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The Year That Changed Our World
Agence France-Presse, author
Marielle Eudes, editor
Thames & Hudson, Inc.
500 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10110-0017
9780500025062, $60.00, HC, 416pp
Synopsis: "The Year That Changed Our World" is a definitive, visual history of the Covid-19
Pandemic. With more than the use of some 500 photographs, this ambitious publication traces
the arc of the Pandemic from early 2020 through to the vaccine breakthroughs of Spring
Here, the talented photographers of Agence France Presse document the deep, human stories of
the Pandemic. Active in more than 150 countries, these capture all sides of the Covid-19 story as
experienced by people throughout the globe. Organized into six chronological parts, and braided
together with thematic breakout sections, including topics such as protests, sports, and politics,
The Year That Changed Our World is a comprehensive time capsule. These images show the
extraordinary efforts to understand, control, and cope with a previously unknown virus alongside
the human stories of our lives at home: playing, caring, watching, and sharing, both together and
at a distance.
Edited by Marielle Eudes, Director of Photography at Agence France Presse, and featuring, texts,
quotes and insights from a range of contributors and public figures, "The Year That Changed Our
World" is a photographic testament to humankind's resilience in the face of the pandemic. The
book's arresting imagery provides a visual record for us and for future generations to better
understand the world during the time of Covid-19.
Critique: Agence France-Presse (AFP) is a French state-owned international news agency
headquartered in Paris, France. Founded in 1835 as Havas, it is the world's oldest news agency.
Deftly edited by Marielle Eudes (who is the Photo Director of Agence France Presse), "The Year
That Changed Our World: A Photographic History of the Covid-19 Pandemic" is a unique,
memorable, especially and unreservedly recommended addition to personal, professional,
community, college, and university library Photo Journalism and Covid Pandemic, and
Contemporary History collections.
The Navigation Case
John E. Happ
c/o Permuted Press
9781642939613, $30.00, HC, 320pp
Synopsis: An aged and glossy leather briefcase was discovered when the family house of John E.
Happ was cleaned out and sold. He came to learn that his father had meticulously collected his
military documents, private letters, and souvenirs, and packed them away in what was his father's
World War II pilot's navigation case.
From randomly within, a newspaper article tumbled out. It described a massive typhoon in New
Guinea causing "horror and tragedy" and resulting in incredible untold loss of men and aircraft.
But larger questions remained unanswered for John: What was his father, or any American, doing
in New Guinea, of all places? If America was fighting Japan, why was U.S. troops fighting in
Aviation as an industry was in its infancy. Drawn from the author's personal research and his
father's documents, "The Navigation Case: Training, Flying and Fighting the 1942 to 1945 New
Guinea War" is the saga of pioneering pilots and details the fascinating but deadly cadet training
and violent air missions. The narrative comprising "The Navigators Case" is an incredible history
giving the context for all the Pacific war stories from Pearl Harbor, Guadalcanal, Midway island,
and Iwo Jima, up to the avoidable catastrophes of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
Critique: An invaluable and unique contribution to the growing library of World War II histories
and biographies, "The Navigation Case: Training, Flying and Fighting the 1942 to 1945 New
Guinea War" is an extraordinary and unreservedly recommended addition to community, college,
and university library 20th Century American Military History collections in general, and World
War II Pacific Theatre supplemental curriculum studies lists in particular. It should be noted for
students, academia, military buffs, and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the
subject that "The Navigation Case: Training, Flying and Fighting the 1942 to 1945 New Guinea
War" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).
Editorial Note: John E. Happ is a contributing author to the Journal of the American Revolution,
has written for the World War One website The 75th Artillery C.A.C., and the adventure
magazine Atlantic Coastal Kayaker. A native of the Chicago area John was immersed in the
contrasting narratives of foreign cultures since his college days in Spain. John speaks five
languages and his varied assignments in Germany, Switzerland, the Philippines, and Japan
contributed greatly to his research into the origins of the Pacific War.
The Lady and the Mountain Man
c/o The Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group, Inc.
9781493045921, $19.95 pbk / $17.57 Kindle
Synopsis: Isabella Bird was a proper Victorian lady, a minster's daughter, a writer who traveled
the globe. She was expected to marry a man of means and position instead she was drawn to a
gruff mountain man, a desperado named Jim Nugent.
The unlikely pair met in Estes Park, Colorado in 1873. Jim was enchanted by Isabella and she
was infatuated with him. In a published version of Isabella's letter to her sister, she said of Jim
that "he was a man any woman might love but no sane woman would marry." On a climb to the
top of Longs Peak their friendship blossomed into more than expected.
This book reveals the true story of Bird's relationship with Nugent as they traveled through the
dramatic wilderness of the Rocky Mountains.
Critique: The Lady and the Mountain Man: Isabella Bird, Rocky Mountain Jim, and their
Unlikely Friendship is the extensively researched, true-life account of how two people with
tremendously different backgrounds and temperaments shared a mutual love of a wild land.
Isabella Bird was a well-to-do woman, an author and a traveler with dreams, expected to marry a
man of means and position. Yet she became infatuated with the gruff desperado Jim Nugent
("Rocky Mountain Jim") in Estes Park, Colorado in 1873. Their unlikely friendship bloomed
over the course of a climb to the top of Longs Peak. Extensive notes, a bibliography, and an
index round out his in-depth examination of a journey and a relationship that would transform
both Isabella and Jim of them for the rest of their lives - although Isabella was ultimately
destined to have a much longer life than Jim. A thoroughly captivating slice of history, The Lady
and the Mountain Man is highly recommended especially for public library Western History
collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that The Lady and the Mountain Man is
also available in a Kindle edition ($17.57).
Editorial Note: Chris Enss is a New York Times best selling author who has been writing about
women of the Old West for more than twenty years. She has penned more than forty published
books on the subject. Her work has been honored with five Will Rogers Medallion Awards, an
Elmer Kelton Book Award, an Oklahoma Center for the Book Award, and was a Western
Writers of America Spur Finalist. Her book The Pinks: The First Women Detectives, Operatives,
and Spies with the Pinkerton National Detective Agency has been optioned by NBC is currently
in development to become a television series. Enss's most recent work is According to Kate: The
Legendary Life of Big Nose Kate Elder, Love of Doc Holliday.
The Book of Casey Adair
University of Wisconsin Press
728 State Street, Suite 443, Madison, WI 53706-1418
9780299333546, $18.95, PB, 232pp
Synopsis: In the fall of 1980, young Casey Adair begins a year of postgraduate theater research in
Spain, then on the verge of a military coup. As he attends plays and dinner parties, visits gay
bars, and becomes increasingly involved in protests, Casey's correspondence reveals intimate
confessions and new understandings. He falls in love with a man named Octavio, gets a role in a
major theatrical production, and revels in the awakening of his own sexuality and social
consciousness. Then, a visit from his college friend Poppy leads to an emotionally charged
evening that changes their lives forever.
Three years later Casey is an educator in Boston, trying to balance finding his voice as an AIDS
activist, dealing with an intolerant headmaster, and rebuilding a relationship with his daughter.
As dear friends fall ill to the virus, he struggles to understand how his many identities (father,
teacher, caretaker, dissident, lover, husband) can coexist. In a world that asks so much of us,
what is our responsibility to others and ourselves?
Critique: A deftly crafted and emotionally revealing novel by an author with a genuine flair for
narrative storytelling involving social, cultural, and personal struggles of being gay, "The Book
Of Casey Adair" is an especially an unreservedly recommended for community, college, and
university library Contemporary American Literary Fiction collections in general, and LGBTQ
Fiction collections in particular. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "The Book Of
Casey Adair" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $14.49).
Editorial Note: Ken Harvey is the author of the memoir "A Passionate Engagement" and the short
story collection "If You Were with Me Everything Would Be All Right", which won the Violet
Quill Award for Best Gay Fiction of the Year.
The End of an Era: Diverse Thoughts From 100+ Years of Living
John H. Manhold
Newman Springs Publishing, Inc.
9781636925639 $19.95 pbk / $9.95 Kindle
Investigative scientist, world lecturer, sculptor, USCG Captain with Master's Papers, and WW II
and Korea Veteran John H. Manhold presents The End of an Era: Diverse Thoughts From 100+
Years of Living, a thoughtful cross-examination of the activities and mores of the United States
during the past century. Chapters compare and contrast how the tremendous changes of the
Industrial Revolution, World War I, the Great Depression, World War II, the Cold War, modern-
day digital revolutions, the proliferation of the internet, and astonishing developments in artificial
intelligence. At once both sweeping in its survey and offering the measured viewpoint of a man
who personally lived through the entire previous century's upheavals, The End of an Era is an
utterly fascinating read from cover to cover, highly recommended. It should be noted for personal
reading lists that The End of an Era is also available in a Kindle edition ($9.95).
The Adult Side of Dyslexia
Jessica Kingsley Publishers
P.O. Box 960, Herndon, VA 20172-0960
The Adult Side of Dyslexia offers a particular focus on dyslexic adults, and is a much-needed
title that stands out from the crowd of many books that focus on the educational challenges faced
by dyslexic students. It features interviews with dyslexic adults who comment on their education,
the impact of dyslexia on mental well-being and literacy, and strategies employed to handle
mental and everyday challenges. Also included are parenting tips for those with dyslexic
children, who find both their child's struggles and their own conditions may affect their parenting
choices. This much-needed guide is highly recommended reading for parenting and self-help
The Writing/Publishing Shelf
Supply Chain 20/20
Polished Publishing Group
9781988971490, $30.00, PB, 284pp
Synopsis: There is no better description of the origin and purpose of Supply Chain 20/20: A
Clear View on the Local Multiplier Effect for Book Lovers" than that given by its author, Kim
Staflund. She writes:
In 2018 and 2019, I was blogging, email marketing, and publishing books regularly. My Amazon
author ranking was rising each month. I was confidently on my way to joining the ranks of the
Amanda Hockings and Mark Dawsons of this world, all while helping other authors accomplish
Then I was sucker punched in early 2020, along with so many others, when our governments
announced a lockdown of all non-essential businesses. With my principal income at risk, I had to
let my side hustle go. I stopped living and quickly switched to survival mode. Was I an essential
employee at an essential business? So much of it was out of my hands, but I showed up every day
to prove my worth. And I prayed every night.
Only hindsight has been able to show me that 2020's worldwide wake-up call was actually a
hidden gift we all needed to unwrap. It isn't about individual success online. If your local
community is suffering, you'll never thrive in the long run. If any one link is broken, the whole
supply chain suffers.
Allow me to introduce you to a new and improved book supply chain that can help us all work
more efficiently while earning both local and international profits simultaneously. We can protect
ourselves by helping each other. In fact, we can thrive! Does that sound farfetched? Read this
book, and you will see just how realistic it is. It already exists. Now we just have to utilize it
Critique: Simply stated, "Supply Chain 20/20: A Clear View on the Local Multiplier Effect for
Book Lovers" must be considered essential, mandatory reading for every aspiring author,
published author, small press entrepreneur wanting to be financially successful and survive (even
prosper) in a publishing industry (including bookstores and libraries) having to deal with today's
pandemic impacted economy. A unique, effective, invaluable, 'real world practical', exceptionally
well written, organized and presented DIY instruction manual and guide, "Supply Chain 20/20: A
Clear View on the Local Multiplier Effect for Book Lovers" is unreservedly and unquestionably
recommended addition to personal, professional, community, college, and university library
Writing/Publishing collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that a version of
"Supply Chain 20/20: A Clear View on the Local Multiplier Effect for Book Lovers" is also
available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.00).
Editorial Note: Kim Staflund is a bestselling author and TESOL certified sales coach for authors
with 25 years' experience in the North American English book publishing industry (in both the
traditional and contemporary markets), She routinely shows aspiring authors how to write,
publish, and sell their book(s) using all the effective traditional and online tricks of the
The Environmental Studies Shelf
Earth Spirit: Healthy Planet
John Hunt Publishing
9781789048308, $24.95, PB, 416pp
Synopsis: With the publication of "Earth Spirit: Healthy Planet: Global meltdown or global
healing", environmentalist Freed Hageneder offers a clear and concise overview of the global
ecological crisis that humanity has brought upon itself, and what options we still have to save a
benevolent climate, to restore biodiversity, reduce pollution, and heal the ecosphere of this
planet, including ourselves.
Since well before the Covid-19 crisis the United Nations have been emphasizing that only a
healthy planet can support healthy people. The degradation and pollution of nature also poisons
our own bodies. Climate breakdown and the global loss of biodiversity also threaten the human
species. But what is a "healthy planet"? How does it work, how much do we disrupt the planet's
life support systems, and what changes are overdue?
We have all the necessary means at our disposal, though just patching up the worst symptoms
won't do anymore, we have to address the underlying causes, including our habits, values, and
paradigms. We are at a crucial crossroads, and time is running short. If we act fast enough, a
dignified and truly sustainable healthy future awaits.
Critique: A clarion call to action, "Earth Spirit: Healthy Planet: Global meltdown or global
healing" is impressively informative, organized and presented -- making it an ideal and essential
addition to professional, community, college, and university library Environmental Issues,
Climatology, and Ecology collections and supplemental curriculum studies lists. It should be
noted for students, academia, governmental policy makers, environmental activists, and non-
specialist general readers with an interest in the subject that "Earth Spirit: Healthy Planet: Global
meltdown or global healing" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle,
Editorial Note: Currently residing in Llandeilo, Wales, Fred Hageneder is a leading author in the
ethnobotany of trees, a founding member of the Ancient Yew Group (AYG) in the UK, and a
member of the Ecocentric Alliance, a global advocacy network for ecocentrism and deep green
The Pets/Wildlife Shelf
The Animals In Our Lives
Catherine Lawton, compiler
9781945099274, $17.99, PB, 210pp
Synopsis: Our animal companions inspire our awe, entertain us, help us, teach us, play with us,
mourn with us, even work with us in our daily lives. Compiled and edited by dedicated animal
lover Catherine Lawton, "The Animals In Our Lives: Stories of Companionship and Awe" is
comprised of 43 winsome, varied, and personal stories recount experiences with dogs, cats,
sheep, horses, backyard birds, woodland deer, and many other creatures. The encounters and
adventures of people and animals include childhood memories, family experiences,
contemplative moments, and wilderness explorations. A celebration of companionship with
animals both domestic and wild, in good times and hard times.
Critique: An absolutely 'must read' selection for anyone who has every had a beloved animal
companion of their own, "The Animals In Our Lives: Stories of Companionship and Awe". A
truly memorable, engaging, heartwarming, entertaining anthology that is especially and
unreservedly recommended for community library Pets/Wildlife collections, it should be noted
for personal reading lists that "The Animals In Our Lives: Stories of Companionship and Awe" is
also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $6.99).
The Martial Arts Shelf
Martial Arts and the Mirror Image
Blue Snake Books
c/o North Atlantic Books
2526 Martin Luther King Jr. Way, Berkeley, CA 94704-2607
9781623176440, $19.95, PB, 200pp
Synopsis: With the publication of "Martial Arts and the Mirror Image: Improve Your Form,
Build Strength, and Increase Flexibility with Psychology and Qigong Principles", martial arts
champion and teacher, Phillip Starr draws upon his more than sixty years of experience and
expertise to introduce the Mirror Image Technique -- a method that recognizes the reinforcing
nature of body and mind. Our self-image expresses in how we stand, move, and hold ourselves in
the world; and in martial arts, the way we move reflects the way we think on the mat, in practice,
and when sparring.
In the pages of "Martial Arts and the Mirror Image: Improve Your Form, Build Strength, and
Increase Flexibility with Psychology and Qigong Principles", Starr pulls from Self-Image
Psychology and Qigong to offer martial arts students a unique set of physical exercises that can
be applied to any martial art tradition -- as well as our personal lives. Like two mirrors facing
each other, the physical body both reflects and changes the mind, and vice versa: our physical
movements become more than just the consequence of our intentions or thoughts. As we adjust
the way we move, we adjust the way we think: about ourselves, our lives, and our
Unlike other self-help books that consider the mind as the sole gateway to change, the Mirror
Image Technique shows that cognitive transformation starts with the body. Starr takes martial
arts students through: Demonstrating key principles of Qigong with exercises like The
Unbreakable Arm and The Unliftable Body; Improving the stance; Increasing the strike force; As
well as insights into the mindset for breaking boards (tameshiwari).
Intended to enhance growth and personal development, the techniques in Martial Arts and the
Mirror Image lead to a renewal of confidence and enthusiasm for one's particular practice.
Critique: Expertly illustrated with black-and-white photography throughout, "Martial Arts and
the Mirror Image: Improve Your Form, Build Strength, and Increase Flexibility with Psychology
and Qigong Principles" is exceptionally well written, organized and presented, making it an ideal
and thoroughly 'user friendly' DIY instruction manual and guide for novice and experienced
martial arts students alike. While highly recommended for Dojo, community, college, and
university library Martial Arts collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that
"Martial Arts and the Mirror Image: Improve Your Form, Build Strength, and Increase Flexibility
with Psychology and Qigong Principles" is also readily available in a digital book format
Editorial Note: Phillip Starr began his training in the martial arts in 1956, beginning with judo.
Within a year, he received instruction in traditional kung fu in the basement of a small Chinese
grocery store. He continued his training, also earning black-belt grades in two styles of Japanese
karate (third dan in Kyokushin, first dan in Shito-ryu). His primary kung fu teacher was W. C.
Chen, a direct disciple of one of China's best-known masters, Zhang Zhaodong. From Master
Chen, Starr learned taijiquan (tai-chi chuan), xingyiquan, baguazhang, and a form of
shaolinquan. He began teaching Chinese martial arts in 1967 at Parsons College in Fairfield,
Iowa. After spending several years in law enforcement, he opened his first full-time martial arts
school in Ottumwa, Iowa. He entered competitions and earned the title of U.S. National
Champion five times, the last time when he was sixty-three years old. He was named to the
National Rules Committee of the United States Karate Association and became the kung fu
chairman. Later, he was named to the list of the Rocky Mountain top ten competitors. Starr has
gone on to train in Arnis, becoming a certified instructor under Tuhon Leo Gaje and Jeet Kune
The Science Shelf
A Brief History of Timekeeping
9781953295606, $16.95, PB, 336pp
Synopsis: Our modern lives are ruled by clocks and watches, smartphone apps and calendar
programs. While our gadgets may be new, however, the drive to measure and master time is
anything but -- and in "A Brief History of Timekeeping: The Science of Marking Time, from
Stonehenge to Atomic Clocks", Professor Chad Orzel traces the path from Stonehenge to the
Predating written language and marching on through human history, the desire for ever-better
timekeeping has spurred technological innovation and sparked theories that radically reshaped
our understanding of the universe and our place in it.
In "A Brief History of Timekeeping", Professor Orzel, demystifies thorny scientific concepts by
using the clocks and calendars central to our everyday activities as a jumping-off point to explore
the science underlying the ways we keep track of our time. Ancient solstice markers (which still
work perfectly 5,000 years later) depend on the basic astrophysics of our solar system;
mechanical clocks owe their development to Newtonian physics; and the ultra-precise atomic
timekeeping that enables GPS hinges on the predictable oddities of quantum mechanics.
Along the way, Professor Orzel visits the delicate negotiations involved in Gregorian calendar
reform, the intricate and entirely unique system employed by the Maya, and how the problem of
synchronizing clocks at different locations ultimately required us to abandon the idea of time as
an absolute and universal quantity.
Sharp and engaging, "A Brief History of Timekeeping" is a history that is not just about the
science of sundials, sandglasses, and mechanical clocks, but also the politics of calendars and
time zones, the philosophy of measurement, and the nature of space and time itself.
For those interested in science, technology, or history, or anyone who's ever wondered about the
instruments that divide our days into moments: the time you spend reading this book may fly, and
it is certain to be well spent.
Critique: Impressively informative and presented, "A Brief History of Timekeeping: The Science
of Marking Time, from Stonehenge to Atomic Clocks" is an inherently interesting, unique, and
highly recommended addition to personal, professional, community, college, and academic
library Physics of Time & Scientific Measurement history collections and supplemental
curriculum studies lists. It should be noted for students, academia, and non-specialist general
readers with an interest in the subject that "A Brief History of Timekeeping" is also readily
available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).
Editorial Note: Chad Orzel is an Associate Professor in the Department of Physics and
Astronomy at Union College in Schenectady, NY, where he has been on the faculty since 2001.
Orzel has been blogging about physics and academia for Forbes and www.Scienceblogs.com
since 2002. He is also the author of "How to Teach Quantum Physics to Your Dog", "How to
Teach Relativity to Your Dog", and "Eureka: Discovering Your Inner Scientist".
Mountain Press Publishing Company
P.O. Box 2399, Missoula MT 59806
Two new geology books in the 'Rocks' series survey different states' geologic formations and
how they came to be, and are highly recommended for collections located in each state as well as
libraries interested in travel and science books.
Magdalena S. Donahue and Marli B. Miller's Colorado Rocks! A Guide to Geologic Sites in the
Centennial State (9780878427055, $22.00) features fifty sites that represent the many different
geologic landscapes of Colorado. From a canyon that, today, holds no river to mounds of colorful
silica at Pagosa Springs and the Chalk Cliffs of Mt. Princeton, attractive and good-sized color
photos of each area accompany geologic discussions of how that area came to be. The contrast
between vastly different geologic events and their lasting heritage is nicely done, designed to
appeal to science readers and novices alike.
Nathalie Brandes's New Mexico Rocks! A Guide to Geologic Sites in the Land of Enchantment
(9780878427048, $22.00) features some sixty of the state's outstanding sites, which range from
the remnants of volcanic activity to the White Sands of gypsum, the caves of Carlsbad, and the
evident of dinosaurs to be found at Prehistoric Trackways National Monument. Beautiful color
photos of each site accompany maps, geologic discussions, and travel tips for those
destination-bound visitors. Both books excel in a blend of travel-oriented practical details and
scientific insights that help explain these sites, making for top recommendations for science and
travel collections alike.
The World History Shelf
The History of the World in 100 Pandemics, Plagues and Epidemics
Pen & Sword Books
c/o Casemate (US distribution)
9781399005425, $42.95, HC, 320pp
Synopsis: "The History of the World in 100 Pandemics, Plagues and Epidemics" is a revelatory
history by Paul Chrystal that charts and explains the impact and consequences of successive
pandemics, plagues and epidemics on the course of world history -- all through the lens of today's
ongoing global experience of COVID 19.
Ranging from prehistory to the present day, "The History of the World in 100 Pandemics,
Plagues and Epidemics" first defines what constitutes a pandemic or epidemic then looks at 20
guilty diseases: including cholera, influenza, bubonic plague, leprosy, measles, smallpox,
malaria, AIDS, MERS, SARS, Zika, Ebola and, of course, Covid-19. Some less well-known, but
equally significant and deadly contagions such as Legionnaires' Disease, psittacosis, polio, the
Sweat, and dancing plague, are also covered.
"The History of the World in 100 Pandemics, Plagues and Epidemics " is presented
chronologically. Each individual chapter features an explanation and description of
epidemiology, sources and vectors, morbidity, mortality, governmental response and reaction,
societal response and impact as well as psychological issues where known -- as well as the
political, legal and scientific consequences it had or has for each locus at a local and international
"The History of the World in 100 Pandemics, Plagues and Epidemics" explains how each of the
events both made and influenced subsequent history in its own way, particularly how each
shaped future medical and scientific research and vaccine development programmes. It also
examines myths about infectious diseases, the role of the media and social media. Perhaps most
importantly, what lessons have been learnt. Will we be better prepared next time? Because, if one
thing is sure, when it comes to pandemics in the modern age of global transportation, there is
going to be a 'next time'.
Critique: Timely, topical, informative, exceptionally well written and impressively presented,
"The History of the World in 100 Pandemics, Plagues and Epidemics" is a strongly
recommended addition to community, college, and university library World History and
Health/Medicine collections. It should be noted for the personal reading lists of students,
academia, and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject that "The History of
the World in 100 Pandemics, Plagues and Epidemics" is also readily available in a digital book
format (Kindle, $18.99).
Editorial Note: Paul Chrystal is the author of some seventy books published over the last decade,
including recent publications such as Wars and Battles of the Roman Republic, Roman Military
Disasters and Women and War in Ancient Greece and Rome. He is a regular contributor to
history magazines, local and national newspapers and has appeared on BBC Radio 4, BBC World
Service and on BBC local radio throughout Yorkshire and in Teesside and Manchester. He writes
extensively for several Pen & Sword military history series including 'Cold War 1945 - 1991', 'A
History of Terror' and 'Military Legacy' (of British cities).
The White Ship
William Collins Books
9780008296803, $28.99 hc / $14.99 Kindle
Synopsis: The sinking of the White Ship on the 25th November 1120 is one of the greatest
disasters that England has ever suffered. Its repercussions would change English and European
history for ever.
King Henry I was sailing for England in triumph after four years of fighting the French.
Congregating with the king at the port of Barfleur on that freezing night was the cream of
Anglo-Norman society, including the only legitimate heir to the throne. By 1120, Henry was the
most formidable ruler in Europe with an enviable record on the battlefield, immense lands and
wealth and unprecedented authority in his kingdoms. Everything he had worked for was finally
achieved, and he was ready to hand it on to his beloved son, William.
Henry I and his retinue set out first. The White Ship - considered the fastest afloat - would
follow, carrying the young prince. Spoilt and arrogant, William had plied his comrades and crew
with drink from the minute he stepped aboard. It was the middle of the night when the drunken
helmsman rammed the ship into rocks. There would be only one survivor from the gilded roll call
Charles Spencer evokes this tragic and brutal story of the Normans from Conquest to Anarchy.
With the heir dead, a civil war of untold violence erupted, a game of thrones which saw families
turn in on each other with English and Norman barons, rebellious Welsh princes and the Scottish
king all playing a part in a bloody, desperate scrum for power.
Critique: The White Ship: Conquest, Anarchy and the Wrecking of Henry I's Dream is a riveting
history of the violent fallout from a nautical disaster in the year 1120 that destroyed England's
conquering ruler and his heir. English and Norman barons, Welsh princes, and the Scottish king
all battled one another for power and influence. Expertly researched yet utterly enthralling in its
presentation to lay readers and scholars alike, The White Ship is highly recommended especially
for public library World History collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that The
White Ship is also available in a Kindle edition ($14.99).
Editorial Note: Charles Spencer was educated at Eton College and obtained his degree in Modern
History at Magdalen College, Oxford. He was a reporter on NBC's Today show from 1986 until
1995, and is the author of seven books, including the Sunday Times bestsellers Blenheim: Battle
for Europe (shortlisted for History Book of the Year, National Book Awards) and Killers of the
King: The Men Who Dared to Execute Charles I.
The Struggle Against Russia in the Romanian Principalities
Radu R. Florescu
Center for Romanian Studies
c/o Histria Books
9789739809139, $49.99, HC, 382pp
Synopsis: The period leading up to the unification of the Romanian principalities is one of the
most dynamic periods in modern Romanian history. It was a time of effervescence, which
witnessed the birth of new ideas and the struggle between revolution and reaction. The Romanian
principalities, located on the crossroads between East and West, were at the center of the conflict
between the various empires dominating Southeastern Europe, making them a permanent subject
of international diplomacy.
With the expansion of Russia in the Balkans, amidst the decline of the Ottoman Empire, the
struggle against Russia in the Romanian principalities, supported by Anglo-Turkish diplomacy,
took on international significance. Written by Professor Radu R. Florescu (one of the leading
specialists on Romanian history in the United States), "The Struggle Against Russia in the
Romanian Principalities: A Study in Anglo-Turkish Diplomacy, 1821-1854" is a significant
contribution to nineteenth century European diplomatic history.
Critique: Enhanced for academia with the inclusion of a twelve page Appendix, a thirty-eight
page Bibliography, and a thirteen page Index, "The Struggle Against Russia in the Romanian
Principalities: A Study in Anglo-Turkish Diplomacy, 1821-1854" is an extraordinary and
exceptionally informative history that is particularly and unreservedly recommended for
community, college, and university library 19th Century European History collections in general,
and 19th Century Romanian/Turkey histories in particular. It should be noted for the personal
reading lists of students, academia, and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the
subject that "The Struggle Against Russia in the Romanian Principalities: A Study in
Anglo-Turkish Diplomacy, 1821-1854" is also readily available in a paperback edition
Editorial Note: The author, Radu R. Florescu, was professor of history at Boston College. He is
the author of The Struggle against Russia in the Romanian Principalities, Dracula: Prince of
Many Faces, and In Search of Dracula.
The Civil War Shelf
William Barksdale, CSA
John Douglas Ashton
McFarland & Company
PO Box 611, Jefferson NC 28640
9781476683744, $39.95, PB, 307pp
Synopsis: An aggressive and colorful personality, William Barksdale (August 21, 1821 - July 3,
1863) was no stranger to controversy. Orphaned at 13, he succeeded as lawyer, newspaper editor,
Mexican War veteran, politician and Confederate commander. During eight years in the U.S.
Congress, he was among the South's most ardent defenders of slavery and advocates for states'
rights. His emotional speeches and altercations (including a brawl on the House floor) made
headlines in the years preceding secession.
His fiery temper prompted three near-duels, gaining him a reputation as a brawler and
knife-fighter. Arrested for intoxication, Colonel Barksdale survived a military Court of Inquiry to
become one of the most beloved commanders in the Army of Northern Virginia. His reputation
soared with his defense against the Union river crossing and street-fighting at Fredericksburg,
and his legendary charge at Gettysburg.
Critique: "William Barksdale, CSA: A Biography of the United States Congressman and
Confederate Brigadier General" by John Douglas Ashton is first comprehensive biography to
place Barksdale's life and career in an historical context. Enhanced for academia with the
inclusion of an Appendix (Previously Unpublished Material Concerning William Barksdale),
twenty-six pages of Chapter Notes, an eight page Bibliography, and a four page Index, "William
Barksdale, CSA" is an exceptionally informative and unreservedly recommended addition to
community, college, and university library American Civil War History & Biography collections.
It should be noted for the personal reading lists of students, academia, Civil War history buffs,
and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject that "William Barksdale, CSA"
is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $17.99).
Editorial Note: John Douglas Ashton is a founding member and later Chairman of the Southern
Ontario Civil War Roundtable, he has traveled to all of the major battlefields where Barksdale's
Mississippians fought to gain further insights.
Movements and Positions in the Battle of Kennesaw Mountain
James T. Holmes, author
Garth D. Bishop, editor
McFarland & Company
PO Box 611, Jefferson NC 28640
9781476673127, $29.95, PB, 163pp
Synopsis: Edited by Garth D. Bishop (who is the great-grandson of Col. James Taylor Holmes)
and published for the first time by McFarland & Company, "Movements and Positions in the
Battle of Kennesaw Mountain: The Memoir of Colonel James T. Holmes, 52d Ohio Volunteer
Infantry" is the Civil War combat memoir of Lieutenant Colonel James Taylor Holmes of the
52nd Ohio Volunteers and presents a richly detailed firsthand account of the action on
Cheatham's Hill during the June 1864 Battle of Kennesaw Mountain.
