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Wisconsin Bookwatch

Volume 12, Number 12 December 2017 Home | WBW Index

Table of Contents

Reviewer's Choice Christmas Shelf Writing/Publishing Shelf
Gaming Shelf Agriculture Shelf Fantasy/SciFi Shelf
American History Shelf World History Shelf Biography Shelf
Woodworking Shelf Literary Studies Shelf Self-Help Shelf
Christian Studies Shelf Judaic Studies Shelf Buddhist Studies Shelf
Pets/Wildlife Shelf Cookbook Shelf Graphic Novel Shelf
Audiobook Shelf Music CD Shelf DVD/Blu-ray Shelf
Poetry Shelf Business Shelf Crafts Shelf
Railroading Shelf Metaphysical Studies Shelf Political Science Shelf
Education Shelf Fiction Shelf Mystery/Suspense Shelf
Needlecraft Shelf Art Shelf Coloring Book Shelf
Military Shelf Automotive Shelf Health/Medicine Shelf


Reviewer's Choice

Bolt and Keel
Kayleen VanderRee and Danielle Gumbley
The Countryman Press
c/o W. W. Norton & Company
500 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10110
www.countrymanpress.com
9781682681206 $14.95 hc / $9.95 Kindle amazon.com

Bolt and Keel is a photographic showcase of furry feline Instagram stars Bolt and Keel. Their handles Kayleen VanderRee and Danielle Gumbley discovered the pair of orphaned kittens while working at a summer camp, only hours before they were scheduled to backpack through the mountains of Vancouver Island in Canada. The local shelter had just closed, so in order to save the kittens, VanderRee and Gumbley brought them along, outfitted with tiny harnesses and leashes to keep them safe. Bolt and Keel took to life on the trail with enthusiasm, and continue their outdoor travel adventures to this day - lovingly protected with form-fitting leashes, lifejackets, and scarves. Over 60 full-color photographs show Bolt and Keel redefining what it means to be an outdoors cat, whether snuggling in sleeping bags, cruising in a kayak, or even toboganning. A joy to browse, Bolt and Keel makes a delightful giftbook for cat lovers everywhere!

Toybox Time Machine
Marty Baumann
IDW Publishing
2765 Truxton Road, San Diego, CA 92106
www.idwpublishing.com
9781631409073, $29.99, HC, 164pp, www.amazon.com

Readers can now recapture an innocent era of boundless commercial creativity in the pages of "Toybox Time Machine: A Catalog of the Coolest Toys Never Made", a beautifully illustrated tome featuring some of the greatest toys that were never actually made -- but would have made the world a better place if they had been. "Toybox Time Machine" is also a tribute to the unbridled imaginations and madcap design and illustrative skills of the toy creators who drew inspiration from the robots, movie monsters, comic books and military men that kids adored, as well as the limitless possibilities of the space age. Showcased in catalogs, comics, trading cards, drug store and department store displays, somehow these toys were imagined by geniuses knew what we wanted before we did. Author and illustrator Marty Baumann has drawn inspiration from these incredible creators and extrapolated on those outlandish and appealing ideas, developing and illustrating an amazing array of fictional toys that reflect that optimistic era. An inherently fascinating and entertaining browse (especially for the Babyboomer generation), "Toybox Time Machine: A Catalog of the Coolest Toys Never Made" will prove to be an enduringly popular addition to personal and community library collections.


The Christmas Shelf

Lowcountry Christmans A to Z
Carole Marsh Longmeyer
Buffton Books
c/o Gallopade
PO Box 2779, Peachtree City, GA 30269
www.gallopade.com
9780635127822, $19.99, HC, 136pp, www.amazon.com

Carole Marsh is the creative force behind more than 15,000 children's books, state-aligned curriculum, and supplemental educational materials. Now in "Lowcountry Christmans A to Z" she presents a volume showcasing more than 400 years history, mystery, legend, lore, luscious recipes and more related, all related to the Christmas season as celebrated in the lovely American lowcountry of the Carolinas, Georgia, Virginia, and the Outer Banks, the marshes, sea, forts, plantations and more. In addition to providing a wealth of trivia facts, of special note is the inclusion of a thematically crafted Bibliography. An unreservedly recommended addition to family and community library collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Lowcountry Christmans A to Z" is also available in a paperback edition (9780635127815, $9.99) and in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

Christmas Jars: Collector's Edition
Jason F. Wright
Shadow Mountain Publishing
P.O. Box 30178, Salt Lake City, Utah 84130-0178
www.shadowmountain.com
9781629723297, $17.99, HC, 240pp, www.amazon.com

Hope Jensen is a young, single woman and an aspiring newspaper writer, and when she receives a much-needed but anonymous Christmas gift, she's determined to find her benefactor. That search leads her to an unusual family with a longstanding Christmas tradition. Sensing a front-page feature article, Hope desperately wants to publish their story, but doing so would be a breach of trust. What she decides to do will change her life forever. "Christmas Jars" by Jason F. Wright is now available for a new generation of appreciative readers in a beautiful hardcover collector's edition that contains the complete text comprised of twenty true, inspiring stories of people who have experienced the Christmas Jar miracle in their own lives by either giving or receiving an anonymous jar full of coins. A truly classic Christmas tale that is both inspired and inspiring, "Christmas Jars" has sparked a national phenomenon of giving and a community tradition of generous outreach across the nation and is unreservedly recommended for personal, community, and academic library collections. It should be noted that "Christmas Jars" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $12.39).

Mrs. Claus: Not the Fairy Tale They Say
Rhonda Parrish
World Weaver Press
www.worldweaverpress.com
9780998702247, $12.95, PB, 214pp, www.amazon.com

When most of us think of Mrs. Claus, we imagine a quiet, plumb, gray haired, congenial, North Pole homebody who finds complete fulfillment in baking cookies, petting reindeer and crafting toys alongside elves? But in the fourteen short stories comprising "Mrs. Claus: Not the Fairy Tale They Say " we find her as a magic-wielding ice goddess; a tough-as-nails Valkyrie; an ancient fae of dubious intentions; a well-meaning witch; a cigar-smoking Latina; a crash-landed alien; and more! Within these pages Mrs. Claus is a hero, a villain, a mother, a spacefarer, a monster hunter, and more. The only thing she decidedly is not, is a sidekick. In "Mrs. Claus: Not the Fairy Tale They Say" it is the turn of Mrs. Claus to shine while stepping out from under Santa's shadow and into the spotlight in fourteen spectacular stories that make her the star! Featuring original short stories by Laura VanArendonk Baugh, C.B. Calsing, DJ Tyrer, Jennifer Lee Rossman, Kristen Lee, Randi Perrin, Michael Leonberger, Andrew Wilson, Ross Van Dusen, MLD Curelas, Maren Matthias, Anne Luebke, Jeff Kuykendall, and Hayley Stone, "Mrs. Claus: Not the Fairy Tale They Say" will prove to be a perennial and year round popular addition to personal and community library collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Mrs. Claus: Not the Fairy Tale They Say" is also available in an inexpensive digital book format (Kindle, $0.99).

Total Christmas Makeover
Melissa Spoelstra
Abingdon Press
2222 Rosa L. Parks Blvd., PO Box 280988, Nashville, TN 37228-0988
www.abingdonpress.com
9781501848704, $16.99, PB, 208pp, www.amazon.com

In the bustle of the Christmas season, it can be easy to get swept up in all of the things to do. But it's important to pause and remember that our priority should be to spend time celebrating Christ's birth and not forget to invite Jesus to his own party. Christmas is far more than a celebration of an event from long ago or a modern holiday centered around shopping. Mindfully take time to listen to how God continues to speak through the Christmas story as the Gospel narratives centered around the birth of Jesus provide encouragement and revelation concerning the love of God and his wisdom for us today. In "Total Christmas Makeover: 31 Devotions to Celebrate with Purpose", author and Bible teacher Melissa Spoelstra provides a practical approach for individuals and families to turn their attention toward God's grace day-by-day as they prepare for Christmas. "Total Christmas Makeover" is a 31-day devotional that presents key scriptures, ideas to implement with each reading, and questions for reflection to guide in the rediscovery of rituals, of relationships, and of rest in order to connect more deeply with Christ this holiday season. Exceptionally well organized and presented, inspired and inspiring, "Total Christmas Makeover" is unreservedly recommended to all members of the Christian community regardless of denominational affiliation. It should be noted that "Total Christmas Makeover" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

The Christmas Letters
Joel S. Goldsmith
Acropolis Books, Inc.
c/o DeVorss Publications
553 Constitution Avenue, Carmarillo, CA 93012-8510
www.devorss.com
9781939542601, $14.95, PB, 208pp, www.amazon.com

"The Christmas Letters" is a compilation of letters, each of which was written by the late Joel S. Goldsmith for the December monthly letter that he had faithfully sent out over the many years of his ministry and directed to his students around the world. Each individual chapter celebrates an aspect of the universal Christ message of Christ in us. The material in "The Christmas Letters" may feel familiar to many, or brand new to others, but what is clear is its purpose to illuminate for the reader the ever-growing richness of his or her own awakening consciousness with its ever-widening depths of spiritual discernment. "The Christmas Letters" touches all aspects of the spiritual journey from sense to Soul, highlighting the profound truth that Christmas is not one day in the year, but is the living reality hidden within each and every soul on earth. As Joel wrote: To understand Christmas Day, then, let us understand clearly that God has planted the seed of Himself in each of us, the seed that springs forth as the fully developed son of God whose mission it is that our lives may be fulfilled, that we may show forth the glory of God which the Master revealed. A simply inspired and inspiring read from cover to cover, "The Christmas Letters" is unreservedly commended to the attention of all members of the Christian community regardless of denominational affiliation. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "The Christmas Letters" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

Time to Get Ready: An Advent, Christmas Reader to Wake Your Soul
Mark A. Villano
Paraclete Press
PO Box 1568, Orleans, MA 02653
www.paracletepress.com
9781612615592, $16.99, PB, 192pp, www.amazon.com

For a great many Christians, Advent and Christmas have simply become just another time of year, albeit more holiday oriented frenetic. It is particularly for their benefit that Mark Villano has written "Time to Get Ready: An Advent, Christmas Reader to Wake Your Soul". Mark (a native of New Haven, Connecticut, studied theology at the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C., where he received his Master of Divinity degree and who has ministered at parishes and campus ministry centers across the country, including at the University of Texas, UCLA, Ohio State University, and Yale) opens up the scriptures, themes, and liturgical traditions of these holy seasons to better appreciate their meaning. He reveals the life-changing mystery of Christ, the invitations of grace all around us. Consider "Time to Get Ready" as a kind of daily retreat, a time to let go of the activity and noise of life and simply listen. "Time to Get Ready" will become a cherished companion for many as they prepare spiritually for Christmas and beyond. While unreservedly recommended for personal, seminary, and church library collections, it should be noted that "Time to Get Ready" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.95).

Christmas in London
Anita Hughes
St. Martin's Griffin
175 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10010
www.stmartins.com
9781250145796, $15.99, PB, 288pp, www.amazon.com

It's a week before Christmas and Louisa Graham is working twelve hour shifts at a bakery on Manhattan's Lower East Side. When a young cooking show assistant comes in from the rain and begs to buy all the cinnamon rolls on her tray, she doesn't know what to do. Louisa is just the baker, and they aren't hers to sell. But the show burned the rolls they were supposed to film that day; so she agrees. The next morning, Louisa finds out that her cinnamon rolls were a hit, but the star of the show was allergic, and the whole crew is supposed to leave for London that afternoon. They want Louisa to step in for their annual Christmas Eve Dinner TV special at Claridge's. It's a great opportunity, and Digby Bunting, Louisa's famous baking idol, will be there. Even if he does seem more interested in her than her food. And then there's Kate, the show's beautiful producer. On their first day in London she runs into the skinny boy she jilted at St. Andrew's in Scotland ten years ago. Now he's a handsome, brilliant mathematician, and newly divorced. Their familiar spark is still there, but so is the scar of how they left things. Kate and Louisa are busy preparing for the show, but old and new flames are complicating their work. Set during London's most festive time of year and filled with delicious food Anita Hughes' "Christmas in London" is a deftly crafted and thoroughly entertaining novel about love and friendship, and the Christmas season's most important lesson -- learning how to ask for and give forgiveness. While unreservedly recommended for both personal reading lists and community library General Fiction collections, it should be noted that "Christmas in London" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

Hope at Christmas
Nancy Naigle
St. Martin's Griffin
175 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10010
www.stmartins.com
9781250108678, $15.99, PB, 352pp, www.amazon.com

Sydney Ragsdale is looking for a fresh start far away from her controlling ex-husband and the self-doubt that has plagued her since the divorce. Returning to her childhood home in Hopewell, North Carolina is just what her soul needs. Praying some Christmas magic will follow her she moves with her daughter to a farmhouse that once belonged to her grandparents. While there Sydney finds solace working at The Book Bea, her favorite bookstore. Single dad Kevin MacAlea, Mac to his friends, is the local high school history teacher and baseball coach. He is also the towns best kept secret - he has been playing Santa since his son was born twelve years ago. Mac loves the enchantment of the season and wants his son to share in his joy. When a catastrophe forces The Book Bea to close before the end of the year, everyone in the small town is feeling the loss. While Sydney is already off-balance by the bad news, her ex-husband breaks a promise to their daughter that sends her running away and threatens the relationship that she has begun with Mac. As Sydney and Mac try to figure out what their next steps are together they will soon discover that there's always hope at Christmas. An impressively crafted novel that reveals author Nancy Naigle's genuine flair for originality and a truly memorable story, "Hope at Christmas" is an extraordinarily entertaining read from cover to cover. While enthusiastically recommended, especially for community library General Fiction collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Hope at Christmas" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $5.99).

The Christmas Blessing
Melody Carlson
Revell
c/o Baker Publishing Group
6030 East Fulton, Ada, MI 49301
www.bakerbooks.com
9780800722708, $16.99, PB, 176pp, www.amazon.com

When she receives the news in late 1944 that her baby's father was shot down in the South Pacific, Amelia Richards loses hope. Jobless and broke, she has nowhere to turn for help but her infant's paternal grandparents. The only problem is, they don't know that she (or their grandson) exists. When Amelia discovers that the family is wealthy and influential, dare she disclose the truth of her relationship with their son? Or could the celebration of the arrival of another unexpected baby nearly two thousand years ago be the answer to her dilemma? With the publication of "The Christmas Blessing", novelist Melody Carlson has written a deftly crafted, consistently entertaining, and ultimately inspiring story of love, hardship, and reconciliation that will leave readers filled with Christmas joy. While very highly recommended for both personal reading lists and community library General Fiction collections, it should be noted that "The Christmas Blessing" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).


The Writing/Publishing Shelf

Damn Fine Story: Mastering the Tools of a Powerful Narrative
Chuck Wendig
Writer's Digest Books
c/o F+W Media
10151 Carver Road, Suite 200, Blue Ash, OH 45242
www.writersdigest.com
9781440348389, $17.99, PB, 232pp, www.amazon.com

Great storytelling is making readers care about your characters, the choices they make, and what happens to them. It's making your audience feel the tension and emotion of a situation right alongside your protagonist. And to tell a damn fine story, you need to understand why and how that caring happens. Using a mix of personal stories, pop fiction examples, and traditional storytelling terms, "Damn Fine Story: Mastering the Tools of a Powerful Narrative" by Chuck Wendig (author of Star Wars: Aftermath) will help aspiring writers to internalize the feel of powerful storytelling. "Damn Fine Story' explores: Freytag's Pyramid for visualizing story structure -- and when to break away from traditional storytelling forms; Character relationships and interactions as the basis of every strong plot - no matter the form or genre; Rising and falling tension that pulls the audience through to the climax and conclusion of the story; Developing themes as a way to craft characters with depth. An impressive and comprehensive course of instruction that is specifically and emphatically recommended for writing a novel, a screenplay, a video game, a comic, or even if just telling stories to friends and family, "Damn Fine Story" is a funny, informative, and effective guide replete with illustrative examples about the art and craft of storytelling. Of special note is the appendix '50 Storytelling Tips'. While highly recommended for personal, professional, community, and academic library Writing/Publishing collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Damn Fine Story" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

Guide To Literary Agents 2018
Cris Freese
Writer's Digest Books
c/o F+W Media
10151 Carver Road, Suite 200, Blue Ash, OH 45242
www.writersdigest.com
9781440352669, $29.99, PB, 336pp, www.amazon.com

Cris Freese is the managing editor of Writer's Digest Books, the editor of Children's Writer's & Illustrator's Market, the editor of Guide to Literary Agents, and the editor of the GLA blog at WritersDigest.com. Now in a fully updated and expanded twenty-seventh edition, the "Guide To Literary Agents 2018" is comprised of hundreds of current listings for literary agents, writing conferences: An exclusive webinar on 'How to Land a Literary Agent' by Danielle Burby and Joanna MacKenzie from the Nelson Literary Agency; and essential, 'real world practical' advice on the use of query letters, the first page, beta readers, and critique groups. This new edition of the "Guide To Literary Agents 2018" also features a one-year subscription to the literary agent content on WritersMarket.com; 'New Agent Spotlights' offering targeted profiles of literary agents who are currently actively building their client lists; instructive advice on getting the most out of literary and publishing conferences. Of special note is the special genre section on science fiction and fantasy. Also new is the information concerning online content that is applicable to working with any and all literary genres. Simply stated, "Guide To Literary Agents 2018" is an indispensable instructional reference and resource for all aspiring authors seeking to get their work into print. Indeed, no personal, professional, community, or academic 'Writing/Publishing' reference collection can be considered complete or comprehensive without the inclusion of the "Guide To Literary Agents 2018". It should be noted that "Guide To Literary Agents 2018" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $14.99).


