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Rittenhouse Writers: Reflections on a Fiction Workshop
Paul Dry Books
1700 Sansom Street, Suite 700, Philadelphia, PA 19103-5214
9781589881129, $20.00, PB, 275pp, www.amazon.com
James Rahn has led the Rittenhouse Writers' Group since he founded it in 1988, making it one of America's longest-running independent fiction workshops. Hundreds of writers and would-be writers have sought out the group for its remarkable level of instruction and collaboration. "Rittenhouse Writers: Reflections on a Fiction Workshop" is Rahn's personal memoir of the workshop and how his own evolution as both a teacher and a writer (as well as a son, husband, and father) has been intertwined with the establishment and growth of the RWG. In addition, Rahn includes ten short stories written by current and former members of the workshop. These short stories include "On Fire" by Gwen Florio; "Mother - 6/7 Months" by Romnesh Lamba; "Moon Penitent" by Diane McKinney-Whetstone; "The Last Confession" by Tom Teti; "Ivory Is Wrong About Me" by Caren Litvin; "The Conference Rat" by Samantha Gillison; "Dropping a Line into the Murky Chop" by Saral Waldorf; "What She Missed" by Lisa Paparone; "Kingdom of the Sun" by Alice Schell; and "The Letters of Hon. Crawford G. Bolton III" by Daniel R. Biddle. An impressively written, informative and insightful read, "Rittenhouse Writers: Reflections on a Fiction Workshop" is very highly recommended for community and academic library Literary Studies collections, and have a great deal of special interest for all aspiring authors and writer workshop providers. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Rittenhouse Writers: Reflections on a Fiction Workshop" is also available in a Kindle format ($9.99).
N. John Hall
David R. Godine, Publisher
Fifteen Court Square, Suite 320, Boston, MA 02108-2536
9781567925616, $18.95, PB, 192pp, www.amazon.com
Flush with $400,000 from the sale of his great-great-grandfather's correspondence with Victorian authors, Larry Dickerson, our unassuming retired blank clerk, amateur editor, and literary neophyte, needs a creative outlet for his newly acquired wealth and fast escalating obsession with all things bookish. Larry's journey begins with collecting rare editions of Victorian novelists but soon spirals rapidly into the abyss of New Yorker authors, his determination to acquire growing with each new purchase. James Thurber, E.B. White, Vladimir Nabokov, J.D. Salinger, and Dorothy Parker all find their way onto Larry's shortlist, standing along previously acquired greats Trollope, Dickens, Thackeray, and Hardy. Being sensible, he approaches the biggest names in the rare book field with childish glee, and with refreshing brashness, finds himself handling copies of authors' most coveted titles, touring the New Yorker offices, and then involved in one of the biggest scandals book collecting has ever seen. Will the thrill of the chase overwhelm Larry's ability to see reason? Will his appetite outpace his resources? Join him on this journey as he discovers just how far he's willing to take his obsession. "Bibliophilia" by John Hall (a Distinguished Professor Emeritus of English at the Bronx Community College and the Graduate Center, City University of New York, who is also the recipient of numerous awards including twice having been a Guggenheim Fellow) is a 'must' for every bibliophile and literary fiction enthusiast! A truly compelling read from beginning to end, "Bibliophilia" is an extraordinary novel and enthusiastically recommended for personal reading lists, as well as both community and academic library Literary Fiction collections.
Hot Sauce Nation
Chicago Review Press
814 North Franklin Street, Chicago, IL 60610
9781613731840, $17.99, PB, 240pp, www.amazon.com
"Hot Sauce Nation: America's Burning Obsession" by Denver Nicks is an inherently fascinating journey of discovery, delving into the history, culture, immigration patterns, and the science of spice and culinarily induced pain. Through the stories of hot sauce makers and lovers, "Hat Sauce Nation" deftly explores the unique hold the dark prince of condiments has over the American heart. Informed and informative, "Hot Sauce Nation" is an inherently fascinating read from beginning to end. While very highly recommended for community library collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Hot Sauce Nation" is also available in a Kindle format ($9.99).
The Cookbook Shelf
The Monet Cookbook
Florence Gentner & Francis Hammond
900 Broadway, Suite 603, New York, NY 10003
9783791382883, $35.00, HC, 240pp, www.amazon.com
Florence Gentner was formerly special assistant to the Carnavalet Museum and the Maison de Victor Hugo. She regularly writes articles devoted to the homes of writers and gives lectures on art history. In the profusely and beautifully illustrated pages of "The Monet Cookbook", Florence showcases 60 of Claude Monet's original recipes alongside glorious reproductions of his paintings, scenes from his life in Giverny, and stunning photographs of the dishes. While Claude Monet is best known as an artist, he was also a gourmand whose culinary journals are filled with detailed recipes and notes about what he ate and with whom he shared his meals. Brimming with the colors and flavors of Giverny, France, each chapter comprising "The Monet Cookbook" features recipes that were served in Monet's famed yellow dining room, eaten al fresco in the gardens at Giverny, or at several of the fine restaurants along the Seine in Normandy. The recipes were selected for their rustic appeal and use of only the freshest ingredients, range from simple galettes and hearty casseroles to fine souffles, seafood dishes, and delicious tarts, cakes, and other pastries. With dishes that range from Grilled Chicken; Nantes Cakes; Potato Pie; and Veal Meatballs; to Baked Eggs with Tomato Sauce; Partridges with Cabbage; Preserved Cherries; and Cepes a la Bordelaise, "The Monet Cookbook" offers a thoroughly 'kitchen cook friendly' resource ideal for planning truly memorable meals.
The Gaza Kitchen
Laila El-Haddad & Maggie Schmitt
Just World Books
PO Box 5484, Charlottesville, VA 22905
9781682570081, $29.99, HC, 352pp, www.amazon.com
Born in Kuwait to Palestinian parents from Gaza, Laila El-Haddad currently lives in Maryl and is an award-winning writer, public speaker, and social activist. She is also the co-editor of Gaza Unsilenced and the author of "Gaza Mom: Palestine, Politics, Parenting, and Everything In Between" (9781935982173, $27.99 PB, $9.99 Kindle). . Maggie Schmitt is a writer, researcher, translator, educator, and social activist working in various media and exploring the daily practices of ordinary people as a way of understanding political and social realities in the Mediterranean region. Together they have collaborated in producing a truly exceptional culinary compendium showcasing authentic Palestinian cuisine in the pages of "The Gaza Kitchen" and offering thoroughly 'kitchen cook friendly' recipes for sups, dips, spreads, breads, biscuits, savory pies, eggs and hot mezze, one-bowl means, vegetable stews, rice dishes and stuffed vegetables, seafood, sweets, beverages, pickles, preserves, and special dishes for special occasions. Beautifully and profusely illustrated throughout, "The Gaza Kitchen" also includes an informative introduction and an invaluable list of resources. Offering a treasury of palate pleasing, appetite satisfying dishes for all dining occasions, "The Gaza Kitchen" is unreservedly recommended for personal, professional, family, and community library Ethnic Cookbook collections.
The Saffron Tales
175 Fifth Avenue, Suite 315, New York, NY 10010
9781632867100, $35.00, HC, 240pp, www.amazon.com
Yasmin Khan is a writer and cook from London who loves to share people's stories through food. An avid traveler whose passport is never too far from her pocket, she runs cooking classes, pop-up supper clubs and writing retreats around the world. In the beautifully illustrated pages of "The Saffron Tales: Recipes from the Persian Kitchen" she has compiled a truly impressive culinary compendium showcasing and celebrating the cuisine of Iran. Replete with cooking tips, lists of ingredients, and thoroughly 'kitchen cook friendly' step-by-step instructions the dishes range from Persian Ajil Granola; Mixed Herb Kuku; Salad Shirazi; and Spicy Lentil and Tamarind Soup; to Mixed Herb Rice with Baked Salmon; Slow-Cooked Lamb Shoulder with Dried Lime and Split Peas; Orange Blossom and Date Pudding; and Choux Buns with Rose Water and Pistachio Cream. Of special note is what Yasmin Khan advices with respect to 'Planning a Meal'. Enjoyable to simply browse through and inspiring to plan menus with, "The Saffron Tales" is strongly recommended and certain to be an enduringly popular addition to personal, professional, family, and community library cookbook collections.
c/o Charlesbridge Publishing
85 Main Street, Watertown, MA 02472
9781623540746, $18.95, HC, 128pp, www.amazon.com
The chickpea is a legume of the family Fabaceae, subfamily Faboideae. Its seeds are high in protein and is one of the earliest cultivated legumes whose 7,500-year-old remains have been found in the Middle East. Einat Mazor is a certified chef who studied at the Natural Gourmet Institute in New York City and currently works as a culinary consultant for restaurants and food companies. In "Chickpeas: Sweet and Savory Recipes from Hummus to Dessert" Chef Mazor has compiled a beautifully illustrated compendium of chickpea oriented recipes for dishes that are as palate pleasing as they are nutritious and appetite satisfying. The thoroughly 'kitchen cook friendly' recipes range from Hummus Guacamole; Phyllo Triangles Filled with Chickpeas & Cheese; Spicy Carrot & Chickpea Soup; Veggie Burger; and Grilled Polenta with Mushroom Ragout; to Baked Cauliflower Patties; Fish Burgers; Mediterranean Beef Stew; Rosemary & Pumpkin Seed Bread; and Pine Nut Cracker. While "Chickpeas: Sweet and Savory Recipes from Hummus to Dessert" is certain to be an enduringly popular addition to family and community library cookbook collections, it should be noted that it is also available in a Kindle format ($10.99).
Rock Recipes Christmas
Barry C. Parsons
P.O.Box 2188, St. John's, NL A1C 6E6
9781550816556, $22.95, PB, 160pp, www.amazon.com
"Rock Recipes Christmas" by lifelong food obsessive, recipe blogger, and food photographer Barry Parsons showcases old-fashioned family cooking at its very best. Every recipe is accompanied by a full-page color photograph to help with the perfect presentation. The thoroughly 'kitchen cook friendly' holiday season recipes range from Chocolate Orange Cookies; Christmas Chelsea Buns; Spiced Clementine & Orange Marmalade; Cranberry hazelnut Turkey Wellington; and Maple Roasted Vegetables; to Caramelized Onion Gravy; Turkey Parmesan Baked Rotini; Maple and Brown Sugar Glazed Ham; Bacon Cheddar Cornbread Muffins; and Smoky Sweet Spiced Almonds. A delight to browse through and ideal for planning memorable menus with, "Rock Recipes Christmas" is very highly recommended for personal, family, and community library cookbook collections.
The Official Chase 'N Yur Face Cookbook
Greenleaf Book Group Press
PO Box 91869, Austin, TX 78709
9780692755853, $24.95, PB, 188pp, www.amazon.com
Inspired by his journey with autism and overcoming food aversions, Chase Bailey's "The Official Chase 'N Yur Face Cookbook" entices people of all ages to experience familiar dishes done in different ways; and to discover new things about food while celebrating life and ourselves. Combining delightful recipes, uplifting anecdotes, fun facts, delectable photographs, and humorous animations, Chase teaches home-cooks how to prepare a wonderful array of dishes under fun chapter titles: Get Up & Go; Feed the Beast; Pick-Me-Ups; Let's Feast; Life Is Sweet; and Cool Breezes & a Santa Ana Wind. Chase's cookbook includes omnivore, vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free recipes ranging from Barnyard Breakfast Muffins; Grilled Chicken Panini; Heirloom Tomato Basil Salad with Parmesan Crisps; and Spicy Double-Dipped Onion Straws; to Grilled Portobello Rice Bowl; Sloppy Chase with Lamb; Brownie S'Mores Sandwiches; Peanut Butter Cup Pound Cake; and Pizzeria Drink. There is even a bonus recipe for making doggie treats! Of special note is the nine page 'Fun Facts References' section. Profusely and colorfully illustrated throughout, "The Official Chase 'N Yur Face Cookbook" will prove to be a highly prized addition to personal, family, and community library cookbook collections.
1,001 Best Hot and Spicy Recipes, second edition
c/o Agate Publishing
1328 Greenleaf Street, Evanston, IL 60202
9781572842007, $22.99, PB, 840pp, www.amazon.com
Dave DeWitt has written or coauthored more than 30 books on hot peppers and spicy foods and edited two different magazines devoted to those subjects. He is an adjunct associate professor at New Mexico State University, where he is also a board member of the Chile Pepper Institute. His media company, Sunbelt Shows, Inc., has produced the annual National Fiery Foods and Barbecue Show since 1988. Compiled DeWitt, this newly updated second edition of "1,001 Best Hot and Spicy Recipes: Delicious, Easy-to-Make Recipes from Around the Globe" is the latest addition to Agate Surrey's beloved 1,001 series of cookbooks and is its hottest ever. Featured are thoroughly 'kitchen cook friendly' hot and spices recipes for dishes ranging from Pickapeppa Hot Sauce; Sweet Potato Chips Dusted with Chimayo Red Chile; Lime Oysters with Garlic; and Acorn Squash and Corn Stew with Chipotle; to Brazilian Churrasco with Molho Campanha; Fried Chicken with Green Chile; Red Hot Lover's Vegetarian Lo Mein; and Homestyle Fries with Red Chile Salt and Cilantro Catsup. Showcasing a vast array of hot and spicy favorites that include a huge variety of soups, stews, chilis, and gumbos; a broad selection of barbecue dishes for the grill; and a lengthy list of meatless entrees and vegetable options, hundreds of spicy main dishes from around the globe, and an impressive array of zesty beverages, desserts, and breakfasts, "1,001 Best Hot and Spicy Recipes" continues to be the most comprehensive and exhaustive culinary resource for planning memorable meals of hot and spicy dishes. While very highly recommended for personal, family, professional, and community library cookbook collections, it should be noted that "1,001 Best Hot and Spicy Recipes" is also available in a Kindle format ($9.99).