Written in 1915, Holmes' insightful narrative, with original hand-drawn diagrams, differs on key
points from the accepted scholarship on troop movements and positions at Kennesaw, and
contests the legitimacy of a battlefield monument. An extensive introduction and annotations by
historian Mark A. Smith (who's a professor at Fort Valley State University in Georgia) provides a
brief yet comprehensive overview of the battle and places Holmes' document in historical
Critique: A rare and treasured contribution to the growing library of American Civil War
Histories, Memoirs, and Biographies, "Movements and Positions in the Battle of Kennesaw
Mountain: The Memoir of Colonel James T. Holmes, 52d Ohio Volunteer Infantry" is enhanced
with the inclusion of two Appendices, twelve pages of Annotations, and a three page Index. An
impressively informative and inherently fascinating read that will be particularly appreciated by
Civil War historians and military fans and bringing out of relative obscurity a critically important
battle of the American Civil War with unique and interesting eye-witness detail, "Movements
and Positions in the Battle of Kennesaw Mountain: The Memoir of Colonel James T. Holmes,
52d Ohio Volunteer Infantry" is recommended for professional, community, college, and
university library American Civil War collections and supplemental curriculum studies -- and is
also available for personal reading lists in a digital book format (Kindle, $13.49).
PO Box 4527, El Dorado Hills, CA 95762
9781611215373, $29.95, HC, 336pp
Synopsis: On May 24, 1861, Col. Elmer Ellsworth became the first Union officer killed in the
Civil War. The entire North was aghast. First Fallen is the first modern biography of this national
celebrity, Northern icon, and mostly forgotten national hero.
Ellsworth and his entertaining U.S. Zouave Cadets drill team had performed at West Point, in
New York City, and for President, James Buchanan before returning home to Chicago. He helped
his friend and law mentor Abraham Lincoln in his quest for the presidency, and when Lincoln
put out the call for troops after Fort Sumter was fired upon, Ellsworth responded. Within days he
organized more than 1,000 New York firefighters into a regiment of volunteers.
When he was killed, the Lincolns rushed to the Navy Yard to view the body of the young man
they had loved as a son. Mary Lincoln insisted he lie in state in the East Room of the White
House. The elite of New York brought flowers to the Astor House and six members of the 11th
New York accompanied their commander's coffin. When a late May afternoon thunderstorm
erupted during his funeral service at the Hudson View Cemetery, eyewitnesses referred to it as
"tears from God himself." The death of the young hero was knocked out of the headlines eight
weeks later by the battle of First Bull Run. The trickle of blood had now become a torrent that
would not stop for four long years.
Groeling's well-written biography is grounded in years of archival research and includes diaries,
personal letters, newspapers, and many other accounts. In the six decades since the last portrait of
Ellsworth was written, new information has been found that gives readers and historians a better
understanding of the Ellsworth phenomenon and his deep connections to the Lincoln family.
Critique: Exceptionally well written and impressively informative, "First Fallen: The Life of
Colonel Elmer Ellsworth, the North's First Civil War Hero" examines every facet of Elmer
Ellsworth (April 11, 1837 - May 24, 1861) surprisingly complex and fascinating life, while
adding a key note to the historiography of the Civil War. Also readily available to students,
academia, Civil War historians, military history buffs, and non-specialist general readers with an
interest in the subject in a digital book format (Kindle, $13.49), "First Fallen: The Life of
Colonel Elmer Ellsworth, the North's First Civil War Hero" is a very special and core addition to
American Civil War Histories & Biography collections.
Editorial Note: Meg Groeling is a contributing writer for the blog Emerging Civil War. A writer,
teacher, and curriculum developer since 1987, she has taught at both the elementary and middle
school levels for more than thirty years. She graduated from California State University, Long
Beach with a B.A. in liberal studies and has been involved in continuing education for her entire
career; she is currently a master's candidate at American Public University, majoring in military
history with a Civil War emphasis.
The Military Shelf
Justin G. Prince
University of Oklahoma Press
2800 Venture Drive, Norman, OK 73069
9780806167558, $34.95, HC, 272pp
Synopsis: At the beginning of the twentieth century, field artillery was a small, separate,
unsupported branch of the U.S. Army. By the end of World War I, it had become a critical
component of American military might. "Million-Dollar Barrage: American Field Artillery in the
Great War" by Professor Justin G. Prince tracks this transformation. Offering a detailed account
of how American artillery crews trained, changed, adapted, and fought between 1907 and 1923,
"Million-Dollar Barrage" tells the story of the development of modern American field artillery, a
military history stretching from the period when field artillery became an independent
organization to when it became an equal branch of the U.S. Army.
The field artillery entered the Great War as a relatively new branch. It separated from the Coast
Artillery in 1907 and established a dedicated training school, the School of Fire at Fort Sill, in
1911. "Million-Dollar Barrage" describes the challenges this presented as issues of doctrine,
technology, weapons development, and combat training intersected with the problems of a
peacetime army with no good industrial base. This history draws on a wealth of sources, ranges
from debates about U.S. artillery practices relative to those of Europe, as well as discussing the
training, equipping, and performance of the field artillery branch during the war.
"Million-Dollar Barrage" follows the field artillery from its plunge into combat in April 1917 as
an unprepared organization to its emergence that November as an effective fighting force, with
the Meuse-Argonne Offensive proving the pivotal point in the branch's fortunes. "Million-Dollar
Barrage" also provides an unprecedented analysis of the ascendance of field artillery as a key
factor in the nation's military dominance.
Critique: A unique and impressively informative contribution to 20th Century American Military
History & Technology, "Million-Dollar Barrage: American Field Artillery in the Great War" is an
extraordinary, unique, comprehensive, exceptionally well presented and detailed study. While
strongly recommended for community, college, and university library Military Conventional
Warfare History in general, and World War I histories in particular, it should be noted for the
personal reading lists of students, academia, military history buffs, and non-specialist readers
with an interest in the subject that "Million-Dollar Barrage: American Field Artillery in the Great
War" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $16.10).
Editorial Note: Justin G. Prince is an adjunct professor of history at Oklahoma State University.
He has published numerous articles on the American army in World War I.
Churchill, Master and Commander
4301 21st St, Suite 220B, Long Island City, NY 11101
9781472847331, $30.00, HC, 384pp
Synopsis: From his earliest days Winston Churchill was an extreme risk taker and he carried this
into adulthood. Today he is widely hailed as Britain's greatest wartime leader and politician.
Deep down though, he was foremost a warlord. Just like his ally Stalin, and his arch enemies
Hitler and Mussolini, Churchill could not help himself and insisted on personally directing the
strategic conduct of World War II. For better or worse he insisted on being political master and
Again like his wartime contemporaries, he had a habit of not heeding the advice of his generals.
The results of this were disasters in Norway, North Africa, Greece, and Crete during 1940 - 41.
His fruitless Dodecanese campaign in 1943 also ended in defeat. Churchill's pig-headedness over
supporting the Italian campaign in defiance of the Riviera landings culminated in him threatening
to resign and bring down the British Government.
Yet on occasions he got it just right, his refusal to surrender in 1940, the British miracle at
Dunkirk and victory in the Battle of Britain, showed that he was a much-needed decisive leader.
Nor did he shy away from difficult decisions, such as the destruction of the French Fleet to
prevent it falling into German hands and his subsequent war against Vichy France.
"Churchill, Master and Commander: Winston Churchill at War 1895 - 1945" is a fascinating new
military biography of Churchill by acclaimed historian Anthony Tucker-Jones and explores the
record of Winston Churchill as a military commander, assessing how the military experiences of
his formative years shaped him for the difficult military decisions he took in office. "Churchill,
Master and Commander: Winston Churchill at War 1895 - 1945" also assesses his choices in the
some of the most controversial and high-profile campaigns of World War II, and how in high
office his decision making was both right and wrong.
Critique: Impressively comprehensive, informatively detailed, meticulous, exceptionally well
written, organized and presented, "Churchill, Master and Commander: Winston Churchill at War
1895 - 1945" is an extraordinary and valued contribution to the growing body of World War II
histories and biographies. While highly recommended as an essential and core addition to
community, college, and university library 19th & 20th Century military biography collections, it
should be noted for the personal reading lists of students, academia, military buffs, and non-
specialist general readers that "Churchill, Master and Commander: Winston Churchill at War
1895 - 1945" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $12.60).
Editorial Note: Anthony Tucker-Jones, a former intelligence officer, is a prolific writer and
military historian with well over 50 books to his name. His work has also been published in an
array of magazines and online. He regularly appears on television and radio commenting on
current and historical military matters.
1940 Lawrence Road, Havertown, PA 19083
9781636240824, $34.95, HC, 288pp
Synopsis: Free Libya! was the chant heard throughout Libya during the Arab Spring revolution
that ended with the death of the Libyan dictator Colonel Gadaffi in October 2011. "Liberating
Libya: British Diplomacy and War in the Desert" by Rupert Wieloch is about the British military
and political involvement in Libya since the first treaty signed with the rulers in Tripoli in
"Liberating Libya" is divided into four eras. The first covers the period up to the Italian invasion
in 1911. The second covers the First World War and Italian pacification. The third covers the
Western Desert Campaign. The fourth part brings the reader up to date with recent events.
In the words of the Foreign Secretary, Edward Grey, the 1911 Italian invasion of Libya "led
straight to the catastrophe of 1914". Using memoirs of politicians and correspondents from both
sides of the conflict, the author pieces together British involvement, shedding new light on the
Senussi Campaign and the Duke of Westminster's rescue of 100 British PoWs at Bir Hakkeim, as
well as the story of Colonel Milo Talbot, who did as much as TE Lawrence to establish British
influence with Arab leadership, but was never rewarded for his work.
Even though hundreds of books have been written about the Western Desert Campaign,
"Liberating Libya" includes much unpublished material in addressing the contentious issues and
explains why General Brian Horrocks wrote: "Command in the desert was regarded as an almost
certain prelude to a bowler hat".
The final part of "Liberating Libya" begins with Britain's operations to establish Libya as an
independent kingdom and the rise of nationalism that led to Gadaffi's coup in 1969. The story of
the tense relationship with the Brotherly Leader during the "Line of Death" era and subsequent
rapprochement precedes an authoritative account of the 2011 revolution.
The final chapter, brings the reader up to date with the current conflict as well as the migration
crisis and the Manchester Arena bombers.
Critique: A detailed and documents history of Britain's involvement with Libya, "Liberating
Libya: British Diplomacy and War in the Desert" is an extraordinarily informed and informative
study and one that is especially recommended for community, college, and university library
Libyan History and British Military History collections. It should be noted for the personal
reading lists of students, academia, military history buffs, and non-specialist general readers with
an interest in the subject that "Liberating Libya: British Diplomacy and War in the Desert" is also
readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $15.99).
Editorial Note: Rupert Wieloch was appointed as the Senior British Military Commander before
Gadaffi was captured and killed. He had privileged access to the new Libyan government and
drafted the first Defence White Paper for the Libyan Chief of Defence in 2012. He was the first
foreign representative to visit Tobruk after the revolution, establishing the basis for a
multi-million pound international contract to refurbish the airport and military base at El Adem.
He led the immediate response after the Islamic attack on the British war graves in Benghazi and
was present at the Battle of Bani Walid, known as the start of the second civil war. His previous
books are Belfast to Benghazi and Churchill's Abandoned Prisoners (Casemate).
Eben-Emael and the Defence of Fortress Belgium, 1940
Pen & Sword Books
c/o Casemate (US distribution)
9781526779823, $42.95, HC, 272pp
Synopsis: In the early morning of 10 May 1940, the sky literally fell on the heads of the
defenders of Fort Eben-Emael, considered to be Belgium's most powerful fortress. This huge
structure, with its powerful artillery and infantry weapons, was the key to the Meuse and Albert
Canal defences. In the darkness of the pre-dawn, German DFS 230 gliders drifted silently over
the southern Netherlands, landing one by one on top of Eben-Emael. Within minutes German
Special Forces troops destroyed most of the fort's weapons and observation capabilities. The
following day, the garrison surrendered, and the door to Belgium and France was open.
"Eben-Emael and the Defence of Fortress Belgium, 1940" is an impressively perceptive and
meticulously researched study, by author and military historian Clayton Donnel focusing on
Eben-Emael, which was only one of the nineteen forts of the fortified positions of Li ge and
Namur attacked in May 1940.
Three new and sixteen refurbished forts held out for several days, and fought to the death. The
story Donnell tells contradicts the common assumption that these static defenses were rolled over
or bypassed -- powerless to resist the overwhelming force of the German combat engineer's
assaults, Stuka bombs and heavy artillery shells. In vivid Donnel demonstrates that their
importance in the 1940 campaign has been seriously under reported, and he gives clarity to some
of the legends that have grown up around the capture of Eben-Emael itself.
Critique: An invaluable, original, and unique contribution to the growing body of World War II
histories, "Eben-Emael and the Defence of Fortress Belgium, 1940" is an extraordinarily
informative and impressively presented study. While very highly recommended, especially for
community, college, and university library World War II collections and supplemental
curriculum studies lists, it should be noted for students, academia, military history buffs, and
non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject that "Eben-Emael and the Defence of
Fortress Belgium, 1940" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $18.99).
Editorial Note: Clayton Donnell is retired from the US Air Force. He has a degree in history and
has passionately studied military history and fortress engineering for thirty years. Clayton lived
for many years in Europe and studied the architecture and archaeology of the most renowned
fortress systems of Belgium, France and Germany. He created the first internet site in the world
in English about the Maginot Line, and another on the fortress and Battle of Lige, Belgium.
The War on the Eastern Front
Pen & Sword Books
c/o Casemate (US distribution)
9781526786104, $34.95, HC, 344pp
Synopsis: The RIA-Novosti press agency (now known as Sputnik in the West) has one of the best
archives of Soviet Second World War photographs and for "The War on the Eastern Front: The
Soviet Union, 1941-1945 - A Photographic History", Professor Alexander Hill has made a superb
selection of them. These striking images record vividly, as only photographs can, the brutal
conflict on the Eastern Front and the extraordinary experience of the soldiers and civilians who
were caught up in it.
Every aspect of the struggle is depicted, including the fighting on the front lines and behind the
lines, aerial combat and naval warfare, the ordeal of living under German occupation, the war
industries and Lend-Lease and the massive sacrifices made at every level of Soviet society to
defeat the Germans.
The photographs and captions take the reader through the entire course of the war, from the
Nazi-Soviet Pact and Soviet expansion into Poland, Finland and the Baltic Republics, through
Operation Barbarossa and the German advances of 1941 and 1942, to the momentous battles at
Stalingrad and Kursk and the sequence of massive offensives mounted by the Red Army that
drove the Wehrmacht back to Berlin.
The landscapes over which the armies moved, and the shattered towns and cities they left behind,
are recorded as are individuals whose faces were captured by the camera during this devastating
conflict over seventy years ago.
Critique: A unique and inherently fascinating contribution to the growing library of World War II
histories, "The War on the Eastern Front: The Soviet Union, 1941-1945 - A Photographic
History" by military historian and academician Alexander Hill is a one-of-a-kind and
unreservedly recommended addition to personal, professional, community, college, and
university library World War II collections and supplemental curriculum studies lists. It should
be noted for students, academia, military buffs, and non-specialist general readers with an interest
in the subject that "The War on the Eastern Front: The Soviet Union, 1941-1945 - A
Photographic History" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $12.99).
Editorial Note: Professor Alexander Hill teaches at the University of Calgary, Canada and is a
leading expert on the military and political history of Russia and the Soviet Union since 1917. He
has written extensively on Soviet military, naval and strategic history during the Second World
War, focusing in particular on the partisan movement, naval warfare and Lend-Lease. He is also
a former editor-in-chief of the Journal of Slavic Military Studies and the author of The Red Army
and the Second World War.
4301 21st St, Suite 220B, Long Island City, NY 11101
9781472852854, $30.00, HC, 288pp
Synopsis: In 1945, when Congress began reviewing the record of the most conspicuous acts of
courage by American soldiers during World War II, they recommended awarding the Medal of
Honor to 432 recipients. Despite the fact that more than one million African-Americans served,
not a single Black soldier received the Medal of Honor. The omission remained on the record for
over four decades.
But recent historical investigations have brought to light some of the extraordinary acts of valor
performed by black soldiers during the war. Men like Vernon Baker, who single-handedly
eliminated three enemy machine guns, an observation post, and a German dugout. Or Sergeant
Reuben Rivers, who spearhead his tank unit's advance against fierce German resistance for three
days despite being grievously wounded. Meanwhile Lieutenant Charles Thomas led his platoon
to capture a strategically vital village on the Siegfried Line in 1944 despite losing half his men
and suffering a number of wounds himself.
Ultimately, in 1993 a US Army commission determined that seven men, including Baker, Rivers
and Thomas, had been denied the Army's highest award simply due to racial discrimination. In
1997, more than 50 years after the war, President Clinton finally awarded the Medal of Honor to
these seven heroes, sadly all but one of them posthumously.
Critique: Timely and timeless, informative and memorable, unique and long overdue, "Immortal
Valor: The Black Medal of Honor Winners Of World War II" documents and commemorates
seven individual American soldiers whose acts of uncommon valor in the field of battle went
unrecognized for more than forty years because of racial discrimination and bigotry, but are now
redressed with the recognition and honor they deserved. Enhanced with the inclusion of a section
of black/white historical photos, "Immortal Valor: The Black Medal of Honor Winners Of World
War II" is an especially and unreservedly recommended addition to community, college, and
university library World War II Histories & Biographies collections. It should be noted for the
personal reading lists of students, academicians, military history buffs, and non-specialist general
readers with an interest in the subject that "Immortal Valor: The Black Medal of Honor Winners
Of World War II" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $12.60).
Editorial Note: Robert Child is a military history writer, director, and published author with
Penguin/Random House. Child has garnered more than 26 writing and directing awards including
an Emmy nomination and is one of only a handful of writer/directors whose work has screened in
the United States Congress. His film, The Wereth Eleven, was nominated for an Emmy and won
the highest honor at the G.I. Film Festival in Washington DC, the Founders Choice Award. In 2011, the survivor's association of the World War II aircraft carrier, USS Franklin, singled
Child out for Honorary Crew Membership aboard the most decorated vessel in U.S. Naval
The Genealogy Shelf
List of Free African Americans in the American Revolution
c/o Genealogical Publishing Company
3600 Clipper Mill Road, Suite 260, Baltimore, MD 21211
9780806359342, $25.00, PB, 174pp
Synopsis: It is not commonly known that more than 420 African Americans who were born free
during the colonial period served in the American Revolution from Virginia. Another 400 who
descended from free-born colonial families served from North Carolina, 40 from South Carolina,
60 from Maryland, and 17 from Delaware.
It's also not well known that over 75 free African Americans served in the colonial militias, as
well as the French and Indian Wars in Virginia and North and South Carolina. (Lest the reader be
confused by the plural Wars, all the dynastic wars from the late 1600s through 1763 are
collectively referred to as the French and Indians Wars.)
Although some slaves fought to gain their freedom as substitutes for their masters, they were
relatively few in number; those who were not serving under their own free will are not included
in this list. While the information one each of the free black veterans varies, in most cases the
author has provided the individual's name, state and county, unit served in, military theatre, some
family information, often a physical description, pension applied for or received, sometimes
other information, and the source.
Critique: A unique and invaluable contribution to African American history and impressively
useful for genealogical research, "List of Free African Americans in the American Revolution:
Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Maryland, and Delaware (Followed by the French ...
French and Indian Wars and Colonial Militias)" by Paul Heinegg is especially and unreservedly
recommended for personal, professional, community, college, and university library
DNA for Native American Genealogy
Genealogical Publishing Company
3600 Clipper Mill Road, Suite 229, Baltimore, MD 21211
9780806321189, $34.95, PB, 192pp
Synopsis: Written by genealogist Roberta Estes, the foremost expert on how to utilize DNA
testing to identify Native American ancestors, "DNA for Native American Genealogy" is the first
to offer detailed information and advice specifically aimed at family historians interested in
fleshing out their Native American family tree through DNA testing.
Figuring out how to incorporate DNA testing into your Native American genealogy research can
be difficult and daunting. What types of DNA tests are available, and which vendors offer them?
What other tools are available? How is Native American DNA determined or recognized in your
DNA? What information about your Native American ancestors can DNA testing uncover? This
book addresses these questions and much more.
Included are step-by-step instructions, with illustrations, on how to use DNA testing at the four
major DNA testing companies to further your genealogy and confirm or identify your Native
American ancestors. Among the many other topics covered are: tribes in the United States and
First Nations in Canada; ethnicity; chromosome painting; population genetics and how ethnicity
is assigned; genetic groups and communities; Y DNA paternal direct line male testing;
mitochondrial DNA maternal direct line testing; autosomal DNA matching and ethnicity
comparisons; creating a DNA pedigree chart; native American haplogroups by region and tribe;
ancient and contemporary Native American DNA.
Special features include numerous charts and maps; a roadmap and checklist giving you clear
instructions on how to proceed; and a glossary to help the genealogist decipher the technical
language associated with DNA testing.
Critique: Unique, illustrated, comprehensive, deftly organized and throughly 'user friendly' in
presentation and application, "DNA for Native American Genealogy" must be considered an
essential and core addition to personal, professional, community, college, and university library
Genealogy instructional reference collections.
Editorial Note: Roberta Estes has been a professional scientist and business owner for 25+ years,
(MS Computer Science, MBA, graduate work in Geographic Information Systems), as well as an
obsessed genealogist since 1978. In 2005, reflecting her interest and expertise in genetics for
genealogy, she formed DNAeXplain, a company providing individual analysis of DNA results
and consulting services. Roberta is a National Geographic Society, Genographic Project affiliate
scientific researcher and became part of the design team in 2012. Roberta has authored multiple
academic papers, provided content and consultation to the New York Times, the Wall Street
Journal, the History Channel, and other organizations and businesses.
The Biography Shelf
Not Book Club Material
Tumbleweed Press Inc.
9798596940893, $10.99 Paper/$2.99 ebook
Not Book Club Material is a memoir packed with wry humor, mouth-watering revelations, and
insights that are candid, thought-provoking, and fun all in one.
The introduction to this collection captures all these facets in a few succinct lines: "Before my
first collection came out, I toyed with the notion of adding a recipe section in the middle of the
book because many of the stories were about the Egyptian Jewish food I was raised on. Books,
especially self-published story collections by completely unknown former powder paint salesmen
are, as it turns out, surprisingly hard to market and I thought the recipes might be a compelling
hook. One July morning, over a breakfast of scrambled eggs at the cottage, I made the mistake of
casually suggesting it might be of interest for book clubs. I actually thought it was a pretty good
idea. This led my sister-in-law to utter the sentence which became the family's favorite line in the
summer of 2020. "Your book," she said in her completely honest and unfiltered style, "is not
book club material."
Thus, the title was born...and a rollicking ride through a life that introduces (and quickly
answers) the question of what makes a good book club read and why this book likely doesn't fit
that definition: "Book clubs, they explained, read thick best-selling novels with complicated
themes, motifs, and plotlines. Grey matter material they could discuss over coffee and low-fat
gluten-free banana muffins. They went on to list a bunch of books as examples. Most of them
appeared to have the word Crawdad in the title. Anyway, book clubs, they stated emphatically,
did not read short story collections." This belays the point that book clubs, above all, enjoy vivid,
Ironically, Not Book Club Material's stories represent these very things, and it would be a shame
if book clubs judged the title by the size of its tales. Here lies bright, sparkling jewels of insight
and experience in fun mix of reality and fantasy that features a host of characters and dilemmas
and more than light references to food. Take the opening story, 'Home Made Cake'. Here, facts
about his mother's Cairo life meld with the memory of a Cairo French patisserie owned by
Greeks, called Home Made Cake. Zevy brings to life the atmosphere of Cairo and his family's
love for this quirky place: "...every time they spoke about the patisserie on rue Ismaili Pasha I
never, not once, heard the words Home Made Cake. Only Om Met Kek. Of all the food my
family was nostalgic about after leaving Egypt, the one they missed the most was not Egyptian at
all. It was from Home Made Cake." The strange pronunciation comes back to haunt him in
adulthood when Zevy decides to get to the heart of his memories about Home Made Cake, only
to stand corrected.
The delightful family stories usually conclude with ironic twists. Each stand-alone piece adds to
the strength of the collection as a whole, providing enticing tidbits of facts and whimsy to delight
the heart and mind like sugar on the tongue. Perhaps now, more than ever, there is an exceptional
need for the laughter, fun, and family reflections of the stories in Not Book Club Material. And
these facets make for, ironically, perfect book club material indeed as readers navigate the Jewish
culture, Egyptian heritage, and observations of food, love, and learning that permeate this
Jewish, literary, and general-interest humor and memoir readers who delight stories of in food
and family will all find Not Book Club Material a major attraction. And, yes, book clubs
interested in any of these subjects should put it high on their reading lists.
Rare Integrity: A Portrait of L. W. Payne, Jr.
University of North Texas Press
1155 Union Circle #311336, Denton, TX 76203-5017
9781574418422, $21.95, HC, 176pp
Synopsis: Leonidas Warren Payne, Jr. (July 12, 1873 - June 16, 1945), counted Robert Frost
among his friends and a member of the inner circle of poets who embraced him and sought his
advice. He altered forever the perception of Texas when he created the Texas Folklore Society
that continues to record, publish, and promote Texas history, myth, music, and customs. He
guided J. Frank Dobie back into The University of Texas fold, where Dobie produced his finest
work and established a voice for Texas literature. L. W. Payne, Jr., influenced generations of
American school children through his anthologies that became basic English textbooks.
Drawing upon Payne's own writing, interviews with former colleagues and students, and private
letters lain undisclosed since Payne's death, "Rare Integrity: A Portrait of L. W. Payne, Jr." by
biographer Hansen Alexander reveals a portrait of a man whose great gift of creative generosity
and warmth of heart enabled him to see a person as the person wished to be seen.
Critique: Commemorating an extraordinary man of extraordinary accomplishments, "Rare
Integrity: A Portrait of L. W. Payne, Jr." is exceptionally informative, well written, impressively
organized and presented life story. Enhanced with the inclusion of four pages of Notes and a six
page Index, "Rare Integrity: A Portrait of L. W. Payne, Jr." is also readily available in a digital
book format (University of North Texas Press, 9781574418521, $TBA), and is highly
recommended for community, college, and university library American Biography
Editorial Note: Hansen Alexander was an attorney for many years in New York City, and a
history major at The University of Texas when he began researching and writing about Payne. He
is the author of two books about Texas baseball legend Roger Clemens, One Brave Man and The
Life and Trials of Roger Clemens.
One Man in His Time...
Douglas & McIntyre
c/o Harbour Publishing
9781771623001, $29.95, HC, 256pp
Synopsis: Freedom rider. Student radical. Academic. Social activist. Residential developer.
Museum builder. Grizzly bear protector. Michael Audain has been all of these things and more in
a colorful life spanning eight decades, three continents and five careers. Born into a branch of the
legendary BC Dunsmuir clan that had lost its wealth and social status, little was expected of
Audain. A lonely teenager plagued by insecurities, he was a dismal failure in the classroom and
on the playing field. Yet Audain would become one of the most prominent home builders in
British Columbia and a well-known philanthropist in support of the visual arts and wildlife
Along the way, Audain did time in a Mississippi prison for participating in the Freedom Rider
movement. He started the Nuclear Disarmament Club at the University of British Columbia and
was a founder of the BC Civil Liberties Association. He advocated for the radical Sons of
Freedom Doukhobor sect on their protest march from the Kootenays to Vancouver. He proudly
displayed a photograph of the communist revolutionary Fidel Castro at the founding convention
of the New Democratic Party until Tommy Douglas persuaded him to take it down.
Audain worked for an airline in the Arctic, became a probation officer and a farm appraiser, was
arrested in Ireland under suspicion of terrorism, and sought wisdom from a Buddhist monk in
Thailand. In 1980, he took the most unexpected turn of all and became a developer in Greater
Vancouver's volatile housing market. As chairman of Polygon Homes Ltd., he has been
responsible for the construction of over 30,000 homes.
With the publication of his memoir, "One Man in His Time...", Audain reveals the story of his
life's unplanned twists and turns, victories and defeats -- all recounted with characteristic wit and
candor. His life story is a tale of adventure and perseverance that will inspire many seeking to
find their own place in the world.
Critique: Exceptionally well written and presented, "One Man in His Time..." is a simply
fascinating memoir of an extraordinary man who lived through extraordinary times. "One Man in
His Time..." by Michael Audain is particularly and specifically recommended for personal
reading lists, as well as community, college, and university library Contemporary Canadian
Editorial Note: Currently residing with his wife, Yoshiko Karasawa, in Vancouver, BC., Michael
Audain is the founder and chairman of Polygon Homes Ltd., an officer of the Order of Canada
and a member of the Order of British Columbia.
Joni: An Unforgettable Story
Joni Eareckson Tada
Zondervan Publishing House
5300 Patterson Avenue, S.E., Grand Rapids, MI 49530
9780310364191, $18.99, PB, 224pp
Synopsis: On a hot July afternoon in 1967, Joni Eareckson Tada's life was dramatically altered in
a split second. A reckless dive into shallow water took an athletic young woman from health and
success to life as a quadriplegic in a wheelchair. In the forty-five years since the release of her
memoir (which has more than five million copies in print in over forty languages) Joni's earnest
struggle to find hope has resonated with millions of readers around the world. The hard-earned
truths she shares in this special edition reveal the power of God's love to transform, as well as the
triumph of faith over pain and suffering.
Joni's message has inspired people facing all types of challenges, helping them overcome their
own limitations with a determined smile. In this updated edition, you will discover how to stay
satisfied in God through disappointment and affliction. Filled with practical insights, Joni will
help you find hope in every hardship.
This commemorative 45th anniversary edition features updated photos, as well as an all-new
afterword in which Joni describes her current battle against two different cancers, her daily
struggle with chronic pain, and the joys of leading a global outreach to people living with
Critique: A unique, inspiring, and inherently interesting life history, Joni's personally updated
edition of "Joni: An Unforgettable Story" is especially and unreservedly recommended for
community, middle school, high school, college, and university library Contemporary American
Biography & Memoir collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Joni: An
Unforgettable Story" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).
Editorial Note: Joni Eareckson Tada and her husband Ken live in Calabasas, California. Joni is
also the founder and president of Joni and Friends, an organization accelerating Christian
outreach in the disability community which numbers 550 million people worldwide. She is an
artist and author of numerous best-selling books, including Diamonds in the Dust, Heaven - Your
Real Home, and When God Weeps..
These Walls Between Us
She Writes Press
9781647421670, $16.95, PB, 328pp
Synopsis: In the mid-1950s, a fifteen-year-old African American teenager named Mary White
(now Mary Norman) traveled north from Virginia to work for twelve-year-old Wendy Sanford's
family as a live-in domestic for their summer vacation by a remote New England beach. Over the
years, Wendy's family came to depend on Mary's skilled service -- and each summer, Mary
endured the extreme loneliness of their elite white beachside retreat in order to support her
As the Black "help" and the privileged white daughter, Mary and Wendy were not slated for
friendship. But years later, each divorced, each a single parent, and Mary now a rising officer in
corrections and Wendy a feminist health activist, they began to walk the beach together after
dark, talking about their children and their work, and a friendship began to grow.