The Gaming Shelf

Georgian and Victorian Board Games
Ellen Liman
Pointed Leaf Press
136 Baxter Street, Suite 1C, New York, NY 10013
www.pointedleafpress.com
9781938461439, $65.00, HC, 152pp, www.amazon.com

As the turn of the eighteenth century approached Great Britain, more and more parents and teachers embraced a suggestion from the philosopher John Locke: that "learning might be made a play and recreation to children". "Victorian and Georgian Games" draws from the Liman Collection and showcases and demonstrates the beautifully crafted board games of that era. Presenting 60 games that were made for both instruction and delight, this superbly illustrated volume reflects on a transatlantic market that flourished into and throughout the nineteenth century. Although games were often printed on linen or board instead of delicate paper, many fell apart thanks to enthusiastic use. But those that do survive open a window onto the time period in which they were created, reflecting its social and moral priorities as well as every educational subject. "Victorian and Georgian Games" is a unique contribution to following the course of the Industrial Revolution and the expansion of the British empire, alongside changing attitudes toward childhood and education. An extraordinary and highly recommended addition to personal, community, and academic library collections, "Georgian and Victorian Board Games" shines a very special light on a specific corner 19th century children's culture -- and the adults who created it.


The Agriculture Shelf

Chicken DIY
Samantha Johnson, author
Daniel Johnson, photographer
Lumina Media
c/o Fox Chapel Publishing Company
1970 Broad Street N., East Petersburg, PA 17520
www.FoxChapelPublishing.com
9781620082300, $19.99, PB, 192pp, www.amazon.com

Samantha Johnson and her brother, Daniel, have collaborated on a number of rural-living guidebooks, including "How to Raise Rabbits" and "Beginner's Guide to Beekeeping". Both Samantha and Daniel are 4-H alumni and live on the family farm, Fox Hill Farm, in far northern Wisconsin. In "Chicken DIY: 20 Fun-to-Make Projects for Happy and Healthy Chickens" they focus on providing twenty of do-it-yourself projects for building chicken coops for the hobbyist. In "Chicken DIY", aspiring chicken farmers will find creative plans and easy-to-follow construction tips for making a safe and healthy environment for their fine-feathered friends. Veteran farmers and poultry enthusiasts Samantha and Daniel provide complete and easy-to-follow instructions for 20 essential projects, ranging from coops and feeders, to runs, ramps, roosts, incubators, and more. Clear step-by-step color photographs guide the reader through each hands-on project. "Chicken DIY" provides an informative overview of the basic tools and skills needed to complete each project. Of special note is the section explaining the positive benefits and satisfaction of building things yourself. Bonus chapter takes a fascinating look at the history of chicken-keeping. Sustainable and fun, raising chickens is one of the most interesting and rewarding backyard hobbies suitable for urban, suburban, and rural settings. While very highly recommended, especially for community library DIY collections, it should be noted that "Chicken DIY" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $15.33).


The Fantasy/SciFi Shelf

Juni Taisen: Zodiac War
Story by Nisioisin
Art by Hikaru Nakamura
Translated by Nathan A. Collins
Viz Media LLC
1355 Market Street, Suite 200, San Francisco CA 94103
www.viz.com
9781421597508 $18.99 hc / $10.69 Kindle amazon.com

Juni Taisen: Zodiac War is a fast-paced novel with a fantastic premise: every twelve years, the twelve animal-based signs of the Chinese zodiac adopt the form of human warriors and engage in a battle royale to the death, drawing upon all the powers of their star signs. To the winner is granted the ultimate prize - one wish. The signs of the zodiac are not necessarily malevolent toward one another (or are they?), but with an unlimited wish at stake, they do not hold back in the slightest! Packed cover to cover with ferocious action, Juni Taisen: Zodiac War moves at a fast clip, and keeps the reader riveted to the final page.

Fairy Village
Debbie Schramer & Mike Schramer
Familius
1254 Commerce Way, Sanger, CA 93657
www.familius.com
9781945547386, $24.99, HC, 160pp, www.amazon.com

In the pages of "Fairy Village", readers will step into the world of fairies and little folk like never before with an unprecedented collection of magical miniature scenes and objects made entirely from moss, bark, flowers, and other objects found in nature. The collaborative project of Debbie and Mike Schramer, "Fairy Village", is the highly-anticipated followup to their first volume, "Fairy House", and features full-color photography of beautifully crafted whimsical scenes, including a bakery, a clock makers shop, small boutiques, a village pavilion, charming homes, and unbelievable living areas. A compendium of exquisite illustrations, anthropological notes on fairies and their ways, and Victorian era art "Fairy Village" is a lushly illustrated artistic treasure complete with a particularly stunning gatefold displays the full enchanting village. Inherently fascinating from cover to cover, "Fairy Village" is unique and enthusiastically recommended for personal and community library collections.


The American History Shelf

United Tastes
Keith Stavely and Kathleen Fitzgerald
University of Massachusetts Press
PO Box 429, Amherst, MA 01004
9781625343222 $32.95 www.umass.edu/umpress

United Tastes: The Making of the First American Cookbook is a storied history of not only the classic cookbook "American Cookery" (first published in 1796), but also the culinary traditions that formed part of the post-Revolutionary American effort to create a unique national identity. A thorough study of both cultural and culinary American traditions written with scholarly precision, yet accessible to readers of all backgrounds, United Tastes is an excellent contribution to public and college library American History collections. Highly recommended.


The World History Shelf

Game of Thrones and the Medieval Art of War
Ken Mondschein
McFarland & Company
PO Box 611, Jefferson NC 28640
www.mcfarlandpub.com
9780786499700, $35.00, PB, 236pp, www.amazon.com

Acclaimed and prize winning science fiction and fantasy author George R.R. Martin's "A Song of Ice and Fire" novels which are the basis for HBO's wildly popular 'Game of Thrones' television series depicting a medieval world at war. But how accurate are they with reference to historical medieval warfare and culture? Ken Mondschien is an historian and medieval martial arts expert who draws upon his years of experience and expertise to examines in detail how authentically Martin's fictional world reflects the arms and armor, fighting techniques and siege warfare of the Middle Ages. Along the way, Mondschien explores the concept of medievalism modern pop culture's idea of the Middle Ages. As inherently fascinating a read as it is informed and informative, "Game of Thrones and the Medieval Art of War" will prove to be an enduringly popular addition to both community and academic library collections. For the personal reading lists of the legions of "Game of Thrones" fans it should be noted that "Game of Thrones and the Medieval Art of War" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

The World Turns to War
Jay Wertz
Monroe Publications
http://www.monroepublications.com
9780998889306, $39.95, HC, 336pp, www.amazon.com

In the pages of "The World Turns to War", Jay Wertz deftly weaves stories of combat veterans into an event-by-event history of World War II. Included are the words of veterans drawn from all of the involved forces and in all theaters of operation. Illustrated by high-quality photographs, full-color images and detailed maps, "The World Turns to War " presents through a wealth of first hand accounts a complete picture of the war from those who fought it. Included are firsthand recollections and perspectives from those who witnessed the Rise of Fascism in Europe, the invasion of Poland, and the 1940 German Blitzkrieg across Europe. An inherently fascinating and impressively informative read from cover to cover, "The World Turns to War" is unreservedly recommended for both community and academic library 20th Century History and World War II collections, as well as the personal reading lists of students and non-specialist general readers with an interest in these subjects.


The Biography Shelf

Kane from Canada
Mary Kane, editor
ACMRS
Arizona State University
PO Box 874402, Tempe, AZ 85287-4402
http://acmrs.org/publications
9780866985680, $39.95, PB, 322pp, www.amazon.com

George Kane (1916-2008) was at heart a farm boy from Saskatchewan. In the early part of his memoir, "Kane from Canada", he looks back on his family background, schooldays in St Peter's Abbey in Muenster and university years in Vancouver, Toronto, and Northwestern universities before he set off for London on an Imperial Order of Daughters of the Empire two-year graduate scholarship in September 1938. He was never to live in Canada again. Kane spoke rarely about his wartime years, when he served as an officer in the British Army. The greater part of his memoir focuses on 1939-1945, giving a new picture of P.O.W. life in Germany -- and escape attempts. In later life Kane won international acclaim as a medieval scholar. The final chapter, to 1965, includes discussion of the origins of his Piers Plowman editions. At the University of London Kane taught in University College and later held chairs at Royal Holloway (1955-1965) and King's College (1965-1976); afterwards he held the William Rand Kenan Jr. Professorship of English at the University of North Carolina (1976-1987). Deftly edited by his daughter, Mary Kane, "Kane from Canada" is an inherently fascinating and detailed account of an inherently interesting and eventual life. "Kane from Canada" is an especially recommended addition to both community and academic library Contemporary Biography collections.

The Worrier's Guide to the End of the World
Torre Deroche
Seal Press
c/o Hachette Book Group
1290 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10104
9781580056854, $16.99, PB, 288pp, www.amazon.com

Torre DeRoche was at rock bottom following a breakup and her father's death when she crossed paths with the goofy and spirited Masha, who is pursuing her dream of walking the world. When Masha invites Torre to join her pilgrimage through Tuscany (drinking wine, foraging wild berries, and twirling on hillsides) Torre straps on a pair of flimsy street shoes and gets rambling. But the magical hills of Italy are nothing like the dusty and merciless roads of India where the pair wind up, improvising a pilgrimage in the footsteps of Gandhi along his march to the seaside. Hoping to catch that noble man's fearlessness by osmosis and end the journey as wise, svelte, and kick-ass warriors, they are instead unraveled by worry that this might be one adventure too far. Coming face-to-face with their worst fears, they discover the power of friendship to save us from our darkest moments. Deftly written by an author with an authentic gift for engaging her reader's full and complete attention, "The Worrier's Guide to the End of the World: Love, Loss, and Other Catastrophes--through Italy, India, and Beyond" is an inherently fascinating, fun and informative read from cover to cover. While unreservedly recommended, especially for community library collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that Torre DeRoche's The Worrier's Guide to the End of the World: Love, Loss, and Other Catastrophes--through Italy, India, and Beyond" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $11.99).


The Woodworking Shelf

Finishing Wood
Fine Woodworking Editorial Staff
The Taunton Press
63 South Main Street, Newtown, CT 06470
www.taunton.com
9781631868931, $21.95, PB, 220pp, www.amazon.com

A great finish can make even a simple project look terrific. A bad finish can ruin the most well-built, sophisticated piece of furniture. Finishing can be a daunting and mystifying task to many novice woodworkers who fear wrecking their projects at this late stage in the process. "The Woodworking Shelf" is comprised of a collection of articles drawn from the pages of Fine Woodworking magazine and collectively bring together the best information on a rich variety of finishing techniques. Nowadays, finishing wood doesn't just embrace fine clear finishes like shellac and French polishing, but also bright pigmented lacquers, dyes and stains, milk paint, and "crackled" paint. "Finishing Wood" features a whole section on the hot new trend of coloring wood. Also included is timeless information on preparing a surface before you apply a finish (a critical first step) as well as tried-and-true methods for applying all the traditional finishes, whether by brush or by spraying. Profusely illustrated throughout, "Finishing Wood" is an exceptionally 'user friendly' instructional reference in content, organization, and presentation, making it an ideal and highly recommended addition to personal, professional, highschool wood shop, and community library Woodworking collections. It should be noted that "Finishing Wood" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $15.99).

The Art of Coloring Wood
Brian Miller & Marci Crestani, authors
Marc Carter, photographer
Linden Publishing
2006 South Mary, Fresno, CA 93721-9875
www.woodworkerslibrary.com
9781610353052, $24.95, PB, 144pp, www.amazon.com

"The Art of Coloring Wood: A Woodworker's Guide to Understanding Dyes and Chemicals" by Brian Miller (who is a Professor of Wood Technology who teaches an actual course on coloring wood at Cerritos College in Norwalk, CA) is an instructional manual and guide for the woodworker looking to take their woodworking skills to a higher level of craftsmanship using chemicals and dyes instead of stains. Unlike stains that can trap light and obscure grain patterns, chemicals and dyes, when handled properly, are one of the best methods for enhancing a wood's color or accentuating the grain pattern. A classic technique that's been practiced for centuries, coloring wood is a sure way to infuse a "wow" into your woodworking efforts. To keep the information accessible and relevant, The Art of Coloring Wood focuses on the six most popular woods used by woodworkers (maple, quartersawn white oak, mahogany, walnut, cherry and alder) and outlines the unique characteristics with regard to coloring each. After the six woods are outlined, "The Art of Coloring Wood" moves onto the supplies needed, including brushes, sandpaper, and much more, before proceeding into the easy-to-follow and engaging chapters on the different chemicals and dyes that will make your woodworking shine. Each individual chapter offers recipes, insights, and many "a-ha!" moments that make learning about chemicals and dyes both fascinating and within easy reach. Of special note is the inclusion of helpful sidebars throughout "The Art of Coloring Wood" offering tips, mistakes, and countless nuggets of information. Unique and thoroughly 'user friendly' in tone, organization and presentation, "The Art of Coloring Wood" is an extraordinary and highly recommended addition to personal, professional, highschool woodshop, community and academic library Woodworking instructional reference collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "The Art of Coloring Wood" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).


The Literary Studies Shelf

The Case for Fanfiction
Ashley J. Barner
McFarland & Company
PO Box 611, Jefferson NC 28640
www.mcfarlandpub.com
9781476668772, $35.00, PB, 220pp, www.amazon.com

Fan fiction or 'fanfiction' is fiction about characters or settings from an original work of fiction, created by fans of that work rather than by its creator. It is a popular form of fan labor, particularly since the advent of the Internet. Fan fiction is rarely commissioned or authorized by the original work's creator or publisher, and is rarely professionally published. It may or may not infringe on the original author's copyright, depending on the jurisdiction and on such questions as whether or not it qualifies as "fair use". Attitudes of authors and copyright owners of original works to fan fiction have ranged from indifference to encouragement to rejection. Copyright owners have occasionally responded with legal action. Fan fiction is defined by being both related to its subject's canonical fictional universe (often referred to as "canon") and simultaneously existing outside it. Most fan fiction writers assume that their work is read primarily by other fans, and therefore presume that their readers have knowledge of the canon universe (created by a professional writer) in which their works are based. Challenging readers to rethink what they read and why, In "The Case for Fanfiction: Exploring the Pleasures and Practices of a Maligned Craft" author Ashley J. Barner questions the aesthetic assumptions that have led to the devaluing of fanfiction (a genre criticized as both tasteless and derivative) and other "guilty pleasure" reading (and writing), including romance and fantasy. The complicated relationship between "fanfic" and intellectual property rights is discussed in light of the millennia-old tradition of derivative literature, before modern copyright law established originality as the hallmark of great fiction. An inherently fascinating, thoughtful and thought-provoking read from beginning to end, "The Case for Fanfiction" is a unique and very special addition to both community and academic library Contemporary Literary Studies collections. It should be noted for the personal reading lists of students, academia, and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject that "The Case for Fanfiction" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $3.99).

Star-Begotten: A Life Lived in Science Fiction
James Gunn
McFarland & Company
PO Box 611, Jefferson NC 28640
www.mcfarlandpub.com
9781476670263, $25.00, PB, 223pp, www.amazon.com

James Gunn, an emeritus professor of English at the University of Kansas, is the author or editor of 45 books and more than 100 short stories, has been president of both the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America and the Science Fiction Research Association and has received their lifetime awards, including the Grand Master Award of SFWA and induction into the Science Fiction and Fantasy Hall of Fame. In "Star-Begotten: A Life Lived in Science Fiction" he provides his legions of fans with an autobiography of his life and his work -- how each has impacted the other. Impressively informative and (as to be expected from one of the most erudite of the science fiction authors) exceptionally well written, organized and presented. Of special note is the inclusion of tow appendices: 'A Speech Given at the Donation of the Theodore Sturgeon Papers at Kansas University' and 'Publications' (which consists of a bibliographical listing of Books Published, Books Edited, Short Fiction, and Other Publications). An inherently fascinating read in its own right, "Star-Begotten: A Life Lived in Science Fiction" is an especially and unreservedly recommended addition to personal, community, and academic library Literary Studies collections in general, and James Gunn supplemental studies reading lists in particular. It should be noted for fans, students, academia, and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject that "Star-Begotten: A Life Lived in Science Fiction" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $13.99).


The Self-Help Shelf

Breakup Rehab: Creating the Love You Want
Rebekah Freedom McClaskey
New World Library
14 Pamaron Way, Novato, CA 94949
www.newworldlibrary.com
9781608684892, $15.95, PB, 216pp, www.amazon.com

After her devastating breakup, counselor Rebekah Freedom McClaskey became inspired by her work in the field of addiction recovery to craft a safe, step-by-step path to forging healthy relationships based on honesty, love, integrity, and trust. "Breakup Rehab: Creating the Love You Want" specifically and effectively addresses post-breakup chaos, providing clarity and direction so that your next relationship will be your best relationship. This wise, real-world, and often humorous guide acknowledges the state of grief or resignation that comes with a breakup and then walks you through the stages of forgiveness and letting go. Along the way, you'll experience a more compassionate self-awareness as you rebuild self-confidence and learn how to be loved for who you truly are. These steps will propel you forward on your unique path, as you recognize your life's purpose and then travel toward well-being and a love that will set you free. With insights that are both timely and timeless, "Breakup Rehab: Creating the Love You Want" is exceptionally well written, organized and presented, making it very highly recommended, especially for community library Self-Help/Self-Improvement collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Breakup Rehab: Creating the Love You Want" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).