The Pueblo Food Experience Cookbook
Edited by Roxanne Swentzell and Patricia M. Perea
Museum of New Mexico Press
PO Box 2087, Santa Fe, NM 87504-2087
9780890136195 $24.95 amazon.com
The Pueblo Food Experience Cookbook: Whole Food of Our Ancestors is a treasure trove of recipes by, for, and about the indigenous tribes of the Southwestern United States, particularly the Pueblo peoples of New Mexico. All recipes promote the original culinary lifestyle of these peoples, basing recipes on foods eaten before contact with Europe, including chemical-free meat, fowl, fish, whole grains, nuts, seeds, fruits, and vegetables. Recipes include Corn Squash Pudding, Turkey Tomatillo Tamales, Prickly Pear Fruit Juice, Jackrabbit Stew, and more. A sizeable portion of The Pueblo Food Experience Cookbook is also dedicated to the culinary history and modern-day experience of the Pueblo people, as well as a few vignettes about Pueblo life in the context of hunting, growing, or preparing food. Highly recommended.
Build Your Own Smoothie
161 John Roberts Road, South Portland, ME 04106
9781416245766 $16.95 amazon.com
Spiral Bound for ease of use, Build Your Own Smoothie is a hands-on cookbook with a unique design. Every page of Build Your Own Smoothie is divided into three horizontal sections that can be freely turned, or mixed and matched with one another: a choice for the smoothie's liquid composition (such as milk and frozen yogurt, or cashew milk and ice cream), a choice for the smoothie's base (such as banana and berry, or apricot with almond butter and honey), and a choice for the smoothie's flavorful boost (such as mango and lime zest, or whipped cream and chocolate). Turning the pages to any three liquid-base-boost combinations yields simple ingredient lists and preparation instructions on the left, and a full-color photograph of the ingredients stacked in a smoothie cup on the right. An index rounds out this intuitive, user-friendly guide to making unique, healthy, and delicious smoothies!
Bringing Home the Seitan
Kris Holechek Peters
PO Box 3440, Berkeley CA 94703-3440
9781612436081 $14.95 amazon.com
Seitan is wheat gluten, also known as "wheat-meat", "gluten meat", or "gluten", the main protein of wheat. Properly prepared seitan makes an excellent meat substitute, and an alternative to soybean-based foods. Although a few people are gluten intolerant, the vast majority of people can enjoy seitan as the protein-packed, plant-based foundation of a meal. Bringing Home the Seitan is a vegetarian cookbook especially for those who wish to create and taste seitan dishes for themselves and others. Vegetarian recipes include "Nutty Rice Burgers", "Buffalo Wingz with Perfect Ranch Dipping Sauce", "Italian Wedding Soup", "Avocado Not-Chicken Salad Sandwiches", "Not Beef with Broccoli", and more. A recipe index rounds out this easy-to-use, hands-on cookbook for creative vegetarians everywhere.
The Travel Shelf
Lonely Planet Publications
150 Linden Street, Oakland CA 94607
9781786571304, $24.99, HC, 304pp, www.amazon.com
Beautifully illustrated throughout, "Food Trails" is an impressive compendium of information that will prove to be especially appreciated by anyone who combines travel with the opportunity of sampling the local delicacies of the places they visit. "Food Trails" is the perfect compendium and resource for planning of perfect weekends around the world for dedicated food lovers. Featured trails include the an homage to Buenos Aires steak, cozy wintertime French Canadian cuisine, Puglia's distinctive dishes, and Parisian patisserie, and so much more! Each individual trail is an itinerary, detailing when and where to indulge in the local specialties. There are 52 trails in all, each with gorgeous photography, a bespoke map, expert writing and practical details of how to get there and where to stay. Unique, informative, perfect for inspiring and planning itineraries, "Food Trails" is certain to be an enduringly popular addition to community library Travel Guide reference collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists and travel reference collections that "Food Trails" is also available in a Kindle format ($24.99).
The Enchantment of New York
William Post & Ton Wienbelt, authors
Jasmine van den Hoek, translator
Skyhorse Publishing, Inc.
307 West 36th Street, 11th Floor, New York, NY 10018
9781510708112, $16.99, PB, 176pp, www.amazon.com
Residing in Houtrustweg, the Netherlands, media commentator Willem Post is connected to the Institute of Clingeldael in The Hague as an expert on America. Ton Wienbelt is a graphic designer and photographer with years of experience in city portraits and considers New York one of the most photogenic cities in the world and has visited many times and also resides in Houtrustweg, the Netherlands. Together they collaborate to produce "The Enchantment of New York: 75 of Manhattan's Most Magical and Unique Attractions", a profusely illustrated guide to 'the magic and mystery' that is New York, the iconic American 'melting pot' metropolis. Specific destinations ranges from the FDNY Memorial Wall, to Night Court, to Chinatown Ice Cream Factory, to the Garden of St. Luke in the Fields, to El Museo del Barrior, to The Back Room Bar, and so many, many more. Each destination includes transit information and a QR code which readers can scan with their smartphones to learn more about the various spots. Unique, informative, exceptionally well organized and presented, "The Enchantment of New York" fully lives up to its title and is very highly recommended for anyone contemplating a visit to the Big Apple! For personal reading lists it should be noted that "The Enchantment of New York" is also available in a Kindle format ($9.99).
The Fiction Shelf
Leaving Lucy Pear
c/o Penguin Group USA
375 Hudson Street, New York, NY 10014
9781594632655, $26.00, HC, 336pp, www.amazon.com
One night in 1917 Beatrice Haven sneaks out of her uncle's house on Cape Ann, Massachusetts, leaves her newborn baby at the foot of a pear tree, and watches as another woman claims the infant as her own. The unwed daughter of wealthy Jewish industrialists and a gifted pianist bound for Radcliffe, Bea plans to leave her shameful secret behind and make a fresh start. Ten years later, Prohibition is in full swing, post-WWI America is in the grips of rampant xenophobia, and Bea's hopes for her future remain unfulfilled. She returns to her uncle's house, seeking a refuge from her unhappiness. But she discovers far more when the rum-running manager of the local quarry inadvertently reunites her with Emma Murphy, the headstrong Irish Catholic woman who has been raising Bea's abandoned child -- now a bright, bold, cross-dressing girl named Lucy Pear, with secrets of her own. A consistently compelling, expertly narrated, skillfully plotted novel, "Leaving Lucy Pear" showcases author Anna Solomon's impressive storytelling skills and would prove to be an enduringly popular addition to community library General Fiction collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Leaving Lucy Pear" is also available in a Kindle format ($12.99).
The Perils Of Command
Allison and Busby
1940 Lawrence Road, Havertown, PA 19083
9780749018221, $25.00, HC, 352pp, www.amazon.com
John Pearce, having negotiated the highly questionable sale of the two French prizes taken in The Devil to Pay, has left HMS Flirt, as well as the crew and the wounded Henry Digby in Brindisi and is headed for Naples to see his lover. In an uncomfortable journey he seeks to work out a way to best both Admiral Sir William Hotham and Captain Ralph Barclay, men who are his sworn enemies. All his calculations are thrown into turmoil when he discovers that Emily is pregnant which, while it is a cause for joy, is also a reason to worry; she is still married to Ralph Barclay and by the laws of the time he can claim the child as his own. In "The Perils Of Command" author David Donachie has once again written an riveting maritime novel that will enthusiastically engage the reader from beginning to end. While highly recommended and certain to be an enduringly popular addition to community library General Fiction collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "The Perils Of Command" is also available in a paperback edition (9780749018320, $12.95) and in a Kindle format ($6.15).
PO Box 2225, Chapel Hill, NC 27515-2225
9781616206178, $26.95, HC, 352pp, www.amazon.com
Maribeth Klein is a harried working mother who's so busy taking care of her husband and twins, she doesn't even realize she's had a heart attack. Surprised to discover that her recuperation seems to be an imposition on those who rely on her, Maribeth does the unthinkable: she packs a bag and leaves. But, as is often the case, once we get where we're going we see our lives from a different perspective. Far from the demands of family and career and with the help of liberating new friendships, Maribeth is able to own up to secrets she has been keeping from herself and those she loves. With bighearted characters that include husbands, wives, friends, and lovers -- all of whom stumble and trip, grow and forgive, "Leave Me" is a novel about facing the fears we're all running from. In "Leave Me", author Gayle Forman has penned another wonderfully engaging, deftly crafted novel that will prove to be an enduringly popular addition to community library General Fiction collections. It should be noted for the legions of Gayle Forman fans that her latest novel, "Leave Me", is also available in a Kindle format ($11.88).
The Worst Generation: A Myopic Prosperity
Dan P. Greaney
c/o John Hunt Publishing, Ltd.
9781785354663, $19.95, PB, 288pp, www.amazon.com
"The Worst Generation" by Dan P. Greaney is a novel about Jenny Alhouse, who deplores her parents' contributions to the contemporary world, their generational short-sighted and selfish degradation of economic and environmental well-being. Jenny's recounting of childhood shows much she herself is thankful for, including a stable and caring home, the times she went kayaking with her father, the family trips, a quality education, and the benefits of prosperity. But she also tells the story from her adulthood, and includes the things she could not see as a child such as the economic and environmental plundering, and the inconsideration imbedded in her upbringing that leave her world unstable, uncivil, and unsafe. An inherently fascinating and resonating read from beginning to end, "The Worst Generation" is highly recommended for community library General Fiction collections. For personal reading lists it should be noted that "The Worst Generation" is also available in a Kindle format ($6.15).
The Two Of Us
1520 Wyandotte Street East, Windsor, ON N9A 3L2, Canada
9781771960991, $14.95, PB, 224pp, www.amazon.com
The sixteen short stories by Kathy Page that comprising "The Two Of Us" focus on pairs: intense one-on-one relationships and encounters. Page's various characters undergo genetic testing, garden, overeat, starve themselves, travel, fall pregnant, all while simultaneously driving each other towards moments where they (sometimes unwillingly) glimpse the meaning and shape of their lives, and who they might become. Deftly crafted, consistently compelling, unfailingly entertaining, "The Two Of Use" is very highly recommended for community and academic library Literary Fiction collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "The Two Of Us" is also available in a Kindle format ($9.99).
A Farmhouse In The Rain
Top Hat Books
c/o John Hunt Publishing, Ltd.
9781785354342, $24.95, PB, 408pp, www.amazon.com
"A Farmhouse in the Rain" by Joe Kilgore is a deftly crafted novel of war and peace, crime and punishment, love and loss, and eventually hope. It's a saga of three American soldiers and the women they love before, during, and after World War II. During the war, the three are given shelter by a French woman. The next morning she is found dead and the trio realize they were the only ones in the house. While the three survive the war, the questions remain: Who will survive the peace? Who will unite with the love they left behind? And who will be unmasked as the murderer on that fateful farmhouse night at. "A Farmhouse In The Rain" is a consistently compelling page-turner of a read and highly recommended for community library General Fiction collections. "A Farmhouse In The Rain" is also available in a Kindle format ($6.15).
The Orange Grove
1011 Washington Avenue South, #300, Minneapolis, MN 55415-1246
9781571311191, $16.00, PB, 174pp, www.amazon.com
Twin brothers Amed and Aziz live in the peaceful shade of their family's orange grove. But when a bomb kills the boys' grandparents, the war that plagues their country changes their lives forever. Blood must repay blood, and, in order to avenge their grandparents' deaths, one brother must offer the ultimate sacrifice. Years later, the surviving twin - now a student actor in a wintry Montreal - is given a role which forces him to confront the past. Through a masterfully crafted work of fiction, author Larry Tremblay, himself an actor and director, poses the difficult question: can art ever adequately address suffering? Both current and timeless, written with the sharp purity of desert poetry, "The Orange Grove" depicts the haunting inheritance of war and its aftermath. While very highly recommended for community library General Fiction collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "The Orange Grove" is also available in a Kindle format ($9.76).
Echoes of Family
Barbara Claypole White
Lake Union Publishing
9781503938137, $14.95, PB, 412pp, www.amazon.com
Marianne Stokes fled England at seventeen, spiraling into the manic depression that would become her shadow. She left behind secrets, memories, and tragedy: one teen dead, and her first love, Gabriel, badly injured. Three decades later she's finally found peace in the North Carolina recording studio she runs with her husband, Darius, and her almost-daughter, Jade...until another fatality propels her back across the ocean to confront the long-buried past. In her picturesque childhood village, the first person she meets is the last person she wants to see again: Gabriel. Now the village vicar, he takes her in without question, and ripples of what if reverberate through both their hearts. As Marianne's mind unravels, Jade and Darius track her down. Tempers clash when everyone tries to help, but only by finding the courage to face her illness can Marianne heal herself and her offbeat family. "Echoes of Family" is a riveting read from cover to cover and clearly showcases author Barbara Claypole White as a true master of the storytelling arts. While highly recommended and certain to be an enduringly popular addition to community library General Fiction collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Echoes of Family" is also available in a Kindle format ($4.99).
The Valley of Dry Bones
Jerry B. Jenkins
6100 Tower Circle, Suite 210, Franklin, TN 37067
9781617950087, $16.99, PB, 336pp, www.amazon.com
In "The Valley of the Dry Bones", author Jerry B. Jenkins deftly overlays the ancient End Times prophecies of Ezekiel onto the landscape of modern California. After a 17-year drought, multiple earthquakes, and uncontrollable wildfires, the state is desolate. The United States President declares the state uninhabitable and irreparable, directing California's 39 million citizens to relocate. From the air, California looks like a vast abandoned sand box, but to a few groups of people, it's their home. With less than 1% of the population remaining in California at their own risk, the holdouts encounter a clash of cultures, ethnicities, religions, and politics that pits friend against friend with the future of California at stake. In a riveting novel that could be ripped from tomorrow's headlines, "The Valley of the Dry Bones" is another superbly crafted and consistently engaging novel by a master storyteller. While very highly recommended, especially for community library General Fiction collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "The Valley of the Dry Bones" is also available in a Kindle edition ($9.85).