Based on decades' worth of visits, phone calls, letters, and texts between Mary and Wendy,
"These Walls Between Us: A Memoir of Friendship Across Race and Class" chronicles the two
women's friendship, with a focus on what Wendy characterizes as her "oft-stumbling efforts, as a
white woman, to see Mary more fully and to become a more dependable friend."
The memoir examines obstacles created by Wendy's upbringing in a narrow, white, upper-class
world; reveals realities of domestic service rarely acknowledged by white employers; and draws
on classic works by the African American writers whose work informed and challenged Wendy
along the way.
Though Wendy is the work's primary author, Mary read and commented on every draft -- and
together, the two friends hope their story will incite and support white readers to become more
informed and accountable friends across the racial divides created by white supremacy and to
become active in the ongoing movement for racial justice.
Critique: A treasured contribution to the growing numbers of African-American biographies, and
a timely, valued, and recommended addition to community, college, and university Race
Relations and Contemporary American Biography & Memoir collections, it should be noted for
personal reading lists that "These Walls Between Us: A Memoir of Friendship Across Race and
Class" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $8.99).
Editorial Note: Wendy Sanford grew up in an upper-middle-class white suburban family in
Princeton, New Jersey, and attended private schools throughout her life. During the socially
turbulent time of the 1970s, she became a feminist, a lesbian, and a Quaker. A founding member
of the Boston Women's Health Book Collective, Wendy coauthored and edited many versions of
the women's health and sexuality classic Our Bodies, Ourselves from 1973 to 2011. In seminary
at Harvard Divinity School in the '80s, she began to read works of women of color as "devotional
reading," to remedy her previous exclusive exposure to white and mostly male authors. She
served for nearly a decade in campus ministry in the Boston area. In her fifties, she began reckon
with her own white skin and the benefits that came to her through being white. In 2003, she
earned an MFA in Writing from Vermont College. She is grateful to Mary Norman for partnering
with her to create this book.
The Christian Studies Shelf
Saint Isaac the Syrian and His Spiritual Legacy
Metropolitan Hilarion Alfeyev
9780881415261, $30.00 pbk / $14.99 Kindle
Synopsis: St Isaac the Syrian, also known as St Isaac of Nineveh, was a Christian hermit of the
seventh century, living in present-day Iraq. His writings are so widely revered that he is venerated
as a saint by both the Oriental and Eastern Orthodox Churches. While his writings and influence
are universally acclaimed by Christian theologians today, precious little has been written in
English about this towering figure of the Syrian Christian tradition. Gathering together many of
the world's authoritative voices on St Isaac (including Sebastian Brock and Metropolitan Hilarion
Alfeyev), this volume represents the papers delivered at the inaugural International Patristics
Conference held in Moscow, 2013.
Critique: St Isaac the Syrian, also known as St Isaac of Nineveh (613-700) was a Christian hermit
and theologian who lived in what is present-day Iraq. Well-known for his written works on
Christian asceticism - choosing to live in abstinence of physical pleasures, in pursuit of spiritual
goals, St Isaac has influenced centuries of philosophy and tradition. St Isaac the Syrian and His
Spiritual Legacy gathers the papers presented by a diverse assortment of authors and delivered at
the International Patristics Conference situated in Moscow, 2013. Individual writings examining
St Isaac's works include "The Arabic Version of Saint Isaac the Syrian", "Angelology of St Isaac
the Syrian", "The Ritual of Tears in Isaac of Nineveh", "Isaac of Nineveh and Dostoyevsky's
Work", and much more. St Isaac the Syrian and His Spiritual Legacy is a "must-have" for
Christian church libraries and theology collections, highly recommended. It should be noted for
personal reading lists that St Isaac the Syrian and His Spiritual Legacy is also available in a
Kindle edition ($14.99).
Editorial Note: Metropolitan Hilarion (Alfeyev), Chairman of the Moscow Patriarchate
Department for External Church Relations, is well known throughout the Orthodox Church as a
leading theologian, writer, and musical composer. He holds a doctorate in Philosophy from
Oxford University and a doctorate in theology from St Sergius Orthodox Theological Institute in
Enjoying the Old Testament
Eric A. Seibert
c/o InterVarsity Press
PO Box 1400, Downers Grove, IL 60515-1426
9781514001202, $26.00, PB, 248pp
Synopsis: Christians know they are supposed to read the Old Testament. Yet many struggle to do
so. They often find it confusing, theologically troubling, or just uninteresting. Professor Eric
Seibert understands this dilemma and, with the publication of "Enjoying the Old Testament: A
Creative Guide to Encountering Scripture" provides a solution. His goal is to help people learn to
love the Old Testament and actually want to read it.
Professor Seibert demonstrates how this part of the Bible is extremely valuable for Christians and
offers dozens of practical suggestions and creative activities for hands-on interaction with the
biblical text. Equipped with a variety of tools and approaches, readers discover how even the
most seemingly dry passages can come to life.
With "Enjoying the Old Testament", readers of all ages will be inspired to pick up the Old
Testament over and over again.
Critique: An ideal choice for individual, small group, or Sunday School classroom Old
Testament studies, "Enjoying the Old Testament: A Creative Guide to Encountering Scripture"
by Professor Eric A. Seibert is strongly commended as an addition to personal, church, seminary,
community, college, and academic library Biblical Studies collections and supplemental
curriculum reading lists. It should be noted for students, academia, clergy, seminary students, and
non-specialist general readers throughout the Christian community that "Eric A. Seibert (PhD,
Drew University) is a professor of Old Testament and has served as the president of the Eastern
Great Lakes Biblical Society. His most recent books are The Violence of Scripture: Overcoming
the Old Testament's Troubling Legacy and Disarming the Church: Why Christians Must Forsake
Violence to Follow Jesus and Change the World" is also readily available in a digital book
format (Kindle, $24.70).
Editorial Note: Eric A. Seibert (PhD, Drew University) is a professor of Old Testament and has
served as the president of the Eastern Great Lakes Biblical Society. His most recent books are
The Violence of Scripture: Overcoming the Old Testament's Troubling Legacy and Disarming
the Church: Why Christians Must Forsake Violence to Follow Jesus and Change the World.
Christopher T. Baglow
Ave Maria Press
PO Box 428, Notre Dame, IN 46556
9781646801077, $14.95, PB, 160pp
Synopsis: Was creation a fantastic series of actions by God that long ago set the universe in
motion? Or is creation an eternal flowing forth from God that even now causes all things to
With the publication of "Creation: A Catholic's Guide to God and the Universe", Christopher
Baglow writes from within the deep well of Catholic tradition and his personal love of both
science and faith to provide probing yet lively and often-humorous answers to the foundational
questions of human existence.
Christian doctrine sees creation not as a one-time event but rather as an eternal outpouring of
divine merciful love. In the pages of "Creation: A Catholic's Guide to God and the Universe",
Baglow explores how the doctrine of creation addresses the why of the universe, making it
perfectly open to science, which helps us to answer how the universe came to be and continues to
Baglow also deftly weaves together the lessons of scripture, the Church's long tradition of
scientific inquiry and theological development, and cultural icons such as Douglas Adams's The
Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy and the inhabitants of C. S. Lewis's Narnia series to create a
concise and spirited guide for Catholics wanting to better understand the doctrine of creation
without abandoning what science teaches us.
"Creation: A Catholic's Guide to God and the Universe" also helps to neutralize the unnecessary
conflict between faith and science that often runs rampant among people of faith. It provides an
excellent guide for curious Catholics, and an expert resource for teachers in Catholic schools,
parish leaders, campus ministers, and RCIA teams, helping those exploring foundational
questions of faith dive into the meaning of creation and what it tells us about who God is, who
we are, and how we are to live.
Critique: Within the framework and context of Roman Catholic Theology, and also readily
available for personal reading lists of clergy, seminary students, and non-specialist general
readers throughout the Christian community in a digital book format (Kindle, $11.49), "Creation:
A Catholic's Guide to God and the Universe" is especially and unreservedly recommended for
community, seminary, college, and university library Creationism, Science & Religion
Editorial Note: Christopher T. Baglow is the director of the Science and Religion Initiative in the
McGrath Institute for Church Life at the University of Notre Dame, where he also serves as a
professor in the theology department. He is the author of the textbook Faith, Science, & Reason,
and his work has been featured by the Word on Fire Institute and in That Man is You, Crux, and
Church Life Journal. He is also a consultant for the USCCB Committee on Catechesis and
Evangelization and his thirty-year career in Catholic education has spanned high school,
undergraduate, graduate and seminary teaching.
On Retreat with Henri Nouwen
Chris Pritchett, author
Marjorie J. Thompson, author
1 Montauk Ave #200, New London, CT 06320
9781627856140, $19.95, PB, 176pp
Synopsis: The late Henri Jozef Machiel Nouwen (January 24, 1932 - September 21, 1996) was a
Dutch Catholic priest, professor, writer and theologian. His interests were rooted primarily in
psychology, pastoral ministry, spirituality, social justice and community. Over the course of his
life, Nouwen was heavily influenced by the work of Anton Boisen, Thomas Merton, Rembrandt,
Vincent van Gogh, and Jean Vanier.
After nearly two decades of teaching at academic institutions including the University of Notre
Dame, Yale Divinity School and Harvard Divinity School, Nouwen went on to work with
individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities at the L'Arche Daybreak community
in Richmond Hill, Ontario.
With the publication of "On Retreat with Henri Nouwen: Engaging Life's Big Questions" by the
team of Chris Pritchett and Marjorie J. Thompson, a Christian readership is treated to a unique
retreat experience encourages them to profoundly reflect on five essential, timeless, and
In the pages of "On Retreat with Henri Nouwen: Engaging Life's Big Questions" will be found
connections to contemporary life, points for reflection, prayer-pauses for contemplation, and
prompts for engaging in a personalspiritual quest -- whatever shape that quest may take.
Among the extensive writings that have made Henri Nouwen a treasured spiritual guide for
years, "On Retreat with Henri Nouwen: Engaging Life's Big Questions" is one of the most timely
and compelling books for today's believers and seekers alike.
Critique: Thoughtful and thought-provoking, informative and insightful, inspired and inspiring,
"On Retreat with Henri Nouwen: Engaging Life's Big Questions" is an extraordinary and
unreservedly recommended for church, seminary, community, seminary, college, and university
library Philosophy & Religious Studies collections. It should be noted for the personal reading
lists of clergy, seminary students, academia, and non-specialist general readers throughout the
Christian community who have an interest in spirituality and personal growth that "On Retreat
with Henri Nouwen: Engaging Life's Big Questions" is also readily available in a digital book
format (Kindle, $18.99).
Editorial Note: Dr. Chris Pritchett serves as Senior Pastor of Mount Olympus Presbyterian
Church in Salt Lake City, Utah, and as a member of the Board of Directors for the Henri Nouwen
Society. Marjorie J. Thompson is an author and spiritual director, and a member of the Board of
Directors for the Henri Nouwen Society.
You're Only Human
Kelly M. Kapic
c/o Baker Publishing Group
6030 East Fulton, Ada, MI 49301
9781587435102, $24.99, HC, 272pp
Synopsis: Work. Family. Church. Exercise. Sleep. The list of demands on our time seems to be
never ending. It can leave you feeling a little guilty -- like you should always be doing one more
Rather than sharing better time-management tips to squeeze more hours out of the day,
theologian and academician Kelly Kapic takes a different approach with the publication of
"You're Only Human: How Your Limits Reflect God's Design and Why That's Good News".
Professor Kapic offers a better way to make peace with the fact that God didn't create us to do it
Professor Kapic explores the theology behind seeing our human limitations as a gift rather than a
deficiency. He lays out a path to holistic living with healthy self-understanding, life-giving
relationships, and meaningful contributions to the world. He frees us from confusing our
limitations with sin and instead invites us to rest in the joy and relief of knowing that God can
use our limitations to foster freedom, joy, growth, and community.
Readers will emerge better equipped to cultivate a life that fosters gratitude, rest, and faithful
service to God.
Critique: An inherently fascinating, impressively informative, life changing, and spirituality
enhancing read throughout, "You're Only Human: How Your Limits Reflect God's Design and
Why That's Good News" will have a particular appeal for academicians, clergy, seminary
students, and non-specialist general readers with an interest in Christian Spiritual Growth
Christian Theological Anthropology. While highly recommended for community, church,
seminary, college, and university library Contemporary Christian Studies collections, it should be
noted for personal reading lists that "You're Only Human" is readily available in a digital book
format (Kindle, $17.99).
Editorial Note: Kelly M. Kapic (PhD, King's College, University of London) is a professor of
theological studies at Covenant College in Lookout Mountain, Georgia, where he has taught for
twenty years. He is an award-winning author or editor of more than fifteen books, including
Embodied Hope: A Theological Meditation on Pain and Suffering, winner of a Christianity
Today Book Award. Kapic, a popular speaker, has been featured in Christianity Today and The
Gospel Coalition, has worked on research teams funded by the John Templeton Foundation, and
contributes to the Journal of Spiritual Formation and Soul Care and various other journals.
The Church and the Dark Ages (430-1027)
Phillip Campbell, author
Mike Aquilina, editor
Ave Maria Press
PO Box 428, Notre Dame, IN 46556
9781646800353, $17.95, PB, 192pp
Synopsis: It is a commonplace assumption that the fall of the Roman Empire only resulted in
those centuries of violence, ignorance, and barbarism in Europe referred to as The Dark Ages.
But that's not all that happened during that time! The period between the fall of the Roman
Empire and the High Middle Ages also was characterized by institutional, spiritual, and cultural
advancements such as the rise of monasticism with St. Benedict of Nursia and the first
encyclopedia by a Christian writer, St. Isidore of Seville.
In "The Church and the Dark Ages (430-1027): St. Benedict, Charlemagne, and the Rise of
Christendom", author Phillip Campbell explains that the Dark Ages were not only a period of
great political and cultural transition but also an era of great transformation in the Catholic
Church. Campbell highlights key personalities of the Dark Ages such as St. Gregory the Great,
Charlemagne, King Alfred the Great, St. Patrick, and St. Brigid.
"The Church and the Dark Ages (430-1027)" reveals that: Benedictines were responsible for
technical and scientific advancements such as the mechanical clock, human flight, and
eyeglasses; The Dark Ages was a period of great evangelization throughout Europe; Christianity
elevated the status of women, particularly through mutual consent in the Sacrament of Marriage;
The Church preserved literacy (and literature) throughout the chaotic centuries of early medieval
Critique: Informed and informative, exceptionally well written, organized and presented, "The
Church and the Dark Ages (430-1027): St. Benedict, Charlemagne, and the Rise of Christendom"
is an inherently fascinating and impressively enlightening history that brings a greater
understanding to what was happening in Europe upon the demise of the Roman Empire and the
emergence of the Roman Catholic church to religious dominance over its former territories.
While especially and unreservedly recommended for community, church, seminary, college, and
university library History of Christianity and Medieval Studies collections, it should be noted for
the personal reading lists of students, academia, seminary students, clergy, and non-specialist
general readers with an interest in the subject that "The Church and the Dark Ages (430 - 1027):
St. Benedict, Charlemagne, and the Rise of Christendom" is also readily available in a digital
book format (Kindle, $13.49).
Further Up and Further In
Edith M. Humphrey
575 Scarsdale Road, Yonkers, NY 10707
9780881415971, $28.00, PB, 301pp
Synopsis: Clive Staples Lewis (29 November 1898 - 22 November 1963) was a British writer
and lay theologian. He held academic positions in English literature at both Oxford University
(Magdalen College, 1925 - 1954) and Cambridge University (Magdalene College, 1954 - 1963).
He is best known for his works of fiction, especially The Screwtape Letters, The Chronicles of
Narnia, and The Space Trilogy, and for his non-fiction Christian apologetics, such as Mere
Christianity, Miracles, and The Problem of Pain. (Wikipedia)
Drawing on C. S. Lewis' broad corpus, both his beloved classics and his less well-known
writings, with the publication of "Further Up and Further In : Orthodox Conversations with C. S.
Lewis on Scripture and Theology", Edith M. Humphrey (who is the William F. Orr Professor of
New Testament at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary and the author of seven books on the Bible
and Orthodoxy) brings C. S. Lewis into conversation with Orthodox thinkers from the ancient
past down to the present day, on subjects as diverse and challenging as the nature of reality,
miracles, the ascetic life, the atonement, the last things, and the mystery of male and female.
Critique: Informatively insightful, thoughtful and thought-provoking, inspired and inspiring,
"Further Up and Further In : Orthodox Conversations with C. S. Lewis on Scripture and
Theology" is compelling and inherently fascinating reading throughout. While highly
recommended for community, church, seminary, college, and university library Religious
Literature and Christian Orthodoxy collections, it should be noted for the personal reading lists of
academia, seminary students, and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject
that "Further Up and Further In : Orthodox Conversations with C. S. Lewis on Scripture and
Theology" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $14.99).
Witness at the Cross
9781791021122, $17.99, PB, 176pp
Synopsis: With the publication of "Witness at the Cross" by Professor Amy-Jill Levine, Christian
(and Jewish) readers can experience Holy Friday from the perspective of those who watched
Jesus die: Mary his mother; the Beloved Disciple from the Gospel of John; Mary Magdalene and
the other women from Galilee; the two men, usually identified as thieves, crucified with Jesus;
the centurion and the soldiers; Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus. Jews and Romans, friends
and strangers, the powerful and the powerless, the hopeful and the despairing.
The story of Jesus's death is not something we just read: we think about it, and we experience it;
we hear the taunts of the soldiers, the priests, and the passersby even as we hear the famous
"seven last words" from the cross.
In the pages of "Witness at the Cross", Professor Levine shows how the people at the cross each
have distinct roles to play. Each Evangelist presents a distinct picture of the death of Jesus. Each
portrays different individuals and groups of people at the cross, each offers different images and
dialogues, and so from each, we learn how those meanings and messages cross the centuries to
any who would come to the cross today.
Each Gospel has its own story to tell, all the witnesses have their own memories, and every
reader comes away with a new insight. The witnesses at the Crucifixion watch Jesus die, and we
watch with them, and we watch them. And we come away transformed.
Critique: As informed and informative as it is thought-provoking and inspirational, "Witness at
the Cross" is especially recommended to the attention of clergy, seminary students, and non-
specialist general readers throughout the Christian community. While also available in a digital
book format (Kindle, $9.99), it should be noted that there are additional components available for
a six-week study including a DVD featuring Dr. Levine and a comprehensive "Witness at the
Cross Leader Guide" (9781791021146, $14.99 PB, $9.99 Kindle, 64pp).
Editorial Note: Amy-Jill Levine ("AJ") is the Rabbi Stanley M. Kessler Distinguished Professor
of New Testament and Jewish Studies at Hartford Seminary and University Professor of New
Testament and Jewish Studies Emerita, Mary Jane Werthan Professor of Jewish Studies Emerita,
and Professor of New Testament Studies Emerita at Vanderbilt University. Professor Levine is
also the author of numerous books including The Difficult Words of Jesus: A Beginner's Guide
to His Most Perplexing Teachings, Short Stories by Jesus: The Enigmatic Parables of a
Controversial Rabbi, Entering the Passion of Jesus: A Beginner's Guide to Holy Week, Light of
the World: A Beginner's Guide to Advent, and Sermon on the Mount: A Beginner's Guide to the
Kingdom of Heaven. She is also the coeditor of the Jewish Annotated New Testament. Of special
note is that Professor Levine is the first Jew to teach New Testament at Rome's Pontifical
Biblical Institute. In 2021 she was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
Professor Levine describes herself as an unorthodox member of an Orthodox synagogue and a
Yankee Jewish feminist who until 2021 taught New Testament in a Christian divinity school in
the buckle of the Bible Belt.
In All the Scriptures
Nicholas G. Piuotrowski
c/o InterVarsity Press
PO Box 1400, Downers Grove, IL 60515-1426
9781514002186, $32.00, PB, 304pp
Synopsis: Hermeneutics is the theory and methodology of interpretation, especially the
interpretation of biblical texts, wisdom literature, and philosophical texts. Hermeneutics is more
than interpretative principles or methods used when immediate comprehension fails and includes
the art of understanding and communication.
No one reads the Bible without some interpretive principles, or hermeneutics, in place. The
question every student of Scripture needs to ask, then, is this: Are your interpretive principles and
methods legitimate and ethical?
"In All the Scriptures: The Three Contexts of Biblical Hermeneutics" by Nicholas G. Piotrowski
is an accessible introduction to biblical hermeneutics, utilizing an approach that explores three
layers of context: literary, historical, and christological. Because no text exists in the abstract,
interpreters must seek to understand a passage's ecology: the flow and argument of the entire
biblical book, the world of the original author and audience, and the movement of redemptive
history that culminates in the person and work of Jesus Christ.
Piotrowski argues that careful interpretation is both a science and an art, as well as having
powerful implications for what we believe and how we apply God's Word. Featuring numerous
examples, further reading lists, and a glossary, "In All the Scriptures: The Three Contexts of
Biblical Hermeneutics" equips students, pastors, and thoughtful readers to build a solid
foundation for interpreting the Bible.
Critique: Impressively informative, exceptionally well written, organized and presented, "In All
the Scriptures: The Three Contexts of Biblical Hermeneutics" is an ideal and highly
recommended DIY instructional resource for both seminary students and non-specialist general
readers embarking upon a biblical studies program or curriculum. Also readily available in a
digital book format (Kindle, $23.99), "In All the Scriptures: The Three Contexts of Biblical
Hermeneutics" is a welcome and highly recommended addition to community, church, seminary,
college, and university library Biblical Studies, Exegesis & Hermeneutics collections and
supplemental curriculum studies textbook lists.
Editorial Note: Nicholas G. Piotrowski (PhD, Wheaton College) is the president and academic
dean at Indianapolis Theological Seminary in Indianapolis, Indiana, where he also teaches
hermeneutics and New Testament studies. Piotrowski is also the author of "Matthew's New
David at the End of Exile".
The Judaic Studies Shelf
Pondering The Past
Gefen Publishing House
c/o Storch 255 Central Ave #B-206, Lawrence, NY 11559
9789657023235, $14.95, PB, 193pp
Synopsis: "Pondering The Past. The Tragic Story of Lithuanian Jewry" by Dr. Meir Pinski
surveys the rich history of Lithuanian Jewry from the turn of the first millennium to its
devastating conclusion during the Second World War, when the Lithuanian Jewish communities
were totally wiped out by the Nazis and their collaborators.
The participation of many Lithuanians in the persecution of their local Jewish neighbors is a
topic that is hardly popular in the modern independent state of Lithuania. "Pondering the Past"
counters Lithuanian historians' attempt to justify the mass murder. Archival materials disprove
various false accusations and myths that the Lithuanians fabricated against the Jews.
Dr. Pinsk has traveled to Lithuania many times, both to the major cities and small towns. The
war monuments and killing pits serve as a constant reminder of the tragedy of the Jews on
Lithuanian soil. These emotional visits inspired him to reflect on the past and the present of
Lithuania, whose Jewish population today numbers merely four thousand individuals.
In the pages of "Pondering the Past" Dr. Pinsk surveys the enduring anti-Semitism of this country
and relates the story of several hundred brave Lithuanians who saved some Jews and describes
the new generation of Lithuanians.
Critique: An informed and informative history of the Jewish population, with a special emphasis
on the Lithuanian holocaust at the hands of non-Jewish Lithuanians and the lingering anti-
Semitism that continues to the present day, "Pondering The Past. The Tragic Story of Lithuanian
Jewry" is a highly recommended addition to personal, community, college, and university library
Jewish History & Holocaust collections. It should be noted for the reading lists of students,
academia, and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject that "Pondering The
Past. The Tragic Story of Lithuanian Jewry" is also readily available in a digital book format
Editorial Note: Dr. Meir Pinsk was born in Lithuania and at the age of six was deported to
Siberia for thirteen years with his family. In 1971, he earned his doctorate in physics at St.
Petersburg Pedagogical University. He worked in the Soviet Union as a researcher and lecturer in
higher education. In 1979, Dr. Pinsk made aliyah to Israel, where he worked as a researcher at the
Hebrew University of Jerusalem and later taught physics in high schools and colleges.
The Buddhist Studies Shelf
Zen Is Right Now
David Chadwick, editor
Shambhala Publications, Inc.
300 Massachusetts Avenue, Boston, MA 02115-4544
9781611809145, $14.95, HC, 160pp
Synopsis: Shunryu Suzuki (May 18, 1904 - December 4, 1971) was a Soto Zen monk and teacher
who helped popularize Zen Buddhism in the United States, and is renowned for founding the first
Zen Buddhist monastery outside Asia (Tassajara Zen Mountain Center). Suzuki founded San
Francisco Zen Center which, along with its affiliate temples, comprises one of the most
influential Zen organizations in the United States. A book of his teachings, "Zen Mind,
Beginner's Mind", is one of the most popular books on Zen and Buddhism in the West.
The teachings of Shunryu Suzuki have served for innumerable people as the gateway to Zen
practice and meditation. In "Zen Is Right Now: More Teaching Stories and Anecdotes of Shunryu
Suzuki", devoted student and biographer David Chadwick sheds new light on Suzuki's presence
and teachings through selected quotes from his lectures and a variety of stories told by his
"Zen Is Right Now" offers a joyful bounty of anecdotes and insights, revealing a playful and
deeply wise teacher who delighted in paradox and laughed often. Each of the stories and quotes
presented here is an example of the versatile and timeless quality evident in Suzuki's teaching,
showing that the potential for attaining enlightenment exists right now, in this very moment.
Critique: An extraordinary, thought-provoking and highly recommended addition to personal,
professional, community, college, and university library Zen Buddhism collections and
supplemental curriculum reading lists, "Zen Is Right Now: More Teaching Stories and Anecdotes
of Shunryu Suzuki" must be considered essential reading for all students and practitioners of Zen
Buddhism. It should be noted that "Zen Is Right Now: More Teaching Stories and Anecdotes of
Shunryu Suzuki" is also available for personal study in a digital book format (Kindle,
Editorial Note: David Chadwick began his Zen study under Shunryu Suzuki Roshi in 1966.
Ordained as a Zen priest in 1971, he later wrote Suzuki's biography, "Crooked Cucumber", as
well as "Thank You and OK!: An American Zen Failure in Japan". With a great deal of help,
Chadwick is poo-bah of Cuke Archives, preserving the legacy of Shunryu Suzuki and those
whose paths crossed his -- and anything else that comes to mind. He has two informative web
sites: www.cuke.com and www.shunryusuzuki.com.
The Islamic Studies Shelf
The Islamic Interfaith Initiative
John Andrew Morrow
Cambridge Scholars Publishing
9781527573314, $109.84, HC, 475pp
Synopsis: When ISIS emerged in Islamic communities in the last decade, God had already
prepared a "vaccine" against the contagion of extremism that created it: the re-discovery of the
Covenants of the Prophet Muhammad with the Peoples of the Book, which firmly place the
actions of groups like ISIS under the curse of God and His Prophet.
This was largely due to the exhaustive scholarship of Dr John Andrew Morrow, leading to the
publication in 2013 of "The Covenants of the Prophet Muhammad with the Christians of the
World". Not only was this a scholarly triumph, but it also inaugurated an international, interfaith
movement throughout the Muslim world known as the Covenants Initiative, which culminated in
the acquittal of the Christian woman Asia Bibi on charges of blasphemy by the Pakistani
Supreme Court in 2018. It is particularly notable that the book was quoted by the justices in their
"The Islamic Interfaith Initiative: No Fear Shall Be Upon Them" is volume of speeches, articles
and interviews that serves as a chronicle of the first, activist phase of the Covenants Initiative,
proving that socially committed scholarship is alive and well in the twenty-first century.
Critique: A particularly timely publication given the current and continued activities of such
Islamic terrorist organizations as ISIS, Boko Haram, the Taliban, and al-Qaeda, and other state
sponsored terrorist groups and offshoots operating in Lebanon, Syria, Afghanistan, and
elsewhere, "The Islamic Interfaith Initiative: No Fear Shall Be Upon Them" is an especially and
unreservedly recommended addition to personal, professional, community, governmental,
college, and university library Islamic culture, 20th & 21st Century Islamic History,
Contemporary Islamic Political Science, and Anti-Islamic Terrorism collections and
supplemental curriculum studies lists.
Editorial Note: John Andrew Morrow received his Doctor of Philosophy degree from the
University of Toronto. An academic, author, educator, and administrator, as well as an
international activist and global lecturer, his works include The Messenger of Mercy, Shi'ism in
the Maghrib and al-Andalus, Finding W.D. Fard, The Most Controversial Qur'anic Verse, Islam
and the People of the Book, Restoring the Balance, The Covenants of the Prophet Muhammad
with the Christians of the World, Religion and Revolution, and the Encyclopedia of Islamic
Herbal Medicine, among many others.
The Religion/Spirituality Shelf
Peaceful Heart, Warrior Spirit
New World Library
14 Pamaron Way, Novato CA 04040
Peaceful Heart, Warrior Spirit: The True Story of My Spiritual Quest provides a memoir about
the author's spiritual awakening and follows his passage from questioning youth to adulthood.
During the course of this journey, he captures a way of living that embraces peace and strength
alike, discussing the impact of mentors who inspired not only a different approach to spirituality
that resulted in his best-selling Way of the Peaceful Warrior, but the circumstances that led to his
attraction to and influence by each type of mentor. The result is a vivid study in growth that will
especially be appreciated by prior Millman readers, but also by any on the road to spiritual
discovery and self-improvement.
The General Fiction Shelf
The 31 Near-Death Experiences of Jenny Black
9781734519747, $16.95 Print; $7.99 eBook
Loretta Sparkman is becoming a zombie in The 31 Near-Death Experiences of Jenny Black. It's
not the brain-eating specter of horror novels; but rather, Loretta reflects that "I'm certainly not
hungry for brains. And it's not that my ability to think and be smart and read and talk and love
and so on is gone. It's just, I'm no longer sure who's doing that stuff anymore. Like, there's no 'I'
inside me." Matthias, her husband, responds with questions about the specific way in which
Loretta is fading from life and emotional connections.
As the story evolves, so do ethical considerations that move from the introductory description of
Loretta's changing state of mind to events that provoke medical conundrums and social
F.E. Shearer's story is compelling on several levels. First, it excels in character descriptions that
capture underlying emotions and reactions in a succinct, hard-hitting manner: "Loretta sees in the
slump of his shoulders - pushed down now by the weight of a decades-old scream - a man
determined to do good in the world."
As Loretta moves from increasingly reactive, zombie-like response to life to embracing a host of
new challenges, she becomes involved in a case of misplaced sperm (a PR nightmare for the
university where she works) and simultaneously, her childhood friend Jenny's near-death
occurrences. Each holds special challenges to her and her work for the university, forcing Loretta
to re-engage with life in a different manner than she chose in the past. Her friend, world traveler
Jenny, is on the cusp of a new experience for 2020. And it doesn't involve predictable change,
either for her or for Loretta. Jenny has had twenty-two near death experiences, which medicine
has yet to explain. Her ability to draw Loretta into a strange new world of possibilities embraces
many evolving issues that change both their lives.
Readers won't anticipate the concurrent development of issues related to medical research,
including bias in mental illness diagnoses, treatment, and progression; scientific racism; and the
cosmological limitations of cultural analysis.