The Christian Studies Shelf

Water My Soul
Darla Weaver
Herald Press
1251 Virginia Avenue, Harrisonburg, VA 22802
www.heraldpress.com
9781513802428, $25.99, HC, 200pp, www.amazon.com

In the pages of "Water My Soul", Darla Weaver (who is a homemaker, a gardener, a writer, and herself an Old Order Mennonite living in the hills of southern Ohio) writes out of her own struggles with Christian discipleship so that others will know Old Order Mennonites are human too and often long to walk closer to God. She bares her heart in these 90 devotionals drawn from her home-centered life in western Ohio's hills. While family, gardening, cooking with home grown food, and living as naturally as possible off the land are the focus of her days, her utmost goal is to serve and honor the Christ she loves and serves through all aspects of her life. Women especially will relate to these meditations generously sprinkled with stories from Darla's children, marriage, community and wider friends and family. Daily scripture readings, poignant prayers and journal prompts or ideas for active responses are included with each inspiring devotional. Inspired and inspiring, "Water My Soul" is truly memorable read from beginning to end and very highly recommended to the attention of all members of the Christian community regardless of their denominational affiliations. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Water My Soul" is also available in a paperback edition (9781513802411, $12.99) and in a digital book format (Kindle, $8.99).

At Play in the Lions' Den
Jim Forrest
Orbis Books
Price Building, Box 302, Maryknoll NY 10545-0302
www.orbisbooks.com
9781626982482, $28.00, PB, 352pp, www.amazon.com

The late Daniel Berrigan (1921-2016) was a Jesuit priest and poet, and arguably one of the preeminent Christian peacemakers of his time. After gaining notoriety in 1968 through his role, along with his brother Philip, in destroying Vietnam-era draft files as part of the Catonsville 9, he helped elevate the Christian conscience with regard to issues of war and violence. Resistance to the Vietnam War was followed by decades of protest against nuclear weapons, including his participation in the first "Plowshares" action, the symbolical disarming of nuclear warheads. But Berrigan's efforts on behalf of life also involved care for the dying and ministry to those suffering from AIDS. In the pages of "At Play in the Lions' Den: A Biography and Memoir of Daniel Berrigan" biographer Jim Forest (who worked with Berrigan in building the Catholic Peace Fellowship in the 1960s) draws on his deep friendship over five decades to provide the most comprehensive and intimate picture yet available of this modern-day prophet. Extensive photographs and quotations from Berrigan's writings complete the portrait. While especially recommended for community, seminary, and academic library Contemporary American Biography & Christian Studies collections, it should be noted for the personal reading lists of clergy, academia, and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the life and work of Daniel Berrigan that "At Play in the Lions' Den" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $13.50).

Jesus Approaches
Elizabeth M. Kelly
Loyola Press
3441 North Ashland Avenue, Chicago, IL 60657
www.loyolapress.com
9780829444728, $16.95, PB, 200pp, www.amazon.com

In "Jesus Approaches: What Contemporary Women Can Learn about Healing, Freedom & Joy from the Women of the New Testament", Elizabeth Kelly shares vivid stories of New Testament women whose encounters with Jesus freed them to flourish in life. The stories are supplemented with moving accounts from her own life, and from the lives of women like you, to demonstrate that sometimes the best way to find healing, strength, and wholeness in Christ is, ironically, to lead with vulnerability and openness. Ultimately, "Jesus Approaches" teaches that finding the fullness of life for which you were created begins with bringing your brokenness to the Lord. An erudite study that is exceptionally inspiring and biblically grounded, "Jesus Approaches" is an extraordinary and highly recommended addition to church and seminary Christian Studies collections. It should be noted for the personal reading lists of clergy and all members of the Christian Community with an interest in the subject that "Jesus Approaches" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $8.49).

One Life, Two Paths
Kimberly Sowell & Brian Saxon
New Hope Publishers
PO Box 830711, Birmingham, AL 35283-0711
www.newhopepublishers.com
9781625915245, $12.99, PB, 176pp, www.amazon.com

The collaborative work of Kimberly Sowell (author of the Thin Red Line Bible study series and the founder and president of Kingdom Heart Ministries) and Brian Saxon (who currently serves as the pastor of a growing church in South Carolina where he encourages Christ followers to live out their maximum potential for God), "One Life, Two Paths: Life Lessons from a Fallen King" reveals key biblical truths, spiritual markers, and principles for successful decision-making. Like King Saul, you can unwittingly make slow, steady choices that carry you to your ruination instead of toward God's intended success. "One Life, Two Paths" shows just how to avoid the traps of fading from God's fellowship and favor. As thoroughly 'reader friendly' in organization and presentation as it is inspired and inspiring in tone and content, "One Life, Two Paths" is unreservedly recommended to all members of the Christian community regardless of denominational affiliation. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "One Life, Two Paths" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $5.59).

Saving Images
Gordan W. Lathrop
Fortress Press
P.O. Box 1209, Minneapolis, MN 55440-1209
http://fortresspress.com
9781506406336, $34.00, HC, 224pp, www.amazon.com

The Protestant Reformation emphasized the centrality of scripture to Christian life; the twentieth-century liturgical movement emphasized the Bible's place at the heart of liturgy. But we have not yet explored the place of the Bible as the subject of critical exegesis in contemporary liturgy, argues Gordon W. Lathrop (who has taught liturgy at Wartburg Theological Seminary, the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia, Yale Divinity School, and the Virginia Theological Seminary). In "Saving Images: The Presence of the Bible in Christian Liturgy" he seeks to remedy that lack because it is critical historical scholarship that has shown us the grounding of the text in the life of the assembly and the role of intertextuality in its creation. "Saving" and revitalizing images of the past are at the heart of scripture and are the work of the gathered community. Lathrop finds patterns in biblical narratives that suggest revising our models of the "shape" of liturgy (Dix and Schmemann) and our understanding of baptism, preaching, Eucharist, and congregational prayer. "Saving Images" lifts up the visual imagery at the Dura Europos house church and elsewhere as a corrective to the supersessionist impulse in much Christian typology. It also identifies the liturgical imperative as seriousness about the present rather than an effort to dwell in an imagined past. Impressively informed and informative, "Saving Images" is a call for a new, reconceived biblical-liturgical movement that takes seriously both biblical scholarship and the mystery at the heart of worship. As thoughtful and thought-provoking as it is inspired and inspiring, "Saving Images" is very highly recommended for church, seminary, and academic library Christian Studies collections. It should be noted for the personal reading lists of theology students, clergy, and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject that "Saving Images" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $29.57).

Philippians
Paul A. Holloway
Fortress Press
P.O. Box 1209, Minneapolis, MN 55440-1209
http://fortresspress.com
9780800660963, $49.98, HC, 286pp, www.amazon.com

Paul's letter to the Philippians offers spiritual treasures to the reader, as well as historical and theological puzzles. In "Philippians", Paul A. Holloway (University Professor of Classics and Ancient Christianity at Sewanee: The University of the South) treats the letter as a literary unity and a letter of consolation, according to Greek and Roman understandings of that genre, written probably in Rome and thus the latest of Paul's letters to come down to us. Adapting the methodology of what Professor Holloway calls a new history of religions perspective, he attends carefully to the religious topoi of Philippians, especially the metamorphic myth in chapter 2, and draws significant conclusions about Paul's personalism and "mysticism". With succinct and judicious treatments of pertinent exegetical and theological issues throughout, Professor Holloway draws richly on Jewish, Greek, and Roman comparative material to present a complex understanding of the apostle as a Hellenized and Romanized Jew. The newest addition to the outstanding Fortress Press series 'Hermeneia: A Critical and Historical Commentary on the Bible', "Philippians" is unreservedly recommended for church, seminary, college, and university library New Testament Theology and collections in general, and Pilippians supplemental studies reading lists in particular.

Auden, The Psalms, and Me
J. Chester Johnson
Church Publishing
PO Box 931294, Atlanta, GA 31193-1294
https://www.churchpublishing.org
9780898699647, $16.00, PB, 168pp, www.amazon.com

In the nearly 40 years since the advent of the 1979 Book of Common Prayer, the re-translation of the Psalter created for that book has become a standard, used not only by Episcopalians, but adopted by others into their own worship service books and liturgies. Now J. Chester Johnson, one of the two surviving members of the Committee that produced the re-translation, has agreed for the first time to tell the story of this Psalter and the little-known but vital part played in it by acclaimed poet W. H. Auden, whom Johnson replaced on the committee when Auden decided to return to live in England. Despite Auden's ambivalence about changes in the Episcopal Book of Common Prayer, he wrote associated articles and poems, authored many letters, some of special liturgical and spiritual significance, and attended Psalter drafting committee meetings. "Auden, The Psalms, and Me" not only illuminates this untold part of the Episcopal Psalter story but also describes the key elements that drove the creation of this special re-translation edition from Church Publishing. Impressively informative and exceptionally well organized and presented, "Auden, The Psalms, and Me" is especially commended to the attention of scholars, poets, theologians, members of the Episcopal Church, particularly as prayer book revision becomes an active conversation again. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Auden, The Psalms, and Me" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

One by One
David A. Bednar
Deseret Books
57 West South Temple, Salt Lake City, UT 84101
www.deseretbook.com
9781629723822, $21.99, HC, 176pp, www.amazon.com

In Mormon theology the Lord tells his followers that "the worth of souls is great" in His sight (Doctrine and Covenants 18:10). But how can we know what is true? How can we gain a greater sense of the worth of every soul -- including our own? In "One by One", Elder David A. Bednar (who was called to serve as a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in 2004.) offers a compelling look at a pattern the Lord uses to bless His people: He works with us on an individual basis, one by one. Demonstrating that pattern as it occurs throughout the scriptures, in the lives of many Church leaders, and in his own ministry, Elder Bednar opens our hearts to the Lord's love for us. He teaches that by ministering as the Savior does, one by one, we can be more powerful instruments in His hands to do His work, From a "guided tour" through scriptural illustrations to an array of touching personal accounts, "One by One" is an important new book offers hope and guidance for anyone who has ever wondered, "Do I matter to the Lord?" While a very highly recommended, inspired and inspiring read, it should be noted that "One by One" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $12.99).

A Woman Overwhelmed
Hayley DiMarco
Abingdon Press
2222 Rosa L. Parks Blvd., PO Box 280988, Nashville, TN 37228-0988
www.abingdonpress.com
9781501840708, $16.99, PB, 208pp, www.amazon.com

The reason they say that a woman's work is never done is because it isn't! Women are often simply overwhelmed by the demands and circumstances of life, resulting in stress, fear, worry, impatience, fatigue, frustration, and even depression. The truth is that women (and men) were created to be overwhelmed, not by life, but by God! When we learn to be overwhelmed by God, the fruit in our lives goes from rotten to fragrant -- filling our days with peace, hope, love, and joy. In "A Woman Overwhelmed: Finding God in the Messes of Life", the wife of a pastor, Hayley DiMarco shares biblical insights and personal stories to offer a glimpse at the comedy of an overwhelmed life while encouraging us to discover the depths and heights of God's love and power. Her readers will be empowered to find freedom in becoming overwhelmed with who God is by learning to focus on what we know about God so that we can hold onto faith even when it seems that all is lost. For it is when an overwhelmed woman gives up the mission of me and exchanges it for the mission of God that being overwhelmed becomes a good thing. The underlying message of "A Woman Overwhelmed" is that we all can choose to bask in the abundance of the Father as his unfathomable depths can surely replace our fathomable messes. Exceptionally well written, organized and presented, "A Woman Overwhelmed" is inspired and inspiring, making it unreservedly recommended to all members of the Christian community regardless of denominational affiliations. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "A Woman Overwhelmed" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.00) and as a complete and unabridged audio book (9781683669647, $15.92, CD).

Pope Francis and the Caring Society
Robert M. Whaples, editor
The Independent Institute
100 Swan Way, Oakland, CA 94621-1428
www.independent.org
9781598132878, $24.95, HC, 256pp, www.amazon.com

Robert M. Whaples is a Research Fellow at the Independent Institute, Co-Editor and Managing Editor for The Independent Review, Professor of Economics at Wake Forest University, Director and Book Review Editor for EH.NET, and a member of the Board of Advisors for the Center on Culture and Civil Society at the Independent Institute. He received his Ph.D. in economics from the University of Pennsylvania. In "Pope Francis and the Caring Society" Professor Whaples provides a thoughtful exploration of the Pope Francis's earnest call for a dialogue on building a truly compassionate society. Pope Francis's fervent support for uplifting the poor and protecting the environment has inspired far-reaching discussions worldwide: Do capitalism and socialism have positive or negative social consequences? What is the most effective way to fight poverty? And what value does a religious perspective offer in addressing moral, political, and economic problems? "Pope Francis and the Caring Society" is an indispensable resource for consideration of these vital questions and provides an integrated perspective on Francis and the issues he has raised, examining the intersection of religion, politics, and economics. Readers will discover important historical and cultural context for considering Francis's views, along with alternative solutions for environmental preservation, a defense of Francis's criticism of power and privilege, a case for market-based entrepreneurship and private charity as potent tools for fighting poverty, and an examination of Francis's philosophy of the family. "Pope Francis and the Caring Society" is essential reading for anyone interested in creating a better, more caring, and prosperous world. While unreservedly recommended for both community, seminary, and academic library collections, it should be noted for all members of the Catholic community, as well as non-Catholic readers with an interest in the thought and theology of Pope Francis, that "Pope Francis and the Caring Society" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $16.99).


The Judaic Studies Shelf

A Torah Giant
Rabbi Dr. Shuly Yanklowitz, editor
Urim Publications
c/o Lambda Publishers
527 Empire Boulevard, Brooklyn, New York 11225
www.UrimPublications.com
9789655242713, $28.95, HC, 320pp, www.amazon.com

In the pages of "A Torah Giant: The Intellectual Legacy of Rabbi Dr. Irving (Yitz) Greenberg", readers will discover the breadth of wisdom provided by this generation's giant of Torah. Rabbi Irving "Yitz" Greenberg. Rabbi Yitz is one of the most renowned leaders in contemporary Jewish communal life. His dedication to foster a more interconnected and vibrant Judaism has been felt across the academic and broader world. In this new study of his work as compiled and edited by Rabbi Dr. Shmuly Yanklowitz (President & Dean of Valley Beit Midrash, the Founder & President of Uri L'Tzedek, and Founder & CEO of Shamayim V'Aret), the legacy of Rabbi Yitz is discussed at length by those who have been affected by his inclusive model of contemporary Judaism, his approachable erudition, commitment to fostering meaningful interfaith dialogue, and constant striving to make the world a more just place. These intellectual progenies divulge the lasting impact Rabbi Yitz has had on their lives and the lives of people around the globe. Exceptionally well organized and presented, "A Torah Giant" is unreservedly recommended for personal, synagogue, community, and academic library Judaic Theology collections and supplemental studies reading lists.

Of Tears and Laughter
Menachem M Schneerson
Kehot Publication Society
770 Eastern Parkway, Brooklyn, NY 11213
www.kehot.com
9780826607607, $12.95, HC, 80pp, www.amazon.com

A erudite Talmudic exegesis by the Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson, "Of Tears and Laughter" is deftly adapted from two siyumim delivered by the Rebbe (on the tractates Makkot and Yoma). "Of Tears and Laughter" focuses on two moving Talmudic stories that occurred in the aftermath of the destruction of the second Beit Hamikdash. With his unique, holistic approach to Torah study, the Rebbe explores the positions taken by the leading Sages of that time, and examines their lives and teachings. With a spotlight on Rabbi Akiva and his response, the Rebbe searches the Talmud for laws taught by Rabbi Akiva, his life's story and allusions to the composition of his very soul, to provide a comprehensive and insightful reasoning for Rabbi Akiva's optimism. In the final analysis the Rebbe provides a breathtaking mosaic of the leaders of the Jewish people in the post second Beit Hamikdash era. As informed and informative as it is thoughtful and thought-provoking, "Of Tears and Laughter" is unreservedly recommended for personal, synagogue, and academic library Judaic Studies collections and supplemental reading lists.

Ceremony & Celebration
Rabbi Jonathan Sacks
Maggid
Koren Publishers Jerusalem Ltd.
c/o Toby Press
PO Box 8531, New Milford, CT 06776-8531
www.korenpub.com
9781592640256, $24.95, HC, 336pp, www.amazon.com

Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks is one of the world's leading Jewish thinkers and moral voices of our time, laureate of the 2016 Templeton Prize. Educated at Oxford and Cambridge Universities, King's College London and Jews' College, Rabbi Sacks served as chief rabbi of the United Hebrew Congregations of the Commonwealth from 1991 until 2013. In the pages of "Ceremony & Celebration: Introduction to the Holidays" Rabbi Sacks response to such questions as: When did Rosh HaShana (the anniversary of creation) become a day of judgement?; How does Yom Kippur unite the priest's atonement with the prophet's repentance?; What makes Kohelet (read on Sukkot) the most joyful book in the Bible?; Why is the remembrance of the Pesah story so central to Jewish morality?; Which does Shavuot really celebrate the law or the land? Bringing together Rabbi Sacks's acclaimed introductions to the Koren Sacks Mahzorim, "Ceremony & Celebration: Introduction to the Holidays" reveals the stunning and complex interplay of biblical laws, rabbinic edicts, liturgical themes, communal rituals and profound religious meaning of each of the five central Jewish holidays. While unreservedly recommended for synagogue, community, and academic library Judaic Studies collections, it should be noted for the personal reading lists of students, academia, and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject that "Ceremony & Celebration: Introduction to the Holidays" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $7.99).

