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Small Press Bookwatch

Volume 12, Number 7 July 2013 Home | SPBW Index

Table of Contents

Reviewer's Choice Economic Studies Shelf Business Shelf
Health/Medicine Shelf Cookbook Shelf Art Shelf
Self-Help Shelf Fiction Shelf Poetry Shelf
Metaphysical Studies Shelf Fantasy/SciFi Shelf Education Shelf
Christian Studies Shelf Judaic Studies Shelf Biography Shelf
Martial Arts Shelf Gardening Shelf Woodworking Shelf
Military Shelf Divorce Shelf Crafts Shelf
Needlecraft Shelf    

Reviewer's Choice

Are You Indian?
Sanjit Singh
Bad Swami Productions
2647 Gateway Road #105-510
Carlsbad, CA 92009
9780578116136 $12.99 print / $6.99 Kindle or iBooks

Are You Indian? A Humorous Guide to Growing Up Indian in America is a laugh-out-loud funny chronicle of the Indian-American experience (East Indian, not Native American). Author Sanjit Singh draws upon his personal experience to relate the good, the bad, the quirks, and the foibles of growing up between two cultures. From dealing with difficult (to put it mildly) aunties, to struggling to please parents hyperfocused on SAT prep, to dealing with ultra-suspicious airport security personnel, Are You Indian lightheartedly recounts everyday problems, challenges, realities, and joys. "Sometimes, though, your name will have you in a very tight spot. If your name is Mehboob, for instance, you really don't have many good options. Life is just plain hard for Mehboobs. If you have a good sense of humor, then you can advise people to, 'just call me Boob for short,' followed by 'No seriously, I'd prefer it if you'd just call me Max.' Alternatively, you could just have your name legally changed to 'Raj.'"

The Economic Studies Shelf

Internal Market Economics
N. Dean Meyer
NDMA Publishing
3-B Kenosia Avenue, Danbury CT 06810
9781892606310, $28.00,

A market economy is an economy in which decisions regarding investment, production and distribution are based on supply and demand, and prices of goods and services are determined in a free price system. The major defining characteristic of a market economy is that decisions on investment and the allocation of producer goods are mainly made through markets. This is contrasted with a planned economy, where investment and production decisions are embodied in a plan of production. In "Internal Market Economics: Practical Resource-Governance Processes Based On Principles We All Believe In", successful entrepreneur and businessman N. Dean Meyer offers a 369 page compendium of instructive commentary laying out a series of basic principles for avoiding unproductive redundancies within a corporate enterprise and creating effective internal resource-governance processes to successfully address any financial or management challenges a business might find itself having to deal with. Of special note are Meyer's insightful commentaries on cost control, downsizing, outsourcing, and 'The Executive Bottleneck'. Informed, informative, practical, and thoroughly 'user friendly', "Internal Marketing Economics will prove to be exceptionally valuable reading for anyone charged with executive or managerial responsibilities.

The Business Shelf

Red Hot Internet Publicity
Penny C. Sansevieri
Author Marketing Experts, Inc.
PO Box 421156, San Diego, CA 92142
9781480224957, $15.95,

In "Red Hot Internet Publicity: An Insider's Guide to Marketing Online", Penny C. Sansevieri draws upon her many years of marketing, publicity, and promotion experience and expertise to write a superbly organized and presented, 280 page, thoroughly 'user friendly' instructional guide to utilize every aspect of the internet to promote, publicize, and market products and/or services. From utilizing search engines, to exploiting social media sites, to crafting an effective web site, to employing blogs, to creating on-line videos, to taking advantage of newsletters, and so much more, "Red Hot Internet Publicity: An Insider's Guide to Marketing Online" is a complete course of practical, 'hands-on', real-world advice, examples, instructions, tips, tricks and techniques that will enable even the most novice of marketers to create effective customer base outreach with a complete roster of internet tools.