A Floating Phrase
c/o John Hunt Publishing, Ltd.
9781785354229, $14.95, PB, 184pp, www.amazon.com
"A Floating Phrase" by Trent Portigal is a deftly crafted novel that explores the nature of art, fear and snow puddles through the experiences of Cesarine, a stop-motion animator caught up in the intrigues of international diplomacy in 1970s continental Europe. At that time, national delegations for international conferences on European issues, such as those leading up to the Helsinki Accords, typically included defectors from the other side of the Iron Curtain. This led to scientists and artists with little experience in diplomacy being involved in high-level politics. A consistently compelling and fully engaging read from beginning to end, "A Floating Phrase" is especially recommended for community and academic library Literary Fiction collections. Of special note for personal reading lists is that "A Floating Phrase" is also available in a Kindle format ($6.15).
The Wedding Shop
Zondervan Publishing House
5300 Patterson Avenue, S.E., Grand Rapids, MI 49530
9780310341543, $15.95, PB, 384pp, www.amazon.com
It's the early 1930s, an Cora Scott is walking in stride as a career woman after having inherited her great aunt's wedding shop in Heart's Bend, Tennessee, where brides come from as far away as Birmingham to experience her famed bridal treatment. Meanwhile, Cora is counting down the days until her own true love returns from the river to make her his bride. But days turn into months and months to years. All the while, Birch Good continues to woo Cora and try to show her that while he is solid and dependable, he can sweep her off her feet. More than eighty years later, former Air Force Captain Haley Morgan has returned home to Heart's Bend after finishing her commitment to military service. After the devastating death of her best friend, Tammy, and discovering the truth about the man she loved, Haley is searching for her place in life. When Haley decides to reopen the romantic but abandoned wedding shop where she and Tammy played and dreamed as children, she begins a journey of courage, mystery, and love. As Cora's and Haley's stories intertwine through time in the shadow of the beloved wedding shop, they both discover the power of their own dreams and the magic of everyday love. A deftly crafted and inherently fascinating read from beginning to end, "The Wedding Shop" clearly showcases author Rachel Hauck as an impressively gifted and original novelist. For personal reading lists it should be noted that "The Wedding Shop" is available in a Kindle format ($8.99). Ideal for their General Fiction collections, community librarians should be aware that "The Wedding Shop" is also available in a Library Binding edition (Turtle books, 9780606394369, $28.15, 352pp).
Mark A. Jacobson
PO Box 3440, Berkeley CA 94703-3440
9781612435701, $15.95, PB, 288pp, www.amazon.com
"Sensing Light" is the story of Kevin, who a gay medical resident from working class Boston, has moved to San Francisco in search of acceptance of his sexual identity. Herb, a middle-aged supervising physician at one of the nation's toughest hospitals, struggles with his own emotional rigidity. And Gwen, a divorced mother raising a teen daughter, is seeking a sense of self and security while endeavoring to complete her medical training. Author Mark A. Jacobson is a Professor of Medicine at the University of California San Francisco and attending physician at San Francisco General Hospital, began his internship in 1981, just days after the CDC first reported a mysterious, fatal disease affecting gay men that wold eventually be know as HIV/AIDS. In "Sensing Light" he draws upon his own experience and expertise to inculcate a vivid realism to his novel. The result is a consistently engaging and compelling read from beginning to end. While very highly recommended for community library General Fiction collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Sensing Light" is also available in a Kindle format ($9.26).
Wooing The Echo
Cosmic Egg Books
c/o John Hunt Publishing, Ltd.
9781780998961, $22.95, PB, 357pp, www.amazon.com
The first volume in author Lee Morgan's "The Christopher Penrose" series of novels, "Wooing The Echo" a story about chasing a ghost and features echoes of magic. Christopher discovers the darkness that looms behind desire. Christopher is a man haunted and hollow with the loss of a friend unlike any other. When a stranger arrives with the secrets of 'Old Craft' sorcery and communion with the dead, Christopher's fate will be altered forever. On that crooked path the facade of normal life falls away to reveal a world of wonder, but also danger. As the ghosts of the dead stir, what secrets will rise to the surface with them, and will Christopher survive the horror that is love's other face? A consistently compelling and deftly crafted journey into a world of the occult, seething with real, adult and believable magic, "Wooing The Echo" will hold a special and enduring attraction to fans of the supernatural and occult. While highly recommended for community library collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Wooing The Echo" is also available in a Kindle format ($6.15).
The Life She Wants
225 Duncan Mill Road, Don Mills, ON, Canada, M3B 3K9
9780778330141, $26.99, HC, 336pp, www.amazon.com
In the aftermath of her financier husband's suicide, Emma Shay Compton's dream life is shattered. Richard Compton stole his clients' life savings to fund a lavish life in New York City and, although she was never involved in the business, Emma bears the burden of her husband's crimes. She is left with nothing. Only one friend stands by her, a friend she's known since high school, who encourages her to come home to Sonoma County. But starting over isn't easy, and Sonoma is full of unhappy memories, too. And people she'd rather not face, especially Riley Kerrigan. Riley and Emma were like sisters until Riley went and betrayed Emma, thereby ending their friendship. Emma left town, planning to never look back. Now, trying to stand on her own two feet, Emma can't escape her husband's reputation and is forced to turn to the last person she thought she'd ever ask for help from her former best friend. It's an uneasy reunion as both women face the mistakes they've made over the years. Only if they find a way to forgive each other (and themselves) can each of them find the life she wants. A master of the genre, Robyn Carr has written yet another consistently compelling read that will prove to be an enduringly popular addition to community library collections. A 'must' for the legions of Robyn Carr fans, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "The Life She Wants" is also available in a paperback edition (9780778319672, $15.99) and in a Kindle format ($9.99).
The Mirror Sisters
V. C. Andrews
c/o Simon & Schuster
1230 Avenue of the Americas, 13th fl., New York, NY 10020
9781476792361, $7.99, PB, 384pp, www.amazon.com
As identical twins, their mother insists that everything about them be identical: their clothes, their toys, their friends...the number of letters in their names, Haylee Blossom Fitzgerald and Kaylee Blossom Fitzgerald. If one gets a hug, the other must, too. If one gets punished, the other must be, too. Homeschooled at an early age, when the girls attend a real high school they find little ways to highlight the differences between them. But when Haylee runs headfirst into the dating scene, both sisters are thrust into a world their mother never prepared them for -- causing one twin to pursue the ultimate independence. The one difference between the two girls may spell the difference between life, and a fate worse than death. Very highly recommended for personal and community library collections, author V. C. Andrews is a master of the gothic atmosphere novel and "The Mirror Sisters" is the latest masterpiece and a 'must read' for her legions of fan.
The Mystery/Suspense Shelf
Lady Here's Your Wreath / Miss Callaghan Comes to Grief
James Hadley Chase
Stark House Press
1315 H Street, Eureka, CA 95501
9781944520083, $19.95, PB, 292pp, www.amazon.com
James Hadley Chase was the pseudonym of Rene Brabazon Raymond and the author more than 90 books and a master of the hard-boiled mystery genre. Brought back into print for a new generation of appreciative mystery buffs by the Stark House Press in their 'Crime Classics' series, two of his long out of print, time-lost classic stories are published under one cover. "Lady -- Here's Your Wreath" is the story of Vessi who is heading toward the gas chamber, when a mysterious phone voice offers newspaperman Nick Mason $10,000 to find the real killer. Vessi's dying words are "Lu Spencer pulled it", but Spencer's organization is not a group you want to tangle with because the shareholders include most of the men who run the city. When Mason decides to check it out anyway, he meets Mardi, Spencer's secretary, a sweet dish with the largest brown eyes. But Mason's also got a gunman on his tail. And the cold-hearted Blondie, who has a knack for turning up when she's least expected. Not to mention the mysterious person who keeps insisting he investigate Spencer. One of them is bound to be wearing a wreath before this game is over. In "Miss Callaghan Come To Grief", gang boss Mendetta is getting old and careless, so it's a cinch for Raven to step in and take over. The first thing he changes is the prostitution racket. Raven feels that too much of the profit is going to the girls. So he rounds them up, takes them off the street, puts them in new houses and rakes off all the profit for himself. And when fresh girls are needed, he simply has them kidnapped. Newspaperman Jay Ellinger senses something is amiss when he hears about a husband whose wife has gone missing. But Sadie is missing for a different reason -- she saw Raven leave Mendetta's apartment, and can put the finger on him. Sadie is now a valuable pawn, able to bring the whole racket down. If only Jay can find her. "Lady Here's Your Wreath / Miss Callaghan Comes to Grief" is very highly recommended for the personal reading lists of hardcore noir thriller buffs and community library Mystery/Suspense collections.
The Trouble with Goats and Sheep
c/o Simon and Schuster
1230 Avenue of the Americas, 14th fl., New York, NY 10020
9781501121890, $25.00, HC, 368pp, www.amazon.com
England, 1976. Mrs. Creasy is missing and the Avenue is alive with whispers. The neighbors blame her sudden disappearance on the heat wave, but ten-year-olds Grace and Tilly aren't convinced. As the summer shimmers endlessly on, the girls decide to take matters into their own hands. Inspired by the local vicar, they go looking for God -- they believe that if they find Him they might also find Mrs. Creasy and bring her home Spunky, spirited Grace and quiet, thoughtful Tilly go door to door in search of clues. The cul-de-sac starts to give up its secrets, and the amateur detectives uncover much more than ever imagined. As they try to make sense of what they've seen and heard, a complicated history of deception begins to emerge. Everyone on the Avenue has something to hide, a reason for not fitting in. In the suffocating heat of the summer, the ability to guard these differences becomes impossible. Along with the parched lawns and the melting pavement, the lives of all the neighbors begin to unravel. What the girls don't realize is that the lies told to conceal what happened one fateful day about a decade ago are the same ones Mrs. Creasy was beginning to peel back just before she disappeared. All the more impressive considering that "The Trouble with Goats and Sheep" is author Joanna Cannon's debut as a novelist, this exceptionally well written and consistently compelling read will prove to be an enduringly popular addition to community library General Fiction collections. For personal reading lists it should be noted that "The Trouble with Goats and Sheep" is also available in a Kindle format ($12.99).
1290 Sixth Ave., NY, NY 10104
9781681443898, $26.99, HC, 400pp, www.amazon.com
"Coffin Road" author Peter May spins a tale about three disparate cases that may or may not be linked. On the remote Isle of Harris in Scotland's Outer Hebrides, a man washes up on a deserted beach, hypothermic and completely disoriented. He has no idea who he is or how he got there. The only clue to his condition is a map of the island showing a desolate, ancient path called the Coffin Road. With a sense of dread and no clear idea what lies at the other end, he knows he must follow the trail if he has any hope of discovering his identity. Meanwhile, homicide detective George Gunn makes the rough ocean crossing to a remote, sea-battered lighthouse on a rock in the northern Atlantic, twenty miles west of the Outer Hebrides, to investigate a brutal murder. Despite its isolation, the tiny island has seen its share of tragedy: more than a century earlier, three lighthouse keepers disappeared, never to be seen or heard from again. And now there is a new tragedy, and Gunn must figure out what happened. At the same time, a teenage girl lies in her Edinburgh bedroom, desperate to discover the truth about her father's death. Two years after the discovery of the pioneering scientist's suicide note, Karen Fleming still cannot accept that her father would willingly abandon her. And the more she discovers about the nature of his research, the more she suspects that there is much more to her father's death. A consummately skilled and original storyteller, "Coffin Road" fully showcases novelist Peter May's total mastery of the mystery/suspense genre. While strongly recommended for community library Mystery/Suspense collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Coffin Road" is also available in a Kindle edition ($13.99).
Robert B. Parker's Debt to Pay
Reed Farrel Coleman
c/o Penguin Group USA
375 Hudson Street, New York, NY 10014
9780399171437, $27.00, HC, 352pp, www.amazon.com
All is quiet in Paradise, except for a spate of innocuous vandalism. Good thing, too, because Jesse Stone is preoccupied with the women in his life, both past and present. As his ex-wife, Jenn, is about to marry a Dallas real-estate tycoon, Jesse isn't too sure his relationship with former FBI agent Diana Evans is built to last. But those concerns get put on the back burner when a major Boston crime boss is brutally murdered. Despite all evidence to the contrary, Jesse suspects it's the work of Mr. Peepers, a psychotic assassin who has caused trouble for Jesse in the past. Peepers has long promised revenge against the Mob, Jesse, and Suit for their roles in foiling one of his hits -- and against Jenn as well. And though Jesse and Jenn have long parted ways, Jesse still feels responsible for her safety. Jesse and Diana head to Dallas for the wedding and, along with the tycoon's security team, try to stop Peepers before the bill comes due. With Peepers toying with the authorities as to when and where he'll strike, Jesse is up against the wall. Still, there's a debt to pay and blood to be spilled to satisfy it. But whose blood, and just how much? A consistently riveting read from beginning to end, and highly recommended for community library collections, "Robert B. Parker's Debt to Pay" is also available for personal reading lists in a Kindle format ($13.99).