#Parasha
Sivan Rahav-Meir
Menorah Books
Koren Publishers Jerusalem Ltd.
c/o Toby Press
PO Box 8531, New Milford, CT 06776-8531
www.korenpub.com
9781592644803, $24.95, HC, 350pp, www.amazon.com

For Sivan Rahav-Meir, the Torah is a fountain of wisdom for relationships, education, government, finances, self-growth, and beyond. As a seasoned journalist in Israel, Rahav-Meir has interviewed heads of state and senior political officials, and has uncovered exclusive stories that have impacted the discourse in Israel. With a wealth of real-life experience, she applies her insights to the weekly Torah portion. "#Parasha: Weekly Insights from a Leading Israeli Journalist" is Rahav-Meir's debut book in English. Translated from her bestselling Hebrew parasha book, Rahav-Meir shares brief reflections on the Torah from sources past and present, infused with a thought-provoking message for the entire family. What began as short posts shared on social media has stimulated ongoing conversation amongst religious, traditional and progressive families. Now, she brings her inspiration to the English-speaking public. Offering particularly informative, thoughtful, and thought-provoking perspectives, "#Parasha: Weekly Insights from a Leading Israeli Journalist" is unreservedly recommended for both community and academic library collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "#Parasha: Weekly Insights from a Leading Israeli Journalist" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $7.99).


The Buddhist Studies Shelf

Buddha's Little Book of Life
Mark Zocchi
Red Wheel/Weiser/Conari
65 Parker Street, Suite 7, Newburyport, MA 01950
www.redwheelweiser.com
9781571747990 $16.95 pbk / $16.08 Kindle amazon.com

Buddha's Little Book of Life: Daily Wisdom from the Great Masters, Teachers, and Writers of All Time is an anthology of inspirational quotes selected from Gautama Buddha and other spiritual leaders including the 14th Dalai Lama, and Thich Nhat Hanh, as well as other great worthies including Cicero, Lao Tzu, Mother Teresa, and Shakespeare. "Pain in life is inevitable, but misery is optional. -Henry Ward Beecher" A smattering of simple, black-and-white brushstroke art intersperses the words of wisdom, in this excellent resource for daily inspiration or extended contemplation. Highly recommended.


The Pets/Wildlife Shelf

Cloud: Wild Stallion Of The Rockies
Ginger Kathrens
Lumina Media
Fox Chapel Publishing Company
1970 Broad Street N., East Petersburg, PA 17520
www.FoxChapelPublishing.com
9781620082423, $19.99, PB, 160pp, www.amazon.com

Beautifully designed, this newly revised and updated edition of "Cloud: Wild Stallion Of The Rockies" is elaborately photographed and divided into seventeen chapters that follow the life of a wild stallion, just one of hundreds of horses that have roamed wild in the Rocky Mountains for two hundred years. "Cloud: Wild Stallion Of The Rockies" begins with the birth of a helpless white colt named Cloud. Each subsequent chapter documents Cloud's interaction with his mare Raven, his brother Diamond, and other colts in the wild as well as his adventures encountering dangerous predators, older stallions, and human trappers. "Cloud: Wild Stallion Of The Rockies" follows Cloud over the course of five years, taking note of his physical and behavioral development, as his begins to take on more of a leadership role in the band of wild bachelors he's joined, to become a fighter, a survivor, and a father. Author Ginger Kathrens's emotional involvement in Cloud's story is palpable, such as when she tearfully watches the young stallion get captured by trappers. Due to his unusual coloration, he is set free, though the other members of his band and sisters are removed and sold. Returning to the mountains every season, Ginger continued to look for Cloud in the vast wild habitat, always relieved to find him still living, despite fights, predators, and encounters with trappers. Ginger is later is touched to see how Cloud, the five-year-old mare, grazes with his yearling son, the first of his new family. Ginger's gripping observations of wild horses of the Arrowheads, their fights, struggles, and alliances, give the reader much insight into the fascinating behavior of these wild horses. Now published in paperback for the first time, this updated and fully redesigned volume coincides with the one year anniversary of the last sighting of Cloud. While very highly recommended, especially for community and academic library Pets/Wildlife collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Cloud: Wild Stallion Of The Rockies" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $14.49).


The Cookbook Shelf

Betty Crocker Christmas Cookbook
Betty Crocker
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
215 Park Avenue South, New York, NY 10003
www.hmhco.com
9781328710291, $19.99, PB, 304pp, www.amazon.com

What would be Christmas without memorable meals with family and friends? Whether making appetizers and drinks for casual entertaining, a show-stopper meal for family, food gifts for friends, or special cakes and desserts that only come out once a year, this outstanding edition of the "Betty Crocker Christmas Cookbook" will have a wealth of thoroughly 'kitchen cook friendly' recipes for any and all Christmas themed occasions. A simply delightful seasonal cookbook, the "Betty Crocker Christmas Cookbook" combines comforting tradition with new ideas ranging from simple Sugar Cookies and Roast Turkey with Thyme to Roasted Brined Duck with Chipotle Glaze and Holiday Aloo Gobi. In addition, there is a profusion of truly helpful make-ahead tips and special features to add to the holiday cheer. Even the most novice of home entertainers will learn how to effectively set up a home bar and make an Elf-Tini, host a fondue party, as well as fun ways to wrap and give cookies, creating new Christmas traditions, and so much more. "Betty Crocker Christmas Cookbook" is an enticing compendium will be a go-to cookbook year after year, proving that while Christmas is busy, it can also be delicious fun. Beautifully illustrated, a pleasure to browse through, and inspiring to plan menus with, "Betty Crocker Christmas Cookbook" will prove to be an enduringly popular and appreciated addition to personal, family, and community library cookbook collections. It should be noted that this edition of the "Betty Crocker Christmas Cookbook" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

The Vermont Non-GMO Cookbook
Tracey Medeiros
Skyhorse Publishing, Inc.
307 West 36th Street, 11th Floor, New York, NY 10018
www.skyhorsepublishing.com
9781510722729, $29.99, HC, 408pp, www.amazon.com

Compiled by culinary expert Tracey Medeiros, "The Vermont Non-GMO Cookbook" is a compendium of thoroughly 'kitchen cook friendly' recipes that connect us with local organic farmlands and the farmers who nurture and care for them. It also serves as a guide for eating organically and non-GMO in Vermont and celebrates the region's esteemed organic food producers, farmers, cheesemakers, dairy farmers, and the chefs who partner with them to create delicious, innovative, organic, and non-GMO recipes. Profusely illustrated throughout, the dishes range from: Maple Kale Salad with Toasted Almonds, Parmigiano-Reggiano Cheese, and Rustic Croutons; Apple-Raspberry Pie; and Roasted Rainbow Potatoes with Herb Pesto;
Baked Frittata with Baby Spinach, Roasted Red Peppers, and Quark Cheese; Grilled Beef Tenderloin with Rutabaga Puree, Braised Cabbage, and Horseradish Cream; and Old-Fashioned Organic Cream Cheese Cheesecake. In addition to palate pleasing and appetite satisfying recipes, "The Vermont Non-GMO Cookbook" includes informative profiles of a hand-selected group of pioneering organic Vermont farmers, chefs, and non-GMO artisans. A pleasure to browse through and ideal for planning menus with, "The Vermont Non-GMO Cookbook" is an ideal and highly recommended addition to personal, family, and community library Regional Cookbook collections. It should be noted that "The Vermont Non-GMO Cookbook" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $16.19).

The Power of Pasta
Bruno Serato
SelectBooks, Inc.
87 Walker Street, Suite B1, New York City, NY 10013
www.selectbooks.com
9781590794357, $28.95, HC, 288pp, www.amazon.com

In 1987, Italian immigrant Bruno Serato moved to Orange County, Ca. and took over the ownership of the fine dining restaurant, which now features steak and seafood with a Northern Italian cuisine. His award-winning excellence and signature entrees befit the establishment, and has been hailed as bringing fine dining to Orange County. Anaheim White House Restaurant, and his philosophy is simple: to treat each and every one of his patrons as a distinguished guest in his home. In furtherance of this goal he now has drawn upon his years of experience and expertise to compile a wealth of palate pleasing, appetite satisfying, kitchen cook friendly recipes showcasing "The Power of Pasta" showcasing 43 simply outstanding recipes drawn directly from the menus of his award-winning restaurant. After presenting his own personal and inherently fascinating life story, the presented recipes range from Duck Legs in Potato Nests; Cheese Ravioli with Porcini Mushroom Sauce; Italian Branzino; and Pasta Calabrese; to Penne Alla Vodka; Poached Salmon Au Chocolat; Spaghetti Aglio E Olio; and Creme Brulee. Beautifully illustrated throughout, "The Power of Pasta" is a truly exceptional and unreservedly recommended addition to personal, professional, and community library cookbook collections. It should be noted that "The Power of Pasta" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

Food on Tap: Cooking with Craft Beer
Lori Rice
The Countryman Press
c/o W. W. Norton & Company
500 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10110
www.countrymanpress.com

In the age of craft beer, the varieties seem endless. From floral IPAs to rich porters and stouts, and tart lambic ales to gluten-free options, there is a beer for every taste. "Food on Tap: Cooking with Craft Beer" by Lori Rice (a photographer, writer, and nutritional scientist, and the creator of the food blog Fake Food Free) is an accessible guide to using these delicious brews to add complex flavor and exciting twists to classic and new recipes ranging from Tomato Blue Cheese Tarts with Belgian Golden Ale Crust; Autumn Oktoberfest Fish Stew; Lentil Burgers with Wheat Beer Barbecue Sauce; and Pilsner Battered Fried Summer Squash Slices with Creamy Ranch Beer Dip; to Oatmeal Raisin and Barleywine Cookies; Holiday Ale Cut-Out Cookies; Saison Black Pepper Brownies, and Chocolate Pecan Coconut Porter Cake. A pleasure to simply browse through, enhanced with a wealth of beautiful full color photography, and an ideal gift for any craft beer brewer, "Food on Tap: Cooking with Craft Beer" will prove to be an enduringly popular addition to personal, family, professional, and community library cookbook collections.

Tasting Hygge
Leela Cyd
The Countryman Press
c/o W. W. Norton & Company
500 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10110
www.countrymanpress.com
9781682681725, $18.95, HC, 160pp, www.amazon.com

Hygge is a Danish and Norwegian word which can be described as a quality of cosiness and comfortable conviviality that engenders a feeling of contentment or well-being. "Tasting Hygge: Joyful Recipes for Cozy Days and Nights" by food, lifestyle, and travel photographer and storyteller Leela Cyd is a beautifully and profusely illustrated compendium of recipes for fifty dishes that would makes everyone feel warm and cared for -- which is the very essence of hygge. Organized into five sensory experiences (Calm, Bright, Warm, Spiced, and Smooth) the showcases recipes range from Mushroom Pate with Pickled Shallots and Thyme; Champagne Strawberries with Molasses Cream; Glazed Turnip Soup with Parsley and Parmesan; and Almond Sourdough Pancakes; to Baked Cannellini Beans with Tomatoes and Rosemary; Roasted Squash and Sage Grilled Cheese; Enriched Polenta Porridge with Raspberries and Creme Fraiche; Candied Citrus Rose Syrup; and Fairy Bowl with Ice Cream and Honey Sponge Cake. Of special note is information on Tea Blending. A unique and thoroughly 'kitchen cook friendly' addition to personal, family, and community library cookbook collections, "Tasting Hygge" is the perfect introduction to Scandinavian cuisine.

The Baby-Led Feeding Cookbook
Aileen Cox Blundell
Gill & MacMillan
c/o Dufour Editions, Inc.
PO Box 7, 124 Byers Road, Chester Springs, PA 19425-0007
www.dufoureditions.com
9780717172634, $29.00, HC, 240pp, www.amazon.com

Aileen Cox Blundell is a mother of three. When her daughter, Jade, was born in 2002, the only way to get her to eat anything was to place the food in front of her and let her take control and feed herself. Seeing the incredible benefits of allowing her own children to experiment with food at an early age led her to create the popular blog and website Baby-Led Feeding, which recently won awards for both Best Irish Parenting Blog, and Best Irish Food and Drink Blog. Now with "The Baby-Led Feeding Cookbook: A New Healthy Way of Eating For Your Baby That the Whole Family Will Love" she draws upon her years of experience and expertise to compile a culinary wealth of 'baby-friendly' recipes that are as kitchen cook friendly as they are palate pleasing, appetite satisfying, wonderfully nutritious, and down right fun! From breakfast fare, to kid-friendly lunches, to family dinners, soups and sauces, this colorfully illustrated cookbook is certain to be an enduringly popular addition to family and community library collections, Of special note are the sections 'Tummy Treats for Little Hands' and 'Yippee! Let's Have a Party'. With dishes ranging from Baked French Toast; Roasted Vegetable Mini-Lasagnes; and Healthy Chicken Nuggets with Potato Wedges; to Coconut Milk Ice-Cream Sambos; Raw Snickers Bites; and Raspberry Frosting Birthday Cake, it should be noted that "The Baby-Led Feeding Cookbook" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $7.99).


The Graphic Novel Shelf

Tekken: Blood Feud
Cavan Scott, author
Andie Tong, artist
Titan Comics
www.titan-comics.com
9781785861284 $16.99 amazon.com

Tekken: Blood Feud (also titled "Tekken Volume 1") is the full-color graphic novel compilation of the four-issue "Tekken: Blood Feud" comic book mini-series. Based on the supremely popular Tekken series of head-to-head fighting video games (42.5 million units sold as of this writing), Tekken: Blood Feud brings the fast-paced, arcade battle action to glorious life with Andie Tong's dynamic artwork. Set between the events of games Tekken 6 and the recently released Tekken 7, the story begins with an impromptu summoning of Iron Fist fighters, including the ruthless assassin Nina Williams, the hot-blooded brawler Paul Phoenix, the youthful martial arts prodigy Ling Xiaoyu, and more. Jin Kazama, heir to the notorious Mishima syndicate, has assembled them all in order to retrieve an artifact of limitless celestial power, before Jin's cruel grandfather Heihachi Mishima can get his hands on it. But Jin is on the brink of succumbing to the devil madness in his own blood, and Jin's father Kazuya Mishima (who has already embraced the devil within) has his own nefarious agenda! Tekken: Blood Feud is a "must-read" for Tekken fans, and especially recommended for connoisseurs of high-octane fighting action. Tekken: Blood Feud is a complete, self-contained story; hopefully, the Volume 1 designation implies that more graphic novels are to come!

Wolfenstein: The Deep
Dan Watters, author
Piotr Kowalski and Ronilson Freire, artists
Titan Comics
www.titan-comics.com
9781785863417, $16.99 pbk / $11.99 Kindle amazon.com

"Wolfenstein: The Deep" is a full-color graphic novel compilation of "Wolfenstein" issues #1-2 and the prequel to the anticipated video game "Wolfenstein: The New Colossus", forthcoming from acclaimed software publisher Bethesda. The harrowing, bloody saga is set in an alternate- history 1960 where Nazis won World War II, and a scarce few rebels struggle to survive in occupied America. Tales of the mysterious fascist hunter B.J. "Terror-Billy" Blazkowicz are virtually the only ray of hope left! Dark yet captivating, Wolfenstein: The Deep is a choice pick for alternate-history and video game comic enthusiasts. Also highly recommended for connoisseurs is "The Evil Within: The Interlude" (9781785863295, $16.99), a hardcover graphic novel compilation of "The Evil Within: The Interlude" issues #1-2 and a grim prequel to the Bethseda survival-horror video game "The Evil Within 2".

The Mercenary: The Cult of the Sacred Fire
Vincente Segrelles, author/illustrator
NBM Publishing
160 Broadway, Ste. 700, East Wing, New York, NY 10038
www.nbmpub.com
9781681121246, $17.99, HC, 64pp, www.amazon.com

Simply stated, the museum quality of Vincente Segrelles artwork is legendary and brings his original and fascinating story of a mercenary soldier on a strange and multilayered planet vividly to life. This new 40th Anniversary edition of "The Mercenary: The Cult of the Sacred Fire" will bring this first volume of an epic and exquisitely graphic novel series to the attention of a whole new generation of appreciative readers. Of very special note is the last part of "The Mercenary: The Cult of the Sacred Fire" in which Vincente explains and illustrates in considerable background detail how he approached drawing and writing this truly memorable and consistently entertainingly original graphic novel -- including the use of female nudity essential germane to the storyline of his action/adventure saga. "The Mercenary: The Cult of the Sacred Fire" is unreservedly recommended for dedicated graphic novel fans.

Rivers of London: Detective Stories
Ben Aaronovitch, author
Lee Sullivan, illustrator
Titan Books
www.titanbooks.com
9781785861710, $16.99, PB, 128pp, www.amazon.com

The fourth volume in the acclaimed graphic novel series "Rivers of London", CSI meets Harry Potter in the pages of "Detective Stories", a superbly created new graphic novel written by Ben Aaronovitch and illustrated by Lee Sullivan. "Detective Stories" features Police Constable Peter Grant, his partner, Sahra Guleed, and their associates, as they tackle supernatural crime on the streets of London. Tying directly into the Rivers of London continuity, "Detective Stories" is a riveting read from beginning to end and is unreservedly recommended for the personal reading lists of dedicated graphic novel enthusiasts and will prove to be an extraordinary and popular addition to community library graphic novel collections. It should be noted that "Rivers of London: Detective Stories" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.59).

Doctor Who: War Of Gods
Nick Abadzis, author
Giorgia Sposito, illustrator
Titan Books
www.titanbooks.com
9781785860867, $22.99, HC, 112pp, www.amazon.com

Volume 7 of this particular Doctor Who series collection, "War Of Gods" showcases the epic conclusion of the Tenth Doctor's Year Two adventures! On the Shining Horizon, Dorothy and Gabby become concerned about Anubis' behavior -- portending the return of the terrible Sutekh! An absolute 'must' for the legions of Doctor Who fans, "War Of Gods" continues to expand the Doctor Who universe and is unfailingly entertaining from first page to last. Another epic Doctor Who title from Titan Books, "War Of Gods" is unreservedly recommended for personal reading lists and will prove to be an exceptionally and enduringly popular addition to community library Graphic Novel collections. It should be noted that "Doctor Who: War Of Gods" is also available in a paperback edition (9781785860904, $16.99) and in a digital book format (Kindle, $6.71).