The Media Training Bible
Brad Phillips
SpeakGood Press
1050 17th Street NW, Suite 600
Washington, DC 20036
c/o Jane Wesman Public Relations, Inc.
322 Eighth Avenue, Suite 1702
New York, NY 10001
9780988322004 $24.95

The Media Training Bible: 101 Things You Absolutely, Positively Need to Know Before Your Next Interview lives up to its title as a "must-have" guide especially for business leaders and spokespeople. Public perception is everything in today's competitive and volatile economy; The Media Training Bible is an invaluable asset to improving one's brand recognition and getting the one's message across clearly. Chapters cover a wide variety of critical considerations from "The 12-year-old-nephew rule" (if a young adult can paraphrase your message in their own words, you've successfully eliminated its jargon), to "The Peter Jennings Rule" (instead of saying "I don't know", answer a confounding question with the relevant information that you do know), to makeup considerations (both men and women should fix shadows under their eyes before going on camera), to special considerations for blog interviews, and much more. Each of the 101 pointers is succinct, informative, and utterly invaluable in today's interconnected world of public relations. Highly recommended!

The Health/Medicine Shelf

Pros of Prozac
Beca Mark
CTL Press
518 East 300 South, Orem, UT 84097
9780988995703, $9.99,

Prozac is the trade name of the drug fluoxetine and is an antidepressant of the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) class. Fluoxetine was first documented in 1974 by scientists from Eli Lilly and Company. It was presented to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in February 1977, with Eli Lilly receiving final approval to market the drug in December 1987. Fluoxetine went off-patent in August 2001. Fluoxetine is approved for the treatment of major depression (including pediatric depression), obsessive-compulsive disorder (in both adult and pediatric populations), bulimia, panic disorder and premenstrual dysphoric disorder. Despite the availability of newer agents, fluoxetine remains extremely popular. In 2010, over 24.4 million prescriptions for generic formulations of fluoxetine were filled in the United States alone. "Pros of Prozac: A Faith-based Memoir of Overcoming the Stigma" by Beca Mark is the personal and informative story of her own mental illness necessitated a daily dosage of Prozac, which along with a deeply religious commitment, made her able to function in all aspects of ordinary life. She has written "Pros of Prozac" to provide others with a useful 'real life' example and in effort to eliminate the stigma often attached to those who must take Prozac to deal with their psychological illnesses. It should be noted that "Pros of Prozac" is also available in both Kindle ($4.99) and audio book ($6.95) editions. Exceptionally well written, informed, informative, and ultimately inspiring, "Pros of Prozac" is highly recommended reading and an excellent addition to community library Health & Medicine reference collections.

Beat Chronic Pain: An Insider's Guide
Maren O. Mitchell
Line of Sight Press
PO Box 1103
Young Harris, Georgia 30582
9780985311902 $9.75

Author Maren O. Mitchell has learned how to cope with chronic pain from spinal cord damage, over the course of twenty-five years. Maren's book Beat Chronic Pain: An Insider's Guide shows techniques for alleviating pain and improving quality of life without relying on drugs or other expensive treatments. The focus is upon mastering pain through mastering one's mind, from the values of exercise to counter depression, to the value of experiencing simple daylight, to mental techniques such as self-hypnosis, prayer, or meditation, and much more. "One of our main barriers to feeling better is excuses. I can always find reasons to not exercise, to not rest, and to not socialize, even though I know I will feel better afterwards." Beat Chronic Pain is highly recommended as a valuable, supplemental advice guide for anyone who suffers from chronic pain - or as an eye-opening, tell-it-like-it-is experience for friends and relatives of such individuals.

The Cookbook Shelf

The Pie Place Cafe Cookbook
Kathy Rice
Lake Superior Port Cities Inc.
PO Box 16417, Duluth, MN 55816-0417
9781938229046, $19.95,

A 192 page compendium packed with recipes drawn from the menus of family restaurant The Pie Place Cafe located in Grand Marais, Minnesota, "The Pie Place Cafe Cookbook" is enhanced with wonderful recorded memories and full color photographs. The result is a cookbook that is as much fun to simply browse through as it is 'kitchen cook friendly' to prepare memorable dishes for every dining occasion. With recipes ranging from Wild Rice Blueberry Waffles; Curried Acorn Squash & Apple Soup; Warm Potato, Sausage & Goat Cheese Salad; and Beef Stout Pie; to Grilled Peanut Butter & Banana Split Sandwich; Smoked Salmon & Caper Pasta Salad; Ruffled Grouse with Lingonberry Sauce; and Blackberry Peach Pie, "The Pie Place Cafe Cookbook" truly showcases two decades of a family friendly restaurant and is a highly recommended addition to personal, family, and community library cookbook collections.