Matrimony in Miniature
c/o Daniel & Daniel, Publishers
PO Box 2790, McKinleyville, CA 95519
9781564745750, $15.95, PB, 224pp, www.amazon.com
When murder happens in the small town of Lincoln Point CA, there aren't many degrees of separation between the victim and retired teacher Gerry Porter. How can she stay away from the investigation when the crime scene is the venue for her marriage to Henry Baker? But this time, nephew Detective Skip Gowen tries to discourage Gerry's and granddaughter Maddie's efforts to solve "The Case." He couldn't live with himself if the murderer learns of their efforts and comes after them. "Matrimony in Miniature" is another consistently engaging and compelling mystery by Margaret Grace and continues to reveal this author as a master of the genre. A deftly crafted and unfailingly entertaining read from cover to cover, "Matrimony in Miniature" is enthusiastically recommended for community library Mystery/Suspense collections.
c/o Baker Publishing Group
6030 East Fulton, Ada, MI 49301
9780800726454, $14.99, PB, 432pp, www.amazon.com
As part of his regular street performance, a deception specialist who goes by the name The Raven picks his audience's pockets while they watch. It's harmless fun -- until he decides to keep the spare wallet a city councilman doesn't seem to miss, hoping for a few extra bucks. When he finds not money but compromising photos of the councilman and his "personal assistants". That's when the Raven hatches a plan to blackmail the councilman. However, he quickly finds himself in over his head with the Ukrainian Mafia and mired in a life-threatening plot code-named, "Nevermore". Private investigators Trudi Coffey and Samuel Hill must scramble to sort out the clues (and their complicated feelings for each other) to rescue The Raven and save hundreds of lives from a wildcard bent on revenge. A deftly crafted, exceptionally well written thriller by a true master of the genre, Mike Nappa's "The Raven" is enthusiastically recommended for community library collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "The Raven" is also available in a Kindle edition ($9.99). Librarians should be aware that "The Raven" is also available in a large print hardcover edition (Thorndike Press, 9781410494955, $29.99) and in a complete and unabridged CD audio book format (Oasis Audio: 9781613758472, $14.99).
Astor + Blue Editions
9781941286920, $16.95, PB, 275pp, www.amazon.com
Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Brian Jones, Jim Morrison, Ron "Pigpen" McKernan, Peter Ham - all of them iconic rock stars, all of them dead at age twenty-seven. How could a group of great musicians all die at the same age? All evidence points to the deaths being unrelated, but were they really? Gantry Elliot is a relic of rock and roll era still writing for Rolling Stone magazine covering "classic" rock and roll and struggling for relevance in the age of hip-hop and electronic dance music. Even though he's an encyclopedia of music trivia, Gantry can't compete with the new kids on the block and is now reduced to watching the clock tick down on his once dynamic career. But Gantry's vast knowledge may be the only thing that can unravel the Myth of 27. When anonymous packages start showing up at his office and then his home, Gantry initially shrugs them off as another Myth of 27 conspiracy nerd trying to get attention. As the clues became more intimate, more personal, more sinister, he realizes this is not a game: someone knows the truth, and the truth may put Gantry's life in serious danger. Considering that it is author Chris Formant's debut as a novelist,"Bright Midnight" is an exceptionally compelling and consistently engaging read from beginning to end. While very highly recommended for community library Mystery/Suspense collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Bright Midnight" is also available in a Kindle format ($7.99).
Dying for Christmas
80 Broad Street, 5th Floor, New York, NY 10004
9781681772615, $25.95, HC, 400pp, www.amazon.com
Out Christmas shopping one December afternoon, Jessica Gould meets the charming Dominic Lacey and impulsively agrees to go home with him for a drink. What follows is a Twelve Days of Christmas from hell as Lacey holds Jessica captive, forcing her to wear his missing wife's gowns and eat lavish holiday meals. Each day he gifts her with one item from his twisted past, including his dead sister's favorite toy, disturbing family photos, and a box of teeth. As the days pass and the "gifts" become darker and darker, Jessica realizes that Lacey has a plan for her, and he never intends to let her go. But Jessica has a secret of her own -- a secret that may just mean she has a chance to make it out alive. Author Tammy Cohen is a master of the suspense/thriller genre and her latest novel, "Dying for Christmas" is a truly riveting read from beginning to end. While very highly recommended for community library collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Dying for Christmas" is also available in a Kindle format ($12.99).
Cat Got Your Diamonds
Crooked Lane Books
2 Park Avenue, 10th floor, New York, NY 10016
9781629538426, $24.99, HC, 304pp, www.amazon.com
Grandeur and opulence are everything in the famed New Orleans Garden District where pets are family and no bling is too big. Opening Furry Godmother, pet boutique and organic treat bakery, is Lacy Marie Crocker's dream come true--until the glitter gun used to make her Shih Tzu tutus becomes a murder weapon. And Lacy becomes public enemy #1. Now Detective Jack Oliver is hounding Lacy, and her Furry Godmother investor wants out before his name is tarnished by association. To make matters worse, a string of jewel heists with suspicious ties to the murder case has New Orleans residents on edge. To save her dream, Lacy must take a stand, put her keen eyes to work, and unravel what really happened at her shop that night. But can Lacy sniff out the killer cat burglar in time to get her tail-raising designs on the catwalk? Author Julie Chase is a master storyteller with a positive gift for whimsey and wit compelling the reader's riveted attention from beginning to end. While enthusiastically recommended and certain to be an enduringly popular addition for community library Mystery/Suspense collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Cat Got Your Diamonds" is also available in a paperback edition (9781683311973, $15.99) and in a Kindle format ($9.89).
The Dundurn Group
3 Church Street, Suite 500, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, M5E 1M2
9781459733251, $15.99, PB, 232pp, www.amazon.com
When Harvey Keill, ex-manager of the Ladykillers, arranges a reunion for his notorious punk band on a remote island off the coast of Seattle, it seems as though the group's glory days are about to return. One by one, the band members and their guests arrive. Lead singer Spike Anthrax, bassist Pete Doghouse, and guitarist Max Hardcore confront one another for the first time since their well-publicized and highly acrimonious split fifteen years earlier stopped them from finishing their musical testament to punk rock genius: Endgame. They are joined by an entourage of groupies, girlfriends, one of America's best rock critics, and a real estate agent invited to put the island up for sale. But where's Harvey? No matter -- a party's a party, right? Wrong. Once everyone has gathered, a dark secret emerges from the past to haunt them and, one by one, the guests begin to fall prey to a mysterious fate. In the brilliant tradition of Agatha Christie, "Endgame" by Jeffrey Round is a consistently compelling read replete with unexpected plot twists and turns making it highly recommended for personal reading lists and community library Mystery/Suspense collections. It should be noted for dedicated mystery buffs that "Endgame" is also available in a Kindle format ($5.38).
E. S. Thomson
80 Broad Street, 5th Floor, New York, NY 10004
9781681772141, $25.95, HC, 400pp, www.amazon.com
Ramshackle and crumbling, trapped in the past and resisting the future, St. Saviour's Infirmary awaits demolition. Within its stinking wards and cramped corridors, the doctors bicker and backstab. Ambition, jealousy, and loathing seethe beneath the veneer of professional courtesy. Always an outsider, and with a secret of her own to hide, apothecary Jem Flockhart observes everything but says nothing. And then six tiny coffins are uncovered, inside each a handful of dried flowers and a bundle of mouldering rags. When Jem comes across these strange relics hidden inside the infirmary's old chapel, her quest to understand their meaning pries open a long-forgotten past?with fatal consequences. In a trail that leads from the bloody world of the operating room and the dissecting table to the notorious squalor of Newgate Prison and the gallows, Jem's adversary proves to be both powerful and ruthless. As St. Saviour's destruction draws near, the dead are unearthed from their graves while the living are forced to make impossible choices. And murder is the price to be paid for the secrets to be kept. A simply riveting read from beginning to end, "Beloved Poison" by E. S. Thomson will prove to be an enduringly popular addition to community library Mystery/Suspense collections and clearly establishes the author to be a true master of the genre. For personal reading lists it should be noted that "Beloved Poison" is also available in a Kindle format ($12.99).
c/o Dufour Editions, Inc.
PO Box 7, 124 Byers Road, Chester Springs, PA 19425-0007
9781910050712, $18.00, PB, 470pp, www.amazon.com
To a Formula One driver, speed, wheel-to-wheel combat, and danger are all part of everyday life. But things turn sinister at the Monaco Grand Prix: Remy Sabatino's car is sabotaged, and a teammate only just defies death when he suffers a horrific crash. Are these incidents in any way connected? Matt Straker, former Marine and corporate intelligence director, is brought in to investigate, but he soon realizes that the perpetrators are incredibly and deviously clever. It is only by outsmarting them that he can uncover a major conspiracy intent on far more than one man's life. They're after a prize so great they will stop at nothing to get what they want. Clearly, British author Toby Vintcent draws upon his experience and expertise as an avid Formula One racing fan to deftly craft a riveting novel that pays considerable attention to descriptive accuracy in detail and background. While very highly recommended and certain to be an enduringly popular addition to community library General Fiction collections, it should be noted for the personal reading lists of mystery buffs and racing fans that "Driven" is also available in a Kindle edition ($7.99).
Robert K. Tanenbaum
c/o Simon and Schuster
1230 Avenue of the Americas, 14th fl., New York, NY 10020
9781476793191, $27.00, HC, 368pp, www.amazon.com
When a former Army veteran suddenly murders a colonel in New York, he claims that he had to do it because he was being used in mind control experiments. Surprisingly, a top Wall Street criminal defense lawyer, one with ties to the White House, decides to defend the killer, arguing that his client suffered from post-traumatic stress from his tours in Afghanistan and that it's his patriotic duty to assist him. As New York District Attorney Roger "Butch" Karp prepares a murder case against the veteran, he meets with investigative reporter Ariadne Stupenagel, who suspects that one of her sources for a story on high-level government corruption was a victim in the shooting. This points not to a random act of violence, but a hired killing that goes to the top levels of our nation. Karp goes up against corruption so powerful that he, his family, and his friends are in danger if he intends to prosecute those responsible for the murder of an FBI whistle-blower. "Infamy" is a swiftly paced thriller, ripe with intrigue, murder, corruption, and dramatic courtroom battles, all of which are deftly combine by a master storyteller to make "Infamy" another must-read for the legions of Tanenbaum fans. While very highly recommended for community library Legal Thriller collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Infamy" is also available in a Kindle format ($12.99).
The Adjustment League
1520 Wyandotte Street East, Windsor, ON N9A 3L2, Canada
9781771960823, $14.95, PB, 352pp, www.amazon.com
Back in the 1980s, the patients in a psychiatric hospital formed what they called 'The Adjustment League' as a means of protecting themselves against the depredations of a corrupt and abusive staff. Many years later, the leader of this group (a man known only as "The Super") receives a letter leading to the discovery of a pornographic ring in need of "adjustment". A deftly crafted noir mystery/suspense thriller of a novel by an author who is a master of the genre, "The Adjustment League" is a riveting read from cover to cover and highly recommended for community library collections. For personal reading lists it should be noted that "The Adjustment League" is also available in a Kindle format ($9.11).
The Religion/Spirituality Shelf
No God but One
Zondervan Publishing House
5300 Patterson Avenue, S.E., Grand Rapids, MI 49530
9780310522553, $17.99, PB, 320pp, www.amazon.com
Nabeel Qureshi is a speaker with Ravi Zacharias International Ministries. He holds an MD from Eastern Virginia Medical School, an MA in Christian apologetics from Biola University, and an MA in religion from Duke University. His is also an Islamic convert to Christianity. In "No God but One: Allah or Jesus?: A Former Muslim Investigates the Evidence for Islam and Christianity" he addresses such questions as: Can Allah and Jesus both be God?; Is the idea of God as a Trinity problematic?; How does the Quran compare to the Bible?; Did the Council of Nicaea randomly decide the Biblical canon?; What is the difference between Jihad and the Crusades?; If Jesus is God how did he die on a cross and who was ruling the universes when Jesus was dead?. An inherently fascinating and impressively informative read, "No God but One" is very highly recommended for all members of the Christian community regardless of their denominational affiliation. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "No God but One" is also available in a Kindle format ($9.99). Church and community librarians should be aware that "No God but One" is also available as an MP3 CD audio book (Brilliance Audio, 9781531832087, $14.99).
Angels Plain & Simple
65 Parker Street, Suite 7, Newburyport, MA 01950
9781571747556 $14.95 amazon.com
Angels Plain & Simple: The Only Book You'll Ever Need is a succinct guide to connecting with angels, whether through meditation, dreams, using decks of special cards, or other means. A deeply spiritual book, open to readers of all religious faiths, Angels Plain & Simple discusses modern-day encounters with angels, herbs and plants with connections to angels, the meaning of heaven and angels in the afterlife, and much more. "In Victorian society, it was well known that little children were under the protection and guardianship of special angles... An angel who particularly loves children is Paige, so it is she who will minister sick or unhappy children. If a request is made to an angel of children, the gift of a baby can be granted to couples that are finding it hard to conceive." A handful of black-and-white illustrations enhance this soulful addition to spirituality or New Age shelves.
The Christian Studies Shelf
Work and Wealth in Scripture
Lawrence A. Clayton
Resource Publications, Inc.
2205 Benton, Searcy, AR 72143
9781620322567, $21.00, PB, 164pp, www.amazon.com
What do you do with your money? What do you think of your boss? Do you like your work? Is it satisfying? Are you satisfied with your answers? Do you know that God, through Scripture, offers us answers? Two of the most fundamental challenges for all humankind are deciding how to live and, if we accumulate riches, deciding how to use them. Did you know that God expects all humankind to work? For the Christian, all work is part of your Christian calling, whether you collect garbage for a living or sit in Washington deciding affairs of state. And what does Scripture have to say about riches? Did you know that Jesus directed more attention to the question of how to deal with wealth than just about any other subject he addressed during his three-year ministry? "Work and Wealth in Scripture: How to Grow, Prosper, and Work as a Christian" by Lawrence Clayton is (Professor Emeritus of History, University of Alabama) deftly explore work and wealth as referenced in biblical scripture and seek answers to the above questions and a great many others. Beginning with the first work recorded in the Bible and continuing down to our own contemporary time, when leisure competes with work for our attention and wealth gives us a false sense of security that puts us in danger of replacing God with self, "Work and Wealth in Scripture" will prove to be as informed and informative as it is thoughtful and thought-provoking. Exceptionally well reasoned, researched, written, organized and presented, "Work and Wealth in Scripture" is unreservedly recommended to the attention of all members of the Christian community regardless of their denominational affiliation. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Work and Wealth in Scripture" is also available in a Kindle format ($9.99).
