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The Bookwatch

Volume 16, Number 10 October 2021 Home | BW Index

Table of Contents

Reviewer's Choice Pets/Wildlife Shelf Self-Help Shelf
Beer/Wine/Spirits Shelf Fantasy/SciFi Shelf  

Reviewer's Choice

Santa 2020: The Final Ride
Jane Shoup
Privately Published
9781735164854 $10.00 pbk / $3.99 Kindle

Santa 2020: The Final Ride is a novel for all ages offering a modern-day twist on the beloved folk legend of Santa Claus, who brings cheer and holiday toys to children each Christmas. The year 2020 was so dreadful that Santa contemplates hanging up his red hat, but the world needs holiday season hope more than ever. Fortunately, Santa doesn't have to tackle his responsibilities alone; he has help from elves, reindeer, Mrs. Claus, and... his replacement? A heartwarming holiday story that is sure to stir warm feelings inside year round, Santa 2020: The Final Ride is highly recommended. It should be noted for personal reading lists that Santa 2020: The Final Ride is also available in a Kindle edition ($3.99).

The Pets/Wildlife Shelf

Integrated Dog Training
Michael Wombacher
New World Library
14 Pamaron Way, Novato CA 94949
9781608686520, $19.95

Integrated Dog Training: The Commonsense Visual Guide to Training Any Dog comes from an author with thirty years of experience in dog training, and is based on an approach that he developed for his successful efforts. The method blends canine psychology, positive reinforcement methods, and a degree of aversive control as it covers how to identify, interrupt, and redirect a dog's attention and behaviors. Black and white photos on every page support an exercise designed to reinforce commands and approaches to dog training that make it easy for dogs and people to follow his guidelines. From the difference between "exercise" and "commands" to the basics of using motivators successfully, Integrated Dog Training is a 'must' for dog trainers who would adopt a more positive approach to training exercises and getting the results they need.

The Self-Help Shelf

Letting Go of Nothing
Peter Russell
New World Library
14 Pamaron Way, Novato CA 94949
9781608687657, $17.95

Letting Go of Nothing: Relax Your Mind and Discover the Wonder of Your True Nature offers a collection of insights into the process of letting go of self-absorption and the kinds of thoughts and feelings that stymie joy and happiness in daily living. It presents a healthy alternative to negativity, helping readers identify these elements not just in daily experience, but mindsets. More importantly, it offers a specific set of practices for developing and supporting fresh perspectives, and teaches how to identify and mitigate the impact of judgments and emotional responses that stress mind and body. From learning how to pause and take a step back to letting go of ego, these are practices anyone can achieve, made simple by the explanations and how-to instructions that relate to better daily living. Self-help readers will find this a simple task leading to a much better life.

The Beer/Wine/Spirits Shelf

Spirits of the Otherworld
Allison Crawbuck and Rhys Everett
9783791387147, $19.95

Spirits of the Otherworld: A Grimoire of Occult Cocktails blends astrology and spirits arts with mixed drinks that reflect occult history in unusual ways. If this is hard to envision, consider the Druids and the 'Oak and Mistletoe' inspired drink that reflects their history; or a rum cocktail made of Peychaud's bitters from New Orleans that reflects voodoo. One expects a collection of drink recipes, but the background review of various occult beliefs and history adds further flavors of insight while blending herbs, spices, and magic in elixirs that will appeal to cocktail drinkers seeking something different in the way of a cookbook of information. It's a worthy, and different, addition to any collection strong in cocktail blends and culinary history.

The Fantasy/SciFi Shelf

Baen Books
P.O. Box 1403, Riverdale, NY 10471

Two excellent new sci-fi reads are recommended for fans who enjoy new additions to ongoing series creations.

Charles E. Gannon's At the End of the World (9781982125479, $8.99) provides a new novel in John Ringo's Black Tide Rising vampire series. No prior familiarity with that series is required, however, in order to enjoy this story of plague, zombies, and a summer cruise on the ketch Crosscurrent Voyager which becomes an effort to survive a cannibal plague. Think Lord of the Flies combined with World War Z to get a sense of the riveting struggles that evolve in a tiny space of remaining teenage angst.

Tony Daniel and Christopher Ruocchio edit World Breakers (9781982125516, $16.00), which gathers short stories by David Weber, Larry Correia, and other Baen authors in military sci-fi pieces of giant tanks and war. The dilemmas posed by these World Breakers are many and vividly portrayed in diverse scenarios.

James A. Cox, Editor-in-Chief
Diane C. Donovan, Editor
Midwest Book Review
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Oregon, WI 53575-1129
phone: 1-608-835-7937

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