Red Range: A Wild Western Adventure
Joe R. Lansdale, author
Sam Glanzman, illustrator
IDW Publishing
2765 Truxton Road, San Diego, CA 92106
www.idwpublishing.com
9781631409943, $19.99, HC, 112pp, www.amazon.com

Memorably written by multiple Bram Stoker Award winner Joe R. Lansdale, and deftly illustrated by Golden Age comic book master and WWII veteran, Sam J. Glanzman, "Red Range: A Wild Western Adventure" from IDW presents this classic graphic novel in color for the first time, and includes an Introduction by Mojo Press' Richard Klaw and an Afterword by Stephen R. Bissette. As a bonus, this edition of "Red Range: A Wild Western Adventure" contains a little-seen story by Glanzman, "I Could Eat a Horse!" "Red Range: A Wild Western Adventure" is a western action/adventure saga is replete with a monstrous, genre-bending story twist that is nothing less than mind-blowing. This is a the tale of Red Mask, a tough as nails vigilante who rides to fight the tragic racism of a Klan-dominated Texas., A tale of savage vengeance, stone cold justice, as well as a beastly and bloody comeuppance, "Red Range: A Wild Western Adventure" is a 'must' for graphic novel enthusiasts in general, and western graphic novel fans in particular.

Children of the Whales Volume 1
Abi Umeda
Viz Media LLC
1355 Market Street, Suite 200, San Francisco CA 94103
www.viz.com
9781421597218 $12.99 amazon.com

Children of the Whales Volume 1 is the first manga (Japanese graphic novel) in a fantastic series about an idyllic small community who reside on the Mud Whale, a floating island city of clay and magic cast adrift in a sea of sand. The community knows next to nothing of its own history prior to the 93 years of its existence, yet there remains ominous shadows of its past. Chakuro is the archivist for the Mud Whale, who chronicles the lives and deaths of his people; he is also a wielder of the psychokinetic power known as Thymia, though the price of his gift is a drastically shortened lifespan (most Thymia wielders do not survive past age 30). Then the isolation of the Mud Whale community is shattered by the arrival of a seemingly emotionless girl, who denounces them as criminals and appears to know more of the Mud Whale's past than any of them! Children of the Whales is recommended for older teen to adult readers due to mature themes such as war and loss, and is highly recommended for connoisseurs of quality storytelling.

Tokyo Ghoul :re Volume 1
Sui Ishida
Viz Media LLC
1355 Market Street, Suite 200, San Francisco CA 94103
www.viz.com
9781421594965 $12.99 amazon.com

Tokyo Ghoul :re Volume 1 begins the sequel series to the dark horror manga (Japanese graphic novel) series "Tokyo Ghoul", set in a world where monstrous ghouls disguised as ordinary men and women stalk and prey upon human beings. In Tokyo Ghoul :re, The Commission of Counter Ghoul has been created to fight the ghoul menace with an unorthodox weapon - humans implanted with a Kagune, the Ghoul organ of predation. But the procedure and the newly created Qs Squad of ghoul-human hybrids have not been put to the test. Will the very people created and trained to be heroes devolve into monsters? Protagonist Haise Sasaki has the duty of teaching Qs Squad the skills of a master investigator, but Sasaki runs into trouble with the charged personalities of his students, and his own shaky grasp of his Ghoul powers. Kicking off a brand new arc in the violent and suspenseful world of Tokyo Ghoul, Tokyo Ghoul :re Volume 1 is highly recommended for connoisseurs of action-horror.


The Audiobook Shelf

At the Heart of It
Tawna Fenske, author
Performed by Teri Schnaubelt
Brilliance Corporation
PO Box 887, Grand Haven, MI 49417
www.brillianceaudio.com
9781543614602 $12.99 www.tawnafenske.com

At the Heart of It is an unabridged audiobook on MP3-CD (plays on MP3-CD enabled players or transfers to portable devices) rendition of author Tawna Fenske's volatile romance between reality TV producer Kate Geary and the bookish (but blazing hot!) Jonah Porter, a reluctant inductee into the world of showbiz. A blossoming bonfire of love threatens to violate both their contracts, and it's hard to keep one's personal life private when surrounded by television cameras! Smart and funny, At the Heart of It is a treat for connoisseurs of lighthearted love stories, highly recommended. 1 MP3 CD, 9 hours, 36 min.

Bone Swans
C. S. E. Cooney
Tantor Media, Inc.
6 Business Park Road, Old Saybrook, CT 06475
9781515918431, $37.99, CD, www.tantor.com

C. S. E. Cooney is the author of How to Flirt in Faerieland and Other Wild Rhymes and Jack o' the Hills. She won the 2011 Rhysling Award for her story-poem "The Sea King's Second Bride." In this debut fantasy fiction collection from C. S. E. Cooney her short stories: Features a swan princess hunted for her bones, a broken musician and his silver pipe, and a shape shifting rat named Maurice who bring justice to a town under fell enchantment; A gang of courageous kids confront both a plague-destroyed world and an afterlife infested with clowns but robbed of laughter; An island city where the murder of a child unites two lovers, but vengeance will part them; Only human sacrifice will save a city trapped in ice and darkness; Gold spun out of straw has a price, but not the one you expect! Skillfully narrated by the author herself, this complete and unabridged audio book edition is unreservedly recommended, especially for community library collections. (10 CDs, 12 Hours).

Death on Delos
Gary Corby
Recorded Books, LLC
270 Skip Jack Road, Prince Frederick, MD 20678
9781501957093, CM0578, $TBA, CD, www.recordedbooks.com

"Death on Delos" by Gary Corby is set in Greece, 545 BC when it was illegal to die on the sacred isle of Delos. It was also illegal to give birth there. Yet when the murder of a priest is committed, the only available detective to solve the crime is the Athenian priestess Diotima and her husband Nicolaos -- and Diotima is heavily pregnant! Delos is the holy birthplace of the divine twins Apollo and Artemis, and it is an island in crisis. Not only has murder tainted the holy sanctuary, but there are about a thousand Athenian troops on the island. The army is led by the statesman Pericles and has come to take away the treasury of the Delian League, the defense fund of the Greeks against the Persian Empire. The holy people are in uproar. The Athenians are exasperated. The High Priest of the Delian Apollo is not amused. To cap it off, Nicolaos, is implicated in dodgy dealings of having tried to bribe the murdered priest that link him to the murder. Somehow Diotima and Nicolas must find the killer, calm the island, and. oh, yes, Diotima have a baby with violating the sacred prohibition against having birth on the holy island of Delos! A truly entertaining 'whodunnit' mystery that is superbly narrated by Erik Davies, this simply outstanding audio book production of Gary Corby's historical murder mystery set in the classical Helenic age of Pericles is unreservedly recommended and certain to be an enduringly popular addition to community library audio book collections.


The Music CD Shelf

That Old Feeling
Alma Micic
Whaling City Sound
www.whalingcitysound.com
c/o Naxos (distribution)
www.naxos.com
$16.99 CD / $8.91 MP3 amazon.com

That Old Feeling is a sumptuous jazz album by the Alma Micic Quartet, featuring Alma Micic's dulcet vocals. The songs, inspired by the joy of dancing in the moonlight, evoke a timeless sense of exuberant wonder in the listener. Highly recommended! The tracks are "That Old Feeling" (3:47), "Harvest Moon" (4:09), "Moonglow" (3:13), "Cry Me a River" (4:32), "Honeysuckle Rose" (4:24), "Nezaboravi Me" (2:35), "Estate" (2:35), "Blue Moon" (3:56), and "Solnishko (4:45).

Maya
Harini Raghavan
Privately Published
www.rinimusic.com
$TBA CD / $TBA digital

Maya is the latest music album by Chennai-born, New York-based violinist, vocalist, and composer Harini Raghavan. Extensively trained in Carnatic music, Raghavan blends elements of classic South Asian musical tradition with pop and jazz into a vibrant fusion. Maya also incorporates electronic sounds front and center in the tracks, which range from a tribute to "Star Trek" to a warning about climate change to a soothing Tamil lullaby-inspired song. The result is eclectic, joyous, and highly recommended.


The DVD/Blu-ray Shelf

Hunter x Hunter Volume 3
Based on the manga by Yoshihiro Togashi
Viz Media LLC
1355 Market Street, Suite 200, San Francisco CA 94103
www.viz.com
$49.99 amazon.com

Hunter x Hunter Volume 3 is a Blu-ray compilation of episodes 27-50 of the Hunter x Hunter anime (Japanese animation) TV series, which is in turn adapted from the Hunter x Hunter shonen manga (action-packed Japanese graphic novel aimed at young adult and teenage boys). In the world of Hunter x Hunter, people known as Hunters are awarded enormous privileges - but they are also tasked with performing life-threatening missions, from exploring unknown and quite possibly hostile reaches to tracking down murderous criminals. Gon Freecss is a boy who pursued his dream of becoming a Hunter to track down his missing father; in the process, he has befriended Killua, the middle son of a family of notorious and unstable assassins, among others. In Volume 3, Gon and Killua venture to Heaven's Arena in search of training, then follow a tape left by Gon's father to a shadowy auction targeted by the Phantom Troupe. When the auction merchandise and the guests disappear, the Mafia places a bounty on the unknown assailants, and an all-out hunt begins! Action-packed, and at times venturing into the darker side of human nature, the Hunter x Hunter saga will appeal to fantasy-adventure connoisseurs of all ages and is highly recommended. Special features include an art gallery, clean opening and ending songs, trailers, and ending credits. It should be noted that Hunter x Hunter Volume 3 is rated TV-14 due to scenes of violence. 24 episodes on 4 Blu-ray discs, English subtitles, English and Japanese audio in stereo, 530 min.

Midsomer Murders: John Barnaby's First Cases
Acorn Media
c/o RLJ Entertainment
www.us.RLJEntertainment.com
$79.99 www.acornonline.com

Midsomer Murders: John Barnaby's First Cases collects Series 14 and Series 15 of this long- running British murder mystery drama on DVD. John Barnaby (played by Neil Dudgeon) takes over as Midsomer County's Detective Chief Inspector, solving grisly crimes with aid from DS Ben Jones in his final cases as Barnaby's assistant. Bonus material includes audio commentary for "The Dark Rider" episode, with star Neil Dudgeon and director Alex Pillai; a 15 min. behind- the-scenes look at the episode "Death and the Divas", "Midsomer Murders in Conversation" (34 min.), and a biography of Sykes the dog. Midsomer Murders: John Barnaby's First Cases is a "must-have" for connoisseurs of the genre, and sure to prove a popular public library lend. 14 mysteries on 7 discs, 21.5 hours plus bonus, widescreen, SDH subtitles.

Tai Chi Fit in Paradise
David-Dorian Ross
YMAA Publications
PO Box 480, Wolfeboro, NH 03894-0480
9781594395628 $29.95 www.ymaa.com

Tai Chi Fit in Paradise (60 min.) is a gorgeous fitness DVD, thoroughly accessible to newcomers to this ancient Chinese art of meditation and movements for promoting physical and mental health. Host David-Dorian Ross (winner of eight US gold medals, a world silver medal, and two world bronze medals in tai chi) demonstrates tai chi moves. A mirror-view displays the moves to the left and the right. Filmed on-location at the beach next to Diamond Head volcano in Hawaii, Tai Chi Fit in Paradise lives up to its title and makes the viewer feel like they're enjoying a vacation as they engage in a healthful, whole-body workout! Also highly recommended is Tai Chi Fusion Bamboo (9781594395932, $29.95, 60 min.), also featuring David-Dorian Ross, a fitness DVD combining yoga and tai chi into a tranquil workout that beginners to either or both disciplines can fully enjoy, filmed in the beautiful bamboo forest at Hawaii's Moana Falls.


The Poetry Shelf

The Last Cigarette on Earth
Benjamin Alire Saenz
Cinco Puntos Press
701 Texas, El Paso, Texas 79901
www.cincopuntos.com
9781941026656, $15.95, PB, 144pp, www.amazon.com

Author Benjamin Alire Saenz is a former Associate Professor in the MFA Creative Writing Program at the University of Texas at El Paso -- which is the only bilingual creative writing program in the country. "The Last Cigarette on Earth" is a compilation of the best of his personal poetry arising from an intimate but healing journey through addiction, human desire and broken love. A simple book of extended free verse poetry -- but an extraordinary exploration into the human condition, "The Last Cigarette on Earth" is both an emotional and intellectual tour-de-force. An inherently fascinating, thoughtful and thought-provoking read from beginning to end, "The Last Cigarette on Earth" is unreservedly recommended, especially for academic library Latino Poetry & Prose collections.


The Business Shelf

Get Smarter Marketing
Jill Brennan
Morgan James Publishing
11815 Fountain Way, Suite 300, Newport News, VA 23606-4448
www.morganjamespublishing.com
9781683503927, $17.95, PB, 226pp, www.amazon.com

Marketing can be confusing for the novice entrepreneur or new small business owners. That's why Jill Brennan (who has worked in, with, and for small businesses for over 20 years, and who as the founder of Harbren Marketing has generated thousands of leads and sales for businesses in very competitive niches) has written "Get Smarter Marketing: The Small Business Owner's Guide to Building a Savvy Business", a clear and concise guide to small business marketing. Business owners can follow the simple, yet powerful, step-by-step framework for connecting existing customers and attracting new customers to their business. Impressively informed and informative, exceptionally 'user friendly' in organization and presentation, "Get Smarter Marketing: The Small Business Owner's Guide to Building a Savvy Business" is unreservedly recommended for corporate, community, and academic library Business Management collections and supplemental studies lists. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Get Smarter Marketing: The Small Business Owner's Guide to Building a Savvy Business" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $5.95).

Five Keys to Powerful Business Relationships
Sallie Sherman, Joseph Sperry, Steve Vucelich
McGraw Hill Education
c/o McGraw Hill Professional
1221 Avenue of the Americas, 45th Floor, New York, NY 10020
www.mhprofessional.com
9780071783880, $28.00, HC, 240pp, www.amazon.com

The success of any business fundamentally depends on relationships -- whether the relationship is between two team members, among several divisions of a corporation, or when it spans a large network of suppliers and customers. For almost three decades Sallie Sherman, Joseph Sperry and, more recently, Steve Vucelich have been helping companies increase revenues, reduce costs, and lower risk by helping firms optimize their B2B relationships. In "Five Keys to Powerful Business Relationships: How to Become More Productive, Effective and Influential" they draw upon their years of experience and expertise to publish a game-changing guide that will help you leverage every critical relationship in your organization for greater success. Business managers and executives will learn how to spot those relationships that are not generating their full power -- and then turn them into drivers of profit and growth. "Five Keys to Powerful Business Relationships" offers new ways to eliminate barriers to performance and boost the energy of individuals, teams, groups, and your organization as a whole. The "Five Keys to Powerful Business Relationships" includes: Key #1: Connect first, then focus on task; Key #2: Learn by walking in another's shoes; Key #3: Whether people trust you is often up to you; Key #4: Share information to increase your personal power; Key #5: Manage yourself before you manage others. The authors present proven best practices that individuals and firms can use to form more empowering relationships. They show you how to identify and remove barriers to relationships in your company, whether they are caused by culture, infrastructure, or self-awareness gaps. Providing fundamental principles of business management that are timely and timeless, "Five Keys to Powerful Business Relationships" should be considered mandatory reading for anyone charged with advancing the effectiveness and profitability of any corporate or business endeavor. While very highly recommended for corporate, community, and academic library Business Management collections and supplemental studies lists, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Five Keys to Powerful Business Relationships" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $30.00).


The Crafts Shelf

Paper Flowers Chinese Style
Liu Fang & Yue Yunyun
Better Link Press
c/o Tuttle Publishing
364 Innovation Drive, North Clarendon, VT 05759-9436
www.tuttlepublishing.com
9781602200302, $24.95, HC, 152pp, www.amazon.com

Liu Fang is a paper-folding expert with over a decade of studying and developing paper flower folding behind her. She is frequently invited to give lectures and demonstrations on paper flower folding at schools and institutions. Yue Yunyun is a full-time paper flower maker. Together they collaborate in "Paper Flowers Chinese Style: Create Handmade Gifts and Decorations" to showcase 24 patterns which are designed to match the "24 solar terms" on the Chinese lunisolar calendar, with six flowers for each of the four seasons. These paper flower projects are ideal for gracing your living room, bedroom, study or hallway, as ornaments on mirrors and bookcases, or as wall hangings and window display, or being made into bracelet, garland and hairpin accessories. Some can look surprisingly realistic, while others are ingeniously designed, all being great for birthday parties, family gatherings, New Year parties and weddings. Notably, each individual design has incorporated elements of the Chinese art of flower arrangement, with elegant simplicity and Eastern charm. This simply outstanding Chinese origami book comes with patterns for folds for each design. Readers can either copy these patterns by hand on their preferred paper or simply photocopy them to cut and fold paper flowers by themselves. Thoroughly 'user friendly' in organization and presentation, "Paper Flowers Chinese Style" is unreservedly recommended for personal and community library do-it-yourself crafts collections.