Option for the Poor and for the Earth, third edition
Price Building, Box 302, Maryknoll NY 10545-0302
9781626981621, $45.00, PB, 548pp, www.amazon.com
A theologian and missionary priest who has served as a consultant to the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace and as a resource person for the Irish Missionary Union, In the pages of "Option for the Poor and for the Earth: From Leo XIII to Pope Francis" Donal Dorr focuses on Catholic social teaching and economic equality. This is an expanded and revised third edition of a text long recognized as a classic in Catholic Theological Studies. Throughout, "Option for the Poor and for the Earth" Dorr appreciates the decided strengths of Catholic social teaching but is also ready to point out its inconsistencies and weaknesses. In addition to his classic treatments of church documents from the century and a half of Catholic social teaching that began with Rerum Novarum in 1870, Dorr adds his magisterial take on Pope Francis' apostolic exhortation, Evangelii Gaudium, and the new encyclical on ecology. Informed and informative, thoughtful and thought-provoking, exceptionally well written, organized and presented, "Option for the Poor and for the Earth" is an unreservedly recommended addition for community, seminary, and academic library Christian Studies reference collections in general, and Contemporary Catholic Social Teachings supplemental studies lists in particular. For the personal reading lists of students and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject it should be noted that "Option for the Poor and for the Earth" is also available in a Kindle format ($21.49).
Next Door as It Is in Heaven
Lance Ford & Brad Brisco
3820 North 30th Street, Colorado Springs, CO 80904
9781631464973, $14.99, PB, 208pp, www.amazon.com
There was a time when neighbors knew each other's names, when small children and the old and infirm alike had more than their families looking out for them. There was a time when our neighborhoods were our closest communities. No more. Neighborhoods have become the place where nobody knows your name. Into this neighborhood crisis the words of Jesus still ring true: Second only to the command to love God is the command to "love your neighbor as yourself". Brad Brisco is currently the Director of Bivocational Church Planting for the North American Mission Board. He holds a doctorate in the area of missional ecclesiology. In "Next Door as It Is in Heaven: Living Out God's Kingdom in Your Neighborhood" he draws upon his many years of experience and expertise to offer simple principles and practical steps to make the neighborhoods where Christians dwell into communities of love, respect, dignity, and civic virtue. Exceptionally well written, organized and presented, "Next Door as It Is in Heaven" is very highly recommended for all members of the Christian community regardless of denominational affiliations. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Next Door as It Is in Heaven" is also available in a Kindle format ($9.99).
Working for Our Neighbor
Gene Edward Veith
Christian's Library Press
98 E. Fulton Street, Grand Rapids, MI 49503
9781942503293, $9.95, PB, 140pp, www.amazon.com
The Protestant Reformation was more than just a series of attempts to correct and counter the perceived corruption of the Roman Catholic Church. It as also a catalyst for social mobility, universal education, and the rise of modern market economies. According to Martin Luther, God himself is hidden in vocation, as he providentially works through ordinary human beings to care for his creation. In their work (not only in the economy, but also in family, church, and community) Christians live out their faith in love and service to their neighbors. For Lutherans, the doctrine of vocation is nothing less than the theology of the Christian life. In its social impact, vocation gave a theological basis for the division of labor, social equality, and individual freedom. In the pages of "Working for Our Neighbor: A Lutheran Primer on Vocation, Economics, and Ordinary Life", author Gene Edward Veith connects vocation to justification, good works, and Christian freedom, and thereby defining how the Lutheran contribution to economics can transfigure ordinary life, and work, with the powerful presence of God. Impressively informative, thoughtful and thought-provoking, "Working for Our Neighbor" is a highly recommended and invaluable addition to personal, church, seminary, and academic library Christian Studies collections. It should be noted that "Working for Our Neighbor" is also available in a Kindle format ($7.99).
Bread for the Journey
1251 Virginia Avenue, Harrisonburg, VA 22802
9781513800486, $16.99, HC, www.amazon.com
The basic message of "Bread for the Journey: Meditations and Recipes to Nourish the Soul, from the Authors of Mennonite Girls Can Cook" by Lovella Schellenberg is that you can strengthen your relationship with God by savoring everyday moments while deepen your faith. "Bread for the Journey"is a compendium of meditations for women and specifically written to offer 90 daily devotionals that will provide morsels for both inspiration and reflection, all of which are drawn from God's unending promises in Scripture. Interspersed throughout the devotional are favorite recipes, inviting us to extend our tables and share God's blessing with others. "Bread for the Journey" provides: Daily inspiration for your journey with Jesus; Short prayers and invitations to reflection; Dramatic family stories of suffering, migration, and hope; and 'kitchen cook friendly recipes from the authors of 'Mennonite Girls Can Cook'. Inspiring, encouraging, uplifting, motivating, "Bread for the Journey" is very highly recommended for all members of the Christian community regardless of their denominational affiliation.
Becoming a Person of Mercy
Max Oliva, SJ
1 Montauk Ave #200, New London, CT 06320
9781627851602, $12.95, PB, 112pp, www.amazon.com
Many Christians are familiar with the Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy. But what do they really mean? How can bearing wrongs patiently or comforting the afflicted be relevant in our modern world? In the pages of "Becoming a Person of Mercy: Personal Reflections on the Works of Mercy", Jesuit priest Max Oliva shares stories and insights from decades of ministry around the globe with people whose lives are enriched by giving and accepting mercy. From a First Nations community in Canada to an inner city parish in California, Fr. Oliva provides moving examples of mercy at work and humbly shares his own conversion to compassion experiences. Steeped in scriptural insights and enhanced with the words and deeds of champions of mercy from Pope Francis to Jackie Robinson "Becoming a Person of Mercy" is part practical guide, part spiritual refreshment, and part small-group handbook. Each individual chapter contains questions for reflection and discussion to help us discern how God, the source of mercy, calls us to extend mercy to others, to his own creation, and especially to ourselves. Even the smallest works of mercy, says Fr. Oliva, are graced experiences of God alive within us. Strongly and unreservedly recommended for personal seminary, and church library collections, "Becoming a Person of Mercy" is an informative and inspiring read from beginning to end.
Feeding Your Family's Soul
Donna-Marie Cooper O'Boyle
PO Box 1568, Orleans, MA 02653
9781612618357, $15.99, PB, 256pp, www.amazon.com
"Feeding Your Family's Soul: Dinner Table Spirituality" by Donna-Marie Cooper O'Boyle is a vital tool to enable parents to transform a regular dinner time into a prayerful faith lesson for their elementary school to high school aged children. It will indeed help to fulfill the Catholic Church's vision for evangelization in the family and beyond. Through 52 fun and creative faith lessons (one for each week of the year), "Feeding Your Family's Soul" is one-of-a-kind instruction guide will encourage parents and caregivers to seize the opportunity in teaching the Catholic faith to the children (the captive audience waiting to eat!) while gathered at the dinner table, and while reminding them of the value of coming together as a family to break bread and share hearts. Thoroughly 'reader friendly' in tone, content, commentary, organization and presentation, "Feeding Your Family's Soul" is very highly recommended for personal, family, church Christian Parenting collections.
Tyndale House Publishers
351 Executive Drive, Carol Stream, IL 60188
9781496400949, $15.99, PB, 240pp, www.amazon.com
We live in a world where real friendship is hard to find. Suspicious of others and insecure about ourselves, we retreat into the safety of our small, self-made worlds. Now more than ever, it's easy to avoid people with whom we disagree or whose life experiences don't mirror our own. Safe among like-minded peers and digital "friends", we really don't have to engage with those who can challenge and enhance our limited perspectives. Tragically, even the church can become a place that minimizes diversity and reinforces isolation. Jesus models a much richer vision of friendship and in "Befriend: Create Belonging in an Age of Judgment, Isolation, and Fear" pastor and teacher Scott Sauls invites Christians to see the breadth of Christ's love on a journey comprised of twenty-one meditations to inspire actively pursuing God's love through expanding your circle of friends. Real friendship is costly. Love does make us vulnerable. But without risk, our lives will remain impoverished. "Befriend" is extraordinarily well written, organized and presented, making it strongly recommended, especially for all members of the Christian community regardless of their denominational affiliation. It should be noted that "Befriend" is also available in a Kindle edition ($8.57) and as a complete and unabridged CD audio book (Oasis Audio, 9781613758533, $19.99).
Let God Love You
57 West South Temple, Salt Lake City, UT 84101
9781629722009, $17.99, PB, 240pp, www.amazon.com
We learn who we are and what we can hope for from others in the context of our relationships with family, friends, and others around us. Some of what we have learned and experienced may even blind us to what is really true about God, leaving us both yearning for and afraid of closeness with Him. Coupling the teachings of Christ and His prophets with gospel-oriented ideas from her counseling background, in the pages of "Let God Love You: Why We Don't; How We Can" by author, psychologist, and devout Mormon Wendy Ulrich probes faulty assumptions that we may bring to our relationship with God. By understanding and healing these false beliefs and then following the teachings of Christ about how we can ''come unto Him'', Wendy deftly asserts that we learn to see God more accurately, rely on Him more trustingly, and become strengthened in His love. Exceptionally well written, organized and presented, "Let God Love You: Why We Don't; How We Can" is very highly recommended. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Let God Love You" is also available in a Kindle format ($10.49).
The Judaic Studies Shelf
Kabbalah and Jewish Modernity
Littman Library Of Jewish Civilization
c/o International Specialized Book Services
920 Northeast 58th Avenue, Suite 300, Portland, OR, 97213
9781906764623, $49.50, HC, 222pp, www.amazon.com
Something crucial and quite unprecedented happened to kabbalah in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Though it had previously been considered a highly secretive and esoteric tradition, its practitioners began to spread its doctrines throughout the Jewish world with missionary zeal. Their goal was ambitious: no less than the remodeling of the religious and ethical attitudes of the entire Jewish population, a reformation of Judaism. In "Kabbalah and Jewish Modernity" by academician Roni Weinstein (Hebrew University of Jerusalem) persuasive argues that kabbalistic innovations were partly a response to changes in the Catholic world-view, revealing an intimate link with Counter-Reformation Catholicism, as well as religious and political changes taking place in contemporary Islamic Ottoman settings. Professor Weinstein sees the emergence of 'Jewish modernity' as the result of developments that were intrinsically Jewish rather than as a response to outside influences during the Enlightenment; controversially, he therefore places its origins in the Mediterranean world of the late sixteenth century rather than in eighteenth-century Berlin. His argument is based on a wide range of Jewish sources-including theological tracts, kabbalistic and ethical literature, hagiographies, mystical diaries, halakhic rulings and response, and community and confraternal regulations-as well as the testimonies of non-Jewish travellers, and Catholic religious literature. A truly impressive work of original and seminal scholarship, "Kabbalah and Jewish Modernity" is extraordinarily informative, exceptionally well written, organized and presented, making it unreservedly recommended for both academia as well as non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject. Simply stated, "Kabbalah and Jewish Modernity" is unreservedly and emphatically recommended for college and university library Judaic Studies collections in general, and Kabbalah supplemental studies reading lists in particular.
From Mourning to Morning
Rabbi Simeon Schreiber
c/o Lambda Publishers
527 Empire Boulevard, Brooklyn, New York 11225
9789655242614, $19.95, PB, 128pp, www.amazon.com
In the pages of "From Mourning to Morning: A Comprehensive Guide to Mourning, Grieving, and Bereavement", Rabbi Simeon Schreiber (Senior Staff Chaplain at Mount Sinai Medical Center in Miami Beach, Florida), translates his many years of experience and considerably expertise into a greater understanding of the emotions surrounding death, grieving, mourning, and bereavement in Judaism. From "Mourning to Morning" deftly presents these principles in a comprehensive format. Focusing on the Shiva, the seven day period of mourning in Judaism, Rabbi Schreiber explains the foundation of visiting a house of mourners, and suggests proper etiquette in conducting a visit. With sensitivity and expertise, Rabbi Schreiber provides unique and practical advise on how to cope with death, mourning, and the related issues that we all will inevitably face. Impressively well written, organized and presented, "From Mourning to Morning" is unreservedly recommended.
The Buddhist Studies Shelf
Embracing Each Moment
Shambhala Publications, Inc.
300 Massachusetts Avenue, Boston, MA 02115-4544
9781611803464, $18.95, HC, 144pp, www.amazon.com
Anam Thubten grew up in Tibet and at an early age began to practice in the Nyingma tradition of Tibetan Buddhism. Among his many teachers, his most formative guides were Lama Tsurlo, Khenpo Chopel, and Lama Garwang. He is the founder and spiritual advisor of Dharmata Foundation, teaching widely in the US and occasionally abroad. According to Thubten, the awakened life is the essence and aim of the Buddhist teachings. "Embracing Each Moment: A Guide to the Awakened Life" is a guide to cultivating the awakened mind and heart that allows this wonderful kind of life to happen. "Embracing Each Moment" deftly illuminates the path to awakened living in a way that's concise and completely accessible to anyone of any background. The basic message is that happiness primarily arises from our state of mind, though we can't deny the fact that outside circumstances play a big role. If we can learn to embrace each moment of our lives, then we will be empowered to let go of our emotional patterns and false beliefs about ourselves, and thereby discover the compassion that's been there all along. While "Embracing Each Moment" is an extraordinary and very highly recommended addition to community, college, and university library Buddhism collections and supplemental studies reading lists. For students and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject, it should be noted that "Embracing Each Moment" is also available in a Kindle format ($12.99).