As consciousness, neuroscience research into the nature of reality, and spiritual and philosophical
elements are brought into play, Loretta and Jenny find their connections changing on more than
one level. Readers will find in The 31 Near-Death Experiences of Jenny Black a story that
evolves on many thought-provoking levels. Those who anticipated a zombie horror scenario from
the book's opening introduction will instead find a delightfully unexpected series of inspections
into social and medical communities that comes full circle in a surprising way.
Collections strong in stories about social and medical issues will find The 31 Near-Death
Experiences of Jenny Black riveting reading that considers self, ego, and how near-death
experiences lead to revisions of life, death, and what lies between them.
The Blue Moth Motel
9781550819113, $21.95, PB, 224pp
Synopsis: Ingrid and Norah have an unconventional upbringing -- growing up in a motel, raised
by their mother and her female partner. The girls' grandmother, Ada, who owns the Blue Moth
motel, has always kept them at a distance. But when she buys a piano for the motel, that all
Years later in England, training to be a soloist, Ingrid loses her voice and must decide what to do.
She hears from Norah, who's reviving a party that began during their childhood to celebrate the
arrival of mysterious and elusive blue moths.
Critique: A deftly crafted novel by an author with a genuine flair for originality and the kind of
narrative driven storytelling that holds the reader's fully entertained attention from beginning to
end, "The Blue Moth Motel" by Olivia Robinson is framed against a background of family
dynamics, grief, and the concept of home. While highly recommended for community library
Contemporary General Fiction collections, it should be noted for the personal reading lists of
those with a special interest in novels featuring LGBTQ family life that "The Blue Moth Motel"
is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $5.39).
The World Played Chess
Lake Union Publishing
9781542029377, $24.95, HC, 400pp
Synopsis: In 1979, Vincent Bianco has just graduated high school. His only desire: collect a little
beer money and enjoy his final summer before college. So he lands a job as a laborer on a
construction crew. Working alongside two Vietnam vets, one suffering from PTSD, Vincent gets
the education of a lifetime. Now forty years later, with his own son leaving for college, the
lessons of that summer (which was Vincent's last taste of innocence and first taste of real life)
dramatically unfolds in an original story about breaking away, shaping a life, and seeking one's
Critique: Deftly combining elements of friendship, the trauma of war with what is basically a
coming of age novel, "The World Played Chess" By Robert Dugoni is an inherently engaging,
impressively entertaining, thoughtful and thought-provoking read. While very strongly
recommended for community library General Fiction collections, it should be noted for personal
reading lists that "The World Played Chess" is also available in a paperback edition
(9781542029391, $15.95), in a digital book format (Kindle, $5.99), and as a complete and
unabridged audio book (Brilliance Audio, 9781713601999, $24.99, MP3-CD).
Addison & Highsmith
c/o Histria Books
9780980116434, $29.99, HC, 220pp
Synopsis: Eighteen-year-old Dakota Buchannan is determined not to be the messed-up, orphaned
teenager with an over the top imagination the media describes her as.
After her father's accidental death at Jennings oil refinery, she finds out that she has a much older
half-brother and moves to Houston, Texas, to live with him and his young daughter, Savannah. It
doesn't take long for Dakota to settle in and capture the heart of a young man. Life seems to be
going quasi-normal until CEO Jake Jennings breaks into Dakota's home to confront her. In his
narcotized state, he assaults her while incoherently apologizing for something his late father did,
of which she has no recollection.
She eventually escapes, and Jake is charged. Released on bail, he returns to his penthouse, and
Dakota's boyfriend takes her away for the weekend to clear her mind, but on their return, the
front page of the local newspaper confirms 'Jake Jennings plummets to his death.' Dakota's half
relieved the man is dead, but the other half replays in her mind what he was trying to tell her that
terrifying night and whether or not he actually killed himself or did someone push him off his
Feisty and determined, Dakota never loses sight of hope or the importance of family and
friendships. She navigates her new life with her moral compass -- reconciling the past and
seeking answers while discovering secrets and lies.
Critique: In a deftly crafted and original novel that blends romance with action/adventure,
"Dakota" by author Sarah Patt is a simply riveting read that will have special interest for women
readers. An inherently fascinating and entertaining read from first page to last, "Dakota" is an
especially and unreservedly recommended addition to personal reading lists and community
library General Fiction collections.
Coco at the Ritz
9781643138411, $25.95, HC, 304pp
Synopsis: Though her name is synonymous with elegance and chic, the iconic Coco Chanel had a
complicated dark side, and in late August 1944, as World War II drew to a close, she was
arrested and interrogated on charges of treason to France.
Many of the facts are lost to history, partly through Chanel's own obfuscation, but this much is
known: the charges grew out of her war-time romance with a German spy, and one morning two
soldiers from the French Forces of the Interior (the loose band of Resistance fighters, soldiers and
private citizens who took up arms in the wake of the Liberation of Paris) led Chanel from her
suite at the Ritz Hotel in Paris to an undisclosed location for questioning.
What transpired during her interrogation, who was present, and why she was set free when so
many other women who'd been involved with German men (willingly or otherwise) had their
heads shaved or were imprisoned, remains a mystery.
"Coco at the Ritz" is a brilliantly insightful and deftly crafted novel by Gioia Diliberto that
fictionally explores the motivations of this complex woman and portrays the gripping battle of
wits that could have been her interrogation. Was Chanel truly a collaborator?
By turns raw and vulnerable, steely and flawed, Chanel emerges from these pages as a woman
who owns her decisions, no matter the consequences. Although a fictional biography, "Coco at
the Ritz" is drawn from history and laced throughout with emotional truths. "Coco at the Ritz" is
ultimately a story about the choices one woman made when the stakes were the highest. In
today's world, it is also a cautionary tale about the necessity of standing against evil when it
stares you in the face.
Critique: An inherently fascinating, skillfully crafted, thought-provoking and entertaining read
from cover to cover, "Coco at the Ritz" is a very highly recommended novel for community
library General Fiction collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Coco at the
Ritz" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $16.99).
In Women We Trust
N. H. Sakhia
c/o Acrobat Publishing Group
9781735453507, $29.99, HC, 384pp
Synopsis: "In Women We Trust" by novelist N. H. Sakhia is an intense story of an uneven
conflict where Sardar Timur Barlas, an almighty, powerful and influential landlord in a remote
town in Pakistan goes against Zara Bibi & her husband Shams -- his lowly, poor and helpless
While trying to protect her master's interest, Zara Bibi opens up gates of hell for her only son Gul
when she discovered him holding Timur's young daughter Farah in an unholy embrace in the
presence of a crowd she had gathered.
Gul accidentally walks into undesired and untimely adolescence which his own mother turns into
a deadly mine field for him. All powerful Sardar Timur calls for a facade of a trial with
unspeakable consequences for the poor family. Mullah Aziz, the leader of the town's largest
mosque, renowned for his firebrand sermons and radical idealism, is called forth to gather a jury
of sorts, along with a morally conflicted journalist Turab to provide legal cover for Sardar
Timur's vigilante justice.
The predetermined sentence for Gul, regardless of his guilt or innocence, would deprive him of
the essence of a male child. Zara Bibi and her husband are offered a horrendous choice to present
their only daughter Noor to accept the grave punishment in place of her brother so he can remain
a whole man. The very men of the home Zara Bibi and Noor looked for their protection are
forced to ask that their women sacrifice themselves so their 'maleness' can be saved.
In this heart-wrenching account of hellish circumstance made all the more believable with the
discriminatory treatment of women in such fundamentalist Islamic nations as Afghanistan and
Saudi Arabia, "In Women We Trust" critiques the issues of patriarchy, misogyny, unequal
treatment, the mistreatment of women, debate about female empowerment perceived to have run
amok and a debased and regressive society-all with an insurmountable compassion for its people,
the culture, and an unrelenting hope for a just and better life.
Critique: Showcasing the evils of a religious back patriarchy and the assignment of females to be
little more than the property of males, "In Women We Trust" is a timely novel that although a
work of fiction is firmly grounded in the real world realities of so many Islamic (but not limited
just to Islamic nations) today. While highly recommended for community library Contemporary
General Fiction collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "In Women We
Trust' is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $0.99).
Editorial Note: Naim Haroon Sakhia is a California Attorney-at-Law with a long history of
successfully representing the client's interests under the law in various legal forums,
administrative agencies, and courts. He published multiple Urdu language short stories in the
early '90s in Pakistan's leading magazines, before moving to the USA. After a long hiatus from
writing, he penned his debut English novel 'In Women We Trust', which was inspired by real and
unfortunate events that keep occurring in the name of the informal and corrupt parallel justice
system, serving the whims and interests of the powerful at the expense of their dominated
subjects, in many places across the globe.
9781771964272, $16.95, PB, 280pp
Synopsis: Middle-aged, married, but living on his own, Prin has lost his way. Desperate for
money and purpose, he moves to small-town Indiana to work for an evangelical millionaire who's
building a theme park inspired by Dante's Inferno. He quickly becomes involved in the difficult
lives of his co-workers and in the wider struggles of their opioid-ravaged community while trying
to reconcile with his distant wife and distant God. Both projects spin out of control, and when a
Black teenager is killed, creationists, politicians and protesters alike descend. In the midst of this
American chaos, Prin risks everything to help the lost and angry souls around him while
searching for his own way home.
Critique: Showcasing the author's genuine flair for the kind of narrative storytelling style that is
as thought-provoking as it is intimate and entertaining, "Dante's Indiana" by author Randy
Boyagoda is especially and unreservedly recommended for community library Contemporary
General Fiction collections. It should be noted for the personal reading lists of those with a
special affinity for Christian Fiction & Satire that "Dante's Indiana" is also readily available in a
digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).
Editorial Note: Richard John Neuhaus (1936-2009) was one of the most influential figures in
American public life from the Civil Rights era to the War on Terror. His writing, activism, and
connections to people of power in religion, politics, and culture secured a place for himself and
his ideas at the center of recent American history.
Amir Tsarfati, author
Steve Yohn, author
c/o Harvest House Publishers
PO Box 41210, Eugene, OR 97404-0322
9780736985208, $15.99, PB, 368pp
Synopsis: Nir Tavor is an Israeli secret service operative turned talented Mossad agent. Nicole le
Roux is a model with a hidden skill. A terrorist attack brings them together, and then work forces
them apart -- until they're unexpectedly called back into each other's lives.
But there's no time for romance. As violent radicals threaten chaos across the Middle East, the
two must work together to stop these extremists, pooling Nicole's knack for technology and Nir's
adeptness with on-the-ground missions. Each heart-racing step of their operation gets them closer
to the truth and closer to danger.
The first book in the new 'Nir Tauda Mossad Thriller' series by authors Amir Tsarfati and Steve
Yohn, "Operation Koktan" draw on true events as well as tactical insights Amir learned from his
time in the Israeli Defense Forces.
Critique: For believers in God's life-changing promises, "Operation Joktan" is a deftly crafted,
action packed, suspense-filled, compulsive page-turner of a read the entertains as well as
illuminates the blessing Israel is to the world. Very highly recommended for community library
Contemporary General Fiction collections, "Operation Joktan" is also available in a digital book
format (Kindle, $9.99) and will be of special interest for readers who enjoy Christian Mystery,
Suspense, and Romantic Action/Adventure novels.
Editorial Note #1: Amir Tsarfati is a native Israeli and former major in the Israeli Defense
Forces. He is the founder and president of Behold Israel -- a nonprofit ministry that provides
Bible teaching through tours, conferences, and social media. It also provides unique access to
news and information about Israel from a biblical and prophetic standpoint.
Editorial Note #2: Steve Yohn is Senior Writer and Editor for Behold Israel. Previously, he
served as pastor of a church in Strasburg, Colorado, for ten years. He has co-authored four thriller
novels and has ghost-written five other works.
853 Broadway, New York, NY 10003
9781641291651, $27.00, HC, 384pp
Synopsis: Michael and Wendy Mixner are a Brooklyn-based couple whose marriage is failing in
the wake of a personal tragedy. Michael, a Wall Street trader, is meanwhile keeping a secret: he
lost the couple's life savings when a tanking economy caused a major market crash. And Wendy,
a digital marketing strategist, has been hired onto a data-mining project of epic scale, whose
mysterious creator has ambitions to solve a national crisis of mass unemployment and reshape
America's social and political landscapes. When Michael's best friend is murdered, the evidence
leads back to Wendy's client, setting off a dangerous chain of events that will profoundly change
the couple -- and the country.
Critique: Set in an economic dystopia that's the last two decades have made frighteningly
plausible, "Sensation Machines" by novelist Adam Wison involves such timely and continuingly
relevant issues as unrestrained greed, automation, universal basic income, wearable tech,
revolutionary desires, and a broken justice system. What may turn out to be a prophetic work of
fiction that accurately reflects real-world conditions, "Sensation Machines" is especially and
unreservedly recommended for community library Contemporary General Fiction collections. It
should be noted for the personal reading lists of those with an interest in novels about City Life,
Jewish Literature & Fiction, as well as Comedic Dramas & Plays, that "Sensation Machines" is
also readily available in a paperback edition (9781641292863, $17.00) and in a digital book
format (Kindle, $9.99).
Editorial Note: Adam Wilson is the author of the short story collection What's Important is
Feeling and the novel Flatscreen. His stories have appeared in The Paris Review, Tin House, and
The Best American Short Stories, among other publications, and Flatscreen (which was a
National Jewish Book Award finalist ) and an Indie Next Pick and was translated into German
and Italian. Wilson has taught in the creative writing programs at Columbia and NYU. Adam
maintains an informative website at www.adamwilsonwriter.com
A Cast of Falcons
1940 Lawrence Road, Havertown, PA 19083
9781636240886, $22.95, PB, 288pp
Synopsis: Lieutenant Devlin Collins, an Irish-American flier in the Royal Flying Corps who is
expecting to fly on the Western Front, instead finds himself flying antiquated two-seater bomber
and photo reconnaissance missions over the Egyptian desert against the forces of the Central
Powers which are trying to capture the Suez Canal.
Pitted against a German military air force which is up-to-date and well equipped, the men of the
RFC fight at a considerable disadvantage as they go forth to meet their enemy, but committed to
their cause and with aggressive spirit, no matter how great the stress of battle, they proceed and
prevail, continually forcing the Turks and Germans back as the army moves slowly toward
Constantly endangered by superior German machines, facing incessant ground fire during their
bombing and strafing attacks, Dev and his fellow pilot Crisp drive home their attacks with
unremitting determination. In the off hours from combat, Dev discovers that he has a particular
talent for planning his flight's air raids. This talent manifests itself completely in the campaign's
culminating attack on the German redoubts at the battle of Magdhaba, an attack so successful
that when the pilots are finally pulled back for a rest after a year of fighting, Dev is promoted and
invited onto the staff at GHQ is order to apply his expertise to air planning as the army moves on
Gaza with the intention of driving into Palestine.
Critique: "A Cast Of Falcons" by novelist Phillip Parotti offers fast-paced, deftly crafted,
action/adventure in the World War I skies over the Sinai desert in 1916. Memorable characters
within a deftly described historical background, this is a riveting World War I air war military
novel that will be an enduringly appreciated and high value addition to community library
General Fiction collections in general, and Military Fiction reading lists in particular. It should be
noted for dedicated military history buffs that "A Cast Of Falcons" is also readily available in a
digital book format (Kindle, $11.49).
Editorial Note: Phillip Parotti graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1963, and served four
years at sea on destroyers, both in the Pacific and the Atlantic, before exchanging his regular
commission for a commission in the U.S. Naval Reserve. In addition to a number of short stories,
essays, and poems, Parotti has published three well received novels about The Trojan War.
The Historical Fiction Shelf
Saving Mrs. Roosevelt: WWII Heroines
Candice Sue Patterson
P.O. Box 719, 1810 Barbour Drive, Uhrichsville, OH 44683
9781636090894, $14.99, PB, 256pp
Synopsis: Shirley Davenport is as much a patriot as her four brothers. She, too, wants to aid her
country in the war efforts, but opportunities for women are limited. When her best friend Joan
informs her that the Coast Guard has opened a new branch for single women, they both enlist in
the SPARs, ready to help protect the home front.
Training is rigorous, and Shirley is disappointed that she and Joan are sent to separate training
camps. At the end of basic training, Captain Webber commends her efforts and commissions her
home to Maine under the ruse of a dishonorable discharge to help uncover a plot against the First
Shirley soon discovers nothing is as it seems. Who can she trust? Why do the people she loves
want to harm the First Lady? With the help of Captain Webber, it's a race against time to save
Mrs. Roosevelt and remain alive!
Critique: Deftly blending elements of history, romance and mystery, "Saving Mrs. Roosevelt" by
talented and original novelist Candice Sue Patterson is a inherently compelling and fully
entertaining read from first page to last. While certain to be an immediately welcome and
enduringly popular addition to community library General Fiction collections, it should be noted
for personal reading lists that "Saving Mrs. Roosevelt" is also readily available for personal
reading lists in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99) and as a complete and unabridged audio
book (Oasis Audio, 9781640917439, $39.99, CD). Librarians should also be aware that there is a
Library Binding edition available as well (Center Point Pub, 9781638081791, $37.95).
1940 Lawrence Road, Havertown, PA 19083
9781636240589, $22.95, PB, 288pp
Synopsis: In August 1990, some 30,000 Iraqi troops have invaded Kuwait and are in a position to
influence nearly half of the world's oil supply. The United Nations condemn the aggression but it
is clear that only military intervention is going to displace Saddam Hussein.
Captain Joseph 'Quarry' Samuels and the Marines of Scout Platoon, 2nd Battalion, 2nd Marine
Division are tasked with discovering the strength and deployment of Iraqi troops. Quarry and his
scouts are soon engaged in a game of cat and mouse with the 10,000-strong 108th Iraqi Armored
Division. Operating behind enemy lines, they put themselves squarely in danger's way in order to
collect the intelligence necessary to launch military operations.
When hostilities end, with the greatest one-sided military victory of all time, the Marines deserve
to be on their way home. However, Quarry remains in Kuwait to continue the deadly game with
an old nemesis, but this time with a new ally on his side.
Critique: A compulsively riveting novel of war and intrigue from cover to cover, "Marine
Scouts" by Chuck Johnston is the stuff of which block buster movies are made. With all manner
of unexpected plot twists and turns, "Marine Scouts" is a fully entertaining and highly
recommended addition to community library collections and also available for personal reading
lists in a digital book format (Kindle, $10.99).
Editorial Note: Chuck Johnston is a retired US Marine with 28 years of service. He currently
teaches in the Joint Military Intelligence Training Center for the Department of Defense.
There Was a Time
George H. Wittman
1940 Lawrence Road, Havertown, PA 19083
9781636240442, $24.95, PB, 312pp
Synopsis: It is the summer of 1945, the last and very dangerous days of World War II. The Office
of Strategic Services is in close, cooperative contact with Ho Chi Minh and the fighting cadre of
the Viet Minh, working against the Japanese. In the closing months of the war, the OSS
parachute a team of special operations soldiers into Tonkin, northern Viet Nam.
Led by Major John Guthrie and his second-in-command, Captain Edouard Parnell, both
experienced officers from their earlier assignments in occupied France and Belgium, the team is
tasked with working with Ho Chi Minh against the Japanese in the midst of various groups vying
for control of Indochina. Guthrie and his team have to adapt to the entirely different context of
Vietnamese politics in order to encourage communist operations against the Japanese. Guthrie in
particular, struggles with both his personal and professional conflicts. The relationship that
Guthrie and the rest of the OSS team develops with the Viet Minh leadership is of distinct
annoyance to French ambitions to regain control of their colony, Indochina.
Based on the little-known true story of American and Viet Minh collaboration in 1945, "There
Was A Time" is a novel that challenges the later-accepted dogma of both those supporting and
those opposing the American role in the Viet Nam conflict. This novel notes how what is seen at
a later time is often inadequate to understand what actually went on. Its contemporary relevance
is simply a mirror of what is always the case in international affairs: today's enemies can and may
be tomorrow's friends - and most importantly, the reverse is true also.
Critique: A work of fiction by author George H. Wittman, and one that is based on obscure
historical facts with respect to American military involvement in the Vietnam War, "There Was
A Time" is a deftly written and inherently fascinating read from cover to cover. While very
highly recommended for community library Military Fiction collections, it should be noted for
personal reading lists that "There Was A Time" is also readily available in a digital book format
Editorial Note: George H. Wittman served in the US Army during and after the Korean War and,
in the following decades, he became intimately involved in national security, global intelligence
matters and international business. Along the way he managed businesses, founded public service
organizations, and now writes prolifically. He is a veteran of forty-five years of international
security operations and analysis.
The Literary Fiction Shelf
The Last Professional
Ed Davis, author
Colin Elgie, illustrator
9781951122256, $15.95, PB, 278pp
Synopsis: "The Last Professional" by Ed Davis is a story of America. Lynden Hoover, a young
man on the brink of a new beginning, cannot embrace it without confronting the traumas of his
past. Help comes from The Duke, an old loner who calls America's landscape his home. He
clings to an honor code, but in fleeing from Short Arm, his merciless enemy, his code is being
At the end of the 20th century few Knights of the Road still cling to their vanishing lifestyle. The
Duke mentors Lynden, enlisting old traveling friends to keep himself and his apprentice just
ahead of Short Arm's relentless pursuit. When two of those friends are murdered, the stakes
become life or death.
Bonds are formed, secrets exposed, sacrifices made, trusts betrayed - all against a breathtaking
American landscape of promise and peril. Three unforgettable characters, hurtling toward a
spellbinding climax where pasts and futures collide, and lives hang in the balance.
Critique: An innately fascinating and extraordinarily memorable read in the literary tradition of
Jack Kerouac, "The Last Professional" by novelist Ed Davis will prove to be a welcome and
enduringly appreciated addition to personal, community, college, and university library Literary
Fiction collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "The Last Professional" is
also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $2.99).
Editorial Note: Ed Davis began his writing career over forty years ago, pausing in boxcars, under
street lamps, and in hobo jungles to capture the beats and rhythms of the road as he caught freight
trains and vagabonded around the Pacific Northwest and Canada. "The Last Professional" began
in a boxcar. His short stories have appeared in numerous literary journals. He is also has a
novella, "In All Things", and a collection of travel pieces, "Road Stories". Ed's death row thriller,
"A Matter of Time", was written in real time, twenty-four hours, as the last day of the hero's life
Bread and Tea: The Story of a Man from Karak
Ahmad Tarawneh, author
Nesreen Akhtarkhavari, translator
Michigan State University Press
1405 South Harrison Road, Suite 25, East Lansing, MI 48823-5245
9781611862775, $24.95, PB, 224pp
Synopsis: Ably translated into English for an American readership by Nesreen Akhtarkhavari,
"Bread and Tea: The Story of a Man from Karak" is post - Arab Spring novel by author Ahmad
Tarawneh and tells the story of conflicting loyalties between two Jordanian brothers, one who
serves in the Jordanian national security division, and another who belongs to an extremist
militant Islamic group.
With boldness, clarity, and an insider's eye, Tarawneh addresses the root causes and
circumstances that lead a desperate young Jordanian to be recruited into a terrorist organization,
tempted by the lure of glory purported by a skillful, self-serving sheikh. "Bread and Tea: The
Story of a Man from Karak" also depicts the positive and negative forces that influence the two
brothers in their soul-searching quests for self-actualization that lead to more questions than
answers -- questions many Arab youth still ask today, while engulfed in their own raging
struggles over tradition, religion, modernity, and secularism.
With the publication of "Bread and Tea: The Story of a Man from Karak" interested readers will
find themselves on an intimate journey into the minds and hearts of the protagonists to witness
the tragedy and absurdity of this conflict and the magnitude of the human destruction it leaves
Critique: An extraordinary and deftly crafted work of contemporary Arabic literature from cover
to cover, "Bread and Tea: The Story of a Man from Karak" is an especially and unreservedly
recommended addition to community, college, and university library Literary Fiction collections.
It should be noted for the personal reading lists of students, academia, and the general public that
"Bread and Tea: The Story of a Man from Karak" is also readily available in a digital book
format (Kindle, $23.70).
Editorial Note: Ahmad Tarawne is a Jordanian novelist, playwright, and journalist. He served as
the vice chair of the Jordanian Writers Society Executive Board and won the Jordanian National
Award for his novel Wadi Al-Safsafa in 2009. Nesreen Akhtarkhavri is associate professor of
Arabic language and culture and the director of Arabic Studies at DePaul University where she
teaches Arabic literature, culture, film, media, and translation.
Mad Prairie: Stories and a Novella
University of Georgia Press
9780820360744, $19.95, PB, 176pp
Synopsis: A scary, funny, and slyly political short story collection by Kate McIntyre "Mad
Prairie" conjures a fever dream of contemporary Kansas. Boundaries between fantasy and reality
blur, and grotesque acts birth strange progeny.
A mother must choose between her children and her personal safety when her husband steadily
excavates a moat around their country home, his very own little border wall. A Kansas politician
grapples with international notoriety after an accident traps salt miners hundreds of feet
underground - in the same salt mine where his brother was murdered. A bigot's newly
transplanted liver gives him a taste for upbeat 1980s dance tracks while nudging him toward
Across several of the stories, we follow Miriam, a young overachiever hell-bent on leaving her
home state who is lured back after college to teach elementary school in a rural community. In
Culvert, Kansas, Miriam finds closed mouths and big secrets: the toxic waste storage for the
battery factory leaches into the soil; the hog farm waste lagoons have sprung leaks; and her
students, at turns psychic, lethargic, and aggressive, might not be human.
Critique: An inherently fascinating, fully engaging, often thought-provoking collection of short
stories by an author who is a master of the genre, "Mad Prairie" is a very special and
unreservedly recommended addition to personal, professional, community, college, and
university Contemporary American Literary Fiction collections and reading lists.
Editorial: An assistant professor of creative writing at Worcester Polytechnic Institute, the fiction
and essays by Kate McIntyre have appeared in such journals as Denver Quarterly, the Cincinnati
Review, Copper Nickel, and the Cimarron Review, and she is a recipient of residencies at
Hambidge, Playa, and the Spring Creek Project. Kate has a notable essay in Best American
Essays 2014 and Special Mentions in the 2016 and 2019 Pushcart Prize anthologies.
The Romantic Fiction Shelf
Angela Ruth Strong
2450 Oak Industrial Drive, NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49505
9780825447105, $15.99, PB, 272pp
Synopsis: In a world full of happily-ever-after love, Meri Newberg feels like the last young
woman on the planet to be single, at least in her Christian friend group. So when she's handed a
strange present at the latest wedding (a 1950s magazine article of "ways to get a husband") she
decides there's nothing to lose by trying out its advice. After all, she can't get any more single,
Her brother's roommate sees the whole thing as a great opportunity. Not to fall in love -- Kai
Kamaka has no interest in the effort a serious relationship takes. No, this is a career jump start.
He talks Meri into letting him film every silly husband-catching attempt for a new online show. If
it goes viral, his career as a cameraman will be made.
When Meri Me debuts, it's an instant hit. People love watching her lasso men on street corners,
drop handkerchiefs for unsuspecting potential beaus, and otherwise embarrass herself in pursuit
of true love. But the longer this game goes on, the less sure Kai is that he wants Meri to snag
anyone but him. The only problem is that he may not be the kind of husband material she's
Critique: A masterpiece of comic timing, unbeatable chemistry, and a zany but relatable cast of
characters, with the publication of "Husband Auditions" author Angela Ruth Strong has created a
heartfelt look at the reality of modern Christian dating that her readers will both resonate with
and fall for. A wholesome, engagingly entertaining, witty, deftly crafted, and truly memorable
read from cover to cover, "Husband Auditions" is an especially recommended addition to
community library collections. It should be noted for the personal reading lists of all dedicated
contemporary romance fans that "Husband Auditions" is also readily available in a digital book
format (Kindle, $11.99).
Editorial Note: Angela Ruth Strong is an expert on Write that Book, blogs on Inspyromance.com
and How to Write a Novel, and is the founder of IDAhope Writers. She is also the author of the
Resort to Love series and the CafFUNated mysteries. Angela maintains an informative and
interesting website at: www.angelaruthstrong.com
Tracie Peterson, author
Kimberley Woodhouse, author
Bethany House Publishers
c/o Baker Publishing Group
6030 East Fulton Road, Ada, MI 49301
9780764232527, $15.99, PB, 352pp
Synopsis: On the surface, Whitney Powell is happy working with her sled dogs and welcoming
the new additions to her family through her sisters' marriages and an upcoming birth. But her life
is full of complications, including an estranged father, that have her on the edge of losing control.
Growing up, she was the strong sister, and she can't give that up now.
When villagers in outlying areas come down with a horrible sickness, Dr. Peter Cameron turns to
Whitney and her dogs for help navigating the deep snow, and they become close while
ministering to the sick together. Peter has long recognized her finer qualities but is troubled by
the emotions and secrets she keeps buried within. He wants to help but wonders if she is more of
a risk than his heart can take.
As sickness spreads throughout Nome and another man courts Whitney, she and Peter will
discover that sometimes it is only in weakness that you can find strength.
Critique: A beautifully crafted novel in the Christian Historical Romance Fiction genre, "Ever
Constant" by the writing team of Tracie Peterson and Kimberley Woodhouse is as compelling a
read as it is engagingly entertaining from cover to cover. A welcome and unreservedly
recommended addition to community library Romance Fiction collections, it should be noted for
personal reading lists that "Ever Constant" is also readily available in a digital book format
A Winter's Wish For The Cornish Midwife
c/o Ulverscroft Large Print, Inc.
9781800489592, $31.30, HC, Large Print, 522pp
Synopsis: As winter descends on the coastal town of Port Agnes, midwife Toni Samuels' mood is
as dark as the winter clouds that roll in. Toni loves her job as a midwife, but her private life is
falling apart. Because Toni is keeping a secret - a relationship with fellow male midwife Bobby
that no one can ever know about.
Kind and gorgeous, Bobby is a huge hit at the midwifery centre, but he's tired of keeping his
feelings for Toni a secret - of always coming second best. He knows that Toni's past is painful,
but unless she can be open with her feelings for him, he's prepared to walk away from their
Can love find a way?
Toni loves Bobby and wishes things could be different between them. But torn between her past
and a future with him, everything seems hopeless. Until fate hands Toni one last chance. Now
Toni's secret wish is in her hands. If only she can be brave enough to take a chance and make her
dreams come true!
Critique: Of particular interest to fans of women's fiction and contemporary romance novels, this
large print edition of "A Winter's Wish for the Cornish Midwife" by English novelist Jo Bartlett
is certain to be an extraordinarily and enduringly popular addition to community library
Contemporary General Fiction & Romance collections. It should be noted for personal reading
lists that "A Winter's Wish for the Cornish Midwife" is also readily available from Boldwoods
Books in a large print paperback edition (9781800489615, $16.99, 312pp).
The Western Fiction Shelf
Showdown at Skull Canyon
Linford Western Library
c/o Ulverscroft Large Print, Inc.