The Railroading Shelf

Hereford Locomotive Shed
Steve Bartlett
Pen & Sword Books
https://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk
9781473875555, $50.00, HC, 232pp, www.amazon.com

Steve Bartlett is a fourth generation railwayman. In "Hereford Locomotive Shed: Engines and Train Workings" he has published the first in a series of in-depth studies to look closely at the changing engine allocations and operational responsibilities of motive power depots during the latter days of steam. In Herefords case this was a varied mixture of main line passenger, freight trip working, branch line passenger, station pilot duties and yard shunting. Unusually, the latter remained a steam preserve until months before depot closure in November 1964\. Not forgotten are the depots small sub-sheds, which had varying responsibilities over the years, as the district boundaries changed at Ledbury, Leominster, Ross-on-Wye and Craven Arms. Their very different duties were inevitably a reflection of a bygone age and an all too rapidly changing future. Profusely illustrated with black-and-white period photography, "Hereford Locomotive Shed" is an exceptionally informative and well written study and one that will prove to be a critically important and core addition to personal, community, and academic library Railroading History reference collections in general, and Hereford locomotive supplemental studies reading lists in particular.


The Metaphysical Studies Shelf

Llewellyn's Complete Book of Divination
Richard Webster
Llewellyn Publications
2143 Wooddale Drive, Woodbury, MN 55125
www.llewellyn.com
9780738751757, $29.99, PB, 360pp, www.amazon.com

Richard Webster deftly explores the incredibly wide variety of divination systems from around the world in "Llewellyn's Complete Book of Divination: Your Definitive Source for Learning Predictive & Prophetic Techniques". Students of the metaphysical sciences will discover in-depth information and how-to instruction for more than thirty divination practices, including: Tarot; Astrology; Palmistry; Numerology; Pendulums; I Ching; Automatic Writing; Candle Reading; Coin Divination; Flower Reading; Dowsing; Runes; Scrying; Geomancy; Bibliomancy; and so much more! "Llewellyn's Complete Book of Divination" also features helpful tips for choosing the best form of divination for your specific needs and preparation methods to practice before a divination session. Learn about the history of divination and the historical figures who could see the future. Find out how raising your intuitive skills can improve nearly every aspect of your life, from relationships and health to money and career. Impressively comprehensive, exceptionally well organized, and accessibly presented from beginning to end, "Llewellyn's Complete Book of Divination" is an ideal instructional reference for the novice and offers a wealth of useful information for even the most seasoned practitioner. While unreservedly recommended for personal, professional, community, and academic library Metaphysical Studies collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Llewellyn's Complete Book of Divination" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $17.49).

Messages From a Wonderful Afterlife
Kristy Robinett
Llewellyn Publications
2143 Wooddale Drive, Woodbury, MN 55125
www.llewellyn.com
9780738750910, $15.99, PB, 240pp, www.amazon.com

In the pages of "Messages From a Wonderful Afterlife: Signs Loved Ones Send from Beyond", psychic medium Kristy Robinett shares personal experiences and stories from clients of how our loved ones (including treasured pets) are communicating from the other side. "Messages From a Wonderful Afterlife" also teaches how to identify "heaven hellos" from those in the afterlife and interpret the different signs and symbols that often appear, such as: Finding coins or feathers; Feeling an invisible touch or shiver down your spine; Seeing a shadow out of the corner of your eye; Smelling a familiar scent; Hearing your deceased loved one's voice; Being visited by a special animal or insect. "Messages from a Wonderful Afterlife" also provides advice on taking care of yourself while you're grieving and supporting others through times of hardship. With Kristy's guidance, you'll become more aware of your loved ones in spirit and be assured that they're always with you. Exceptionally and thoroughly 'reader friendly' in tone, organization and presentation, "Messages From a Wonderful Afterlife" is unreservedly recommended, especially for community and academic library Metaphysical Studies collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Messages From a Wonderful Afterlife" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).


The Political Science Shelf

Daring Democracy
Frances Moore Lappe & Adam Eichen
Beacon Press
24 Farnsworth Street, Boston, MA 02210
www.beacon.org
9780807023815, $15.00, PB, 176pp, www.amazon.com

With the ascendency of the Trump administration and the Republican's donor class adding pressure for an expanding of the inequity between the ultra rich and the American middle class and working class, we are increasingly distraught as tightly held economic and political power drowns out ordinary voices and values. With the publication of "Daring Democracy: Igniting Power, Meaning, and Connection for the America We Want" Frances Moore Lappe and Adam Eichen offer a fresh, surprising, practical, and effective response to this core crisis assailing traditional American values. This intergenerational duo opens with an essential truth: It's not the magnitude of a challenge that crushes the human spirit. It's feeling powerless -- in this case, fearing that to stand up for democracy is futile. It's not, Lappe and Eichen argue. With riveting stories and little-known evidence, they demystify how we got here, exposing the well-orchestrated effort that has robbed Americans of their rightful power. But at the heart of this unique study are solutions. Even in this divisive time, Americans are uniting across causes and ideologies to create a "canopy of hope" the authors call the Democracy Movement. In this invigorating "movement of movements," millions of Americans are leaving despair behind as they push for and achieve historic change. The movement and democracy itself are vital to us as citizens and fulfill human needs (for power, meaning, and connection) essential to our thriving. In this timely and necessary book, Lappe and Eichen offer proof that courage is contagious in the daring fight for democracy. In a time where the truth of that old saying "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." has come home hard, all citizens who aspire to stop the increasingly autocratic powers that are corrupting our federal government and endangering future generations with the abolition of their civil rights should give a careful reading to "Daring Democracy". While unreservedly and emphatically recommended for both community and academic library Contemporary Social Issues & Political Science collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Daring Democracy" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $14.99) and in a complete and unabridged audio book edition (Dreamscape Media, 9781520090610, $24.99, CD).


The Education Shelf

The Young Artist as Scientist
Mary Jo Pollman
Teachers College Press
1234 Amsterdam Avenue, New York, NY 10027
www.tcpress.com
9780807757956, $32.95, PB, 108pp, www.amazon.com

"The Young Artist as Scientist: What Can Leonardo Teach Us?" by Mary Jo Pollman (Professor Emerita of Early Childhood Education at Metropolitan State University of Denver and Arts, and a STEM enrichment specialist) is the first in-depth look at the important connections between the arts and science specifically for early childhood education (pre-K - 3rd grade). Highlighting their many commonalities, such as the processes involved in creative problem solving, Professor Pollman draws on what we can learn from Leonardo da Vinci as the supreme artist-scientist. Every chapter begins with a vignette of Leonardo and relates his thinking to the development of children's ideas in the arts and STEM (STEAM). "The Young Artist as Scientist" offers a fresh look at the interdisciplinary connections of the arts and science offers early childhood teachers and administrators a spectrum of tools for connecting the creative arts (art, movement, drama, and music) to the STEM movement, 21st-century skills, and developmentally appropriate practice. "The Young Artist as Scientist" will: Promote a more vigorous, inclusive, and diverse early childhood curriculum needed for the 21st century; Help teachers, parents, and administrators make connections between art and science; Examine the connection of the arts to the Next Generation Science Standards (2013) through the Crosscutting Interdisciplinary Concepts; Incorporate Reggio Emilia practices and includes examples from a Reggio preschool classroom. While especially recommended for school district and academic library Teacher Education instructional reference collections, it should noted that "The Young Artist as Scientist" is also available for personal reading lists in a digital book format (Kindle, $31.30).

The Quest for Learning
Marie Alcock, Michael Fisher, Allison Zmuda
Solution Tree
555 North Morton Street, Bloomington, IN 47404
www.solution-tree.com
9781942496908, $29.95, PB, 176pp, www.amazon.com

It is fundamentally essential for today's classroom teachers and their students to determine together what a student will learn and at what pace. The cooperative work of Marie Alcock (President of Learning Systems Associates), Michael L. Fisher (an educational consultant and instructional coach working with schools and districts in the United States, Canada, China, the Philippines, and Thailand to facilitate curriculum upgrades, design curriculum, and modernize instruction with immersive technology), and Allison Zmuda (a full-time educational consultant specializing in curriculum, instruction, and assessment), "The Quest for Learning: How to Maximize Student Engagement" focuses on a quest learning and offering a customizable inquiry model tailored to a student's interests, needs, and abilities. "The Quest for Learning" shows how to use questing to engross students in emotionally gripping learning experiences, engage them with actionable goals, build 21st century skills, and promote collaboration in online and physical spaces. Teachers will: Learn how to motivate students using the education quest model; Foster students' 21st century learning by engaging critical thinking, creativity, collaboration, and self-direction; Form learning partnerships with students that lead to co-teaching and co-learning; Explore the three main design types through which students can quest to learn: (1) inquiry, (2) network, and (3) game; Investigate the guided inquiry design decisions involved in identifying a quest, determining checkpoints, and helping students reflect on their quest; Use formative assessment templates for engaging students in learning. An invaluable and accessible organized and presented instructional guide and manual, "The Quest for Learning" is especially recommended for school district, college, and university library Teacher Education reference collections and supplemental studies lists. It should be noted that "The Quest for Learning" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $24.06).

Patterns of Power
Jeff Anderson, author
Whitney La Rocca
Stenhouse Publishers
480 Congress Street, Portland, ME 04101-3451
www.stenhouse.com
9781625311856, $50.67, PB, 416pp, www.amazon.com

Jeff Anderson and literacy coach Whitney La Rocca take teachers into primary and intermediate classrooms where students are curious about language, engage with the world around them, and notice and experiment with the conventions all writers use. Instead of chanting grammar rules or completing countless convention worksheets. The first part of "Patterns of Power" introduces a vibrant approach to grammar instruction and sets up what is needed to immerse oneself in this special and effective process by inviting students to experiment and play with language. The second part of "Patterns of Power" offers over seventy practical, ready-to-use lessons, including: Extensive support materials; Over 100 mentor sentences, curated for grades 1-5; Student work samples; Tips and power notes to facilitate a classroom teacher's own knowledge and learning examples for application. Innovative, 'real world practical', exceptionally well organized and presented, "Patterns of Power" is unreservedly recommended for elementary school, college, and university Teacher Education instructional reference collections.


The Fiction Shelf

The Hidden Thread
Liz Trenow
Sourcebooks Inc.
1935 Brookdale Road, #139, Naperville, IL 60563
www.sourcebooks.com
9781492637516, $15.99, PB, 384pp, www.amazon.com

When Anna Butterfield's mother dies, she's sent to live with her uncle, a silk merchant in London, to make a good match and provide for her father and sister. There, she meets Henri, a French immigrant and apprentice hoping to become a master weaver. But Henri, born into a lower class, becomes embroiled in the silk riots that break out as weavers protest for a fair wage. A deftly written and luminous tale of class struggle and star-crossed, forbidden love, Liz trenow's "The Hidden Thread" is a compelling novel by gifted author with a genuine flair for originality. The result is one of the memorable books that linger in the mind and memory long after it has been finished and set back upon the shelf. While unreservedly recommended for community library collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "The Hidden Thread" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $10.07).

Galloway's Gamble
Howard Weinstein
Five Star Books
10 Water Street, Suite 310, Waterville, ME 04901
http://gale.cengage.com/fivestar
9781432837648, $25.95, HC, 314pp, www.amazon.com

After the Civil War, bickering brothers Jamey and Jake Galloway set out from Serenity Falls, Texas to seek their fortune at poker tables across the west. Cautious Jamey prefers being a live coward to a dead hero, but brash big brother Jake rarely backs down from a fight. Cheated out of a fortune, they return to Texas to find their hometown threatened by a land-grabbing cattle king and a shady banker. Can Jamey and Jake cook up a scheme to outfox dirty-dealing scoundrels and save Serenity Falls -- without getting themselves killed? A simply riveting read from cover to cover, "Galloway's Gamble" reveals author Howard Weinstein's impressive flair for originality and complete master of the action/adventure western novel. While unreservedly recommended, especially for community library collections, it should be noted for the personal reading lists of dedicated western novel buffs that "Galloway's Gamble" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $7.99).

The Good Bad Man
Max Brand
Sagebrush Large Print Westerns
c/o Ulverscroft Large Print (USA), Inc.
PO Box 1230, West Seneca, NY 14224-1230
www.ulverscroftusa.com
9781785413858, $29.99, HC, 246pp, www.amazon.com

Frederick Schiller Faust (May 29, 1892 - May 12, 1944) was an American author known primarily for his thoughtful and literary Westerns under the pen name Max Brand. Now published for a new generation of appreciative readers in a large print format, "The Good Bad Man" is an anthology of three of Brand's classic short stories set in the west. 'Speedy's Desert Dance' is the story of a man on a mule who must intercept a killer on horseback. 'A Watch and the Wilderness' tells of a sharpshooter who threatens a trench of soldiers. 'The Good Badman' is about an old prize-fighter has a task to perform. An absolute 'must' for the legions of Max Brand fans, this large print edition of "The Good Bad Man" is very highly recommended for personal reading lists and community library Western Fiction collections.

Quincy's Quest
Jay Clanton
Linford Western Library
c/o Ulverscroft Large Print (USA), Inc.
PO Box 1230, West Seneca, NY 14224-1230
www.ulverscroftusa.com
9781444830408, $20.99, PB, 230pp, www.amazon.com

Down on his luck, Martin Quincy falls in with crooked company, and agrees to participate in a train robbery. The hold-up is successful, netting Quincy over three thousand dollars. But later he's shocked to discover that one of the other thieves shot a woman in front of her child - and when he castigates them, they beat him, steal his money, and leave him for dead in the desert. Quincy, however, is made of stern stuff - and swears to track them down and kill every one of them. Meanwhile the railroad sets one of their best detectives on the case. To complicate matters further, Quincy feels compelled to somehow help the son of that murdered woman avoid having to end up in an orphanage. "Quincy's Quest" is a simply compelling read with multiple and unforseen twists and turns -- leading to a truly memorable climax. It's quite clear that author Jay Clanton has a genuine flair for originality and has completely mastered the action/adventure western novel format -- making it unreservedly recommended for the personal reading lists of western novel buffs and an enduringly popular addition to community library collections.

The Fiddler Is a Good Woman
Geoff Berner
The Dundurn Group
3 Church Street, Suite 500, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, M5E 1M2
www.dundurn.com
9781459737082, $18.99, PB, 232pp, www.amazon.com

Novelist Geoff Berner has been tasked with writing a biography of DD, a mysterious, charismatic, chimerical musician who has, it seems, dropped off the face of the earth. In the course of his search for DD, Berner interviews her friends, ex-bandmates, ex-lovers, and others. They paint such variable portraits of her that each successive attempt to describe her casts doubt on the previous testimony. As his project is taken over by the lively, infuriating, entertaining tales, a wounded, gifted, and complex DD starts to emerge from all the eyewitness accounts and swear-to-God true stories. Who is DD? Where did she go? And why didn't that book get written? "The Fiddler Is a Good Woman" is a deftly crafted novel that travel through a world of knockabout musicians and chancers, on the trail of an inimitable artist who truly lives in the moment, for better or worse. While very highly recommended, especially for community library Contemporary General Fiction collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "The Fiddler Is a Good Woman" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $7.99).

Rule of Law
Randy Singer
Tyndale House Publishers
351 Executive Drive, Carol Stream, IL 60188
www.tyndale.com
9781496418166, $16.99, PB, 480pp, www.amazon.com

For the members of SEAL Team Six, it was a rare mission ordered by the president, monitored in real time from the Situation Room. The Houthi rebels in Yemen had captured an American journalist and a member of the Saudi royal family. Their executions were scheduled for Easter Sunday. The SEAL team would break them out. But when the mission results in spectacular failure, the finger-pointing goes all the way to the top. Did the president play political games with the lives of U.S. service members? Paige Chambers, a determined young lawyer, has a very personal reason for wanting to know the answer. The case she files will polarize the nation and test the resiliency of the Constitution. The stakes are huge, the alliances shaky, and she will be left to wonder if the saying on the Supreme Court building still holds true. Equal justice under law. It makes a nice motto. But will it work when one of the most powerful people on the planet is also a defendant? A riveting read that given the White House politics of today could well have been ripped from tomorrow's headlines, "Rule of Law" is an impressively crafted novel of political intrigue, narrative driven suspense, and deftly crafted action. Clearly author Randy Singer has a genuine flair for originality as a novelist. While very highly recommended, especially for community library General Fiction collections it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Rule of Law" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

Dead Man Draw
Walt Keene
Linford Western Library
c/o Ulverscroft Large Print (USA), Inc.
PO Box 1230, West Seneca, NY 14224-1230
www.ulverscroftusa.com
9781444834505, $20.99, PB, 192pp, www.amazon.com

Retired lawman Dan Shaw and veteran gunfighter Tom ride into the sprawling town of Dead Man Draw. Quickly hired as sheriff and deputy, and charged with collecting protection money from town businesses, it doesn't take long to discover why their appointments were so hasty - the place is crawling with hired killers, and two drifters are considered expendable. But these old-timers have an ace in the hole - their friend Wild Bill Hickok has their backs. Another riveting and original read from the pen of Walt Keene, "Dead Man Draw" is western action/adventure at its very best. Now in a large print edition, "Dead Man Draw" is certain to be an enduringly popular and appreciated addition to the personal reading lists of western fiction fans and community library collections.

The King of Lighting Fixtures: Stories
Daniel A. Olivas
University of Arizona Press
Main Library Building, 5th Floor
P.O. Box 210055, Tucson, AZ 85721-0055
www.uapress.arizona.edu
9780816535620, $16.95, PB, 168pp, www.amazon.com

Comprised of short stories about wanderers and writers, gangbangers and lawyers, dreamers and devils, "The King of Lighting Fixtures" by Daniel A. Olivas paints an idiosyncratic but honest portrait of Los Angeles, depicting how the city both entrances and confounds. Each individual story serves as a reflection of the City of Angels as a "magical metropolis where dreams come true". The characters found in these memorably entertaining tales represent all walks of L.A. life, ranging from Satan's reluctant Craigslist roommate, to a young girl coping with trauma at her brother's wake. All of the various stories ebb and flow among various styles, including magical realism, social realism, and speculative fiction. Like a jazz album, they glide and bop, tease and illuminate, sadden and hearten as they navigate effortlessly from meta to fabulist, from flash fiction to longer, more complex narratives. Collectively, these thirty literary sketches of Los Angeles will surprise, connect, and disrupt readers who have previously entertained their own perceptions and illusions of that fabulous and notorious city. An exceptional collection of original and entertaining stories by a master of the short story format, "The King of Lighting Fixtures: Stories" by Daniel A. Olivas is an extraordinary and highly recommended addition to community and academic library Literary Fiction collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "The King of Lighting Fixtures: Stories" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $11.76).