The Graphic Novel Shelf
The Pterodactyl Hunters in the Gilded City
237 Flatbush Avenue, #331, Brooklyn, NY 11217
9780996273930, $20.00, HC, 44pp, www.amazon.com
Brendan Leach is an Ignatz and Xeric Award winning Cartoonist and Illustrator. His comics have been published by Secret Acres, Top Shelf Comics, and Retrofit Comics. Brendan's illustration work has been recognized by the Society of Illustrators and 3×3 Magazine, and his comics have been included in many collections and anthologies, including Best American Comics 2011. His graphic novel "Pterodactyl Hunters in the Gilded City" is a story of sibling rivalry and family tradition in a rapidly changing alternate universe world and set in a version of 1904 New York where generations of working-class hot air balloonists take to the skies each night to defend their city from pterodactyls. A solidly original, deftly written, engagingly illustrated story from first page to last, "The Pterodactyl Hunters in the Gilded City" is very highly recommended for community library Graphic Novel collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "The Pterodactyl Hunters in the Gilded City" is also available in a Kindle format ($5.99).
The Audiobook Shelf
Richard Castle, author
Read by Robert Petkoff
237 Park Avenue, New York, NY 10017
9781478971504 $30.00 amazon.com
Also available in print and ebook formats, High Heat is the unabridged audiobook rendition of a thriller featuring Captain Nikki Heat. A gruesome video and a murderous threat from a terrorist group set Heat on edge; the killers' next target is her husband, magazine writer Jameson Rook, who is supposedly pursuing a story about independent presidential candidate Legs Kline. Heat's desperate search to find the terrorists before they find Rook takes a turn for the bizarre when she encounters a woman who seems to be her long-dead mother! Superbly performed by professional theater actor Robert Petkoff, High Heat is thrilling and suspenseful to the very end, and a choice pick for both personal listening and public library audiobook collections.
Read by Lucy Rayner
Tantor Media, Inc.
6 Business Park Road, Old Saybrook, CT 06475
9781515911203 $44.99 amazon.com
Also available in paperback and Kindle editions, Bold Angel is an unabridged audiobook of war and passionate love. Caryn of Ivesham is antagonistic toward the Norman knight Ral the Relentless. Ral saved her from a fate worse than death, and their wedding could bring peace to her besieged land, yet she cannot forgive him for his conquests - or for the reprehensible cruelty his men perpetrated on her sister. Ral himself is consumed with desire for Caryn, yet lingering doubts remain that his rebellious bride might betray him. Intense and burning, Bold Angel is a choice pick for connoisseurs of steamy historical romance! 12 CDs, 14.5 hours.
The Bette Davis Club
PO Box 887, Grand Haven, MI 49417
9781531866044 $9.99 amazon.com
The Bette Davis Club is an unabridged MP3 audiobook (plays on MP3-CD enabled players, or transfers to portable devices) filled with laughter and hijinks galore. Fifty-ish spinster Margo Just begins the morning of her niece's wedding with a double martini, but when the young bride suddenly flees with a family heirloom, her mother offers Margo fifty grand to bring both the young woman and the invaluable property back. Margo sets out with the bride's jilted and understandably upset fiance in a cross-country chase, and the adventure only gets more bizarre from there! High-spirited humor is the drink of the day in this delightful comedy. 1 disc, 11 hours 3 min.
The Allure of Julian Lefray
R.S. Grey, author
Performed by Renee Givens and BJ Pottsworth
PO Box 887, Grand Haven, MI 49417
9781536611465 $9.99 amazon.com
The Allure of Julian Lefray is an unabridged MP3-CD audiobook (plays on MP3-CD enabled players, or transfers to portable devices) filled to the brim with romance and sexual tension. Josephine Keller is an impoverished young woman lucky enough to land a dream job, as the new executive assistant at Lorena Lefray Designs in New York City. Her task is to assist Lorena Lefray's wealthy and handsome older brother, Julian. Laced with humor and passion, The Allure of Julian Lefray is a pleasure to experience, and superbly performed by Renee Givens and BJ Pottsworth. A treat for connoisseurs of the genre! 1 MP3-CD, 8 hours.
William W. Johnstone with J. A. Johnstone, authors
Tom Stechschulte, narrator
Recorded Books, LLC
270 Skip Jack Road, Prince Frederick, MD 20678
9781490645759, $TBA, Unabridged, 8 CDs, W0381
Sam Flintlock is an experienced and professional bounty hunter with the scars to prove it. Through a series of unexpected circumstances Flintlock is hired as a body guard for a young man that is publicly accused of the brutal murder of a young school-teacher. But when brought to a hearing, the judge's verdict was not guilty for lack of evidence. And the suspected killer's first guard was murdered by a shotgun blast. That's when the young man's lawyer hires Flintlock -- who knows that some very powerful and dangerous people are trying to make a man look guilty as sin. The only way for Flintlock to get the truth now is to go gunning for it--on a bad man's blood-soaked killing ground. William Johnstone is a master of the western action/adventure genre and "Gut-Shot" is a riveting story replete with unexpected plot twists and deftly crafted characters that are brought vividly to life by the superb narrative storytelling of Tom Stechschulte. Of special note is the introduction of a supernatural element in the form of Flintlock's long deceased grandfather Barnabus who has a deem view of his grandson's intelligence. A wonderfully entertaining yarn, "Gut-Shot" will leave its listeners looking eagerly toward more stories of the bounty hunter Sam Flintlock.
270 Skip Jack Road, Prince Frederick, MD 20678
Lian Hearn draws upon her impressive studies in Japanese medieval culture and history to deftly craft a series of fantasy novels (The Tale of Shikanoko) that have been produced by Highbridge Audio Books into complete and unabridged CD audio books, each of which are deftly narrated by Neil Shah. Volume 1 is "Emperor of the Eight Islands" (9781681681528, $29.99) where a future lord is dispossessed of his birthright by a scheming uncle, a mountain sorcerer imbues a mask with the spirit of a great stag for a lost young man, a stubborn father forces his son to give up his wife to his older brother, and a powerful priest meddles in the succession to the Lotus Throne, the child who is the rightful heir to the emperor barely escaping the capital in the arms of his sister. And that is just the beginning! Volume 2 is "Autumn Princess, Dragon Child" (9781681681542, $29.99) where a self-assured warrior stumbles into a game of Go that turns fatal. An ambitious lord leaves his nephew for dead and seizes his lands. A stubborn father forces his son to give up his wife to his older brother. A powerful priest meddles in the succession to the Lotus Throne. A woman of the Old People seeks five fathers for her five children, who will go on to found the Spider Tribe and direct the fate of the country. Volume 3 is "Lord of the Darkwood" (9781681681566, $29.99) sees Shikanoko, at what should be the warrior's hour of greatest triumph, turn his back on those around him, in mourning for a secret love. The Spider Tribe, spurned by their guardian, explore the extent of their powers and ruthless ambitions. Hina, who alone knows the whereabouts of the true emperor, has to forge a new identity of her own. No one must ever know that she is Kiyoyori's daughter. As the traditional powers navigate weakness and disarray, old spirits and new figures enter the epic battle for the Lotus Throne. All the major players of The Tale of Shikanoko are forced to deal with the consequences-expected and unexpected alike-of their past reckless actions. Each of them strives to achieve their destiny, but so far the paths they have followed seem to have done nothing but provoke Heaven's displeasure. An original, complex, imaginative, and highly recommended trilogy, all three volumes of The Tales of Shikanoko series are very highly recommended for personal and community library audio book collections.
The Music CD Shelf
$10.99 CD / $9.49 MP3 amazon.com
Tracks is the third album by Amsterdam-based, jazz-inspired band Snowapple. A theme of trains, travel, and connections runs through the original songs, which touch upon topics ranging from rush hour frustration to the plight of refugees, to the bravery of 19th-century explorer and writer Isabelle Eberhardt, who often disguised herself as a man. An unforgettable work of creativity and emotion, Tracks is highly recommended for both personal and public library music collections. The tracks are "Businessmen", "Choo Choo Train", "Any Way", "There Becomes Here", "Isabelle", "Track 22","Rolling Away", "Pi", and "Going My Way".
Performed by Fluid Foundation
17th Street Studios
$9.99 CD / $7.00 download cdbaby.com
Fluid Foundation is the self-titled debut album of a progressive reggae quintet. Songs range from reggae and dube to surf music and hip-hop, as well as contributions from special guests. Overflowing with vivacious rhythm, Fluid Foundation is music to groove to, and a savory delight for connoisseurs of the genre! The tracks are "Liquid Spacey", "Foundation", "Sea Swells", "Tripulation", "Roll With Me", "Spin Me Round", "Take the Lead", "Cruizin'", "Livin' Carefree", and "Times Trippin' Dub".
Whispers from Silence
Tom Moore & Sherry Finzer
$12.97 CD / $8.99 download cdbaby.com
Whispers from Silence is a music album designed to encourage deep relaxation, meditation, inner peace, and spiritual awakening. The original, instrumental songs craft a soundscape with gentle yet unpredictable elements. Wind instruments and synthesizers strike a balance between ancient and modern elements in this soothing treasure, highly recommended for unwinding after a difficult day. The tracks are "Awakening Breath" (5:38), "Toward the One" (7:55), "Whispers from Silence" (9:12), "Infinite Space" (7:10), "Way of the Heart" (6:48), "Yugen" (8:32), "Peace Within" (5:46), and "An Ancient Presence" (9:50). 60 min., 51 sec.
$12.98 CD / $9.49 MP3 amazon.com
Nouvelle Journee (meaning "Joys of New Day") is the latest music album from South African-born, JUNO award-winning vocalist Lorraine Klaasen. The songs honor family ties and social responsibility, and their lyrics span a variety of languages, including the Tsonga, Sotho, isiZulu, and Xhosa languages of South Africa as well as English and French. Nouvelle Journee is a jubilant celebration, highly recommended especially for connoisseurs of international music. The tracks are "Nouvelle Journee" (3:28), "Ke Tshepile Bafatsi" (4:02), "Home Sweet Home" (4:07), "Township Memories" (3:56), "Polokwane" (4:21), "Izani Nonke" (3:50), "Make It Right" (4:04), "Babalazi" (3:37), "Where To Now" (5:15) and "Thulandivile" (4:02).
The DVD Shelf
21st Century Great Layouts
TM Books & Video
PO Box 9228, Michigan City, IN 46361
9781936890415 $19.99 www.tmbv.com
21st Century Great Layouts is a DVD especially for model railroad hobbyists and fans. Kicking off an all-new model railroad layout series, 21st Century Great Layouts shows off three hi-rail layouts and a Postwar Lionel layout, using both available control systems - Lionel's LEGACY and MTH's DCS. On display are three hi-rail layouts and an especially detailed Postwar Lionel layout, each skillfully assembled by a different creator, with tips on operating, wiring, and using the new control systems to the fullest. 21st Century Great Layouts is a "must-see" for model railroad enthusiasts, highly recommended. 65 min.
The Metaphysical Studies Shelf
Your Tarot Your Way
2143 Wooddale Drive, Woodbury, MN 55125
9780738749242 $15.99 / $9.99 Kindle amazon.com
Tarot instructor Barbara Moore presents Your Tarot Your Way: Learn to Read with Any Deck, a user-friendly introduction to connecting with and performing readings of Tarot cards. Chapters walk one through how to do a reading, and the core symbolism of each of the minor arcana, court cards, and major arcana is given its own page. Black-and-white illustrations and real-life examples round out this excellent self-teaching reference and resource, highly recommended especially for novice Tarot readers.
2143 Wooddale Drive, Woodbury, MN 55125
9780738748474, $15.99, PB, 288pp, www.amazon.com
Across the country hundreds of bridges harbor some of the creepiest paranormal activity known to man. Invisible hands reach out and touch unsuspecting travelers. Residual ghosts haunt scenes of murders, accidents, hangings, and suicides. At some bridges a voice cries out in the darkness that sends a chill down the spine of anyone who hears it. "Haunted Bridges" by Rich Newman tells the kinds of stories that are told in hushed tones around hearths and campfires as we ponder the unknown late into the night. The stories are at once mesmerizing, unique, and unexpectedly familiar, as if we all know deep down that fate keeps some spirits bound to earth. If you can endure the fear and you don't look away, you will experience the dread and mystery of the unexplained. Exceptionally well written, organized and presented (cities and states are listed for 324 public locations so readers can look up specific bridges), "Haunted Bridges: Over 300 of America's Creepiest Crossings" is certain to be an enduringly popular addition to community and academic library Metaphysical Studies collections. For personal reading lists it should be noted that "Haunted Bridges" is also available in a Kindle format ($9.99).
Konstanza Morning Star
2143 Wooddale Drive, Woodbury, MN 55125
9780738748139, $19.99, PB, 264pp, www.amazon.com
With precise detail, a wide variety of exercises, and a wealth of expertise, in "Medium: A Step-by-Step Guide to Communicating with the Spirit World" Konstanza Morning Star (an ordained minister, certified medium, national spiritualist teacher credentialed through the National Spiritualist Association of Churches, and a shamanic practitioner) shows how to develop your innate gift of spirit communication. "Medium" explains how mediumship works, how anyone can use it, and how to build a strong spiritual foundation so that your abilities will flourish. "Medium" is a beginner-friendly instructional guide specifically designed to help aspiring mediums gain strong and clear spiritual perception through a nine-step process. Konstanza Morning Star takes the reader inside the medium's mind and body, demonstrating how to actually experience contact with a spirit person through clairvoyance, clairaudience, clairsentience, and other spiritual senses. Featuring instructions for creating and conducting a home practice circle, assisting a "stuck" spirit to move on to the light, and much more, "Medium" is a book no aspiring medium should be without. While unreservedly recommended for personal reading lists, as well as community and academic library Metaphysical Studies collections, it should be noted that "Medium" is also available in a Kindle format ($9.99).
The Self-Help Shelf
Heather Jayne Wynn
Change Makers Books
c/o John Hunt Publishing, Ltd.