9781785419638, $TBA, PB, Large Print, 288pp
Synopsis: There was a range war brewing: cattlemen against farmers, a familiar kind of trouble
compounded by attacks on the railroad that was being built. But when Texas Ranger Walt Slade
(who was also known by the name of El Halcon) rode into the town of Oresta (and into a hail of
bullets) he found things weren't that simple. He would put a stop to the range war, all right; but
then the outlaw who'd masterminded it and the attacks on the railroad struck again with dynamite
blasts! Slade knew he was up against a devilishly clever and ruthless enemy -- a killer who would
throw the whole border country into a bloodbath to carry out his plans.
Critique: "Showdown at Skull Canyon" by Bradford Scott is the latest in the western novelist's
series starring Texas Ranger Walt Slade and deftly blending mystery with gunplay. A riveting
read from cover to cover, this large print paperback edition from the Linford Western Library
will be a welcome and appreciated addition to community library Western Fiction collections in
general, and the personal reading lists of all dedicated western action/adventure fans in
The Lawless Border
Allan Vaughan Elston
Linford Western Library
c/o Ulverscroft Large Print, Inc.
9781785419522, $TBA, PB, Large Print, 384pp
Synopsis: It was just one year ago that the O'Hara brothers planned to buy themselves a ranch,
settle down, and raise some stock. But that was before Milton disappeared the night after he won
forty-four hundred dollars at a poker game. Certain that his brother was hijacked and murdered
for his winnings, Lynn vows to investigate. When he arrives in Tucson, there's one man left on
his list...and he finds himself face-to-face with the ugly muzzle of a six-gun!
Critique: First published in 1976, "The Lawless Border" is a fast paced action/adventure novel
with great gunplay against seemingly overwhelming odds. Combining elements of mystery,
romance, and as ruthless a gang of outlaws as ever roamed the west, this new large print
paperback edition of "The Lawless Border" by veteran western novelist Allan Vaughan Elston is
highly recommended for community library Western Fiction collections, and most especially the
personal reading lists of all dedicated western action/adventure fans.
Ulverscroft Large Print, Inc.
9781785419621, $TBA, PB, Large Print, 272pp
Synopsis: "Trigger Talk" features story of Misery Jones, a man trying to keep his faith in a harsh
land and who is unrecognized by his father and his brother after coming home from the Civil
War. It's a time when a notorious gunslinger like Curly Bill and his gang ruled the Cherrycows,
and the click of a revolver was the only law in all of Arizona. And wouldn't you know it but an
old and reformed (?) former Curly Bill associate, Short Beer Ballard, wants nothing more than to
help out Misery Jones -- even if Misery really and truly doesn't want him to.
Critique: Gunplay a plenty is deftly mixed with unexpected plot twists and a great deal of humor
in the pages of "Trigger Talk". The result is a western novel that is a pure and riveting
entertainment from first page to last. This new large print paperback edition of Clem Colt's
"Trigger Talk" (originally published in 1955) is very highly recommended for the personal
reading lists of dedicated western action/adventure fans and community library Western Fiction
The House Of Gold
Linford Western Library
c/o Ulverscroft Large Print, Inc.
9781785419683, $TBA, PB, Large Print, 536pp
Synopsis: Frederick Schiller Faust (May 29, 1892 - May 12, 1944) was an American author
known primarily for his Western stories using the pseudonym Max Brand -- which after his death
became a publishing house 'pen name' used by a number of other western novel authors.
"The House Of Gold" is a trio of tales by Faust under his Max Band pen name and features the
honest thief James Geraldi, who embarks upon three of his greatest adventures: #1 is a quest for
the elusive Golden Horus, a gold statue inlaid with four perfect emeralds and a large, flawless
yellow diamond. #2 is stealing a fortune in gold and jewels from the notorious Naylor outlaw
clan; #3 is surviving that same clan's quest for vengeance against Geraldi and his
Critique: Western action/adventure at its best, and whether the outlaw hero is seeking a treasure,
protecting an innocent girl, or handling other thieves who may not be quite so honest, the
character of James Geraldi remains a classic and unforgettable figure of Western Fiction by a
master of the genre. This large print paperback edition of "The House of Gold" is solid
entertainment from cover to cover and highly recommended for personal reading lists and
community library collections.
The Mystery/Suspense Shelf
Long Overdue at the Lakeside Library
Crooked Lane Books
2 Park Avenue, 10th floor, New York, NY 10016
9781643858906, $26.99, HC, 304pp
Synopsis: A glowing wood stove, a cozy log cabin, and shelves full of books are all Rain Wilmot
needs to ride out the Wisconsin winter, now that she's made her family's Lofty Pines library her
year-round home. But the warm-hearted librarian's blood runs cold when local man, Wallace
Benson, is found dead during the annual Ice Fishing Jamboree.
After Benson's body is found in his ice shanty, Rain recalls that she recently saw the victim in her
library, borrowing a few cookbooks to prepare for the fishing tournament's communal "chili
dump." She later finds these same books returned to the library's drop box, with an enigmatic
note from Benson to Rain.
As Rain seeks to understand the message, the prime suspect becomes Rain's friend Nick, who
was the last person to see Wallace alive and who returned to the Jamboree with a nasty cut on his
hand. The knife found in his tackle box only makes Nick's troubles worse. But Rain keeps fishing
for other suspects. Was the killer Danny, who lost his arm to a logging accident involving
Wallace? Or Danny's bitter father, whose dreams of retirement were dashed by his son's
With the help of her friends Julia and Jace, Rain sets out to hook the real culprit and clear Nick's
name. But can her sleuthing skills protect her from a killer who'd like to take her out of
Critique: As a writer of that subgenre of suspense thrillers known as Cozy Mysteries, "Long
Overdue at the Lakeside Library" by Holly Danvers is another of her deftly crafted and
thoroughly entertaining novels from one plot twist to another until the final reveal. While certain
to be an immediately welcome and enduringly popular addition to community library
Mystery/Suspense collections, it should be noted for the personal reading lists of all dedicated
cozy mystery fans that "Long Overdue at the Lakeside Library" is also readily available in a
digital book format (Kindle, $13.99) and as a complete and unabridged audio book (Dreamscape
Media, 9781666534061, $22.99, CD).
The Strange Case of the Dutch Painter
Seventh Street Books
221 River Street, 9th Floor, Hoboken, NJ 07030
9781645060420, $17.95, PB, 264pp
Synopsis: Paris, 1890. When Sherlock Holmes finds himself chasing an art dealer through the
streets of Paris, he's certain he's smoked out one of the principals of a cunning forgery ring
responsible for the theft of some of the Louvre's greatest masterpieces. But for once, Holmes is
He doesn't know that the dealer, Theo Van Gogh, is rushing to the side of his brother, who lies
dying of a gunshot wound in Auvers. He doesn't know that the dealer's brother is a penniless
misfit artist named Vincent, known to few and mourned by even fewer.
Officialdom pronounces the death a suicide, but a few minutes at the scene convinces Holmes it
was murder. And he's bulldog determined to discover why a penniless painter who harmed no
one had to be killed -- and who killed him. Who could profit from Vincent's death? How is the
murder entwined with his own forgery investigation?
Holmes must retrace the last months of Vincent's life, testing his mettle against men like the
brutal Paul Gauguin and the secretive Toulouse-Lautrec, all the while searching for the girl
Olympia, whom Vincent named with his dying breath. She can provide the truth, but can anyone
provide the proof?
From the madhouse of St. Remy to the rooftops of Paris, Holmes hunts a killer -- while the killer
Critique: A welcome addition to the growing library of Sherlock Holmes stories, "The Strange
Case of the Dutch Painter" by Timothy Miller does full justice to the exploits of that master
detective which was originally created by Sir Conan Doyle. A 'must read' selection for all
dedicated mystery buffs, as well as the legions of Sherlock Holmes fans, and also readily
available for personal reading lists in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99), this paperback
edition of "The Strange Case of the Dutch Painter" from Seventh Street Books is an especially
and unreservedly recommended for all community library Mystery/Suspense collections.
In My Dreams I Hold a Knife: A Novel
9781728229881, $26.99 hc / $8.57 Kindle
Synopsis: Ten years after graduation, Jessica Miller has planned her triumphant return to her
southern, elite Duquette University, down to the envious whispers that are sure to follow in her
wake. Everyone is going to see the girl she wants them to see - confident, beautiful, indifferent.
Not the girl she was when she left campus, back when Heather Shelby's murder fractured
everything, including the tight bond linking the six friends she'd been closest to since freshman
But not everyone is ready to move on. Not everyone left Duquette ten years ago, and not
everyone can let Heather's murder go unsolved. Someone is determined to trap the real killer, to
make the guilty pay. When the six friends are reunited, they will be forced to confront what
happened that night - and the years' worth of secrets each of them would do anything to keep
Critique: In My Dreams I Hold a Knife: A Novel is a tautly written work of suspense about six
friends who split apart in the wake of a horrific murder. Ten years later, the six are reunited, and
one of them is determined to make the guilty pay. Yet each of the six has their own dark secrets.
Will the innocent be forfeit alongside the guilty - or are any of the six truly "innocent" at all? In
My Dreams I Hold a Knife is a gripping page-turner that keeps the reader second-guessing all the
way to the end, highly recommended for public library collections and connoisseurs of
psychological suspense. It should be noted for personal reading lists that In My Dreams I Hold a
Knife is also available in a Kindle edition ($8.57).
John MacLachlan Gray
Douglas & McIntyre
c/o Harbour Publishing
9781771622776, $24.95, HC, 320pp
Synopsis: "Vile Spirits" is spellbinding sequel to author John MacLachlan Gray's riveting
mystery, "The White Angel" (9781771621465, $29.95 HC, $22.95 PB, $9.99 Kindle), that once
again captures the spirit of Vancouver in those gritty, gin-soaked days, as the city was remaking
itself between wars.
Alcohol is once again legal in Vancouver after the failed experiment of prohibition, but
pro-temperance sentiments remain strong. Politicians like Attorney General Gordon Cunning
attempt appeasement by establishing the Liquor Control Board, which oversees supply, from the
lofty circles of power down to bleak public drinking factories called "beer parlours."
But when Cunning is found deceased, an empty martini glass at his side, quickly followed by
Mrs. Harlan Crombie, the wife of a prominent bureaucrat, who falls dead after an afternoon book
club meeting, suspicions are raised. Is it pure coincidence that the deceased were both drinking
the same brand of "tonic"? Or is it a spillover from American prohibition, where deliberately
tainted booze is killing thousands?
Fans of "The White Angel" will be delighted by the return of straight-shooting constable Calvin
Hook, frustrated poet-cum-reporter Ed McCurdy and unpredictable, eavesdropping telephone
operator Mildred Wickstram, as they pool their skills in order to get to the truth.
The result is a clash between temperance activists, the Ku Klux Klan, the Liquor Control Board
and global events on the mean streets of Vancouver -- a rough little city on the edge of
Critique: A riveting thriller of a read from first page to last, "Vile Spirits" once again showcases
author John MacLachlan Gray's genuine flair as a novelist for the kind of narrative storytelling
style that hooks the reader total and fascinated attention. While highly recommended for
community library Mystery/Suspense collections, it should be noted for the personal reading lists
of fans for such films and TV series as 'The Untouchables', Gray's "Vile Spirits" is also readily
available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).
1620 Main Street, Suite 11, Sarasota, FL 34236
9781608093458, $26.95, HC, 336pp
Synopsis: When PI and ex-con, Colleen Hayes, learns that a local neo-Nazi group is talking
about shooting the mayor, she thinks it's just another rumor -- until her source, a humble street
newspaper vendor, winds up in SF General, beaten to a pulp.
To add to her grief, she discovers that her runaway daughter, Pamela, might have joined a
shadowy religious group, building a church in South America near a volcano that is about to
erupt. Death is the path to perfection according to the charismatic young preacher -- and the date
is fast approaching.
Colleen is desperate to find a way to stop her daughter from making the ultimate mistake before
she (along with hundreds of others) lose their lives.
Critique: The stuff of which blockbuster movies are made, "Bad Scene" is a riveting read from
cover to cover that showcases novelist Max Tomilinson's impressively imaginative storytelling
talents for the genre of noir style mystery/suspense thrillers. The third in the author's 'Colleen
Hayes Mystery Series', "Bad Scene" will prove to be an immediately welcome and enduringly
popular addition to community library Mystery/Suspense collections. It should be noted for the
personal reading lists of Max Tomilinson fans that "Bad Scene" is also readily available in a
paperback edition (9781608095001, $16.00) and in a digital book format (Kindle, $1.99).
As Time Unfolds
Morgan James Publishing
11815 Fountain Way, Suite 300, Newport News, VA 23606-4448
9781631957420, $18.95, PB, 294pp
Synopsis: Advertising agency owner, Bethany Miller, inherits an ancestral home from the
biological mother she never knew. Inside a grandfather clock named The Timekeeper, she
discovers a treasured family journal. Generations of first daughters each wrote one entry, sharing
family secrets, chronicling courageous acts, the freeing power of forgiveness and more.
Reading the women's stories and timeless wisdom, Bethany begins to reassess her busy life and
contemplates taking a chance on romance, but she can't forget an alarming encounter with a girl's
soul-piercing eyes. They shot her a dire warning -- right before she disappeared. Those eyes
cause Bethany's past, present and future to collide.
Is history right on time to save a girl's life?
Critique: A deftly crafted combination of Christian Mystery & Suspense Romance, "As Time
Unfolds" by novelist Barbara Zerfoss is a special kind of family saga style historical fiction -- and
one that is as inherently fascinating as it is enduringly entertaining from cover to cover. While
very highly recommended, especially for community library collections, it should be noted for
personal reading lists that "As Time Unfolds" is also readily available in a digital book format
J. L. Doucette
She Writes Press
9781647422196, $16.95, PB, 304pp
Synopsis: In the pages of author J. L. Doucette's new novel, "Unknown Assailant", Dr. Pepper
Hunt and Detective Beau Antelope team up again to investigate a tragic murder/suicide in a
prominent ranch family in the small town of Farson, Wyoming. As they explore events leading
up to the night of the disturbing crime they are drawn into the dark heart of a troubled family
touched by a legacy of trauma.
Critique: A deftly crafted psychological suspense thriller of a mystery, "Unknown Assailant" is
the third title in novelist J. L. Doucette's 'Dr. Pepper Hunt Mystery series and will send satisfied
readers looking for "Last Seen" and "On A Quiet Street" -- the first two titles in this outstanding
series. A ripping great read for all dedicated mystery buffs, "Unknown Assailant" is a strongly
recommended addition to community library Mystery/Suspense collections and readily available
for personal reading lists in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.49).
The Wilkes Insurrection
Greenleaf Book Group Press
PO Box 91869, Austin, TX 78709
9781626348882, $24.95, HC, 360pp
Synopsis: Just outside Omaha, Nebraska, the relative calm at Offutt Air Force Base is suddenly
shattered when commercial Flight 209 crashes down onto its runway. From the flaming
wreckage, Major Tamika Smith must try to rescue survivors and make sense of the tragedy. But
this was no accident. In a time of national unrest and division, a shadowy mastermind is tearing
down the United States from the inside out, moving pawns in an orchestrated plan and playing
law enforcement like puppets. The deadly attacks continue and authorities have no leads. Barely
any clues. Trails that start hot suddenly go cold. With thousands dying and the strikes becoming
increasingly personal, Major Tamika Smith must answer a fundamental question: How far would
you go to save what you love?
Critique: With a skillfully written and original plot that could well have been drawn from today's
contemporary extremist politics and conspiracy theories, "The Wilkes Insurrection" by Robbie
Bach is a compelling read that deftly combines action/adventure with unexpected plot twists and
memorable characters. While also readily available for the personal reading lists of suspenseful
thriller fans in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99), "The Wilkes Insurrection" is especially and
unreservedly recommended as an immediate and enduringly popular addition to community
library Mystery/Suspense collections.
c/o Simon & Schuster
1230 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10020
9781982187453, $27.99, HC, 432pp
Synopsis: The Fairway Players, a local theatre group, is in the midst of rehearsals when tragedy
strikes the family of director Martin Hayward and his wife Helen, the play's star. Their young
granddaughter has been diagnosed with a rare form of cancer, and with an experimental
treatment costing a tremendous sum, their fellow cast mates rally to raise the money to give her a
chance at survival.
But not everybody is convinced of the experimental treatment's efficacy -- nor of the good
intentions of those involved. As tension grows within the community, things come to a shocking
head at the explosive dress rehearsal. The next day, a dead body is found, and soon, an arrest is
made. In the run-up to the trial, two young lawyers sift through the material (emails, messages,
letters) with a growing suspicion that a killer may be hiding in plain sight. The evidence is all
there, between the lines, waiting to be uncovered.
Critique: A deftly crafted, engagingly clever, and inherently compelling read from cover to cover,
"The Appeal" by novelist Janice Hallett is an extraordinary and unreservedly recommended for
community library Contemporary Mystery/Suspense collections. It should be noted for the
personal reading lists of all dedicated mystery buffs that "The Appeal" is also readily available in
a digital book format (Kindle, $10.99) and as a complete and unabridged audio book (Blackstone
Audio, 9781797135694, $44.99, CD).
Live, Local, and Dead
Crooked Lane Books
2 Park Avenue, 10th floor, New York, NY 10016
9781643859453, $26.99, HC, 304pp
Synopsis: In a fit of anger, radio DJ Jaye Jordan blows a snowman's head off with a
Revolutionary War-style musket. But the corpse that tumbles out is all too human. Jaye thought
life would be quieter when she left New York City and bought a tiny Vermont radio station. But
now, Edwin Anger (the ranting and raving radio talk show host who Jaye recently fired) lies dead
in the snow. And the Edwin Anger fans who protested his dismissal are sure she killed him.
To clear her name, Jaye must find the real killer, as if she doesn't have her hands full running the
radio station, DJing her all-request love song show, and shuttling tween daughter Ryan to and
from school. It doesn't make matters easier that the governor (Jaye's old crush) arrived on the
scene before the musket smoke cleared. Fortunately, Jaye has allies -- if you count the flatulent
moose that lives in the transmitter shack, and Neptune, the giant gray cat that lives at the
If Jaye can turn the tables on the devious killer, she and the governor may get to make some
sweet, sweet music together. But if she can't, she'll be off the air -- permanently!
Critique: A rollicking fun read from first page to last, "Live, Local, and Dead" showcases author
Nikki Knight full and complete mastery of the Cozy Mystery genre. Memorable characters,
original storyline, unexpected plot twists, memorable characters, "Live, Local, and Dead" has it
all and is not only recommended for community library Mystery/Suspense collections, but
available for the personal reading lists of all dedicated cozy mystery fans in a digital book format
(Kindle, $13.99) and as a complete and unabridged audio book (Dreamscape Media,
9781666534092, $22.99, CD).
A Dash of Death
Michelle Hillen Klump
Crooked Lane Books
2 Park Avenue, 10th floor, New York, NY 10016
9781643859378, $26.99, HC, 304pp
Synopsis: Samantha Warren, a plucky Houston, Texas, reporter has lost her job and her fiance in
rapid succession. But Sam has a way of making lemonade out of the bitterest of lemons. At a
meeting of the local historical-homes council, she serves up the homemade bitters that she made
as gifts for her wedding party. She intends to use that as her "in" to become an in-demand party
mixologist. But the party's over for one of the council members, who keels over dead soon after
he sips the bereft bride's bitter brew.
It turns out that the victim, Mark, was poisoned -- his drink spiked with oleander. Since Sam
mixed the drink that Mark imbibed right before his demise, she finds herself at the front of the
suspect line. Now, she'll have to use all of her reporter's wisdom and wiles to clear her
Who could have wanted Mark dead? His wife, Gabby? His girlfriend, Darcy? Someone who
wanted his seat on the council? Or another citizen of this sweet Texas town that holds some
Job hunting, building her mixology business, and fending off late-night phone calls from her
nearly betrothed don't leave much time for sleuthing. But if Sam can't "pour" over the clues to
find the killer, it may soon be last call for her!
Critique: Launching a brand new 'cozy mystery' series called 'A Cocktails and Catering Mystery'
by novelist Michelle Hillen Klump, "A Dash of Death" is an impressively fun mystery read that
is clever, deftly scripted, and a memorable read for all dedicated mystery buffs. While also
available for personal reading lists in a digital book format (Kindle, $13.99), "A Dash of Death"
is unreservedly and enthusiastically recommended for any and all community library
Contemporary Mystery/Suspense collections.
Brian T. Seifrit, author
Hudu Creek Publishing
9781777316945, $15.95 (publisher), $11.34 (Amazon), PB, 307pp
Synopsis: "Absolute Anger" by novelist Brian T. Seifrit is an artfully scripted story of intrigue
and suspense revolving around Detective Tyler O'Brien. Promoted to lieutenant since he and his
crew of brash detectives captured the man responsible for four brutal and deranged killings, the
trial conviction and sentencing of the murderer should have ended the crime spree -- but that was
just the beginning!
Critique: Showcasing author Brian Seifrit's genuine flair for originality and the kind of narrative
driven storytelling that holds the reader's full attention from first page to last, "Absolute Anger"
is strongly recommended for community library Contemporary Mystery/Suspense collections. It
should be noted for the personal reading lists of dedicated mystery buffs that "Absolute Anger" is
also readily available in an inexpensive digital book format (Kindle, $0.99).
St. Martin's Press
120 Broadway, New York, NY 10271
9781250274250, $27.99, HC, 320pp
Synopsis: Beautiful, wild, and strange -- Meroe Island is a desolate spot in the middle of the
Pacific Ocean with a mysterious history of shipwrecks, cannibalism, and even rumors of murder.
It's the perfect destination for the most adventurous traveler to escape everything... except the
Six stunning twentysomethings are about to embark on a blissful, free-spirited journey -- one
filled with sun-drenched days and intoxicating nights. But as it becomes clear that the group is
even more cut off from civilization than they initially thought, it starts to feel like the island itself
is closing in, sending them on a dangerous spiral of discovery.
When one person goes missing and another turns up dead, the remaining friends wonder what
dark currents lie beneath this impenetrable paradise -- and who else will be swept under its
Critique: A spellbinding novel that showcases author Rachel Hawkins storytelling skills,
imaginative originality, and blending of memorable characters with unexpected plot twists,
"Reckless Girls" is a riveting and entertaining read from cover to cover. While highly
recommended, especially for community library Contemporary Mystery/Suspense/Thriller
collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Reckless Girls" is also readily
available in a digital book format (Kindle, $14.99) and as a complete and unabridged audio book
(Macmillan Audio, 9781250835574, $39.99, CD).
Death To The Dealers
9781948068109, $14.95, PB, 333pp
Synopsis: When a veternarian finds his deceased wife's secret phone, her list of contacts sends
him on quest to uncover who caused her death. As he navigates his way into the dreary,
drug-dealing world, danger holds a constant presence. The one bright spot in his life is his
growing attraction for his canine patient's owner, Sergeant Corinne Aleckson. But it's a
relationship that will not blossom as he had imagined.
Critique: The 9th book in author Christine Husom's 'A Winnebago County Mystery' series,
"Death To The Dealers" continues to showcase this novelist's genuine flair for, and mastery of,
the suspense thriller and police procedural crime genre. While also readily available for the
personal reading lists of dedicated mystery buffs in a digital book format (Kindle, $0.99), it
should be noted for community library Mystery/Suspense collections that "Death To The
Dealers" is an especially and unreservedly recommended and immediately and enduringly
Hansjorg Schneider, author
Mike Mitchell, translator
Bitter Lemon Press
9781913394622, $15.95, PB, 234pp
Synopsis: The second novel in the police procedural mystery series featuring Basel police
inspector Peter Hunkeler, "Silver Pebbles" is the story of an elegant young Lebanese man
carrying diamonds in his bag who is on the train from Frankfurt to Basel -- a drug mule on the
At the Basel train station, Hunkeler is waiting for him after a tipoff from the German police. The
courier manages to get to the station toilet and flushes the stones away. Erdogan, a young Turkish
sewage worker, finds the diamonds in the pipes under the station. To him they mean wealth and
the small hotel he always wanted to buy near his family village. To his older Swiss girl-friend
Erika, employed at a supermarket checkout counter, the stones signify the end of their life
together. She knows that Erdogan has a wife and children in Turkey.
For the courier, finding the stones is a matter of life and death. His employers are on their way to
"tidy things up". For Hunkeler the stones are the only way to get to the people behind the drug
trade. They turn out to include not only the bottom-feeding drug gangs but bankers and
politicians very high up the Basel food chain.
Critique: Of special note is that no one gets killed in "Silver Pebbles", an unusual and compelling
story of ordinary people accidentally caught in a vortex of crime. A riveting read throughout, and
ably translated into English for an American readership by Mike Mitchell, "Silver Pebbles" by
Hansjorg Schneider is especially recommended for community library Mystery/Suspense
collections. For the personal reading lists of dedicated crime fiction fans, "Silver Pebbles" is also
readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).
Dark Horse: An Orphan X Novel
c/o St. Martin's Publishing Group
9781250252302, $28.99, HC, 432pp
Synopsis: Evan Smoak is a man with many identities and a challenging past. As Orphan X, he
was a government assassin for the off-the-books Orphan Program. After he broke with the
Program, he adopted a new name and a new mission -- The Nowhere Man, helping the most
desperate in their times of trouble. Having just survived an attack on his life and the complete
devastation of his base of operations, as well as his complicated (and deepening) relationship
with his neighbor Mia Hall, Evan isn't interested in taking on a new mission. But one finds him
Aragon Urrea is a kingpin of a major drug-dealing operation in South Texas. He's also the patron
of the local area -- supplying employment in legitimate operations, providing help to the helpless,
rough justice to the downtrodden, and a future to a people normally with little hope. He's
complicated -- a not completely good man, who does bad things for often good reasons.
However, for all his money and power, he is helpless when one of the most vicious cartels
kidnaps his innocent eighteen year old daughter, spiriting her away into the armored complex that
is their headquarters in Mexico. With no other way to rescue his daughter, he turns to The
Now not only must Evan figure out how to get into the impregnable fortress of a heavily armed,
deeply paranoid cartel leader, but he must decide if he should help a very bad man -- no matter
how just the cause.
Critique: A riveting action/adventure from first page to last, "Dark Horse" by Greg Wuritz is a
deftly scripted novel that will have special appeal for fans of vigilante style justice. The stuff of
which block buster movies are made, "Dark Horse", the seventh title in the author's 'Orphan X'
series, is a truly memorable read and highly recommended for community library collections. It
should be noted for the personal reading lists of dedicated assassination and conspiracy fans that
"Dark Horse" is also readily available in a paperback edition (9781405942713, $10.99) and in a
digital book format (Kindle, $14.99).
9798691626647, $4.99 digital, $9.99 paperback, $19.99 hardback
Counterintelligence takes place in a world where a virus has changed everything, and opens with
an astute inspection of the changing political climate in the U.S., which is seeing its freedoms
erode from a deluge misinformation and misunderstandings. Matti and her family of genetically
altered intelligence pros stand in the middle of this hurricane of change virtually alone, since the
President who had employed her is no more, and a new administration leaves her team in
That's not to say that she's idle. Far from it. She maintains a professional acuity during nonstop
action that places herself, her family, and her friends in a crescendo of investigation and danger
that challenges even their supercharged abilities.
Counterintelligence takes place in a very believable world reinforced by current events. Michele
Packard takes the time to explore motivations, changing loyalties, challenging choices and
impossible consequences, and political changes. This mix of thriller and social and political
inspection keeps the action fast-paced, but what really powers the story is Matti's ongoing
exploits, courage, and determination.
If the characters seem larger-than-life in their ability to confront their enemies and each other,
that's because the story itself is intrinsically woven into a milieu of believable events that keep
the characters (and their readers) on their toes and hyper-aware. A wry sense of humor lends
comic relief ("Does Doc McHottie realize that he probably won't be working in the public sector
anymore, after this?"), while Matti's determination fuels a series of proactive responses to her
A heady dialogue that connects characters and reinforces their purposes also keeps the story
riveting. Readers of thrillers use to the usual pragmatic approach of heroes will find something
different in Matti: a sassy sense of purpose and courage that dictates her actions and
confrontations to keep her not just realistic and likeable, but thoroughly engrossing. The musical
references and contemporary song lyrics that pass through Matti's mind during the action scenes
will especially delight contemporary pop music fans. How has Matti's world been changed from
birth onwards by an edict to protect America?
This thriller moves from past to present and considers a much-changed future in a manner that
will attract political fiction readers as well as fans of espionage, action, and powerful female
protagonists. Counterintelligence is very highly recommended for its unique brand of social
inspection and death-defying action.
The Fantasy/SciFi Shelf
Dark Origins: Arkham Horror
Dave Gross, et al.
9781839081187, $19.95, PB, 512pp
Synopsis: "Dark Origins: Arkham Horror" from Aconyte Books is an anthology of four
outstanding horror fantasy novellas by four impressively skilled and imaginative masters of the
genre. These four novellas are: Hour of the Huntress by Dave Gross (the mysterious
disappearance of dilettante Jenny Barnes' beloved sister triggers a frantic search through
Arkham's darkest shadows); The Dirge of Reason by Graeme Davis (for federal agent Roland
Banks, investigating a bizarre incident exposes him to the supernatural horrors of Arkham) Ire of
the Void by Richard Lee Byers (the astronomer and professor Norman Withers finds himself the
subject of a strange creature's gaze when he agrees to assist in a fellow scientist's weird
experiment); The Deep Gate by Chris A Jackson (sailor Silas Marsh must return to Innsmouth
and confront his harrowing nightmares when he stumbles on a tome foretelling the end of the
Critique: Each inherently fascinating and deftly crafted Arkham House themed horror fantasy
novella comprising "Dark Origins: Arkham Horror" is a truly memorable (and haunting) read.
Highly recommended for community library Science Fiction & Fantasy collections, it should be
noted that "Dark Origins: Arkham Horror" is also readily available for the legions of horror
fiction fans in a digital book format (Kindle, $14.95).
Gods and Dragons
Kevin J. Anderson
c/o Tor/Forge Books
120 Broadway, 22nd Floor, New York, NY 10271
9781250302205, $29.99, HC, 496pp
Synopsis: "Gods and Dragons" by Kevin J. Anderson is the story of two continents at war: the
Three Kingdoms and Ishara which have been in conflict with each other for a thousand years. But
when an outside threat arises in the form of the reawakening of a powerful ancient race that
wants to remake the world, these two warring nations must somehow set aside generations of
hatred to form an alliance against a far more deadly enemy.
Critique: The third title in science fiction and fantasy author Kevin J. Anderson acclaimed 'Wake
The Dragon' series, "Gods and Dragons" is still another imaginative, riveting, deftly crafted, and
memorably original novel by a true master of the science fiction and fantasy genres. While
absolutely and unreservedly recommended for community library collections, it should be noted
for the personal reading lists of the growing legions of Kevin J. Anderson fans that "Gods and
Dragons" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $14.99).
Editorial Note: Kevin J. Anderson has written dozens of national bestsellers and has been
nominated for the Hugo Award, the Nebula Award, the Bram Stoker Award, and the SFX
Readers' Choice Award. His critically acclaimed original novels include the ambitious space
opera series The Saga of Seven Suns, including The Dark Between the Stars, as well as Wake the
Dragon epic fantasy trilogy, the Terra Incognita fantasy epic with its two accompanying rock
CDs. He also set the Guinness-certified world record for the largest single-author book signing,
and was recently inducted into the Colorado Authors' Hall of Fame.