The Gold
David Carpenter
Coteau Books
9781550509090, $21.95, PB, 368pp, www.coteaubooks.com

While searching for gold in Canad's north country, Joe Burbidge is blessed with resolve and with good partners to share the load. Stinky Riley is a wrangler and bush pilot who is Joe's first mentor in prospecting. Isidore Chartrand is a hunter and trapper who accompanies Joe on his northernmost odyssey, and more than once, saves Joe's life. Joe has to fight to protect his claim, and this conflict sets in motion a moral dilemma that will dog him for the rest of his life. On the long trail from high adventure and romance to atonement, readers will meet some delightful, complex, and sometimes malicious characters. "The Gold" is David Carpenter's latest novel and reveals the author's genuine flair for originality and the creation of memorable characters embedded in a narrative driven storyline with many an unexpected twist and turn. An impressively entertaining and engaging read from cover to cover, "The Gold" is unreservedly recommended, especially for community library General Fiction collections.

Into a Dark Frontier
John Mangan
Oceanview Publishing
595 Bay Isles Road, 120-G, Longboat Key, FL 34228
www.oceanviewpub.com
9781608092611, $26.95, HC, 323pp, www.amazon.com

In the near future, Africa collapses into an enormous failed state, leaving the continent lawless and severely depopulated. For most, the breakdown brings horror, but for others -- the outcast, the desperate, the criminal, and the insane -- it allows unparalleled opportunity: a new frontier of danger and unlimited possibility. In America, ex-Navy SEAL Slade Crawford, emotionally crippled after twenty years of front line combat, the dissolution of his marriage, and the accidental death of his son, is falsely accused of terrorism. Slade flees to Africa to build a new life and escape his past, but he is captured by an enigmatic American colonel, Gary Kraven, and blackmailed into tracking down a blood cult that is rampaging across the sub-Sahara. Struggling to stay alive and to free himself from Kraven's grasp, Slade pursues the cult across the lawless African frontier. He soon learns that nothing is as it seems and that he is standing at the epicenter of a global struggle that will determine the course of history. Slade must decide whether to fight for his life or his honor -- he can't have both. Showing a genuine flair for originality and a natural gift for narrative driven storytelling, author John Mangan's action/adventure novel is unreservedly recommended for community library General Fiction collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Into a Dark Frontier" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).


The Mystery/Suspense Shelf

Anne Bonny's Wake
Dick Elam
www.dickelambooks.com
Brown Books Publishing Group
16250 Knoll Trail Drive, Suite 205, Dallas, TX 75248-2871
www.brownbooks.com
9781612549040, $22.99, HC, 224pp, www.amazon.com

It's been four years since the Anne Bonny's namesake passed, and Hersh Barstow is taking out the sailboat one last time as a final good-bye to his departed wife. He expects the trip to be a quiet one, but then the mysterious and seductive Maggie Adelaide Moore comes aboard. Trouble quickly follows, and soon the two are entangled with a dangerous drug cartel. Now the criminal justice professor needs to call on old friends from his CIA days to escape their pursuers and riddle out Maggie's mysterious past. In the age-weathered Anne Bonny, Hersh recalls some of his CIA training, but that may not be enough, as enemies could be lurking behind every river bend. All the more impressive when considering that "Anne Bonny's Wake" is author Dick Elam's debut novel, this is an ideal read for those who appreciate an original and deftly crafted story of action, mystery, and romance -- and clearly marks his mastery of the genre. Unreservedly recommended for the personal reading lists of dedicated mystery buffs, "Anne Bonny's Wake" should be a part of every community library's Mystery/Suspense collection.

Falling Back to One
Randy Mason
Archer
c/o Rare Bird Literature
453 South Spring Street, Suite 302, Los Angeles, CA 90013
www.rarebirdbooks.com
9781941729182 $26.95 hc / $6.99 Kindle amazon.com

When thirty-six-year-old Detective Sergeant James Baker finds himself at a dangerous crossroads (facing suspension or even the end of his career) he agrees, under great duress, to an unorthodox therapy: being the acting legal guardian of a convicted juvenile offender. But seventeen-year-old Micki Reilly is not what he expected: she's female, far more violent, and claims to have no memory of her past. Cynical, Baker is determined to be rid of her as quickly as possible while she, full of dreams of a new life, sees him as her only chance. Remaining together out of necessity, they battle each other on every level, the shrouded bridge between them rarely seen and often missed. But the stakes are far higher than what they first appear, leaving both lives in jeopardy -- until a tragic decision finally rips away the veil. A deftly crafted novel by a master of the mystery/suspense genre, Randy Mason's "Falling Back to One" is an inherently fascinating, consistently entertaining, and thoughtfully complex read from beginning to end. An original, riveting, and unreservedly recommended addition to community library Mystery/Suspense collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Falling Back to One" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $6.99).

Striking Murder
A. J. Wright
Magna Large Print
c/o Ulverscroft Large Print (USA), Inc.
PO Box 1230, West Seneca, NY 14224-1230
www.ulverscroftusa.com
9780750544603, $59.60, HC, 342pp, www.amazon.com

In the year1893, Wigan is in the grip of a harsh winter and a devastating national miners' strike. Arthur Morris, a wealthy colliery owner whose determination to cut the miners' pay is one of the main causes of the strike, is found brutally murdered in an alleyway. A sinister letter prompted the victim to leave his dinner guests and hurry out into the freezing night to Scholes, a rough working-class district where he is universally hated. Detective Sergeant Brennan is tasked with finding the murderer and when a mysterious stranger is found bludgeoned to death, Brennan starts to unravel a twisted thread of interwoven clues. A. J. Wright is a master of the mystery/suspense genre with a genuine flair for originality, deftly crafted characters, and a narrative driven 'whodunnit'. Presented in a large print format, this edition of "Striking Murder" is very highly recommended, especially for the personal reading lists of dedicated mystery buffs, as well as community library Mystery/Suspense collections.

A Christmas Return
Anne Perry
Ballantine Books
c/o The Random House Publishing Group
1745 Broadway, 17th floor, New York, NY 10019
www.randomhouse.com
9780425285077, $20.00, HC, 192pp, www.amazon.com

As Charlotte Pitt's grandmother Mariah Ellison finds herself investigating a long-unsolved slaying, it becomes clear that grappling with intrigue and foul play runs in the family. A festive Christmas package left on Mariah's doorstep contains an ominous present, sparking memories of a twenty-year-old murder that shattered her friendship with the victim's widow. Though the gift is a bitter reminder of that tragic time, in the spirit of the season Mariah travels to Surrey in hopes of reconciling with her estranged friend and solving the crime that drove them apart. On arrival, Mariah joins forces with the murdered man's grandson, a sleuth in his own right who's discovered promising evidence as well as a suspect. But Surrey's picturesque hills conceal dark doings and shocking revelations that could make the holiday anything but calm and bright. Decked with intrigue and trimmed with Yuletide spirit, "A Christmas Return" is a perfectly crafted mystery by Anne Perry who is justifiably cited as the currently reigning master of the Victorian mystery genre. While unreservedly recommended for community library Mystery/Suspense collections, it should be noted for the personal reading lists of dedicated mystery buffs that "A Christmas Return" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $10.99).

The Ghost of Christmas Past
Rhys Bowen
Minotaur Books
c/o St. Martin's Publishing Group
175 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10010
www.minotaurbooks.com
9781250125729, $24.99, HC, 272pp, www.amazon.com

Semi-retired private detective Molly Murphy Sullivan is suffering from depression after a miscarriage following her adventure in San Francisco during the earthquake of 1906. She and her husband, Daniel, are invited for Christmas at a mansion on the Hudson, and they gratefully accept, expecting a peaceful and relaxing holiday season. Not long after they arrive, however, they start to feel the tension in the house's atmosphere. Then they learn that the host couple's young daughter wandered out into the snow ten years ago and was never seen again. Molly can identify with the mother's pain at never knowing what happened to her child and wants to help, but there is so little to go on. No ransom note. No body ever found. But Molly slowly begins to suspect that the occupants of the house know more than they are letting on. Then, on Christmas Eve, there is a knock at the door and a young girl stands there. "I'm Charlotte," she says. "I've come home." Another masterpiece of mystery/suspense fiction from a true master of the genre, "The Ghost of Christmas Past" by Rhys Bowen is the latest addition to her 'Molly Murphy Mystery' series and will prove to be an extraordinarily popular addition to all community library collections. It should be noted for the personal reading lists of dedicated mystery buffs that "The Ghost of Christmas Past" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $11.99).

The Twelve Dogs of Christmas
David Rosenfelt
Minotaur Books
c/o St. Martin's Publishing Group
175 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10010
www.minotaurbooks.com
9781250106766, $24.99, HC, 336pp, www.amazon.com

Defense lawyer Andy Carpenter usually tries to avoid taking on new cases at all costs. But this time, he's happy - eager, even - to take the case that's just come his way. Andy's long-time friend Martha "Pups" Boyer takes in stray puppies that the local dog rescue center can't handle, raises them until they're old enough to adopt, and then finds good homes for them. Not everyone admires the work Pups does as much as Andy does, however. With Christmas just around the corner, one of Pups's neighbors has just reported Pups to the city for having more than the legal number of pets in her home under the local zoning laws. Andy happily takes Pups's case, and he feels confident in a positive outcome. Who could punish someone for rescuing puppies, after all, especially at Christmastime? But things get a lot more complicated when Randy Hennessey, the neighbor who registered the complaint against Pups, turns up dead. Pups had loudly and publicly threatened Hennessey after he filed his complaint, and Pups was also the one to find his body. All the evidence seems to point to Pups as the killer, and suddenly Andy has a murder case on his hands. He doesn't believe Pups could be guilty, but as he starts digging deeper into the truth behind Hennessey's murder, Andy may find himself facing a killer more dangerous than he ever imagined. While unreservedly recommended, especially for community library Mystery/Suspense collections, it should be noted for the personal reading lists of dedicated mystery buffs who appreciate a particularly well crafted and original read that "The Twelve Dogs of Christmas" is also now available in a paperback edition (9781250145611, $15.99) as well as in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

A Cajun Christmas Killing
Ellen Byron
Crooked Lane Books
2 Park Avenue, 10th floor, New York, NY 10016
www.crookedlanebooks.com
9781683313052, $26.99, HC, 304pp, www.amazon.com

Maggie Crozat is back home in bayou country during the most magical time of the year. In Pelican, Louisiana, Christmastime is a season of giant bonfires on the levee, zydeco carols, and pots of gumbo. Except, this year, the Grinch has come to stay at the family-run Crozat Plantation B&B. When he floods travel websites with vicious reviews, Maggie thinks she's identified him as rival businessman Donald Baxter. That is, until he's found stabbed to death at Maggie's workplace. And Maggie and her loved ones become top suspects. The Crozats quickly establish alibis, but Maggie's boyfriend, Detective Bo Durand, remains under suspicion. With Bo sidelined during the investigation, Maggie finds herself forced to work with an unlikely ally: longtime family enemy Rufus Durand. Her sleuthing uncovers more suspects than drummers drumming, and lands her in the crosshairs of the murderer. The sleigh bells are jingling, and the clock is ticking for Maggie and Rufus, who must catch the killer or it will be the opposite of a Joyeux Noel! "A Cajun Christmas Killing" is the recipe-stuffed third installment of Ellen Byron's simply outstanding 'Cajun Country Mystery' series and is unreservedly recommended for community library Mystery/Suspense collections. It should be noted for the personal reading lists of dedicated mystery buffs that "A Cajun Christmas Killing" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

Twelve Slays of Christmas
Jacqueline Frost
Crooked Lane Books
2 Park Avenue, 10th floor, New York, NY 10016
www.crookedlanebooks.com
9781683313175, $26.99, HC, 320pp, www.amazon.com

When Holly White's fiance cancels their Christmas Eve wedding with less than two weeks to go, Holly heads home with a broken heart. Lucky for her, home in historic Mistletoe, Maine is magical during Christmastime - exactly what the doctor prescribed. Except her plan to drown her troubles in peppermints and snickerdoodles is upended when local grouch and president of the Mistletoe Historical Society Margaret Fenwick is bludgeoned and left in the sleigh display at Reindeer Games, Holly's family tree farm. When the murder weapon is revealed as one of the wooden stakes used to identify trees on the farm, Sheriff Evan Grey turns to Holly's father, Bud, and the Reindeer Games staff. And it doesn't help that Bud and the reindeer keeper were each seen arguing with Margaret just before her death. But Holly knows her father, and is determined to exonerate him. The jingle bells are ringing, the clock is ticking, and if Holly doesn't watch out, she'll end up on Santa's naughty! The debut novel in Jacqueline Frost's new 'A Christmas Tree Farm Mystery' series, "Twelve Slays of Christmas" is a true mystery lover's delight from beginning to end and will prove to be an enduringly popular addition to personal reading lists and community library Mystery/Suspense collections. It should be noted that "Twelve Slays of Christmas" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99) and in a complete and unabridged audio book edition (Blackstone Audiobooks, 9781538452141, $69.00, CD).

How the Finch Stole Christmas
Donna Andrews
Minotaur Books
c/o St. Martin's Publishing Group
175 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10010
www.minotaurbooks.com
9781250115454, $25.99, HC, 288pp, www.amazon.com

Meg's husband has decided to escalate his one-man show of Dickens' A Christmas Carol into a full-scale production with a large cast including their sons Jamie and Josh as Tiny Tim and young Scrooge and Meg helping as stage manager. The show must go on, even if the famous (though slightly over-the-hill) actor who's come to town to play the starring role of Scrooge has brought a sleigh-load of baggage and enemies with him. And why is Caerphilly suddenly overrun with a surplus of beautiful caged finches? Another Christmas themed Meg Langslow mystery from the pen of Donna Andrews, "How the Finch Stole Christmas!" is deftly crafted, unfailingly funny, absolutely riveting and consistently entertaining read from cover to cover. While unreservedly recommended for community library Mystery/Suspense collections, it should be noted for the Christmas reading lists of dedicated mystery buffs who appreciated a lot of laughter in their 'whodunnits' that "How the Finch Stole Christmas" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $12.99) and in a complete and unabridged audio book edition (Dreamscape Media, 9781520081939, $29.99, CD).

Cat Got Your Secrets
Julie Chase
Crooked Lane Books
2 Park Avenue, 10th floor, New York, NY 10016
www.crookedlanebooks.com
9781683312833, $26.99, HC, 320pp, www.amazon.com

Lacy Marie Crocker has settled into a comfortable groove back home in New Orleans, and with Valentine's Day right around the corner, she's busier than ever running a thriving pet boutique, helping her mother organize the upcoming National Pet Pageant, and untangling her complicated love life. But when delivering a king-sized order of dreidel-shaped doggy biscuits for a Saint Berdoodle's bark-mitzvah, Lacy stumbles into yet another murder scene -- and the last person to see the victim alive was her own father. It's up to Lacy to clear her dad's name from the suspect list before Detective Jack Oliver has to cage him for good. But just when she starts pawing at the truth, she receives a threatening letter from a mysterious blackmailer bent on silencing her with her own secrets. And Lacy's not the only one with bones in her closet. The third volume in author Julie Chase's simply outstanding 'A Kitty Couture Mystery' series, "Cat Got Your Secrets" is another riveting mead from a true master of the Mystery/Suspense genre and an 'absolute must read" for the legions of Julie Chase fans. Of special note is the inclusion of recipes for feline companion treats! While unreservedly recommended for community library Mystery/Suspense collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Cat Got Your Secrets" is also available in a paperback edition (9781683316763, $15.99) and in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

Cast Iron
Peter May
Quercus
1290 Sixth Ave., NY, NY 10104
www.quercus.com
9781681441610, $26.99, HC, 400pp, www.amazon.com

In Western France, 1989, a weeping killer deposits the unconscious body of twenty-year-old Lucie Martin, her head wrapped in a blue plastic bag, into the waters of a picturesque lake. Om Lot-et-Garonne, 2003, some fourteen years later, a summer heat wave parches the countryside, killing trees and bushes and drying out streams. In the scorched mud and desiccated slime of the lake, a fisherman finds a skeleton wearing a bag over its skull. Now in Paris, October 2011, in an elegant apartment in Paris, forensic expert Enzo Macleod, now fifty-six years old, pores over the scant evidence of the sixth and final cold case he has been challenged to solve. The most obvious suspect is Regis Blanc, a former pimp already imprisoned for the murders of three sex workers, who may have been Lucie's lover in the months before her disappearance. But Regis has a solid alibi, and Enzo has a feeling the real explanation might be more complicated. In taking on this old and seemingly impossible-to-crack case, Enzo puts everything and everyone he holds dear in terrible danger -- and in ways even he never could have imagined. Another riveting read from the pen of Peter May, "Cast Iron" is a superbly crafted and entertaining novel that is unreservedly recommended, especially for community library Mystery/Suspense collections. It should be noted for the personal reading lists of dedicated mystery buffs that "Cast Iron" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $12.99).