9781785353086, $19.95, PB, 216pp, www.amazon.com
Heather Wynn is on a mission to transform the conversation about women and fitness. She knows you can't hate your body into true health. Instead, through the practices in her do-it-yourself self-help guidebook "Enough, Already!: Finding Happiness Now in a World That Wants to Sell You Perfection Later", readers will learn to make sane and lasting health and physique changes and finally arrive at a place of peace and love -- a state to which you've been worthy all along. Heather's insightful anecdotes from her personal journey as well as her professional work with clients, help readers to clearly and insightfully recognize the absurdity of the expectations for our bodies that we allow outside influences to determine for us, and the type of lifestyle we think we need to live in order to be healthy and fit. Exceptionally well written, organized and presented, "Enough, Already!: Finding Happiness Now in a World That Wants to Sell You Perfection Later" is as informed and informative as it is practical and inspiring. While very highly recommended for personal and community library Self-Help/Self-Improvement collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Enough, Already!: Finding Happiness Now in a World That Wants to Sell You Perfection Later" is also available in a Kindle format ($7.99).
Crown House Publishing
6 Trowbridge Drive Suite 5, Bethel, CT 06801
9781785830112, $16.95, PB, 200pp, www.amazon.com
In "Grow: Change your mindset, change your life - a practical guide to thinking on purpose", author Jackie Beere demonstrates how we can all change our mindsets, learn to learn and chose to think on purpose. Our thoughts and beliefs lead us to develop habits that can predict our success or failure. We can all choose to grow and coach our loved ones to do the same by fostering and sustaining a mindset that will keep us healthy and happy in future years. Jackie Beere believes the key to this is thinking on purpose and metacognition. Jackie shows you how you can understand yourself and others so that you can be flexible, fearless and happy. Jackie shares observations, stories and practical tools to help you, and others you care about, grow. Jackie offers a personal perspective, but one that is informed by wide reading and research in the fields of psychology and cognitive therapy. She has been particularly inspired by Daniel Goleman's work on emotional intelligence, Carol Dweck's research on the power of developing a growth mindset, the founding principles of neuro-linguistic programming, and the latest discoveries about our brains and how they work. "Grow" is an consistently informative, engaging, practical and occasionally inspiring read that is very highly recommended, especially for community library Self-Help/Self-Improvement collections. For personal reading lists it should be noted that "Grow" is also available in a Kindle format ($9.59).
c/o Wiley Professional Trade Group
111 River Street, Hoboken, NJ 07030-5774
9781119281863, $25.00, HC, 208pp, www.amazon.com
"5% More: Making Small Changes to Achieve Extraordinary Results" by Michael Alden (President & CEO of Blue Vase Marketing) presents a painless route to change, with results that can last a lifetime. Whether you want to boost your health, wealth, or wisdom, "5% More" reveals a key technique that makes it stick and shows how to bring goals within reach with only five percent more effort. Readers will learn how to: Accomplish big changes with very small steps; Make bigger leaps in progress each step of the way; Break big goals into manageable milestones; Find a change that you can stick to for the long-term. No matter what the goal, no matter what the baseline, small, incremental steps will result in ultimate success. While is very highly recommended for community library Self-Help/Self-Improvement collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "5% More" is also available in a Kindle format ($7.55).
The Biography Shelf
Heart Like A Starfish
112 Harvard Avenue, #65, Claremont, CA 91711
9781938349355, $25.00, PB, 240pp, www.amazon.com
Allen Callaci is the lead singer for the band Refrigerator, an adjunct professor, and a librarian whose work has appeared in MungBeing, the Poly Post, The Huffington Post, BK Nation, Cinefantastique, Crump Comics and various zines in the 90s. He is also a heart transplant recipient. "Heart Like A Starfish" is his personal account of that death-defying journey and the healing that follows for both himself and those around him. With his own illustrations and with cover art by Amy Maloof, "Heart Like A Starfish" is a wonderfully chaotic tale is told in a non-linear style that manages to convey the frenetic events and emotions while still embracing the strength and care and security all around. It should be noted that a portion of the proceeds from the sale of "Heart Like A Starfish" will be donated to Cedars- Sinai Heart Research Institute where the procedure was performed. An inherent and consistently engaging read from beginning to end, "Heart Like A Starfish" is highly recommended for community library American Biography collections. For personal reading lists, "Heart Like A Starfish" is also available in a Kindle format ($9.99).
Hub City Press
186 West Main Street, Spartanburg, SC 29306
9781938235191, $16.95, PB, 264pp, www.amazon.com
When the deacons at Mark Beaver's Bible Belt church cue up an evangelical horror flick aimed at dramatizing Hell, he figures he'd better get right with God, and soon. Convinced he could die at age seven and spend eternity roasting on a spit in the fiery furnace of Hades, he promptly gets Saved. But once adolescence hits, the Straight and Narrow becomes a tight squeeze. But "Suburban Gospel" offers more than a look inside Bible Belt suburbia, circa Jerry Falwell and the Moral Majority -- it is also a tale of faith and flesh. Beaver invites us into a world filled with Daisy Duke fantasies and Prince posters, Nerf Hoops and Atari joysticks, raggedy Camaros and the neon light of strip malls. As much about the adolescent heart as the evangelical mind, the story explores similar emotional terrain as coming-of-age classics like Tobias Wolff's This Boy's Life and Mary Karr's Cherry. Suburban Gospel is a tale of growing up Baptist, all right but also of just growing up. Exceptionally well written, inherently fascinating, consistently compelling, "Suburban Gospel" is highly recommended for community library American Biography collections. For personal reading lists it should be noted that it is also available in a Kindle format ($9.99).
The Autism Shelf
The Power Card Strategy 2.0
Elisa Gagnon & Brenda Smith Myles
11209 Strang Line Road, Lenexa, KS 66215
9781942197263, $21.95, PB, 94pp
The Power Card Strategy is a visual aid developed by educators and parents to assist students with Asperger Syndrome and autism in making sense of social situations, routines, the meaning of language, and the hidden curriculum that surrounds us wherever we go. What sets The Power Card Strategy apart is that it makes use of children's special interests - to help them make sense of situations they encounter on a daily basis. Exceptionally well organized and presented, and very highly recommended, "The Power Card Strategy 2.0" by autism spectrum experts Elisa Gagnon and Brenda Smith Myles is an ideal, practical, and effective tool for classroom teachers, parents, and autistic children care-providers.
The Education Shelf
Managing the Inner World of Teaching
Robert J. Marzano & Jana S. Marzano
Marzano Research Laboratory
555 N. Morton Street, Bloomington, IN 47404
9780990345831, $19.95, PB, 168pp, www.amazon.com
It is vitally important that classroom teachers work assiduously to cultivate a positive mindset, and choose productive actions by examining their emotions and interpretations in the classroom. By investigating three management phases (awareness, analysis, and choice) classroom teachers can become mindful of factors that influence their interactions with students and learn a process for ensuring positive outcomes. With a careful reading of "Managing the Inner World of Teaching: Emotions, Interpretations, and Actions", teachers will gain concrete strategies and activities that enhance classroom practice and impact student learning. "Managing the Inner World of Teaching" will enable teachers to: Develop a deep understanding of the human mind; Self-assess your mental state in regard to career, family, and friends; Understand how to use the three-phase management process every day to ensure success: Identify and stay true to your moral purpose and ideals to cultivate personal and professional satisfaction; and Gain strategies and activities to enhance the lives of students, and learn to honor each student's self-system. While unreservedly recommended for college and university Teacher Education collections and supplemental studies reading lists, it should be noted for students and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject that "Managing the Inner World of Teaching" is also available in a Kindle format ($9.99).
Tiered Fluency Instruction
Chase Young & Timothy Rasinski
Maupin House Publishing
c/o Capstone Press
PO Box 669, Mankato, MN 56002-0669
9781496608031, $24.95, PB, 128pp, www.amazon.com
Fluency is an important part of literacy comprehension, but how can classroom teachers make sure they are providing the support that all students learning to read require? The collaborative work of Chase Young (Associate Professor in the Department of Language, Literacy, and Special Populations at Sam Houston State University) and Timothy Rasinski (Professor of Literacy Education at Kent State University and the Director of its award winning reading clinic), "Tiered Fluency Instruction: Supporting Learners in Grades 2-5" will prove to be of immense practical help to teachers in meeting meet this challenge. "Tiered Fluency Instruction" is critically important resource that will provide fluency support for all students, including diffluent readers. Of special note are the chapters on RTI Tiers, assessment and ways to integrate technology. While very highly recommended as a core addition to college and university library Teacher Education reference collections and supplemental studies reading lists, it should be noted for students and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject that "Tiered Fluency Instruction" is also available in a Kindle format ($9.99).
The Architecture Shelf
Bracket 3: At Extremes
Lola Sheppard, editors
355 Lexington Avenue, 8th Floor, New York, NY 10017
9780989331760, $39.95, PB, 270pp, www.amazon.com
Compiled and edited by Lola Sheppard (who received her Bachelor of Science in Architecture and Bachelor of Architecture from McGill University, her Master of Architecture degree from the Harvard Graduate School of Design, and is currently an Associate Professor at the University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada) with the assistance of Maya Przbylski, "Bracket 3: At Extremes" is comprised of critical articles and unpublished design projects that investigate architecture, infrastructure and technology as they operate in conditions of imbalance, negotiate tipping points and test limit states. Contemporary architects are conditioned, as designers of the built environment, towards the organization of people, programs and movement. Indeed the history of modern urbanism, architecture and building science has been predicated on an anti-entropic notion of programmatic and social order. But there are scenarios in which a state of extremity or imbalance is productive. The contributors to "Bracket 3: At Extremes" seeks to understand what new spatial orders emerge in this liminal space. How might it be leveraged as an opportunity for invention? What are the limits of wilderness and control, of the natural and artificial, the real and the virtual? What new landscapes, networks, and urban models might emerge in the wake of destabilized economic, social and environmental conditions? Exceptionally well organized and presented, "Bracket 3: At Extremes" is a unique, original, and highly recommended addition to professional, college, and university library Contemporary Architecture collections and supplemental studies reading lists.
The Pets/Wildlife Shelf
Aperture Press LLC
201 Washington Street, Suite 533, Reading, PA 19601
9780990930297, $19.95, HC, 60pp, www.amazon.com
Common problems of dog owners include dogs ignores you when you call their names; bath time is the stuff of nightmares; barking annoys the neighbors; a new puppy is out of control. If you want a better life for you and your dog, "Insider Training: Chester Gigolo's Dog Training Secrets Revealed" is what-to-do instruction manual to turn to for successfully training your canine companion. "Insider Training", presents easy step-by-step instructions, humorously told through a dog's perspective, to successfully train an age or breed of dog. Whether you're training for the home, the show ring, or the big screen, all breeds large and small will respond to the exercises, sound advice, and insightful tips contained in the page of "Insider Training". Christina Potter has been training dogs for over twenty years. She has trained various breeds such as Golden Retrievers, Chinese Cresteds, Berger Picards, and an Afghan Hound. With "Insider Training: Chester Gigolo's Dog Training Secrets Revealed" she draws upon her impressive experience and exceptionally expertise to prove a thoroughly 'user friendly' guide and do-it-yourself manual that is unreservedly recommended for personal and community library Pets/Wildlife collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Insider Training" is also available in a paperback edition (9780997302004, $11.95) and in a Kindle format ($4.99).
The Automotive Shelf
Mustang: The First 50 Years
TM Books & Video
PO Box 9228, Michigan City, IN 46361
9781936890859, $19.99, DVD, www.tmbv.com
In 1964, Ford's new pony car was immediately embraced by the "Mustang" generation -- namely, those Baby Boomers who blossomed into a huge buying force and were looking for a new car that fit their fun-loving, go-fast lifestyle. The Mustang, which included affordability, performance and cachet, was that car. One million Mustangs were sold in the first 18 months. "Mustang: The First 50 Years" is a superbly produced 2 DVD set that tells the story of America's love affair with the Mustang through the eyes of collectors, enthusiasts, journalists and former Ford employees who were there at the beginning, including Gale Halderman (who designed the 1965 Mustang), Henry Ford III, Mustang expert Jeff Burgy, authors John Clor, Bob Fria, and Matt Stone. Mustangs of all generations were shot in beautiful high definition, wide-screen DVD video and are featured along with rarely seen historical footage from the Ford Archives. There are also profiles on Carroll Shelby, Lee Iacocca and others. Exceptionally informed and informative, "Mustang: The First 50 Years" has a total running time of 2 hours, 30 minutes, and is enthusiastically recommended for personal, community, and academic library Automotive History collections.
The History of Ford Trucks
TM Books & Video
PO Box 9228, Michigan City, IN 46361
9781936890781, $12.99, DVD, www.tmbv.com
The Ford F-150 is the best-selling truck on the planet. Why? To find the answer we go back to Ford's first truck produced in the Ford factory, the Model T one-ton in 1917, then the first factory-built pickup in 1925. We cover Ford's first V8 in 1932, the Streamline Era of the 30s, WWII, and 13 generations of the legendary F-Series, including the 2017 Raptor. "The History of Ford Trucks" is a TM Books & Video DVD that combine rare footage from the Ford Archives with stunning, HD-widescreen footage of Limited Editions like the King Ranch, Harley-Davidson, Raptor, and Lightning. The story of Ford trucks is the story of America. Trucks played a pivotal role in the shaping and expanding of America, the two World Wars, the postwar boom, and still today -- trucks keep America rolling. A story of innovation, determination, and loyalty, this very special automotive history is told through the eyes of journalists, Ford executives, historians, and those who just love Ford trucks. Very highly recommended for personal, community, and academic library Automotive History collections, "The History of Ford Trucks" has a total running time of 70 minutes.