9781641290982, $27.00, HC, 456pp
Synopsis: Over a decade has passed since the ant queen began her apocalyptic war with the
humans. In the aftermath, she leaves behind a strange legacy: a race of uplifted animals, the
queen's conscripts in the war effort, now trying to make their way in the world they destroyed.
While the conflict has left deep scars, it has also allowed both sides to demonstrate feats of
courage and compassion that were never possible before. And now, after years of bloodshed, the
survivors have a fleeting chance to build a lasting peace.
But peace always comes with a price. The holy city of Hosanna (where animals and humans form
a joint government) finds itself surrounded by wolves who are determined to retake the land. A
powerful matriarch has united the rival wolf packs, using a terrible power harnessed from the
Soon, the looming violence pulls in those who sought to escape. The war hero Mort(e) suspects a
plot to destroy Hosanna from within, and recruits a team of unlikely allies to investigate. Falkirk,
captain of the airship Vesuvius, must choose between treason and loyalty to save the city. And
D'Arc, sailing aboard the al-Rihla, learns that the wolves may have triggered a new cycle of life
for the Colony, bringing a final reckoning to animal and human alike. Once reunited, the three
outcasts begin a journey into wolf territory to face the last remnant of the queen's empire.
But while destiny has drawn them together, it may destroy them as well, for even love, courage,
and honor may not be enough to stop the forces of destruction set to be unleashed on the
Critique: A deftly scripted and inherently fascinating dystopian novel, "Malefactor" by author
Robert Repino (and the third and final title in his 'War With No Name' trilogy) is essentially a
romantic fantasy played out against the background of a Post-Apocalyptic world. While highly
recommended, especially for community library Science Fiction & Fantasy collections, it should
be noted for personal reading lists that "Malefactor" is also readily available in a digital book
format (Kindle, $14.99).
That Was Now, This is Then
Michael Z. Williamson
P.O. Box 1403, Riverdale, NY 10471
That Was Now, This is Then represents military sci-fi and alternate history at their best. It tells of
U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan flung back to the Paleolithic Age, along with other historical figures
from different eras. As new allies and foes emerged from the fracas, the team survived and even
found a way back home.
Enter the present, where humans from the far future have done the same thing to another group of
humans, standing them in the past. Sometimes, it's not enough to survive. Sometimes duty calls
upon the soldier to return to fight again. Thus it is that Sean Elliott, having survived one
time-travel disaster, is called upon, with his veterans, to rescue another time-stranded team. The
gripping, unpredictable scenarios make for a story that is gripping and involving as past, present,
and future circumstances collide.
1637: The Coast of Chaos
Eric Flint, Paula Goodlett, and Gorg Huff
P.O. Box 1403, Riverdale, NY 10471
Prior fans of Eric Flint's classic 1637 Ring of Fire stories will enjoy the short novel and stories in
1637: The Coast of Chaos, which adds more segments to the adventure, expanding the political
conflicts that keep the stranded West Virginia town residents on their toes on the past. In this
story, the newly formed United States of Europe has made an agreement that holds the possibility
of abolishing slavery... until the French send invading troops to New England to create a special
form of chaos that may change the future irrevocably. Fast-paced tales emerge that will delight
Eric Flint readers with compelling drama and new events.
The Library Science Shelf
Jess Crilly & Regina Everitt, editors
9781783304974, $78.05, PB, 224pp
Synopsis: The demand to decolonise the curriculum has moved from a protest movement at the
margins to the center of many institutions, as reflected by its inclusion in policies and strategies
and numerous initiatives in libraries and archives that have responded to the call, and are
critically examining their own historic legacies and practices to support institutional and societal
Collaboratively compiled and co-edited by the team of Jess Crilly and Regina Everitt, "Narrative
Expansions: Interpreting Decolonisation in Academic Libraries" explores the ways in which
academic libraries are working to address the historic legacies of colonialism, in the context of
decolonising the curriculum and the university. It acknowledges and explores the tensions and
complexities around the use of the term decolonisation, how it relates to other social justice aims
and approaches, including critical librarianship, and what makes this work specific to
The fifteen articles comprising "Narrative Expansions" are international in scope, and
collectively consider the contextual nature of decolonisation, with discussion of the impacts of
settler colonialism, and post-colonial contexts with authors from Canada, the United States and
Kenya, as well as universities and the British Library in the UK.
Split into two sections, "Narrative Expansions" first addresses experiential contexts, discussing
the environment in which the academic library is enmeshed: legacy knowledge systems, the
neo-liberal university, the pervasive Whiteness of the higher education sector, the global
publishing industry -- how these structures are constitutive of coloniality and how they can be
It then brings together theory and practice featuring case studies interpreting what it means to
'decolonise' in information literacy, collection management, inclusive spaces, LIS education,
research methods and knowledge production through the lens of critical pedagogy, critical
information literacy and Critical Race Theory (CRT).
"Narrative Expansions" also addresses the impact and implications of the Whiteness of university
library staffing. Bringing together the theory and practice of an area of critical concern to the
academy, "Narrative Expansions" is an important reference for academic librarians, educators
and researchers in LIS, education and sociology.
Critique: Timely addressing an increasingly important aspect of library collections and useages,
"Narrative Expansions: Interpreting Decolonisation in Academic Libraries" is a unique and
unreservedly recommended addition to personal, professional, college, and university Library
Science collections and supplemental curriculum studies lists. It should be noted for library
science students, academia, active librarians, racial equality activists, and non-specialist general
readers with an interest in the subject that "Narrative Expansions: Interpreting Decolonisation in
Academic Libraries" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $59.95).
Editorial Note #1: Jess Crilly is an independent author and has worked mainly in academic
libraries, most recently as Associate Director for Content and Discovery, Library Services,
University of the Arts London, up to September 2020. Jess's interests include critical
librarianship, the meaning of and possibilities for the decolonisation of knowledge, and the
multiple contexts and uses of archives.
Editorial Note #2: Regina Everitt is Assistant Chief Operating Officer (ACOO) and Director of
Library, Archives and Learning Services at the University of East London. She began her
professional career as a technical author/trainer working with computer companies that
developed software for the manufacturing, pharmaceutical and financial sectors in the US and
UK. After managing a small library at a university in West Africa as a volunteer with the United
States Peace Corps, she transitioned into the HE sector, developing and managing libraries,
social learning spaces and other learning resources. At University of East London, she is
institution lead on excellence in customer service delivery.
The Business Shelf
The Effective Presenter
Ryan J. Warriner
c/o John Hunt Publishing
9781789047950, $17.95, PB, 192pp
Synopsis: "The Effective Presenter: The Winning Formula for Business Presentations" by
communications expert Ryan J. Warriner effectively services serves as a business presentation
resource for everyone from interns to executives in the private sector.
"The Effective Presenter" centers around a proprietary presentation framework and outlines the
complete formula to preparing, designing and delivering an effective professional presentation.
Combining information, research and first-hand experiences to offer unique insights and outline
common misconceptions of professional presentations, "The Effective Presenter" provides a
blend of practical skills and advice to supplement the optimal presentation formula and build
Critique: Exceptionally well written, and thoroughly 'user friendly' in organization and
presentation, "The Effective Presenter: The Winning Formula for Business Presentations" is an
ideal DIY instructional guide and 'how to' manual that is especially recommended for
entrepreneurs, business managers, and corporate executives. While a strong contribution to
community, corporate, college, and university library Public Speaking, Communication Skills,
and Business Management collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "The
Effective Presenter: The Winning Formula for Business Presentations" is also readily available in
a digital book format (Kindle, $10.99).
Editorial Note: Ryan Warriner is a Professor of Communication, as well as the Director and
Executive Coach of Professional Presentation Services. With over a decade of professional
speaking experience and expertise, Ryan has mastered the art and science of enhancing
communication. Throughout his career, Ryan has performed thousands of professional
presentations, while designing hundreds more. He has developed a compassionate, strategic,
highly effective approach to navigate professional communication. He believes in systematic
skill development to improve confidence, optimize messaging, and enhance overall delivery.
Positioning for Advantage
Kimberly A. Whitler
Columbia Business School Publishing
c/o Columbia University Press
61 West 62nd Street, New York, NY 10023-7015
9780231189002, $29.95, HC, 264pp
Synopsis: Most corporate officers and business managers have an intuitive sense of superior
branding. Consumers prefer to purchase brands they find distinctive and that deliver on some
important, relevant dimension better than other brands. These brands have typically achieved
positional advantage. Yet few marketing professionals have had the formal training that goes
beyond marketing theory to bridge the "theory-doing gap" -- understanding the specific
techniques and strategies that can be used to create brands that attain positional advantage in the
"Positioning for Advantage: Techniques and Strategies to Grow Brand Value" is a
comprehensive how-to guide for creating, building, and executing effective brand strategies. by
Professor Kimberly A. Whitler who identifies essential marketing strategy techniques and moves
through the major stages of positioning a brand to achieve in-market advantage.
Introducing seven tools (from strategic positioning concepts to strategy mapping to influencer
maps), Professor Whitler provides templates, frameworks, and step-by-step processes to build
and manage growth brands that achieve positional advantage. "Positioning for Advantage"
presents real-world scenarios, helping readers activate tools to increase skill in creating brands
that achieve positional advantage. Brimming with insights for students and professionals alike,
"Positioning for Advantage" helps aspiring marketers and entrepreneurs to understand not only
what superior branding looks like but also how to make it come to life.
Critique: Comprehensively detailed, well organized, thoroughly 'user friendly' in presentation,
"Positioning for Advantage: Techniques and Strategies to Grow Brand Value" is a complete DIY
instructional guide and manual with respect to branding a service of product in today's highly
competitive market places. While strongly recommended for professional, corporate, community,
college, and university library Business Management & Marketing collections, it should be noted
for the personal reading lists of MBA students, academia, corporate officers, and entrepreneurs
that "Positioning for Advantage: Techniques and Strategies to Grow Brand Value" is also readily
available in a digital book format (Kindle, $15.65).
Editorial Note: Kimberly A. Whitler is the Frank M. Sands Sr. Associate Professor of Business
Administration at the University of Virginia's Darden School of Business. She has published in
Harvard Business Review, Sloan Management Review, and a number of academic journals. She
is a senior contributor to Forbes, having published more than 350 articles. She previously worked
for companies including Procter & Gamble, Aurora Foods, David's Bridal, and PETsMART,
holding positions such as general manager and chief marketing officer.
The Pit of Success
Dave Jennings, author
Amy Leishman, author
Morgan James Publishing
11815 Fountain Way, Suite 300, Newport News, VA 23606-4448
9781631953828, $17.95, PB, 218pp
Synopsis: Business leaders must routinely face challenges that are beyond their experience. In
this space they feel lost, confused, and overwhelmed. These doubts are shared by leaders across
the globe but many fear it is not "leader-like" to discuss such issues. Yet, leaders are not in their
job because they have all the answers. They are in the job to find answers. By learning to
navigate The Pit of Success leaders gain confidence, find answers, and deliver results faster and
with less anxiety.
"The Pit of Success: How Leaders Adapt, Succeed, and Repeat" by the team of Dave Jennings
and Amy Leishman provides business managers and corporate executives with the mindset and
skillset to do things they do not know how to do. It gives them principles for managing
progressively difficult challenges throughout their career. It also gives them peace of mind that
they are not the only ones experiencing these doubts.
No longer do leaders need to wonder if they are good enough to face the challenges in front of
them. What they need to do can be learned -- and "The Pit of Success" shows them how they are
fully capable to succeed in their demanding situation. The concept of "The Pit of Success" has
already changed 1000s of leader's lives around the world.
Critique: Expertly written, impressively organized, and thoroughly 'user friendly' in presentation,
"The Pit of Success: How Leaders Adapt, Succeed, and Repeat" is an ideal DIY instruction
manual and guide for novice and experienced entrepreneurs, business managers, and corporate
executives. While highly recommended for business, corporate, community, college, and
university Business Management and Leadership Self-Help/Self-Improvement collections, it
should be noted for the personal reading lists of MBA students, academia, corporate executives,
business entrepreneurs, and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject that
"The Pit of Success: How Leaders Adapt, Succeed, and Repeat" is also available in a digital book
format (Kindle, $8.49).
Editorial Note #1: Dave Jennings is a leadership and organizational change consultant. He has
guided leaders from across the globe to navigate The Pit of Success for themselves, their teams,
and their company. He has worked with such organizations as Salesforce, Microsoft, Intel,
Oracle, Deloitte, Exxon/Mobil, Schneider Electric, Myriad Genetics, Kaiser-Permanente, Alaska
Airlines, and the FBI. He has been a featured speaker at leadership conferences in twenty-two
countries. He is author of Catapulted: How Great Leaders Succeed Beyond Their Experience, and
his articles and commentary have been relied on by the Washington Post, Forbes, and
TheStreet.com. He is an adjunct instructor for Kenan-Flagler Business School's Executive
Development program at the University of North Carolina. He earned his PhD researching
change resilience. Readers can learn more online at his two websites:
www.learnablesolutions.com and www.davejennings.com
Editorial Note #2: Amy Leishman is an executive coach, retreat facilitator, and researcher. With
a focus on resilience and leadership, she empowers individuals to influence, problem solve, and
set direction for the challenges they face. Additionally, her research interests include women in
leadership, the triple bottom line, and sustainable social impact. She has helped leaders succeed
in non-profit, small business, and Fortune 500 organizations. She has led market research around
the globe, including work in Italy, India, Mauritius, Ecuador, Mexico, Peru, Nigeria, Thailand,
and New Zealand. Her MBA was focused on Strategy and Social Innovation from Marriott
School of Business. Amy maintains informative websites at www.learnablesolutions.com and
The Big Book of HR
Barbara Mitchell, author
Cornelia Gamlem, author
Career Press Inc.
12 Parish Drive, Wayne, NJ 07470
9781632651945, $26.95, PB, 352pp
Synopsis: Every corporate and business leader will agree that managing people is challenging
and growing more complex. With all of the dramatic changes that have taken place in the
workplace and the workforce over the past decade, this fully updated 10th anniversary edition of
"The Big Book of HR" incorporates discussions and reflections on these changes which are
useful for any business owner, manager, or HR professional.
"The Big Book of HR, 10th Anniversary Edition" includes up-to-date information about:
Flexibility and work; Diversity, equity and inclusion; Respectful workplaces and harassment
prevention; Technology for today's digital workplaces; Pay equity and its effect on transparency
in compensation; Benefits that meet the needs of a multigenerational workforce; Microlearning
and employee development strategy.
With :The Big Book of HR, 10th Anniversary Edition" business executives and managers will
obtain the most from their organization's talent ranging from strategic HR-related issues to the
smallest tactical details. And, of course, there's information on remaining legally compliant
including state and local laws addressing societal changes.
Critique: Justifiably considered to be the 'bible' of sound HR management policies and practices,
this expanded and updated 10th anniversary edition of "The Big Book of HR" must be
considered an essential and core instructional reference and manual for professional, community,
corporate, college, and university library Business Management & Ethics collections. It should be
noted for the personal reading lists of MBA students, academia, corporate executives, business
managers, entrepreneurs, union activists, and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the
subject that "The Big Book of HR, 10th Anniversary Edition" is also readily available in a digital
book format (Kindle, $14.55).
Editorial Note: Barbara Mitchell is the founder and managing partner of the Mitchell Group, a
management consulting practice that helps organizations find, hire, engage and retain the best
available talent. Cornelia Gamlem is the founder of the Gems Group, a management consulting
firm that assists organizations create and maintain respectful workplaces. A writing partnership
was born with the first edition of The Big Book of HR. Since that time, Mitchell and Gamlem
have gone on to write The Essential Workplace Conflict Handbook, The Conflict Resolution
Phrase Book, and the award-winning The Manager's Answer Book. Giving back and being active
in the communities in which they live and work is important to both authors.
The Responsible Shareholder
Edward Elgar Publishing
9 Dewey Court, Northampton, MA 01060-3815
9781800373396, $125.00, HC, 232pp
Synopsis: Examining the role of corporate shareholders in modern companies, "The Responsible
Shareholder" by Stephen Bottomley (Emeritus Professor, ANU College of Law, The Australian
National University, Australia) is timely study which argues that more should be expected of
shareholders, both morally and legally. It explores the privileged position of shareholders within
the corporate law system and the unique rights and duties awarded to them in contrast to other
corporate actors. Introducing the concept of shareholders as responsible agents whose actions and
inactions should be judged on that basis, Professor Bottomley unites a number of distinct
corporate governance discussions including stewardship, activism and shareholder liability.
"The Responsible Shareholder" also argues that when companies cause harm to the environment,
inflict injury on workers, or commit financial fraud, it is not just the actions of the directors,
managers, advisers or regulators that should be scrutinized. Instead of consigning shareholders to
a passive or marginal role in the drive for greater corporate responsibility, "The Responsible
Shareholder" recommends that it is time to hold this key constituency in the company
decision-making structure accountable.
Comparative and interdisciplinary, "The Responsible Shareholder" will be a key resource for
students and scholars of corporate law and governance, business law and insolvency law. It will
also be of value to company law policy makers, corporate interest groups and think tanks
engaged in corporate law reform.
Critique: Comprehensive, informative, exceptionally well organized and presented, "The
Responsible Shareholder" is highly recommended for the reading lists of corporate shareholders,
as well as professional, corporate, community, college, and university library collections -- and
an ideal textbook for Corporate Law, Corporate Governance, and Business Ethics curriculums
and supplemental studies reading lists..
The Theatre/Cinema/TV Shelf
Directing Actors, 25th Anniversary Edition
Michael Wiese Productions
12400 Ventura Blvd., #1111, Studio City, CA 91604
9781615933211, $29.95, PB, 380pp
Synopsis: Collaborating with actors is, for many filmmakers, the scariest part and yet the part
they long for -- the human part, the place where connection happens. Now in a 25th Anniversary
Edition, "Directing Actors: Creating Memorable Performances for Film and Television" by
Judith Weston covers the challenges of the actor-director relationship, including the pitfalls of
"result direction"; breaking down a script; how to prepare for casting sessions; when, how and
whether to rehearse (but with updated references), expanded ideas, a more detailed chapters on
rehearsal and script analysis (using a scene from The Matrix), and a whole new chapter on
directing children. For twenty-five years the industry standard for instilling confidence in
filmmakers, Directing Actors perseveres in its mission -- to bring directors, actors and writers
deeper into the exhilarating task of creating characters the world will not forget.
Critique: Now in a newly updated and expanded 25th Anniversary Edition, "Directing Actors: Creating Memorable Performances for Film and
Television" is the essential and comprehensive DIY instruction guide and manual for anyone
having the responsibility of directing actors on stage, in film, or for television. Also readily
available for personal reading lists in a digital book format (Kindle, $19.45), "Directing Actors: Creating Memorable Performances
for Film and Television" is an essential and core addition for personal, professional, community,
college, and university library Theatre/Movie Direction & Production collections.
Editorial Note: Judith Weston has been a teacher of directors, actors, and writers since 1985. Her
students have included: Alejandro G. Inarritu, Steve McQueen, Andrew Stanton, Pete Docter,
Ritesh Batra, Mark Fergus, Patricia Cardoso, and Andrea Toyias.
The Films of John Garfield
James L. Neibaur
9781629338439, $35.00, HC, 204pp
Synopsis: John Garfield (born Jacob Julius Garfinkle, March 4, 1913 - May 21, 1952) was, and
remains, one of the most impactful actors of 20th century American cinema. A towering
influence on so many screen performers who came along afterward, Garfield managed to create a
lasting image, despite living a life that was marked with tragedy, including the loss of a
When he left the studios and began doing independent films, his politics informed his projects
and he was blacklisted by Hollywood, leading to his early death of a heart attack at only 39 years
of age. T
"The Films of John Garfield" is a film-by-film examination of Garfield's work, ranging from the
brash characters he played in his studio productions, to the tormented antiheroes of film noir that
he later portrayed. His film work continues to resonate into the 21stcentury.
Critique: Nicely illustrated throughout with black-and-white photos, "The Films of John
Garfield" by film historian James L. Neibuar is an impressively comprehensive and informative
study of the life and films of an unquestionably talented actor. While also available for personal
reading lists, "The Films of John Garfield" is an especially and unreservedly recommended
addition to personal, professional, community, college, and university library Cinematic History
& Biography collections.
Editorial Note: James L. Neibaur is a film historian and educator who has written several books
on film, including Arbuckle and Keaton: Their 14 Film Collaborations (2005), Chaplin at
Essanay: A Film Artist in Transition, 1915-1916 (2008), and The Fall of Buster Keaton
Magic in the Dark
Charles B. Moss Jr., author
Jonathan Kay, author
9781989555484, $24.95, HC, 380pp
Synopsis: Early in the twentieth-century, B. S. Moss (1878 - 1951) was one of many ambitious
Jewish immigrants to leap from New York's textile business to the more promising and exciting
world of motion pictures. Unlike most, Moss resisted the siren call of Hollywood and instead
built one of the largest and most prestigious theater chains in the New York area. Inspired by his
vision, successive generations of Moss management have kept his chain thriving, even as
audiences migrated from vaudeville emporiums, to sumptuous Art Deco palaces, to suburban
It was never easy: every movie was a gamble, and the business was constantly challenged by
world wars, depressions, urban blight, union battles, real estate values, and the threats of radio,
television, and streaming services. Yet the Mosses emerge as a rare multigenerational family
success story. Now, with the publication of "Magic in the Dark: One Family's Century of
Adventures in the Movie Business", co-authors Charles B. Moss Jr. and Jonathan Kay explore
every inch of the Moss family archives in their iconic Times Square headquarters to chart a
century of ups, downs, and fascinating adventures in the tumultuous cinema industry
Critique: Exceptionally well written, organized and presented, "Magic in the Dark: One Family's
Century of Adventures in the Movie Business" is and impressively informative contribution to
the growing body of cinematic histories and biographies. An inherently fascinating read for
movie history buffs, and with the highest recommendation for personal, professional,
community, college, and university library American Movie History collections and
supplemental curriculum studies reading lists.
Editorial Note #1: A principal of the oldest motion picture theater company in the US, Charles B.
Moss Jr. lives in New York with his wife Ann, an art consultant. They are participants in both the
New York Film Festival and the Toronto International Film Festival. Charley's favorite movie is
All That Jazz and Ann's is Breakfast at Tiffany's.
Editorial Note #2: Jonathan Kay is the Canadian editor of Quillette and a host of the Quillette
and Wrongspeak podcasts. His previous books include Among The Truthers and Legacy: How
French Canadians Shaped North America.
The Art Shelf
Antiquarians of Nineteenth-Century Japan
Hiroyuki Suzuki, author
Maki Fukuoka, editor & translator
1200 Getty Center Drive, Suite 500, Los Angeles, CA 90049-1682
9781606067420, $60.00, HC, 256pp
Synopsis: Originally published in Japanese and ably translated into English for an American
readership by art historian and academician Maki Fukuoka, "Antiquarians of Nineteenth-Century
Japan: The Archaeology of Things in the Late Tokugawa and Early Meiji Periods" by Professor
Hiroyuki Suzuki looks at the approach toward object-based research across the late Tokugawa
and early Meiji periods, which were typically kept separate, and elucidates the intellectual
continuities between these eras.
Focusing on the top-down effects of the professionalizing of academia in the political landscape
of Meiji Japan, which had advanced by attacking earlier modes of scholarship by antiquarians,
Suzuki shows how those outside the government responded, retracted, or challenged new public
rules and values.
He also explores the changing process of evaluating objects from the past in tandem with the
attitudes and practices of antiquarians during the period of Japan's rapid modernization. He
shows their roots in the intellectual sphere of the late Tokugawa period while also detailing how
they adapted to the new era. Suzuki also demonstrates that Japan's antiquarians had much in
common with those from Europe and the United States.
In her role as editor, Professor Maki Fukuoka also provides an introduction to her English
translation that highlights the significance of Suzuki's methodological and intellectual analyses
and shows how his ideas will appeal to specialists and nonspecialists alike.
Critique: Occasionally illustrated with black-and-white photography, "Antiquarians of
Nineteenth-Century Japan: The Archaeology of Things in the Late Tokugawa and Early Meiji
Periods" is an exhaustively comprehensive, impressively presented, and exceptionally
informative course of instruction that will be an especially prized addition to personal,
professional, community, college, and university library Japanese Art History collections and
supplemental curriculum studies reading lists.
Editorial Note: Hiroyuki Suzuki is professor emeritus of Japanese art history at Tokyo Gakugei
University. Maki Fukuoka is associate professor of the history of art at the University of
The Nautical Shelf
The Practical Guide to Celestial Navigation
9781472987587, $40.00, HC, 160pp
Synopsis: A person standing on the equator is effectively travelling at 900mph? Any sailor can
use this information to work out where they are in the world, to an accuracy of about 3/4 miles. No
GPS, no computers. Just a sextant, some tables from an Almanac and the knowledge revealed
with the publication of "The Practical Guide to Celestial Navigation" by Phil Somerville.
It's the only back up if the GPS goes down, so it's a matter of safety. So if anyone wanting to
qualify as a commercial skipper or a superyacht captain needs to know how to carry out celestial
navigation. Anyone wanting to pass the RYA Ocean Yachtmaster exam, needs to know it too. It's
a major stumbling block for many sailors wanting or needing to take their next qualifications,
and the other books on the market are complex and often assume some prior understanding. "The
Practical Guide to Celestial Navigation" fulfills the need for a jargon-free explanation of celestial
navigation, illustrated with colour diagrams and including unique checklist sheets to enable even
the most novice of sailors to repeat all those calculations they learned back at home, when they
are aboard and on deck.
Without overwhelming the reader with a load of theory from the off, "The Practical Guide to
Celestial Navigation" breaks down what is necessary to do, step by step, explaining why at every
point -- and giving the information context, and making it more interesting and memorable.
Experienced naviagator Phil Somerville has trained students in this subject for years, and in the
pages of "The Practical Guide to Celestial Navigation" he is able to use his experiences of what
works, and what are the common pitfalls. There is included a 'What went wrong?' chapter near
the end, going through errors commonly made, and how to spot them.
The objective is that readers will finish "The Practical Guide to Celestial Navigation" not only
knowing what to do, but really understanding why, and being able to make sense of it all again
later (rather than just getting through and exam and finding themselves at a loss when on deck).
Somerville also includes time-tested 'proformas' -- quick reference sheets that sailors can refer to
when they come to putting the theory into practice on board, avoiding the terrifying 'cold start'
that most sailors experience when they suddenly need to put theory into practice.
Critique: Expertly written, thoroughly 'user friendly' in organization and presentation, "The
Practical Guide to Celestial Navigation" is an ideal textbook for DIY studies and formal
classroom navigation curriculums. Profusely illustrated throughout, "The Practical Guide to
Celestial Navigation" is unreservedly recommended for professional, community, college, and
university library Nautical & Navigation instructional reference collections. It should be noted
for the personal reading lists of students, academia, aspiring oceanic navigators and sailors, as
well as non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject that "The Practical Guide to
Celestial Navigation" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $27.49).
Editorial Note: Phil Somerville has been teaching Celestial Navigation for nearly a decade to
RYA Ocean and MCA Superyacht candidates in the UK, Spain, Italy and France (at numerous
RYA & MCA training centres). Teaching in the winter months, in the summer he has worked on
the likes of Skip Novak's Patagonia-based Pelagic Australis (a 23-metre expedition vessel
designed for high latitude sailing).
The Sports Shelf
Trail Running Illustrated: The Art of Running Free
Doug Mayer, author
Brian Metzler, author
1001 SW Klickitat Way, Suite 201, Seattle, WA 98134-1161
9781680515664, $24.95, PB, 272pp
Synopsis: Running through pastures and forests, hopping over rocks, and splashing through
streams: trail running is humanity's original form of play -- and an activity the human race has
been doing for millions of years. Today, adventurous runners of all ages, shapes, and sizes are
leaving the pavement behind and seeking new challenges. More popular than ever, trail running
is growing rapidly around the world.
"Trail Running Illustrated: The Art of Running Free" covers everything a trail runner needs to
know from training to racing. "Trail Running Illustrated" offers clear, concise advice on how to
get started. Created by the team of Doug Mayer and Brian Metzler (two longtime trail runners
with a passion for the sport), "Trail Running Illustrated" is a practical and informative key to
unlocking a lifetime of exploration and challenges, whether running in a local park or through
some of the world's most remote regions.
Critique: Exceptionally well written, organized and presented, "Trail Running Illustrated: The
Art of Running Free" is a comprehensive and thoroughly 'user friendly' instructional guide and
manual that will be of enduring value for anyone of any age or background wanting to engage in
a health physical activity. While highly recommended for community, college, and university
library Running & Jogging collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Trail
Running Illustrated: The Art of Running Free" is also readily available in a digital book format
Editorial Note: Doug Mayer has been climbing and trail running in mountain ranges around the
world for three decades. The founder of the tour company Run the Alps, he is also a contributing
editor for Trail Runner magazine. Brian Metzler is an author and freelance journalist who covers
running, running gear, and related sports. He is the founding editor and associate publisher of
Trail Runner and Adventure Sports magazines.
Evan F. Moore, author
Jashvina Shah, author
814 North Franklin Street, Chicago, IL 60610
9781629379203, $28.00, HC, 256pp
Synopsis: Those fans who have been lured by the sound of skate blades slicing into fresh ice, by
the incomparable speed, split-second decisions, and everything-or-nothing attitude of the game
know that ice hockey can seem like its own world. It's all-consuming and exhilarating, boasting
its own language and complex morality code.
Yet in another light, that tight community can turn insular; the values of teamwork and humility
can manifest as collective silence in the face of abuse and discrimination, issues which have been
brought to the forefront of the sport as many share their stories for the first time.
With the publication of "Game Misconduct: Hockey's Toxic Culture and How to Fix It",
professional sports reporters and journalists Evan Moore and Jashvina Shah reveal hockey's toxic
undercurrent which has permeated the sport throughout the junior, college, and professional
levels. They address the topic with a level of passion that comes from being rabid hockey fans
themselves, and from experiencing its exclusivity first-hand.
With a sensitive yet incisive approach, "Game Misconduct: Hockey's Toxic Culture and How to
Fix It" lays bare the issues of racism, homophobia, xenophobia, bullying, sexism, and violence
on and off the ice. Readers will learn about notable players and activists fighting for
transformation as well as those beyond the spotlight who are nonetheless deeply affected by
hockey's culture of inaction.
Both a reckoning and a roadmap, Game Misconduct: Hockey's Toxic Culture and How to Fix It"
is an essential read for modern hockey fans, showing the truth of the sport's past and present
while offering the tools to fight for a better future.
Critique: Impressively informed and informative, "Game Misconduct: Hockey's Toxic Culture
and How to Fix It" must be considered mandatory reading for anyone who has enjoyed hockey
and who cares about it as competitive sport. A clarion call to action to preserve, improve, and
protect hockey as a major and national sport, "Game Misconduct: Hockey's Toxic Culture and
How to Fix It" is recommended for community, college, and university library Contemporary
Sports Collections in general, and the sport of Ice Hockey in particular. It should be noted for the
personal reading lists of hockey fans that "Game Misconduct: Hockey's Toxic Culture and How
to Fix It" is also readily available in a paperback edition (9781637270929, $16.95) and in a
digital book format (Kindle, $11.99).