Eve / More Deadly Than The Male
James Hadley Chase
Stark House Press
1315 H Street, Eureka, CA 95501
www.starkhousepress.com
9781944520403, $19.95, PB, 380pp, www.amazon.com

The late James Hadley Chase (24 December 1906 - 6 February 1985) was an English writer. While his birth name was Rene Lodge Brabazon Raymond, he was well known by his various pseudonyms, including James Hadley Chase, James L. Docherty, Raymond Marshall, R. Raymond, and Ambrose Grant. He was one of the best known thriller writers of all time. The canon of James Hadley Chase, comprises some 90 titles, earning him a reputation as the king of thriller writers in Europe. He was also one of the internationally best-selling authors, and, so far, 50 of his books have been made into films. Now as part of their outstanding 'Stark House Crime Classics' series, and featuring an informative introduction by Gregory Shepard, two of Chase's best short stories are once again available to a new and appreciative generation of readers. "Eve" is the story of Clive Thurston, a man who is living a lie. Having claimed a dying playwright's masterwork as his own, he is hailed as a brilliant, new author. Thurston is now living the good life in Hollywood. He has a house in the country, a manservant, a beautiful fiancee... then one night he meets Eve. Eve isn't beautiful at all, but she's got a way about her. Thurston is captivated, and in no time, he becomes obsessed. But as everybody knows, Eve is a prostitute, and his reputation around town begins to suffer. His fiancee has been patient, but she can take no more. Thurston is drinking too much, and making bad decisions. But what he can't figure is why Eve keeps rejecting him. If he can only make Eve love him, maybe his own redemption is at hand! In "More Deadly Than The Male" George is a man who knew the exact moment when he fell in love with Cora Brant. At one moment Cora was just someone with whom he hoped to alleviate an hour of lonely boredom; at the next she was someone he was physically and mentally aware of in a most overpowering way. He had bought drinks, and he had been startled that she tackled a pint of beer. And when he looked more closely at her, he realized she was not immaculate in the accepted sense of the word. But George was not critical. Any woman was a novelty to him, and a girl like Cora Brant was far more than a novelty -- she was an exciting experience." George has been living in a gangster fantasy in which he is always the hero. Now he meets that world head on. But George's troubles have only just begun. Simply stated, This Stark House Press edition of "Eve / More Deadly Than The Male" is unreservedly recommended, especially for community library Mystery/Suspense collections and the personal reading lists of dedicated crime fiction fans.

Murder of a Good Man
Teresa Trent
Camel Press
PO Box 70515, Seattle, WA 98127
www.camelpress.com
9781603816359, $15.95, PB, 256pp, www.amazon.com

When Nora Alexander arrives in Piney Woods, Texas, to fulfill her dying mother's last wish, she has no idea what awaits her. First she is run off the road, then the sealed letter she delivers turns out to be a scathing rebuke to the town's most beloved citizen and favored candidate for Piney Woods Pioneer: Adam Brockwell. Next thing you know, Adam has been murdered in a nasty knife attack. Suspicion instantly falls on Nora, one of the last people to see him alive. After all, everyone in Piney Woods loved him. Or did they? Nora learns that her mother had a complicated past she never shared with her daughter. Told not to leave town by Tuck the flirty sheriff, Nora finds a job with Tuck's Aunt Marty trying to get the rundown Tunie Hotel back in the black. The old hotel was Piney Woods' heart and soul in its heyday as an oil boomtown. Now the secrets it harbors may be the key to getting Nora off the hook. She's going to need to solve the mystery quickly to avoid arrest, or worse: becoming the killer's next victim. A deftly crafted novel by a master of the mystery genre, "Murder of a Good Man" is the first in what promises to be a simply outstanding new 'Piney Woods Mystery' series by Teresa Trent. A truly riveting 'whodunnit' read from cover to cover, "Murder of a Good Man" is unreservedly recommended, especially for community library Mystery/Suspense collections. For the personal reading lists of dedicated mystery buffs it should be noted that "Murder of a Good Man" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $4.95).


The Needlecraft Shelf

Fat Quarter: Christmas
Jemima Schlee
GMC Publications
c/o The GMC Group
www.thegmcgroup.com
9781784943530, $19.95, PB, 152pp, www.amazon.com

One of the reasons that dedicated needlecraft enthusiasts enjoy the Christmas season is the endless inspiration it offers every year for needlecraft based projects. In "Fat Quarter: Christmas", needlecraft expert Jemima Schlee presents 25 projects that even the most novice needlecrafters can make quickly and easily from fat quarters or fabric scraps in their stash bin. Whether looking to add a last-minute touch to Christmas gifts or wanting to deck out a home in handmade flair, "Fat Quarter: Christmas" offers a wealth of cheery, whimsical projects, including hanging hearts, Christmas tree bunting, fairy light shades, gift bags, card ribbons, snowflake garland, napkin rings, mantle edging, and so much more. Profusely illustrated throughout, "Fat Quarter: Christmas" is impressively well organized and presented, making it an ideal addition to personal and community library Needlecraft instructional reference collections.

Radiant Quilts
Elsie M. Campbell
Landauer Publishing
3100 100th Street, Urbandale, Iowa 50322
www.landauercorp.com
9781935726982, $22.95, PB, 80pp, www.amazon.com

Elsie M. Campbell began exhibiting her quilts nationally in 1992 and has won numerous prestigious awards. In the pages of "Radiant Quilts: Stunning Quilts from Simple Shapes" she offers a complete guide to making gorgeous scrap quilts using just one, two, or three simple repeated shapes. Of special note is the inclusion of: Nine projects that are both basic and boldly sophisticated; providing easy-to-follow instructions & diagrams for making each project; Instructions on making stunning scrap quilts using simple repeated shapes; A design emphasis on color and value working together to create the illusion of depth and light; Comprehensive information about tools and techniques; Clear how-to directions on 3 cutting techniques using scissors and templates, rotary cutters and rulers, and die cutters; Guidance on both hand-piecing and machine-piecing; and fearless stitching of Y-seams and curved pieces. Profusely and expertly illustrated throughout, "Radiant Quilts" will prove to be an enduringly valued addition to personal, professional, and community library quilting instructional reference collections.

Stitching Pathways
Wendy Sheppard
Landauer Publishing
3100 100th Street, Urbandale, Iowa 50322
www.landauercorp.com
9781935726937, $21.95, PB, 80pp, www.amazon.com

Get the results you love with this complete visual guide to quilting on your home sewing machine! Expert designer, author, and blogger Wendy Sheppard original designs have been featured in numerous quilting magazines. She also designs patterns for several major fabric companies. In "Stitching Pathways: Successful Quilting on your Home Machine" she draws upon her impressive experience and exceptional expertise to provide an instructional resource for quilters of all skill levels. From straight line quilting to beautiful free-motion techniques, Wendy's expert advice and proven methods deftly guides even the most novice of quilters through every step of each quilting project. Beginning quilters especially will earn new skills and build their confidence with beautiful projects, step-by-step stitch guides, detailed diagrams, and stunning color photographs. Of special note are the chapters on 'Determining What and Where to Quilt'; 'Quilting a Borderless Quilt'; 'Straight Line Quilting'; and 'Stitch Variations'. No personal or community library 'how to' quilting collections can be considered complete without the inclusion of a copy of Wendy Sheppard's "Stitching Pathways"!

Mosaic & Lace Knits
Barbara Benson
Stackpole Books
5067 Ritter Road, Mechanicsburg, PA 17055-6921
www.stackpolebooks.com
9780811716772, $24.95, PB, 128pp, www.amazon.com

Barbara Benson has been experimenting with the fusion of mosaic knitting and lace stitches over the past few years, and has created "Mosaic & Lace Knits: 20 Innovative Patterns Combining Slip-Stitch Colorwork and Lace Techniques", a truly impressive collection of 20 shawls, cowls, scarves, hats, and other accessories. To make the patterns accessible to any knitter, she has added a helpful instructional section in "Mosaic & Lace Knits" that covers the basics of knitting slip stitches, how to read lace and mosaic charts, how to work mosaic in the round, and tips and tricks to help you avoid potential pitfalls. The book has projects for all level knitters. Start with a project in which the mosaic and lace are worked in different sections, such as a hat with alternating bands of mosaic and lace. Then progress to more complex patterns where the slip stitch and lace stitches are worked at the same time. Each stitch plays an important role -- these patterns will keep the interest of even the most experienced knitter! Beautifully and profusely illustrated throughout, "Mosaic & Lace Knits" is very highly recommended for community library Needlecraft instructional reference collections. It should be noted for personal reference collections that "Mosaic & Lace Knits" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $14.39).

Utility-Style Quilts for Everyday Living
Sharon Holland
Landauer Publishing
3100 100th Street, Urbandale, Iowa 50322
www.landauercorp.com
9781935726975, $18.95, PB, 80pp, www.amazon.com

Sharon Holland's passions led her to design fabric for Art Gallery Fabrics. She created the "Quilt-It-Today" and "Sew-It-Today" magazines, for which she has served as editor, photographer and graphic designer. In her debut book, "Utility-Style Quilts for Everyday Living" she aptly draws upon her years of experience and expertise to provide quilting enthusiasts with 12 well illustrated projects, ranging from table runners to a queen-sized quilt. Ideal for the novice beginner, "Utility-Style Quilts for Everyday Living" offers a wealth of skill-building design tips and suggestions throughout, and teaches each technique in an non-intimidating way with a focus on the quilt's ultimate use -- not on unattainable perfection Each individual fast-pieced project is great for beginners, with skill-building design tips and suggestions included throughout. The results are lovely patterns making a compellingly inspired reason to dig into any stash and make a quilt that will be used and loved for years to come. The quilts are inspired by timeless and well-loved block patterns and use surprising fabric and color choices to put a new, modern spin on tradition. Exceptionally well illustrated, written, organized and presented, "Utility-Style Quilts for Everyday Living" is unreservedly recommended for personal and community library Quilting instructional reference collections.


The Art Shelf

The Art of Pokemon Adventures
Satoshi Yamamoto
Viz Media LLC
1355 Market Street, Suite 200, San Francisco CA 94103
www.viz.com
9781421594514 $24.99 amazon.com

Featuring a wealth of color as well as black-and-white concept art, character portraits, and more The Art of Pokemon Adventures showcases art from the Pokemon Adventures manga (Japanese graphic novel) series, known for closely following the stories of the Pokemon series of monster- battling, role-playing video games. Since Pokemon Adventures has been widely translated outside of Japan, it is the best-known manga among fans of the Pokemon franchise worldwide. The Art of Pokemon Adventures has very little text, and is almost entirely dedicated to showcasing the art itself. A bonus manga short story that originally appears on the Pokemon Daisuki Club website on March 23, 2006 is included; the manga features Pokemon Rangers - protectors of the natural world who do not keep more than one Pokemon by their side, but rather temporarily borrow aid from wild Pokemon, and only when needed. The Art of Pokemon Adventures is a gorgeous artbook that connoisseurs of the manga are sure to enjoy, highly recommended.


The Coloring Book Shelf

Hello Kitty & Friends Coloring Book
Viz Media LLC
1355 Market Street, Suite 200, San Francisco CA 94103
www.viz.com
9781421592749 $16.99 amazon.com

Hello Kitty & Friends Coloring Book is a coloring book for all ages, filled with dozens of full- page, detailed illustrations of Hello Kitty and her Sanrio friends. There is no text, simply black- and-white pictures of frolicking, fun, and adventure. Hello Kitty & Friends Coloring Book is an excellent giftbook for anyone who loves to color for pleasure, relaxation, or rainy-day amusement. Highly recommended.


The Military Shelf

U-Boats Off Bermuda
Eric Wiberg
Fonthill Media
c/o Casemate
1940 Lawrence Road, Havertown, PA 19083
www.casematepublishers.com
9781781556061, $35.95, HC, 256pp, www.amazon.com

The German U-Boast campaign against American shipping in the waters of Bermuda is an obscure theater of the Second World War which is now told in great detail and comprehensively (not just in terms of geography but also from the perspectives of both Allied and Axis participants) in Eric Wiberg's "U-Boats off Bermuda: Patrol Summaries and Merchant Ship Survivors Landed in Bermuda 1940-1944". This seminal study provides a wealth of details with respect to specific U-Boat patrols and their commanders, as well as a general overview of the situation in the theater of war around Bermuda. It is a detailed analysis of individual casualties, broken down by a) background of ship, b) background of U-boat, c) attack method (surface and/or submersed), d) details of survivors and their plight at sea and e) their rescue, recuperation and repatriation. Detailed maps and illustrations provide a human face to what were often tragic attacks with fatal consequences. Of special note are such historical facts as half a dozen German submarines coming close enough to the Naval Operating Base in Bermuda to see Gibbs Hill; hardy Canadians from a sunken trading schooner rowed and sailed their way to the remote island on their own; and allied pilots based in Bermuda sank two German U-Boats, rescued dozens in daring water landings and several crashes. A simply fascinating and impressively informative read from cover to cover, "U-Boats off Bermuda: Patrol Summaries and Merchant Ship Survivors Landed in Bermuda 1940-1944" is an extraordinary and unreservedly recommended addition to both community and academic library World War II Military History collections. It should be noted for the personal reading lists of dedicated military history buffs that "U-Boast Off Bermuda" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).


The Automotive Shelf

Jeep CJ 1972-1986
Michael Hanssen
CarTech Inc.
838 Lake Street South, Forest Lake, MN 55025
www.cartechbooks.com
9781613253427, $26.95, PB, 144pp, www.amazon.com

The Jeep CJ series vehicles are arguably the most popular off-road vehicles of all time. The CJ series started after World War II with the CJ-2A being introduced to the masses, and while the early CJs have their share of enthusiasts, the largest group of enthusiasts began their love affair with the AMC-powered Jeep CJ-5s beginning in 1972. Joined by the longer-wheelbase CJ-7 models introduced in 1976, the CJ models were wildly popular through their discontinuation in 1986, when the Wrangler was introduced. These were the only models originally equipped with V-8 engines in any meaningful way. This era combined the ruggedness of the early Jeeps with some of the advancements and horsepower of a more modern era; it makes a platform that is both fun to own and to modify. In "Jeep CJ 1972-1986: How to Build & Modify", Jeep enthusiast and historian Michael Hanssen covers all of the systems that can be upgraded to improve your Jeep's performance. Upgrades include suspension components such as springs, shocks, and steering modifications; driveline components including differentials, transmissions, transfer cases, and axles; engine upgrades including engine swaps; wheel and tire upgrades; aftermarket accessories; armor such as skid plates and bumpers; brake upgrades; and more. Profusely illustrated throughout, "Jeep CJ 1972-1986: How to Build & Modify" is an ideal instructional reference for anyone seeking to get into serious off-roading or just wanting to make their classic CJ a little more fun. Exceptionally well written, organized and presented, "Jeep CJ 1972-1986: How to Build & Modify" is unreservedly recommended for personal, professional, and community library Automotive reference book collections.

New Hemi Engines: 2003 To Present
Larry Shepard
CarTech Inc.
838 Lake Street South, Forest Lake, MN 55025
www.cartechbooks.com
9781613253571, $26.95, PB, 334pp, www.amazon.com

The New Hemi engine has an aggressive persona and outstanding performance. Powering the Challenger, Charger, Ram trucks, and other vehicles in the Chrysler lineup, this engine produces at least one horsepower per cubic inch. Unleashed in 2003, it has been offered in 5.7-, 6.1-, 6.2-, and now 6.4-liter displacements. With each successive engine introduction, Chrysler has extracted more performance. And with the launch of the Hellcat and Demon 6.2-liter supercharged engines, Chrysler built the highest horsepower production engines ever made, at 707 hp and 840 hp respectively. This third-generation Hemi carries on a high-performance Chrysler tradition and is considered the most powerful and "buildable" new pushrod V-8 engine on the market today. Mopar engine expert and veteran author Larry Shepard reveals up-to-date modification techniques and products for achieving higher performance. Porting and modifying the stock Hemi heads as well as the best flow characteristics with high lift are revealed. In addition, guidance on aftermarket heads is provided. A supercharger is one of the most cost-effective aftermarket add-ons, and the options and installation are comprehensively covered. Shepard guides you through the art and science of selecting a cam, so you find a cam that meets your airflow needs and performance goals. He details stock and forged crankshafts plus H- and I-beam connecting rods that support the targeted horsepower, so you can choose the best rotating assembly for your engine. In addition, intake manifold and fuel systems, ignition systems, exhaust systems, and more are covered. With "New Hemi Engines: 2003 To Present" by Larry Shepard (a distinguished engineer, parts manager and racing coordinator), anyone can transform a New Hemi engine into an even more responsive and faster powerplant. With "New Hemi Engines: 2003 To Present" anyone will be able to build the engine that suits all their high-performance needs. Profusely illustrated throughout and exceptionally 'user friendly' in organized and presentation, "New Hemi Engines: 2003 To Present" is very highly recommended for personal, professional, and community library automotive instructional reference collections.


The Health/Medicine Shelf

Yoga 7 Minutes a Day, 7 Days a Week
Gertrud Hirschi
Red Wheel/Weiser/Conari
65 Parker Street, Suite 7, Newburyport, MA 01950
www.redwheelweiser.com
9781573246972 $14.95 pbk / $9.99 Kindle amazon.com

Yoga 7 Minutes a Day, 7 Days a Week: A Gentle Daily Practice for Strength, Clarity, and Calm walks the reader through simple daily yoga exercises, with black-and-white photography demonstrating yoga poses that anyone can perform regardless of personal skill or experience level. Tips for easing stress intersperse this simple, helpful guide, thoroughly accessible to readers of all ages. "What are you still holding on to that is really no good for you? Know what those things are so you can avoid making the same errors. Reorganize! And then don't look back; move forward with nothing holding you back." Highly recommended.


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Diane C. Donovan, Editor
Midwest Book Review
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Oregon, WI 53575-1129
phone: 1-608-835-7937
e-mail: mbr@execpc.com
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