Linda Vaughn: The First Lady of Motorsports
Linda Vaughn & Rob Kinnan
838 Lake Street South, Forest Lake, MN 55025
9781613252321, $39.95, HC, 224pp, www.amazon.com
Linda Vaughn was born August 11, 1943 in Dalton, Georgia and is an American motor racing personality who has been described as the "preeminent beauty queen of stock car racing". Vaughn was named "Miss Queen of Speed at Atlanta International Raceway" at the age of 18 and has acquired many other titles since then. Vaughan has been a notable ambassador and promoter of various forms of American motor racing for several decades and was chosen to be the queen of the 1961 Dixie 400. In 1976 she even appeared in a movie called 'The Gumball Rally'. Perhaps the most photographed personality in automotive and motorsports history, Linda Vaughn has entertained fans and has been a premier marketer of automotive goods for more than 55 years. Profusely illustrated and with the assistance of Rob Kininan, Linda tells the inherently fascinating story of her life and career in the world of automotive racing promotion in the pages of "Linda Vaughn: The First Lady of Motorsports". Exceptionally informative and impressively well organized and presented from first page to last, "Linda Vaughn: The First Lady of Motorsports" will prove to be an enduringly popular addition to community library Automotive Racing History collections and is a 'must' for the legions of Linda Vaughn fans!
Mopar Small-Block Engines
838 Lake Street South, Forest Lake, MN 55025
9781613252802 $26.95 amazon.com
Automotive Media Award-winning author Larry Shepard presents Mopar Small-Block Engines, a technical guide to Chrysler LA-series and Magnum small-block engines, which power Chrysler, Dodge, and Plymouth cars and trucks made from 1964 to 2003. Full-color photography on almost every page illustrates this meticulous, step-by-step reference, invaluable for professional auto repairmen and for lay readers with some background in auto maintenance who wish to keep their vehicle's small-block engine in the best possible condition. An excellent and supremely detailed resource!
The Needlecraft Shelf
3100 NW 101st Street, Suite A, Urbandale, Iowa 50322
9781935726906, $24.95, PB, 144pp, www.amazon.com
"Block Genius: Over 201 Pieced Quilt Blocks with No Math Charts" by needlecraft expert and photographer Sue Voegtlin is comprised of 201 classic blocks that can usefully sewing skills, make block exchanges, and/or simple create wonderful block sampler quilts. "Block Genius organizes and presents the blocks in groups of 2 × 2, 3 × 3, 4 × 4, and 6 × 6 grids with instructions and math provided for 6-, 9- and 12-inch blocks. A veritable block library that will be the quilters practical go-to source for reference, inspiration and instruction. With the exception of a few that were designed by Sue Voegtlin, the block designs presented are all nearly 100 years old. Some designs are still sewn to this day, but many deserve new recognition and use by today's quilters. Of special note is that four-color photography provides color and fabric-choice inspiration to quilters, and each block's evocative name recalls quilting's rich history. Clear instructions and expert advice: exploded diagrams of each block make construction a snap without special rulers. Tips on fabric selection, color choice, cutting pressing and sewing. Simply stated, "Block Genius" is unreservedly recommended for both personal and community library Needlecraft instructional reference collections.
Patchwork Quilted Bags
364 Innovation Drive, North Clarendon, VT 05759-9436
9780804846660, $16.95, PB, 96pp, www.amazon.com
"Patchwork Quilted Bags: Totes, Purses and Accessories" by quilting expert Reiko Washizawa is a beautifully and profusely illustrated compendium of full-sized quilting patterns and step-by-step instructions for 19 different projects, along with techniques for assembling the perfect patch, make this quilting book ideal for novice and practiced crafters alike. Projects range in size from large totes to small pouches in a zakka vein. The individual projects range from a bird-themed travel bag, to a colorful clasp purse; to a fold-away eco bag, to a round bag/basket. "Patchwork Quilted Bags" shows creative ways to use every type of patch from squares to yo-yos, and every type of print from florals to newsprint. Pages showcasing different patchwork quilts add inspiration for mixing traditional and contemporary forms. Unique and thoroughly 'user friendly' in organization and step-by-step presentation, "Patchwork Quilted Bags" is enthusiastically recommended for community library Needlecraft instructional collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Patchwork Quilted Bags" is also available in a Kindle format ($9.99).
Singer Sewing Custom Curtains, Shades, and Top Treatments
Quarto Publishing Group USA
400 First Avenue North, Suite 400, Minneapolis, MN 55401-1722
9781589239319, $26.99, PB, 232pp, www.amazon.com
Susan Woodcock owns HomeDecGal.com, a how-to sewing and decorating resource and workroom in western North Carolina. She began teaching professionally in 2003, and is currently a Craftsy.com instructor. In Singer Sewing Custom Curtains, Shades, and Top Treatments: A Complete Step-by-Step Guide to Making and Installing Window Decor" she draws upon her years of experience and expertise to write, organize and present a thoroughly 'user friendly' how-to instruction manual that guides the reader step-by-step through the entire process from planning the project to measuring scale and proportion, to selecting necessary tools, fabric, and hardware to actually sewing the curtains and installing them. "Singer Sewing Custom Curtains, Shades, and Top Treatments covers: Window treatment project planning; Window measurements; Calculating scale and proportion; Fabric and hardware selection; Curtains and draperies; Grommets; Gathered and ruched curtains; Pleated curtains; Adding trim, banding, and other embellishments to window treatments; Shades and blinds; Roman shades; Flat shades with dowels; Relaxed draperies; Gathered shades; Top treatments; Common tips and techniques; Cutting and Sewing. Enhanced with the inclusion of a glossary and a listing of resources, "Singer Sewing Custom Curtains, Shades, and Top Treatments" is unreservedly recommended for community library Needlecraft instructional reference collections. It should be noted for personal DIY needlecrafter's reading lists that "Singer Sewing Custom Curtains, Shades, and Top Treatments" is also available in a Kindle format ($14.57).
Couture Sewing: Making Designer Trims
Claire B. Shaeffer
The Taunton Press
63 South Main Street, Newtown, CT 06470
9781631866579, $26.95, PB, 144pp, www.amazon.com
Claire Shaeffer is an internationally respected author, lecturer, college instructor and columnist whose innovative sewing techniques and easy-to-read instructions have guided readers and students through many sewing facets of the garment industry. In the pages of "Couture Sewing: Making Designer Trims" Claire presents sewing methods she has developed based on her own meticulous research into couture sewing methods and techniques. Offering a unique, multimedia approach, which includes detailed step-by-step instructions, photos, and how-to video, form an essential resource for needlecrafters looking to elevate their garments to the next level by adding appropriate trims, "Couture Sewing: Making Designer Trims" is a must-have resource that gives an overview of the different types of trims that are used in a couture workroom and explains different methods for attaching the trims to a garment. As a bonus readers will learn how to create trims from scratch. Of special note is the inclusion of intriguing garment examples from Claire's impressive personal collection, alongside information on the construction methods used to create them. Thoroughly 'user friendly' in tone, commentary, organization and presentation, and accompanied by a instructional DVD, "Couture Sewing: Making Designer Trims" is highly recommended for personal, professional, and community library Needlecraft instructional reference collections.
The Art Shelf
Creative Strength Training
North Light Books
c/o F+W Media
700 East State Street, Iola WI 54945
9781440344954, $24.99, PB, 144pp, www.amazon.com
Artists and athletes alike benefit from strength training. Building creative stamina takes encouragement, mentoring, and regular practice. In "Creative Strength Training: Prompts, Exercises and Personal Stories for Encouraging Artistic Genius" by educator and artist Jane Dunnewold, aspiring artists will discover powerful strategies that combine writing and hands-on art-making to overcome creative stumbling blocks, develop a unique voice and make creating art a regular habit. "Creative Strength Training" offers ten specific exercises for making art that stands apart as uniquely yours. Readers will receive support and inspiration from the contributing artists who share how each chapter has improved their practice and helped them evolve. Exceptionally well written, organized, illustrated and presented, "Creative Strength Training" is unreservedly recommended for personal, community, art school, college and university library collections. It should be noted for students and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject that "Creative Strength Training" is also available in a Kindle format ($11.99).
The Poetry Shelf
Lost Among the Hours
Rain Mountain Press
9781495106064, $16.00, PB, 93pp, www.amazon.com
The American poet Alan Britt believes that each poem has its feral destiny. "Lost Among the Hours" is an impressive compilation of some of his best work. Like an artist puts pain to canvas, Britt puts words to paper. The result is a kaleidoscopic swirl of emotion evoking phrases, lines of deliberate human insight, and the consistently compelling presentation of observations both personal and universal. "Lost Among the Hours" is highly recommended for personal reading lists as well as community and academic library Contemporary American Poetry collections. 'American Politics' (for Red Cloud): You know it doesn't matter / who's President // The President doesn't control / the death rate, anyway. // Take genocide, for example. // Not long ago, both parties disguised / cholera as truth, then quarantined / Sioux grandmothers and babes / inside buffalo skins stretched / across warm, moist South Dakota / nights punctuated by insane bullfrogs.
The Woodworking Shelf
The Fundamentals of Segmented Woodturning
2006 South Mary, Fresno, CA 93721-9875
9781610352789, $24.95, PB, 128pp, www.amazon.com
"Profusely and beautifully illustrated with step-by-step instructions for each project, The Fundamentals of Segmented Woodturning: Projects, Techniques & Innovations for Today's Woodturner", by professional woodturner and woodturning instructor Jim Rodgers provides the most up-to-date guide for any woodturner trying his hand at segmented woodturning. With an emphasis on visual instruction, "The Fundamentals of Segmented Woodturning" offers the new segmenter with a simple, accessible introduction to the established practices while providing advanced segmenters with all the new techniques that have emerged due to the growing popularity of the craft. Starting with the basics, "The Fundamentals of Segmented Woodturning" covers the essentials of tools, the steps of construction, and critical technique of accurate segment cutting before moving on to ring segmented and open segmented turning. Also covered for aspiring segmented woodturners are simple design enhancements to dress up any project, a bowl-from-a-board project that utilizes lamination to create mind-blowing designs, and fun techniques for simple and fast segmented pens and vessels that utilize scrap wood and can be completed in a small amount of spare time. Thoroughly 'user friendly' in organization and presentation, "The Fundamentals of Segmented Woodturning" is very highly recommended for both personal, highschool wood shop, and community library Woodworking instructional reference collections.
The Fantasy/SciFi Shelf
The Grimm Future
Erin Underwood, editor
PO Box 809, Framingham, MA 01701
9781610373159, $35.00, HC, 272pp, www.nesfapress.com
Compiled and edited by Erin Underwood, "The Grimm Future" is a compendium of fourteen outstanding science fiction and fantasy stories by masters of the genre and blending fresh new science fiction with a futuristic dash of magic. From cover to cover, "The Grimm Future" is a unique and consistently compelling anthology of re-imagined Grimm fairy tales from some of today's most exciting authors along with the original stories that inspired them. The individual stories comprising "The Grimm Future" deftly examines our humanity and what that term might come to mean through the eyes of future generations as society advances into an age when technology consumes nearly every aspect of our lives or has ultimately changed life as we know it. How might these timeless stories evolve? Given the relentless onrush of technology, there is even greater need for fairy tales and Grimm magic in our future. Simply stated, "The Grimm Future" is unreservedly and enthusiastically recommended for the personal reading lists of science fiction and fantasy fans, and would prove to be an enduringly popular addition to community and academic library Science Fiction & Fantasy collections.
99 Dover Street, Somerville, MA 02144
9780763693534 $24.99 amazon.com
Part of the delightful series of "Ology" pop-up books filled with pull-out items and secrets, Dungeonology showcases the monsters, treasures, and evil labyrinths of the Forgotten Realms (R) setting from the pen-and-paper role-playing game Dungeons & Dragons. Packed with color illustrations (including a 3D hologram on the inside back cover) and fold-out sections, Dungeonology is a beautiful collector's item. Removable paper parts and the fragility of pop-up books make Dungeonology unsuited for public library collections or very young children, but Dungeonology is an excellent giftbook for fantasy fans and role-playing gamers ages 10 and up!
The Beer/Wine Shelf
Hugh Johnson's Pocket Wine Book 2017
Margaret Rand, general editor
c/o Octopus Publishing
236 Park Avenue, New York NY 10017
9781784721473 $16.99 www.octopusbooksusa.com
Now in its 40th anniversary edition, Hugh Johnson's Pocket Wine Book 2017 is a compact, quick-reference, up-to-date guide packed with information on more than 6,000 wines and growers. Hugh Johnson's Pocket Wine Book 2017 summarizes each wine's styles, quality standing, vintage information, and much more. Made accessible to wine tasters of all experience levels with definitions of technical terms, as well as fascinating vignettes and more, Hugh Johnson's Pocket Wine Book 2017 is an absolute "must" for wine connoisseurs!
The Wisconsin Shelf
Place Names Of Wisconsin
University of Wisconsin Press
1930 Monroe Street, Third Floor, Madison, WI 53711-2059
9780299309640, $21.95, PB, 360pp, www.amazon.com
The names given to the villages, towns and cities that comprise Wisconsin often reflect the state's diverse history and are drawn from Native Americans, the exploring French trappers and traders, and the divers European settlers, as well as place names associated with political figures, land owners, and even postmasters! Alphabetically compiled by Edward Callery (Professor Emeritus of Linguistics at Northern Illinois University and the past president of both the American Name Society and the North Central Name Society), "Place Names Of Wisconsin" is comprised of 2,057 community names ranging from Abbotsford to Zoar. Of very special note is the informed and informative introduction by Professor Callary, as well as the inclusion of a twenty-page list of References. While unreservedly recommended for community, college, university, and local museum library Wisconsin History collections, it should be noted for non-specialist general readers that "Place Names Of Wisconsin" is also available in a Kindle format ($11.99).
James A. Cox, Editor-in-Chief
Diane C. Donovan, Editor
Midwest Book Review
278 Orchard Drive
Oregon, WI 53575-1129
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