It's unusual to find a golf book that can appeal to a wide audience of all types of players.
Typically, golf coverages are tailored either to newcomers to the sport, or those already well
versed in golf who seek to improve their swings or learn more advanced techniques. Golf 360:
For Current Players and Those Who Are Considering the Game lives up to its subtitle by
providing lessons and appeal for all levels of player. All that's required is a prior interest in the
Another plus that sets Golf 360 apart from competing golf titles is its well-rounded approach,
which adds spiritual and psychological components into the discussion of playing and improving.
Instructions cover such basics as keeping a steady head during shots, learning new techniques
from the pros, and deconstructing different methods employed by golfers who hold a proven
track record of success. Instructions in the first segment cover the physical aspects of golf, but
the heart of this survey lies in its second and third sections, which cover mental aspects of golf
shots and how to troubleshoot common problems and barriers to success.
Each segment includes case history examples and is delivered in a lively, personal tone that
instructs, educates, and entertains. Readers may expect (and receive) the lessons on techniques,
rules, and improving one's game; but the surprise inclusion of spiritual and psychological lessons
are just as astute and important to success. Making them an intrinsic part of the instruction and
pairing them with case history examples of revised approaches to golf not only sets Golf 360
apart from most of the other golf how-to books on the market, but places it in a special category
of its own. It's highly recommended for all levels of player, those who would better understand
golf from a spectator viewpoint, and for any library collection where golf attracts patrons.
The Metaphysical Studies Shelf
The Big Book of Tarot Meanings
Rock Winds Press
c/o Quarto Publishing Group USA
100 Cummings Center, Suite 265D, Beverly, MA 01915
9780760373057, $26.99, PB, 256pp
Synopsis: Interpreting card meanings is the most exciting aspect of reading tarot. However, it is
also the most challenging for beginners. For example, basic tarot interpretation would have you
understand that The Lovers card has to do with relationships -- but what if your question had to
do with career or health? How are you left to interpret the meaning?
"The Big Book of Tarot Meanings: The Beginner's Guide to Reading the Cards" by Sam
Magdaleno offers an exciting new approach to beginner tarot. Rather than a one-size-fits-all
strategy, this comprehensive guide divides each tarot card interpretation into specific meanings
for all the most-queried categories. No longer will you have to vaguely extrapolate meaning and
insight for diverse questions from the same generic description often given in other beginner
tarot books. These carefully chosen categories give you greater scope to use your intuition when
interpreting the tarot, and enables you to apply these interpretations to the card positions of any
tarot spread, be it the much-loved classic Celtic Cross or one you have created for yourself.
With "The Big Book of Tarot Meanings" as a DIY instruction guide and manual, even the most
novice of beginners will never have to struggle with to understanding how the cards are
Critique: Beautifully illustrated, accessibly comprehensive, informed and informative, "The Big
Book of Tarot Meanings: The Beginner's Guide to Reading the Cards" provides an ideal
introduction to the science and art of Tarot reading and is a very highly recommended resource,
as well as proving an immediate and enduringly popular addition to personal, professional,
community, college, and university library Metaphysical Studies collections in general, and Tarot
Reading studies lists in particular.
Editorial Note: Sam Magdaleno is a professional witch and tarot reader. Creatrix of the popular
Instagram handle, Sam the Cosmic Witch, Sam offers resources on witchcraft and tarot, as well
as a monthly membership centered around working with moon magick. She specializes in
demystifying witchcraft, and making it practical and applicable to everyday life. Having grown
up visiting Wiccan shops and collecting crystals with her mom, Sam experienced the positive
influence that witchcraft had on her life, and is dedicated to helping others live in alignment with
their inner witch.
The Ultimate Guide to Channeling
Fair Winds Press
Quarto Publishing Group USA
100 Cummings Center, Suite 265D, Beverly, MA 01915
9780760371770, $26.99, PB, 192pp
Synopsis: Channeling is the ability to communicate with angels, spirit guides, ascended masters,
and beings in spiritual realms.
With the publication of "The Ultimate Guide to Channeling: Practical Techniques to Connect
With Your Spirit Guides ", channelng expert and Spirit School founder Amy Sikarskie teaches
you how to develop this advanced intuitive skill with precision and safety.
"The Ultimate Guide to Channeling covers: The different styles of channeling; How to connect
with your personal group of guardian angels and spirit guides; The different chakras and clair
senses; How to use your natural intuitive abilities to perceive spiritual messages with accuracy;
How to integrate other divinatory tools such as oracle cards and sound into your channeling
"The Ultimate Guide to Channeling" also presents valuable tools and techniques for energetic
hygiene so that channeling can be done safely and accurately, plus enabling you how to discern
rogue and imposter spirits and clear energy after a channeling session.
Critique: Beautifully illustrated throughout, "The Ultimate Guide to Channeling: Practical
Techniques to Connect With Your Spirit Guides" is and essential and thoroughly 'user friendly'
instruction guide and manual for anyone aspiring to communicate with supernatural and
extraterrestrial beings. Highly recommended for community library Metaphysical Studies
collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "The Ultimate Guide to Channeling:
Practical Techniques to Connect With Your Spirit Guides" is also readily available in a digital
book format (Kindle, $20.49).
Editorial Note: Amy Sikarskie is a Licensed Vocational Nurse, Past Life Hypnotherapist, Reiki
Master, Channel, and the owner of Spirit School, an online school for psychic and energetic
training and development.
The Chintamani Crystal Matrix
Johndennis Govert, author
Hapi Hara, author
c/o Inner Traditions International, Ltd.
One Park Street, Rochester, VT 05767
9781644113141, $29.99, PB, 384pp
Synopsis: Space, time, intention, matter, and consciousness all entangle in crystals. Nowhere is
this more evident than in the ancient gem archetype of the Chintamani, the wish-fulfilling jewel
known in legends around the world as the stone that grants your heart's desires. As authors
Johndennis Govert and Hapi Hara reveal, with the publication of "The Chintamani Crystal
Matrix: Quantum Intention and the Wish-Fulfilling Gem", the Chintamani's "tachyolithic"
technology of wish-granting and spiritual enlightenment creates a vehicle for positive
transformation. They show how the Chintamani energy matrix can be accessed using tangible
crystals and gemstones, meditation, yoga, and the powerful science of intention.
Exploring the many Chintamani myths and legends from East and West, "The Chintamani
Crystal Matrix" explains how there are three types of Chintamani: the mythical gemstone, the
power crystals of history, such as the Koh-i-Noor diamond, and the multidimensional field of
light, energy, and consciousness that forms a network of all gems in what is known as "the jewel
net of Indra" in Hinduism and Buddhism. Activating this crystal energy matrix provides a way to
manifest your intentions and help you create the subtle diamond body.
"The Chintamani Crystal Matrix" details specific gems and crystal spiritual technology that can
affect material reality and trigger profound spiritual growth. It provides a number of simple
practices with crystal grids and meditation to help you access the Chintamani matrix and become
aware of the interconnected jewel net of consciousness. "The Chintamani Crystal Matrix" also
examines the science of intention, which provides a basis for connecting to gemstones and
crystals, and shares advanced meditations to realize and activate your innermost heart's
Critique: Illustrated with full color photography, "The Chintamani Crystal Matrix: Quantum
Intention and the Wish-Fulfilling Gem" is a unique and inherently fascinating volume that will be
of special and particular interest for metaphysical studies involving the properties and uses of
crystals. Impressively informative, exceptionally well presented, "The Chintamani Crystal
Matrix: Quantum Intention and the Wish-Fulfilling Gem" is an ideal and recommended addition
to personal, professional, and community library collections. It should be noted that "The
Chintamani Crystal Matrix: Quantum Intention and the Wish-Fulfilling Gem" is also readily
available in a digital book format (Kindle, $20.99).
The Self-Help Shelf
Let It Be Easy
New World Library
14 Pamaron Way, Novato, CA 94949
9781608687572, $17.95, PB, 304pp
Synopsis: Susie Moore knows that all too often stress is self-created and bogs us down, and she
knows that we can just as easily create peace and power. Susie doesn't deny the reality of
suffering but instead, with the publication of "Let It Be Easy: Simple Ways to Stop Stressing &
Start Living" shows how to pivot toward a life-changing way of processing pain, grief, loss, and
anxiety. Her poignant stories and wise and witty words deliver nuggets of real-life wisdom to
help you defuse reactive triggers and recast failures into successes with simple-yet-powerful
Critique: Exceptionally and impressively well written, organized and presented, "Let It Be Easy:
Simple Ways to Stop Stressing & Start Living" is a kind of blueprint for avoiding stress, and
dealing with stress if it cannot be avoided. Written with humor, candor, insight, and practicality,
"Let It Be Easy: Simple Ways to Stop Stressing & Start Living" is also readily available in a
digital book format (Kindle, $9.15) and strongly recommended for personal, professional,
community, college, and university library Stress Management and Self-Help/Self-Improvement
Editorial Note: A native of England, she now lives and works in Miami, Susie Moore is a life
coach and advice columnist for some of the world's biggest media outlets. A former sales director
and adviser for start-ups in Silicon Valley and New York, she reaches her audience online and in
person with workshops, newsletters, and podcasts.
7-Minute Productivity Solution
Fleming H. Revell Company
c/o Baker Publishing Group
6030 East Fulton, Ada, MI 49301
9780800741389, $29.99, HC, 256pp
Synopsis: Productive days don't just happen. They are the direct results of upending the habits
that aren't working for us and developing ones that will. With the publication of "7-Minute
Productivity Solution: How to Manage Your Schedule, Overcome Distraction, and Achieve the
Results You Want", productivity expert John Brandon reveals how to radically reduce digital
distractions and revamp your routines for better focus, efficiency, and outcomes by using his
proven 7-minute framework.
"The 7-Minute Productivity Solution" shows how to: Start your day; Manage your schedule; Stop
obsessively checking email; Take effective breaks; Create compelling presentations -- and so
much more! It only takes 7 minutes to transform your days from mindlessly reacting to whatever
comes your way to mindfully structuring your time for maximum impact.
Critique: A thoroughly 'user friendly', informative, and 'real world' practical instructional guide
and DIY manual for achieving maximum personal and professional time management benefits,
"7-Minute Productivity Solution: How to Manage Your Schedule, Overcome Distraction, and
Achieve the Results You Want" is an ideal and highly recommended addition to personal,
professional, community, corporate, college, and university library Self-Help/Self-Improvement
collections in general, and Time Management reading lists in particular. It should be noted that
"7-Minute Productivity Solution" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle,
Editorial Note: John Brandon is a reporter and columnist for Inc. magazine, Fox News Network,
Christianity Today, Relevant magazine, and many others. For ten years, he worked as a corporate
manager in the Information Technology field. He then became a writer and has since published
over twelve thousand articles in seventeen years. Over ten million people have read his
thought-pieces on leadership, productivity, mentoring, and technology for Inc.com.
The Psychology Shelf
Complex Integration of Multiple Brain Systems in Therapy
Beatriz Sheldon, author
Albert Sheldon, author
W. W. Norton & Company
500 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10110
9780393713275, $55.00, HC, 496pp
Synopsis: Beatriz and Albert Sheldon have spent the last 20 years developing the novel
therapeutic paradigm called Complex Integration of Multiple Brain Systems (CIMBS). They
have pioneered new methodology for "reading" and assessing emotional states using their
patients' carefully observed psychophysiological phenomena as empirical evidence. CIMBS also
incorporates the latest groundbreaking research on neuroplasticity, brain development, and
therapeutic change. "Complex Integration of Multiple Brain Systems in Therapy" details their
novel neurobiological and psychotherapeutic paradigm -- and reveals how therapists can use it
for more successful treatment.
Clients come to therapy troubled by deeply ingrained neural circuits and emotional habits. The
authors demonstrate how they use psychophysiological perspectives to recognize limitations in
brain systems that are interfering with their patients' functioning. And through
"physiopsychotherapy," they activate self-affirming, nonconscious emotional resources to change
rigid, maladaptive neural circuits. CIMBS offers a way of "integrating" these [brain system]
resources to foster more complex and flexible mental functioning and to produce more successful
psychotherapeutic outcomes. The therapeutic attachment relationship between therapist and
patient, and "present moment" experiences within the session rather than recollections of past
trauma, are key elements in this unique emotional resource-based mode of therapy.
"Complex Integration of Multiple Brain Systems in Therapy" is wide-ranging in documenting
CIMBS' success at operationalizing neuroscience research. Translating their academic, scientific,
and clinical research and successful training courses into a reference work that you can hold in
your hands and savor at leisure, the Sheldons have produced an approachable, intriguing, yet
comprehensive milestone in the psychotherapeutic literature.
Critique: An extraordinary, invaluable, and seminal contribution to the growing library of
Cognitive Neuroscience & Neuropsychology literature, "Complex Integration of Multiple Brain
Systems in Therapy" is especially recommended for professional, college, and university library
Clinical Psychology and Medical Clinical Psychology collections and supplemental curriculum
studies lists. It should be noted for the personal reading lists of psychology students, academia,
psychologists, practicing psychiatrists, counselors, and non-specialist general readers with an
interest in the subject that "Complex Integration of Multiple Brain Systems in Therapy" is also
readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $25.99).
Editorial Note #1: Beatriz Sheldon M.Ed, Psych. has practiced psychotherapy for forty years in
four languages. Ms. Sheldon received specialized post-graduate training in short-term dynamic
psychotherapy at McGill University in Montreal, Canada. Director of a psychotherapy training
program for advanced clinicians in Vancouver, Canada, she and Albert Sheldon have researched
and taught psychotherapy together for 20 years.
Editorial Note #2: Albert Sheldon, MD, a clinical professor of psychiatry at the University of
Washington, Seattle, has specialized in the research, practice and training of psychotherapy for
35 years. Dr. Sheldon received a Bush Medical Fellowship to study psychotherapeutic processes
from a psychophysiological perspective. The development of the CIMBS paradigm is a result of
the Sheldon's research and teaching experiential psychotherapy to clinicians throughout North
America and Europe.
The Computer Shelf
Computers For Seniors For Dummies: 6th Edition
c/o Wiley Professional Trade Group
111 River Street, Hoboken, NJ 07030-5774
9781119849605, $24.99, PB, 416pp
Synopsis: Most seniors who are new to computers can find them a little intimidating at first. But
with the right guidance, even a total novice can be sending email and banking online in no time
at all. Updated and expanded, this sixth edition of "Computers For Seniors For Dummies" by
Faithe Wempen is comprised of clear, easy, step-by-step instructions for accessing websites,
opening and using programs, and keeping safe from viruses and hackers. And unlike the
confusing "tips" from your son-in-law or grandchildren, you can rely on "Computers For Seniors
For Dummies" to deliver advice that actually works!
Whether you've set up your computer and are ready to start using it or it's still sitting in the box,
"Computers For Seniors For Dummies" walks you through each and every step you need to take
to connect with your family or share your photos with your friends on Facebook.
"Computers For Seniors For Dummies" will also show how to: Research topics you're interested
in on the web while steering clear of malicious websites and emails that can harm your computer;
Shop online in a way that keeps your credit card info secure; Find recipes, diet tips, the latest
news, or your favorite TV show.
"Computers For Seniors For Dummies" is a one one-stop resource for taking control of your
computer, transforming it from an expensive paperweight into the most useful gadget in your
home. Filled with easy-on-the-eyes type and tons of explanatory images, "Computers For Seniors
For Dummies" is the combination of instructional guide and 'how to' manual that will finally get
you up to speed on personal computing.
Critique: Exceptionally well written, organized and represented, "Computers For Seniors For
Dummies" is thoroughly 'user friendly' and especially ideal for senior citizens wanting to take
advantage of what the computer and the internet have to offer in this modern ages. While this
newly updated and expanded sixth edition of "Computers For Seniors For Dummies" is
unreservedly recommended for Senior Citizen Center and community library computer
instruction collections, it should be noted for personal use that it is also readily available in a
digital book format (Kindle, $15.00).
Editorial Note: Faithe Wempen is a computer and information technology instructor at Indiana
University Purdue University at Indianapolis. She designs online technology courses for
corporate clients and is the author of over 150 books on computer hardware and software.
Windows 11 For Dummies
c/o Wiley Professional Trade Group
111 River Street, Hoboken, NJ 07030-5774
9781119846475, $24.99, PB, 464pp
Synopsis: Windows 11 promises to be the fastest, most secure, and most flexible version of the
Microsoft operating system yet. "Windows 11 For Dummies" by Windows expert Andy
Rathbone gives you that speed, security, and flexibility by getting you up to date with the latest in
The introductory tour of Windows 11 starts with the Start menu and ends with how to
troubleshoot when things go wrong. In between you find out how to find files on your hard drive,
connect with friends and colleagues on Microsoft Teams, transfer photos from your phone to
your hard drive, or switch between your desktop and laptop.
Additional topics include: Navigating the Start menu; Finding where your files are hiding;
Adding separate user accounts to keep your kids out of your business; Connecting to a WiFi
network; Customizing your widgets; Switching to a laptop or tablet.
You know what you want to get done. Keep Windows 11 For Dummies by your desktop, laptop,
and tablet, and you can open it at any time to find out how to get your Windows computer to do
what you need.
Critique: Exceptionally well written, organized and presented, "Windows 11 For Dummies" is an
essential and comprehensive instructional guide and should be considered a 'must' for both the
novice and the more experienced Windows 11 users. While highly recommended for community,
college, and university library Computer Science collections, it should be noted for personal
reading lists that "Windows 11 For Dummies" is also readily available in a digital book format
Editorial Note: Andy Rathbone began writing the Windows For Dummies series in 1992. His
books have been translated into more than 30 languages worldwide.
The Education Shelf
Case Studies for Positive Behavior Supports in Classrooms and Schools
Keith Storey, Ph.D., BCBA-D
Charles C. Thomas, Publisher
2600 South First Street, Springfield, IL 62704
9780398093662, $29.95, PB, 162pp
Synopsis: With the publication of "Case Studies for Positive Behavior Supports in Classrooms
and Schools", Professor Keith Storey directly addresses the critical need for highly qualified
personnel to work with students that have varying support needs, and provides a framework for
analyzing these needs.
The exploration of Positive Behavior Supports in this text will serve as a guide to help prepare
teachers, teachers in training, and other service providers to adequately support and teach all
students. Professor Storey writes in a non\-technical style and provides case study examples and
guides for assisting readers in analyzing and understanding the appropriate supports and
interventions in Positive Behavior Supports. These case studies analyze real life situations that
will assist teachers and service providers.
The twelve case studies presented in "Case Studies for Positive Behavior Supports in Classrooms
and Schools" contains four cases that offers a complete analysis, and eight cases containing a
description of the case with partial analysis components that readers can use for their own
education, including courses and\/or training purposes. The applicability of the case studies to
applied settings and the ability to use the case studies as assignments and\/or exams will be
beneficial to all teachers and college instructors.
General references related to Positive Behavior Supports are provided, including organizations
and resources. Empirical research to support that the interventions used in the case studies are
evidence\-based practices is depicted. Readers will appreciate the provision of a system for
teachers, teachers in training, school psychologists, behavior specialists, classroom assistants and
others, to analyze inclusion and to understand how supports and instruction can be used to best
educate students with disabilities.
Critique: An invaluable and informative contribution to the growing body of literature regarding
behavioral disorders in Special Education students, "Case Studies for Positive Behavior Supports
in Classrooms and Schools" is highly recommended for personal, professional, school district,
college, and university library Special Education collections.
Editorial Note: Keith Storey is a Professor Emeritus at Touro University in Vallejo, California.
He co-edited the book "Walking Isn't Everything: An Account of the Life of Jean Denecke" and
has published over 100 articles in professional journals and which can be accessed at
Researchgate (https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Keith_Storey). He served on the editorial
boards of Research and Practice for Persons with Severe Disabilities, Career Development for
Exceptional Individuals, Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation, Journal of Positive Behavior
Interventions, Education and Training in Autism and Developmental Disabilities, Education and
Treatment of Children, The Vocational Evaluation and Work Adjustment Bulletin, and
Exceptionality. He can be followed on Instagram at keith.storey.books. His Youtube channel is at
The Literary Studies Shelf
Hamlet: The First Quarto
William Shakespeare, author
William Percy, author
Anna Faktorovich, translator
Anaphora Literary Press
9798750114160, $26.00, HC, 172pp
Synopsis: The standard summary of Shakespeare's 'Hamlet' describes it as a "tragedy" about a
"mad" or "tormented" Prince of Denmark, who follows the solicitation of the Ghost of his
assassinated father to revenge-murder his incestuous and homicidal uncle Claudius.
The commentary that is a part of "Hamlet: The First Quarto" is a never before and fully
modernized First Quarto of Hamlet explaining how it was initially designed to be a satire that
diverged from Saxo Grammaticus' Danish History where Amleth pretends to be mad not only to
execute revenge but also to successfully win the crown from his uncle.
The First Quarto subtracts any desire for the crown from Hamlet, and instead subversively
explains that Hamlet is motivated to feign madness and to deflower Ofelia to disguise his
outlawed homosexual love for Horatio. Hamlet makes no direct expressions of attraction towards
Ofelia's beauty. And in the resolution, Horatio offers to poison himself to death when he learns
Hamlet is dying.
The satirical perspective of this history is especially apparent in the cemetery scene where the
Clown 1 gravedigger sifts through a mass-grave to help Hamlet find a dried skull among those
that are still decomposing.
The heavy re-write between the 1603 and 1604 editions of Hamlet also help to show Percy's
re-writing habit that confirms the attribution to him of diverging versions of anonymous and then
"Shakespeare" - bylined versions of Leir/ Lear, and Tragedy of.../ Richard III.
Critique: "Hamlet: The First Quarto" is an iconoclastic, unique, informative, and inherently
interesting study that is highly recommended for personal, professional, community, college, and
university library Literary Studies collections in general, and supplemental curriculum
Shakespearean Studies lists in particular. Also readily available in a paperback edition
(9798750113255, $21.00) and in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99) "Hamlet: The First
Quarto" is volume twelve of the simply outstanding British Renaissance Re-Attribution and
Modernization Series from Anaphora Literary Press. Ably translated by academician Anna
Faktorovich, "Hamlet: The First Quarto" will have a particular interest and value for
Shakespearean scholars and students, as well as the non-specialist general reader with an interest
in the subject.
The Political Science Shelf
American Turning Point
c/o John Hunt Publishing
9781789049534 $26.95 pbk / $15.99 Kindle
Synopsis: With the assault on our nation's capital on June 6, 2021, it is clear that American
Democracy is in immediate and looming peril. Most of the American people believe our
government is on the wrong track, is broken, and is not capable of solving our major problems.
Our national leaders have for too long made the rules for how we are governed for the benefit of
their careers and re-election, primarily serving partisan and donor interests instead of serving the
country. With the publication of "American Turning Point - Repairing and Restoring Our
Constitutional Republic: Becoming One Indivisible Nation in the Era of Divisiveness", Robert
Vieny presents fact-based, unbiased and non-partisan actions that "We the People" can take to
restore a service-to-country culture in Congress and the Administration.
Critique: A timely and clarion call to preserve the American democracy that, for some 200 years
has been able to resist foreign attempts to overthrow it, but is now on the edge of being destroyed
from within by a fractured society that once fell into Civil War and now may do so again,
"American Turning Point - Repairing and Restoring Our Constitutional Republic: Becoming One
Indivisible Nation in the Era of Divisiveness" is an urgent and highly recommended addition
community, college, and university library Contemporary Political Science collections, as well as
to the personal reading lists of political activists, governmental policy makers, political science
students, academia, and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject.
Editorial Note: Robert Viney is a former nuclear powered submarine officer, US Naval Academy
graduate, and Cold War and Vietnam War Veteran. He served as a Marketing Executive at
Procter & Gamble, Chief Marketing Officer, at Arm & Hammer Household Products, and SVP,
CMO, COO for several digital marketing start ups. He has also contributed a chapter to the title
'When Core Values are Strategic '.
The Graphic Novel Shelf
The Art of Sushi
160 Broadway, Ste. 700, East Wing, New York, NY 10038
9781681122854, $24.99, HC, 160pp
Synopsis: The next best thing to actually flying to Japan, "The Art of Sushi" reveals all there is to
know about sushi as graphic illustrator and author Franckie Alarcon offers his readers a gourmet
panorama of this exceptional dish that has become a culinary favorite around the world!
The author's research for "The Art of Sushi" included his traveling to Japan to meet all the
players involved in the making of this true work of culinary art. From the traditional starred chef
to the young cook who is shaking up the rules, including all the artisans and producers involved,
"The Art of Suschi" covers the most emblematic of Japanese products from A to Z.
Critique: Offering a inherently fascinating and impressively informative journey of discovery that
also reveals a lot about Japanese culture, "The Art of Sushi" is presented in a graphic novel
format and is unreservedly recommended for personal, professional, and community library
cookbook and food history collections. It should be noted for the personal reading lists of all
dedicated sushi fans that "The Art of Sushi" is also readily available in a digital book format
Editorial Note: Franckie Alarcon studied graphic arts in Nantes, France, and after a few years as a
graphic artist, decided to go freelance as illustrator and comic artist, realizing various graphic
novels for prominent French publishers. He is also the author of "The Secrets of Chocolate".
The Silent Invasion: Dark Matter
Larry Hancock, author
Michael Cherkas, illustrator
160 Broadway, Ste. 700, East Wing, New York, NY 10038
9781681122830, $16.99, PB, 144pp
Synopsis: Walter Sinkage's quiet suburban life is shattered when he witnesses several UFOs flash
past in the sky. His search for the truth about the UFOS and the suspicious disappearance of his
brother Matt, leads him to an alien abduction support group and confrontation with the Church of
Cosmic Enlightenment. When Walter also vanishes, police detective Eddy Dime finds himself
stymied while trying to uncover the truth behind what happened to the two brothers and other
victims of what he believes may be an alien conspiracy that reaches into the highest and murkiest
echelons of government power.
Critique; A riveting science fiction mystery in a black-and-white graphic novel format, "The
Silent Invasion: Dark Matter" by the team of author/storyteller Larry Hancock and
artist/illustrator Michael Cherkas is an inherently entertaining read from cover to cover, and
unreservedly recommended for personal and community library graphic novel and science fiction
collections. It should be noted for the personal reading lists of dedicated science fiction fans that
"The Silent Invasion: Dark Matter" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle,
The Audiobook Shelf
How to Book a Murder
Cynthia Kuhn, author
Rachel Dulude, narrator
9781666512373, $22.99, MP3-CD,
Synopsis: To help save her family's floundering Colorado bookstore, Starlit Bookshop,
newly-minted Ph.D. Emma Starrs agrees to plan a mystery-themed dinner party for her wealthy,
well-connected high school classmate Tabitha Baxter. It's a delightful evening of cocktails and
conjecture until Tabitha's husband, Tip (hosting the affair in the guise of Edgar Allan Poe's
detective C. Auguste Dupin) winds up murdered.
In a heartbeat, Emma and her aunt Nora, a famous mystery writer, become suspects. Emma is
sure the party's over for Starlit events, until celebrated author Calliope Nightfall, whose gothic
sensibilities are intrigued by the circumstances, implores the bookseller to create a Poe-themed
launch event for her latest tome.
Throwing a bash to die for while searching for additional clues is already enough to drive Emma
stark raven mad, but another shocking crime soon reveals that Silvercrest has not yet reached the
final chapter of the puzzling case. Someone in this charming artistic community has murder on
the mind, and if Emma cannot outwit the killer, she and her beloved aunt will land behind bars,
to walk free nevermore.
Critique: Creating a true 'theatre of the mind' experience for the listener, narrator Rachel Dulude
gives this complete and unabridged audio book edition of author Cynthia Kuhn's new mystery
novel "How to Book a Murder" a particularly impressive and compelling entertainment for all
dedicated 'whodunnit' mystery fans and an unreservedly recommended addition to personal and
community library audio book collections.
CharlieN. Holmberg, author
Khristine Hvam, narrator
9781713604310, $14.99, MPW-CD
Synopsis: When a star dies, a new one must be born -- even at the cost of the mother's life in a
world where along with human beings there are Gods, Demi-Gods, and Godlings.
The Sun God chooses the village of Endwever to provide a mortal womb. The birthing of a star
is always fatal for the mother, and Ceris Wenden, who considers herself an outsider, sacrifices
herself to secure her family's honor and take control of her legacy. But after her star child is born,
Ceris does what no other star mother has: she survives. When Ceris returns to Endwever,
however, it's not nine months later -- it's seven hundred years later. Inexplicably displaced in
time, Ceris is determined to seek out her descendants.
Being a woman traveling alone brings its own challenges, until Ceris encounters a mysterious
(and desperate) godling. Ristriel is incorporeal, a fugitive, a trickster, and the only being who can
guide Ceris safely to her destination. Now, as Ceris traverses realms both mortal and beyond, her
journey truly begins.
Together, pursued across the Earth and trespassing the heavens, Ceris and Ristriel are on a path
to illuminate the mysteries that bind them and discover the secrets of the celestial world.
Critique: A unique and fabulous fantasy novel by Charlie N. Holmberg, "Star Mother" is a
complete and unabridged audio book edition from Brilliance Audio is deftly narrated by Kristine
Hvam. Providing a true 'theatre of the mind' experience for dedicated fantasy fans, "Star Mother"
is an extraordinarily entertaining addition to personal and community library audio book
collections. (8 Discs, 9 Hours 54 Minutes).
We Shall Rise
John Ringo & Gary Poole
9781713655947, $29.69, MP3-CD
Synopsis: The world has been brought to its knees by the "zombie virus". Nations have fallen,
cities have been overrun by the infected, and the human race has come perilously close to
extinction. But with the first winter come and gone, the infected have been reduced to not much
more than a background nuisance, and survivors around the world are taking stock and vowing to
rebuild and rise up stronger, better, and unafraid.
These are the all new short stories compiled and edited by John Ringo & Gary Poole's science
fiction anthology "We Shall Rise" featuring zombie themed tales from Kevin J. Anderson;
Brendon DuBois; Jody Lynn Nye; Michael Z. Williamson; Kacey Ezell; Mike Massa;
Christopher L. Smith; Lydia Sherrer; Jason Cordova; Brian Trent; Patrick Vanner; and Jamie
Critique: Ably and dramatically narrated by the vocal talents of Tanya Eby and Tristan Morris,
this complete and unabridged edition of "We Shall Rise" is highly recommended and fully
guaranteed to be a popular and appreciated addition to personal and community library Science
Fiction & Fantasy audio book collections. (1 MP3-CD, 11 Hours, 59 Minutes).
Bell, Book, and Key
Rysa Walker, author
Eric G. Dove & Kate Rudd, narrators
9781713607915, $14.99, MP3-CD
Synopsis: CHRONOS historians Madi, Tyson, and Katherine and their cohorts are on the
enemy's trail, fixing the mess that sociopath Saul Rand has made of history -- and of the
Temporal Dilemma rules. Another time shift is on the horizon, and this time, it's one that reflects
Saul's twisted vision.
When the shift hits, it plunges the United States into a modern dark age where superstition
trumps science and seventeenth-century witch hunts are no longer a thing of the past. But Saul
has added a new hurdle to this insane reality: he's hunting the Sisters of Prudence.
Clones of Katherine's daughter, the Sisters are pawns to be sacrificed on Saul's time travel
chessboard -- unless the team can track him down at the 1967 Monterey Pop Festival and erase
him first. Saul is calling the shots, so he's ahead of them every step of the way. With the clock
ticking, this could be the endgame for CHRONOS and, if they fail, for reality itself.
Critique: Creating a coherent time travel novel is a very difficult science fiction subgenre but
with "Bell, Book, And Key", novelist Rysa Walker has fully succeeded. The third volume and
concluding volume in the author's Chronos Origins series, and ably narrated by the team of Ric
G. Dove and Kate Rudd, this complete and unabridged audio book edition of "Bell, Book, And
Key" is an inherently fascinating, fully entertaining, 'theatre of the mind' experience and is very
highly recommended for both the personal lists of dedicated time travel science fiction fans, and
community library Science Fiction & Fantasy audio book collections. (17 Hours, 3 Minutes,
The Library CD Shelf
I Had a Dream: Songs of an Immigrant
Ruth Hertz Weber and Emilia Lopez-Yanez
I Had a Dream: Songs of an Immigrant is an extraordinary music album by mother-daughter team
Ruth Hertz Weber and Emilia Lopez-Yanez, immortalizing the poems of Ruth's late grandmother
Betty Karon Hertz. The music album tells the story of Betty's impoverished childhood in Russia,
her escape during the Bolshevik Revolution, and her life as a Jewish immigrant in the United
States. Emotional and poignant, I Had a Dream: Songs of an Immigrant is utterly unforgettable
and worthy of the highest recommendation for personal and public library music CD collections.
The tracks are Mushrooms, I Had A Dream, I Am A Tree, To Lauren, The Six-Day War, Dear
Ruth, Mayn Heym, My Darling, Back In Your Younger Days, and Why Am I Here?
Rachael Sage and Dave Eggar
$TBA CD / $9.49 MP3
Poetica is an album that blends elements of jazz, classical, new age, and Americana. Producer
and multi-instrumentalist Rachael Sage and Grammy nominated cellist Dave Eggar combine
their talents with additional contributors to create a unique fusion that combines a musical
soundscape with eighteen spoken-word poems into lyrical masterpieces. The physical album for
Poetica includes two CDs (the second CD is entirely instrumental) and a book with colorful still
photographs and the text of the selected poems. Poetica is an extraordinary melding of talent,
highly recommended especially for avant-garde music connoisseurs. The tracks are
Unconditional, Beginning, Powder, Passenger, Magenta and Blue, Lower East Side Baby,
Lamentation, Handwriting, Days of Awe, Winemaker, Sleep When I'm Tired, Butterflies, How
Songs Are Born, engagement, Pulpit, Thanksgiving, Swing Dance, and untitled.
Don't Look Back
Bernie Senensky Quartet/Quintet
$12.99 CD / $11.49 MP3
Don't Look Back is a previously unreleased album of Canadian jazz pianist and composer Bernie
Senensky, along with Bob Mover on alto saxophone, Sam Noto on trumpet, Neil Swainson on
bass, and Barry Elmes on drums. Their smooth, rhythmic artistry carries the listener on a journey
of imagination, in this thoroughly captivating album. Highly recommended, especially for
connoisseurs of the genre. The tracks are Don't Look Back, I Hear a Rhapsody, Floating,
Together, May in June, The Mover, Jump for Joe, The Latest, Danse Encore, One is Enough, and
Blue Yarn Records
$17.00 CD / $7.92 MP3
Love Rules: Meditations for Cello and Piano is an instrumental album by cellist Noah Hoffeld
and pianist Wells Hanley, with contributions from Mark Egan on bass and Arjun Bruggeman on
tablas. A beautiful, meditative collection ideal for fostering relaxation, meditation sessions, or
yoga, Love Rules is a boundless, unfolding soundscape that calms the spirit even as it stirs
imagination. Highly recommended, especially for new age music connoisseurs. The tracks are
Lilies of the Field, The Gardener, Love Rules, 444, Arc of the Sun, Mystery, Boundless Heart,
and Loving Awareness.
Welcome to Florida
Artikal Sound System
Control Substance Labs Records
$15.00 CD / $9.49 MP3
Welcome to Florida is the latest album by reggae-rock band Artikal Sound System. The lyrics are
so bold as to be categorized explicit (one song is expressly titled "You're an Asshole"). A strong
sense of zest for life, dance, and vivacious excitement permeates this choice pick for fans of the
genre. Welcome to Florida celebrates the real and the surreal combined into an unforgettable
listening experience, highly recommended. The tracks are Stayed, One With You, Too Soon,
When I Wanna, Dissolve, Spiritual Broadcaster, Cops and Robbers, Pull Me Close, You're Not
There, You're an Asshole, Happy, and Bald Tires.
Lost Love Songs
The Pine Hearts
Inspired by travels to as far away as the South Pole, Lost Love Songs is roots music that stirs the
desire to dance. The core trio of Joey Capoccia on guitar, Derek McSwain on mandolin, and
Dean Shakked on bass with banjo player Lob Strilla and fiddler Bevin Foley have created a get-
up-and-move celebration, enthusiastically recommended especially for fans of the genre. The
tracks are Mary the Night's on Fire, Wouldn't You Know, Darling Don't the Sunlight in Your
Eyes, Ocean in Your Vision, Losing You, Sugareane, Unrequited Days, Oceans and Limousines,
Bones of the Vineyard, Running in Place, Long Gone Crazy, Burn that Bridge, and Unit of
The Money/Finance Shelf
Secrets to Successful Property Investment
c/o John Hunt Publishing
9781789048186, $16.95, PB, 128pp
Synopsis: A recent financial study and survey found that 88% of people cannot afford to buy
their own home and will always rent a property. With the publication of "Secrets to Successful
Property Investment", journalist and property investor, Deborah Durbin teaches you how to start
your own successful property business.
Taken from her seven years' experience which began with her knowing nothing about property
investment to creating a multimillion-pound property portfolio, "Secrets to Successful Property
Investment" will guide you step-by-step to creating your own property empire.
"Secrets to Successful Property Investment" is informative guide will covers: How to generate
deposits; How to get a mortgage; Renovations; Dealing with contractors; Dealing with bad
tenants; How to grow your portfolio.
Critique: Thoroughly 'user friendly' in organization and presentation, "Secrets to Successful
Property Investment" is a comprehensive, 'real world practical', and 'field tested successful'
combination of informative guide book and how to manual for financially investing in and the
management of property for profit. Highly recommended for community library Money/Finance
and Property Investment collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Secrets to
Successful Property Investment" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle,
Editorial Note: Currently residing in Somerset, UK, Deborah Durbin has over 20 years'
experience working in print media for national magazines and newspapers as a freelance
journalist and feature writer. She writes regularly for all the MBS magazine titles, Chat it's Fate,
Take a Break, and other UK & US magazines.
Decolonizing Wealth, second edition
Berrett-Koehler Publishers Inc.
1333 Broadway, Suite 1000, Oakland CA, 94612
9781523091416, $19.95, PB, 240pp
Synopsis: Exacerbated by the COVID pandemic, the world is out of economic balance. With
increasing frequency, we are presented with the inescapable truth that systemic racism and
colonial structures are foundational principles to our economies. The $1 trillion philanthropic
industry is one example of a system that mirrors oppressive colonial behavior. It's an industry
whose name means "the love for humankind," yet it can and occasionally does more harm than
Now in an updated second edition, "Decolonizing Wealth: Indigenous Wisdom to Heal Divides
and Restore Balance", author, activist, and expert on race, wealth, and philanthropy issues Edgar
Villanueva looks past philanthropy's glamorous, altruistic fa ade and into its shadows: white
supremacy, savior complexes, and internalized oppression. Across history and to the present day,
the accumulation of wealth is steeped in trauma. How can we shift philanthropy toward social
reconciliation and healing if the cornerstones are exploitation, extraction, and control?
Drawing from Native traditions, "Decolonizing Wealth" empowers individuals and institutions to
begin to repair the damage through his Seven Steps to Healing. In this newly published second
edition, Villanueva adds inspiring examples of people using their resources to decolonize
entertainment, museums, libraries, land ownership, and much more.
Critique: The underlying message of "Decolonizing Wealth: Indigenous Wisdom to Heal Divides
and Restore Balance" is that everyone and anyone can become a healer and a leader in restoring
economic, social, and political balance -- everyone is needed to do their part. Practical and
effecitve, thoughtful and thought-provoking, "Decolonizing Wealth: Indigenous Wisdom to Heal
Divides and Restore Balance" is especially and unreservedly recommended for personal,
professional, community, college, and university library Money/Finance and
Philanthropy/Charity collections and reading lists.
Editorial Note: Edgar Villanueva is the Principal of Decolonizing Wealth Project and Liberated
Capital, as well as the adviser for a range of organizations including national and global
philanthropies, Fortune 500 companies, and entertainment/media agencies on social impact
strategies to advance racial equity from within and through their investment strategies.Villanueva
can be followed on Twitter and Instagram @VillanuevaEdgar.
The Health/Medicine Shelf
Douglas & McIntyre
c/o Harbour Publishing
9781771622929, $22.95, PB, 224pp
Synopsis: Canadians who have followed the news about the COVID-19 pandemic will recognize
the names of doctors Lisa Barrett, Isaac Bogoch, Zain Chagla, Sumon Chakrabarti, Susy Hota,
Fatima Kakkar, Srinivas Murthy, Lynora Saxinger and Alexander Wong -- nine remarkable
Canadian physicians who found themselves in the spotlight during a remarkably challenging
While dealing with their own personal concerns about the worsening pandemic and their busy
medical practices, the doctors profiled in "Pandemic Spotlight: Canadian Doctors at the Front of
the COVID-19 Fight" by author and interviewer Ian Hanomansing volunteered their time and
offered their expertise in hundreds of media interviews, providing calm, clear and independent
analysis. Hanomansing talks to them about what inspired them to become doctors and what led
them to specialize in infectious diseases and then take on this very public role.
The doctors discuss the moment the pandemic became very real to them and speak candidly
about what it was like when infections raged out of control in Italy and then New York City,
leaving doctors at Canadian hospitals to wonder what might be next. And they explain the sense
of duty they felt to step into the media glare, even as public anxiety and skepticism sometimes
turned into hostility and social media made them easy to contact and, sometimes, easy targets.
And for anyone who's been asked to offer their expertise to the media, they have advice on how
to answer the call.
There are a few silver linings in the COVID pandemic. But one of them is how these doctors put
science front and centre and became public symbols of trust and hope. As they prepare to return
to their private careers, they respond to Hanomansing's invitation to reflect on lessons learned
and their concerns about the next pandemic.
Critique: Timely, informative, inspiring, "Pandemic Spotlight: Canadian Doctors at the Front of
the COVID-19 Fight" is unreservedly and urgently recommended for personal reading lists, as
well as professional, community, college, and university library Health & Medicine
Editorial Note: Currently residing in Vancouver, BC., Ian Hanomansing is a co-host of CBC's
The National and has been a journalist for more than thirty years.
Weight Loss for Life
Lawrence J. Cheskin, author
Kimberly A. Gudzune, author
The Johns Hopkins University Press
2715 N Charles St, Baltimore, MD 21218
9781421441948, $29.95, HC, 400pp
Synopsis: With the publication of "Weight Loss for Life: The Proven Plan for Success", by
Lawrence J. Cheskin and Kimberly A. Gudzune (two experts from the Johns Hopkins Healthful
Eating, Activity & Weight Program) provides you with all of the information you need on your
weight loss journey. They bring together leading experts in behavioral health, nutrition, exercise,
and nursing to help you develop a plan that works best for you -- and that is not focused on just
restricting calories or certain foods. Anyone struggling with unwanted weight gain or obesity will
find this program to be helpful, compassionate, and clear.
A central feature of the program is a Personal Plan of Action to help you set up reachable goals,
plan your meals, and make time for movement. All the recommendations are customizable based
on your personal health and needs. You'll enjoy the interactive features, too, with surveys
throughout asking you to reflect on your own eating habits as well as barriers to success. And
unlike other weight loss books on the market, "Weight Loss for Life" covers it all: supplements,
prescription medications, med spas, and surgical options. If you struggle, it can help you get back
on track. Throughout, testimonials from others who have followed the program along with
hundreds of photographs and drawings will help educate and keep you motivated along your
weight loss journey.
Critique: A part of the Johns Hopkins Press Health Book series, "Weight Loss for Life: The
Proven Plan for Success" is a thoroughly 'user friendly' instructional guide to the science and art
of achieving and maintaining a healthful weight regardless of gender or age. While especially and
unreservedly recommended for professional and community library Health & Medicine
collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Weight Loss for Life: The Proven
Plan for Success" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $28.45).
Editorial Note #1: Lawrence J. Cheskin, MD, is an adjunct professor of medicine at Johns
Hopkins School of Medicine and a professor and the chair of nutrition and food studies at George
Mason University. He is also the author of "Healing Heartburn and Losing Weight for Good:
Developing Your Personal Plan of Action".
Editorial Note #2: Kimberly Anne Gudzune, MD, MPH, is an associate professor of medicine at
Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, where she is the director of Johns Hopkins Healthful Eating,
Activity & Weight Program.
The Gaming Shelf
Counting at Bridge
Master Point Press
9781771400657, $17.95, PB, 167pp
Synopsis: Dianne Aves is a retired math teacher and professional bridge teacher who has long
felt that counting is the most useful skill she can instill in her bridge students, but that most
books on playing bridge approach the subject at too high a level. But now with the publication of
"Counting at Bridge: The Easy Way to Improve Your Game ", she introduces the concept of
counting for newer players, and helps them to begin acquiring a skill that is critical to their
becoming better players.
Critique: Master Point Press is the premier publisher of 'how to' instructional books on all aspects
of the card game known as Bridge. Very highly recommended for personal reading lists and
community library card game collections, "Counting at Bridge" is an ideal guide and manual
recommended for all new or even experienced bridge players wanting to improve their
The Mathematics Shelf
Algebra & Geometry: An Introduction to University Mathematics, second edition
Mark V. Lawson
c/o Taylor & Francis Group
9780367563035, $66.95 pbk / $63.60 Kindle
Synopsis: Algebra & Geometry: An Introduction to University Mathematics, Second Edition
provides a bridge between high school and undergraduate mathematics courses on algebra and
geometry. The author shows students how mathematics is more than a collection of methods by
presenting important ideas and their historical origins throughout the text. He incorporates a
hands-on approach to proofs and connects algebra and geometry to various applications.
The text focuses on linear equations, polynomial equations, and quadratic forms. The first few
chapters cover foundational topics, including the importance of proofs and a discussion of the
properties commonly encountered when studying algebra. The remaining chapters form the
mathematical core of the book. These chapters explain the solutions of different kinds of
algebraic equations, the nature of the solutions, and the interplay between geometry and
New to the second edition
Several updated chapters, plus an all-new chapter discussing the construction of the real numbers
by means of approximations by rational numbers
Includes fifteen short 'essays' that are accessible to undergraduate readers, but which direct
interested students to more advanced developments of the material
Contains chapter exercises with solutions provided online at
Critique: Now in an updated second edition with updated chapters, expanded references, and
fifteen brief essays designed to steer undergraduate readers to more advanced studies, Algebra &
Geometry: An Introduction to University Mathematics is an educational textbook ideal for
university students or self-study. Chapters cover such foundational mathematical concepts as
mathematic proofs, number theory, complex numbers, polynomials, matrices, vectors, properties
of real numbers, and more. A bibliography, an index, and chapter exercises with solutions
provided online round out this excellent pedagogical reference, resource, and teaching tool. It
should be noted that Algebra & Geometry is also available in a Kindle edition ($63.60).
Editorial Note: Mark V. Lawson is a professor in the Department of Mathematics at Heriot-Watt
University. Dr. Lawson has published over 60 papers and has given seminars on his research
work both at home and abroad. His research interests focus on algebraic semigroup theory and its
The Cookbook Shelf
9781526615978, $18.00, HC, 256pp
Synopsis: Gelato is a frozen dessert of Italian origin. Gelato in Italy generally contains 6-10%
butterfat, which is lower than other styles of frozen dessert. Gelato typically contains 70% less air
and more flavoring than other kinds of frozen desserts, giving it a density and richness that
distinguishes it from other ice creams.
Offering a impressive palette of ice cream recipes, "Gelupo Gelato" by restauranteur and chef
Jacob Kenedy presents a rainbow spectrum of simple, sophisticated gelato recipes from tangy
Lime Sherbet to fruity Peach & Blood Orange, creamy Marron Glace, and decadent Chocolate &
"Gelup Gelato" also includes definitive recipes for a classic granita (like grown-up slushie),
barely-melting semifreddo, ice cream cake, profiteroles, ice cream cones and brioche buns - as
well as the only chocolate sauce any aspiring chef or family cook will ever need, as well as an
invaluable tip sheet for pairing flavors.
Critique: Impressively 'family cook friendly' in organization and presentation, offering a wealth
of DIY recipes for truly memorable gelato desserts and aperitifs, "Gelupo Gelato" is especially
and unreservedly recommended for personal, professional, and community library cookbook
collections. It should be noted for the persona use of all dedicated gelato fans and enthusiasts that
"Gelup Gelato" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).
Editorial Note: When Jacob Kenedy graduated from St John's, Cambridge, England, he was
already a chef at Moro in London, and he continued to flit between the kitchens there and those
at Boulevard in San Francisco, until taking a year out to travel round Italy. There he ate a great
deal, and learned to make gelato at Gelatauro. He opened Bocca di Lupo in a hidden backstreet in
Soho's underbelly in 2008, and it has since been twice named London's best restaurant. In 2010
he opened Gelupo, a gelateria and delicatessen in the same street. He is also the author of Bocca
and the co-author of The Geometry of Pasta.
The Wine/Beer/Spirits Shelf
Claridge's - The Cocktail Book
c/o Octopus Books
236 Park Avenue, New York NY 10017
9781784728007, $29.99, HC, 224pp
Synopsis: Comprised of more than 500 cocktail recipes drawn from London's legendary hotel,
"Claridge's - The Cocktail Book" is a true connoisseurs guide containing a wealth of DIY drinks
suitable for the cocktail hour and any other time of day. Whatever your tastes and wherever your
location, "Claridge's - The Cocktail Book" is a new bartender's bible will enable even the most
novice of cocktail makers to share the magic of Claridge's with family and friends from their own
Co-authored by Denis Broci (Director of Bars) and Nathan McCarley-O'Neill (Director of
Mixology), "Claridge's - The Cocktail Book" is handsome volume that encompasses classics
from drawn from every period in Claridge's history, and includes new inventions that reflect the
evolution of the art of drink-making and drinks of every style from every elegant space within
this grand institution. Whether you prefer something sparkling, sweet, stirred, complex, sharp,
refreshing, bracing or sour, an inviting glass awaits in the beautifully illustrated pages of
"Claridge's - The Cocktail Book".
Critique: A pleasure to simply browse through one inspiring page at a time, "Claridge's - The
Cocktail Book" is a unique and unreservedly recommended addition to personal, professional,
community, college, and university library Wine/Beer/Spirits collections. It should be noted for
all dedicated cocktail fans and bar tenders that "Claridge's - The Cocktail Book" is also readily
available in a digital book format (Kindle, $15.99).
Editorial Note: Since first opening its doors Claridge's has been the destination for fashionable
London. Bought in 1854 by Mr and Mrs William Claridge, the hotel received the ultimate
accolade in 1860 when Queen Victoria visited Claridge's to see her friend Empress Eugenie of
France. This was the beginning of a tradition of royal visits, which continues to this day.
Throughout the twentieth century Claridge's has also been the home of the great and the good of
the worlds of film, fashion, art, and finance.
The Philosophy Shelf
Dave Chappelle and Philosophy
Mark Ralkowski, editor
c/o Carus Books
9781637700020, $19.95, PB, 256pp
Synopsis: David Khari Webber Chappelle (born August 24, 1973) is an American stand-up
comedian and actor. He has received numerous accolades, including five Emmy Awards and
three Grammy Awards as well as the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor. He is known for
his satirical comedy sketch series Chappelle's Show (2003 - 2006). The series, co-written with
Neal Brennan, ran until Chappelle quit the show in the middle of production of the third season.
After leaving the show, Chappelle returned to performing stand-up comedy across the U.S. By
2006, Chappelle was called the "comic genius of America" by Esquire and, in 2013, "the best" by
a Billboard writer. In 2017, Rolling Stone ranked him No. 9 in their "50 Best Stand Up Comics
of All Time". (Wikipedia)
Dave Chappelle has been praised as "an American folk hero" for his ability to communicate
across lines of race, class, and culture at a time when Americans are more polarized than they
have ever been. Expertly compiled and edited by Mark Ralkowski, "Dave Chappelle and
Philosophy: When Keeping It Wrong Gets Real" is comprised of twenty-five chapters by
philosophers of diverse backgrounds and varying points of view, each of whom examine closely
the hilarious, annoying, exhilarating, upsetting, and thought-provoking aspects of Chappelle's
wonderfully rich output. "Dave Chappelle and Philosophy: When Keeping It Wrong Gets Real"
serves as an invitation to think about some of the most urgent moral and political questions of
Critique: An absolute 'must read' selection for the legions of David Chappelle fans, "Dave
Chappelle and Philosophy: When Keeping It Wrong Gets Real" is an unreservedly recommended
addition to personal, professional, community, college, and university library Popular Culture,
Political Humor, Contemporary Social Issues, and Philosophy collections.
The Criminology Shelf
Queen of the Con
The Kent State University Press
1118 Library, P.O. Box 5190, Kent OH 44242
9781606354292, $24.95, PB, 320pp
Synopsis: "Queen of the Con: From a Spiritualist to the Carnegie Imposter " by historian and
author Thomas Crowl tells the true story of Cassie Chadwick, a successful swindler and "one of
the top 10 imposters of all time", according to Timemagazine. Born Betsy Bigley in 1857 in
Canada, she first operated as Madame Devere, a European clairvoyant, and in 1890 was arrested
for defrauding a Toledo bank of $20,000. In the mid-1890s, while working as a madam in a
Cleveland brothel, Cassie met and married a widowed physician with a coveted Euclid Avenue
At the dawn of the 20th century, Cassie borrowed $2 million (worth roughly $50 million today)
throughout northern Ohio, Pittsburgh, New York, and Boston by convincingly posing as the
illegitimate daughter of wealthy industrialist-turned-philanthropist Andrew Carnegie.
When the fraud collapsed in 1904, it was a nationwide sensation. "Yes, I borrowed money in
very large amounts," she told reporters, "but what of it? You can't accuse a poor businesswoman
of being a criminal, can you?" Carnegie, who never responded to the claim, merely joked that
Mrs. Chadwick had demonstrated that his credit was still good.
A meticulously researched study, "Queen of the Con: From a Spiritualist to the Carnegie
Imposter" is the first full-length account of the notorious career of this fascinating woman, the
forerunner to more recent female scammers like Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes or fake
heiress Anna Sorokin, the "Soho Grifter".
Crowl's engaging storytelling also leads readers to consider aspects of gender stereotypes, social
and economic class structures, and the ways in which we humans can so often be fooled.
Critique: A true crime biography that reads with all the inherent and fascinated interest of a deftly
crafted novel, "Queen of the Con: From a Spiritualist to the Carnegie Imposter" will prove to be
an immediate and welcome addition to community, college, and university library True Crime
History & Biography collections. It should be noted for the personal reading lists of dedicated
true crime fans that "Queen of the Con: From a Spiritualist to the Carnegie Imposter" is also
readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $21.99).
Editorial Note: Thomas Crowl is an avocational historian who has published two previous books,
Murder of a Journalist (published by Kent State University Press) and Opdycke's Tigers in the
Civil War. His articles have appeared in Timeline, Echoes, History Magazine, and the Central
States Archaeological Journal.
Street Gangs Throughout the World
Herbert C. Covey, Ph.D.
Charles C. Thomas, Publisher
2600 South First Street, Springfield, IL 62704
9780398093723, $52.95, PB, 282pp
Synopsis: Now in a newly expanded third edition, "Street Gangs Throughout the World" by
Herbert C. Vovey (who is the deputy director of human services for Adams County, Colorado,
and a part-time instructor at the University of Colorado - Boulder) provides an update on what is
known about street gangs throughout the world and summarizes some of the major works on
street gang phenomena. This new edition of "Street Gangs Throughout the World" focuses on
those countries that have a greater presence in the literature.
Chapter 1 introduces the reader to the topic of street gangs throughout the world.
Chapter 2 identifies some of the challenges faced by scholars when studying gangs in different
Chapter 3 reviews some of the basic research on street gangs in the United States and
Chapter 4 covers what is known about street gangs in Europe and Russia.
Chapter 5 reviews the literature on street gangs in one of the hottest areas of the world for gangs,
Central America. In addition, this chapter examines South American and Caribbean gangs. Street
gangs in Brazil, El Salvador, Guatemala, Jamaica, Brazil, Mexico, Nicaragua, Trinidad, and
other countries are covered. The presence of street gangs and gang violence in these and other
countries ! has been identified as a major factor in the mass migration of refugees to the United
Chapter 6 reports on the street gangs of Africa. Research on gangs in South Africa goes back
decades and the country has a unique history on how gangs evolved. Other countries, such as
Egypt, Nigeria, and Kenya are developing a body of literature that highlights the distinctive
nature of gangs and gang members in these countries.
Chapter 7 addresses street gangs in Asia, including China, India, Hong Kong (post-reunification),
Japan, and other countries. This chapter provides rare glimpses of gangs in China, a relatively
secretive country. Although different in many ways from gangs in Asia, information is also
included here about gangs in Australia and New Zealand.
Practitioners in the criminal justice and juvenile justice fields will find this 3rd edition of "Street
Gangs Throughout the World" to be a valuable and timely resource.
Critique: Expertly organized and presented, this newly updated and expanded third edition of
"Street Gangs Throughout the World" is a unique, critically useful, and unreservedly
recommended addition to personal, professional, community, college, and university library
Contemporary Criminology collections and supplemental curriculum studies lists.
Kraby: The Dark Secrets Behind a True-Crime Murder
9781934980149, $15.00, PB, 178pp
Synopsis: A single shotgun blast pierced the starless autumn night, and Officer Paul Kraby
crumpled to the cold pavement, killed instantly by the the deadly shot aimed at his head. The
murder of the well-liked police officer rocked the Wisconsin town which was already staggered
by the depths of the Great Depression and the corruption of bootlegging. Who killed Paul Kraby
and, more importantly, why? As three young reporters begin unraveling the facts, Stoughton,
Wisconsin's dark secrets slowly begin to emerge in the pages of "Kraby: The Dark Secrets
Behind a True-Crime Murder" by Steve Fortney.
Critique: Written with all the dramatic flair of a novel, "Kraby: The Dark Secrets Behind a
True-Crime Murder" is the real life investigation of an actual homicide. A compelling and deftly
presented account that will hold the reader's total attention from first page to last, "Kraby: The
Dark Secrets behind a True-Crime Murder" is highly recommended, especially for community
library True Crime collections. It should be noted for the personal reading lists of dedicated true
crime enthusiasts that "Kraby: The Dark Secrets Behind a True-Crime Murder" is also readily
available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.95).
Editorial Note: Steve Fortney has called Stoughton, Wisconsin, his home since 1961. His varied
working career include jobs as a high school teacher, newspaper reporter, and member of the
Stoughton city council. Since retiring, Fortney enjoys fishing, hunting, and writing at his cabin in
The Holocaust Studies Shelf
Eyewitness to Wehrmacht Atrocities on the Eastern Front
Luis Raffeiner, author
Thomas Hanifle, editor
Alan Donohue, translator
Pen & Sword Books
c/o Casemate (US distribution)
9781399097703, $32.95, HC, 200pp
Synopsis: Throughout human history, war has always been accompanied by atrocities. It was
hoped that the Geneva Conventions that arose out of the ashes of World War I would prevent
that reality from reoccurring in future conflicts.
How can the truth about the devastating atrocities committed by the German army on the Eastern
Front in the Second World War be reconciled with the propaganda of their heroism and their
victories? And how did a simple soldier, caught up in the turmoil of a vast conflict, make sense
of the actions he had taken and the ruthlessness he had seen? Luis Raffeiner's plain and simple
account of his direct experience of the Nazi war of annihilation in the Soviet Union records in
graphic detail circumstances which made him a victim and perpetrator at the same time.
Raffeiner describes his family life in a remote village in the Tyrol in the 1930s, his military
service in Italy, his transfer to the Wehrmacht and his training as a mechanic on assault guns, and
then his march into the Soviet Union in 1941. There he experienced, as he himself says, 'war in
its brutal and cruel reality'. He was captured by the Red Army, barely survived as a prisoner of
war and, many years later, he recounted his vividly remembered experiences in order to produce
"Eyewitness to Wehrmacht Atrocities on the Eastern Front: A German Soldier's Memoir of War
and Captivity", an insightful and thought-provoking memoir.
His recollections are dramatic, honest and concise. He shatters the myth of the clean conduct of
the Wehrmacht on the Eastern Front. He can testify to the vicious actions of his fellow soldiers,
including some in which he himself was involved. His memoir is not a heroic tale, rather it
shows how a man from an ordinary background can become acquainted with, and a participant
in, the outlawed horrors of war.
Critique: Providing a stark, grim, detailed, and honest insights and examples of the darkest side
of World War II actions by the German military operating on the Eastern Front, "Eyewitness to
Wehrmacht Atrocities on the Eastern Front: A German Soldier's Memoir of War and Captivity"
is a unique, extraordinary, informative, and memorable addition to personal, professional,
community, college, and university library World War II history and memoir collections. While
also commended for supplemental curriculum World War II studies, it should be noted for
students, academicians, military historians, military history buffs, and non-specialist general
readers with an interest in the subject that "Eyewitness to Wehrmacht Atrocities on the Eastern
Front: A German Soldier's Memoir of War and Captivity" is also readily available in a digital
book format (Kindle, $12.99).
Editorial Note #1: Luis Raffeiner grew up in Karthaus in the South Tyrolean Schnalstal. In 1939,
aged 22, after serving in the Italian army, he transferred to the Wehrmacht. As a tank mechanic in
a unit of assault guns, he went to war against the Soviet Union in 1941. He was captured by the
Red Army, survived being held as a prisoner of war in the Caucasus and, in 1947, returned to the
Tyrol. He then worked as a master plumber at a brewery and set up his own company. Late in his
life he recorded his wartime experiences which were published in German and are now available
for the first time in English in this edition.
Editorial Note #2: Hannes Heer is a distinguished German historian best known for his work on
the controversial Wehrmacht exhibition in the 1990s. Although some of its exhibits were
criticized at the time, it showed that the German army on the Eastern Front was involved in war
crimes. In 2001 the revised exhibition was relaunched with the title 'Crimes of the German
Wehrmacht: Dimensions of a War of Annihilation 1941-1944'.
James A. Cox, Editor-in-Chief
Diane C. Donovan, Editor
Midwest Book Review
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Oregon, WI 53575-1129
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