The Art Shelf

The Handy Art History Answer Book
Madelynn Dickerson
Visible Ink Press
43311 Joy Road, #414
Canton, MI 48187-2075
9781578594177, $21.95,

Compiled and written by art historian Madelynn Dickerson, "The Handy Art History Answer Book" is a superbly illustrated, 288 page compendium that provides succinct, informed and informative descriptions of art styles and major artists. Providing an historical overview for works of art from paleolithic cave paintings to contemporary 21st Century works, from schools of art from romanticism to impressionism (and all the other isms of art fashion!), "The Handy Art History Answer Book" is superbly organized and presented, truly 'user friendly', and the equivalent of an entire semester's Art History class within the covers of single book. This well crafted, thoroughly 'user friendly' approach covers every art medium from painting, sculpture, and photography, to pottery, needlecrafts, and video games. Enhanced with the inclusion of a nine page glossary, a two page bibliography, and a comprehensive index, "The Handy Art History Answer Book" is a highly recommended addition to school and community library Art History reference collections. Also available in a Kindle edition ($9.99) "The Handy Art History Answer Books is especially appropriate for non-specialist readers seeking a working knowledge of the diverse history of art.

The Self-Help Shelf

"Me" Time
Jennifer Beall
YourBalance Publishing
645 Baltimore-Annapolis Blvd., Suite 107
Severna Park, MD 21146
9780615671741 $11.99

"Me" Time: Finding the Balance Between Taking Care of Others and Taking Care of Yourself is a self-help book written especially for people who tend to give too much of themselves, and could use assistance in finding a healthy balance. The focus is on observing and changing harmful patterns in one's life. "When you have weak boundaries, you have difficulty saying no to others; you are a people pleaser who puts others' needs before your own more often than is good for you (or for them, for that matter). People pleasers often hope that if they anticipate and meet other people's needs the other people will return the favor. That is rarely the case. In general, takers gravitate towards givers and vice versa. So if you are a people pleaser you are likely to find people who will take advantage of your kindness and generosity but give little or nothing back." Featuring practical-minded strategies and emphasizing the importance of taking valuable joy in everyday life, "Me" Time is highly recommended.

Too Much Gold To Flush
Pat Grissom
Dedicated to Empowering Women LLC
PO Box 2235, Friendswood, TX 77549
9780985381301, $24.99

We've all known women who were not only attracted to toxic men -- but married them only to suffer horrendous consequences. Drawing upon her own life experiences, Pat Grissom has written "Too Much Gold to Flush: The Gift of Infidelity", a 311 page compendium in which she lays out in candid detail her own flawed marriage, depressing divorce, and the lessons she learned along the way to rebuilding her life and her reclaiming her self respect. Thoroughly 'reader friendly' in both tone and substance, "Too Much Gold to Flush: The Gift of Infidelity" will prove to be invaluable and inspiring reading for anyone else caught up in similar life experiences. Simply stated, "Too Much Gold to Flush: The Gift of Infidelity" deserves as wide a readership as possible and is highly recommended for self-help collections.

The Fiction Shelf

Victoria Wilcox
Knox Robinson Publishing
c/o Max Communications
2865 Lenox Road, #302
Atlanta, GA 30324
9781908483553, $27.99,

John Henry "Doc" Holliday (August 14, 1851 - November 8, 1887) was an American gambler, gunfighter, and dentist of the American Old West who is usually remembered for his friendship with Wyatt Earp and his involvement in the Gunfight at the O.K. Corral. The legend and mystique of his life is so great that he has been mentioned in countless books and portrayed by various actors in numerous movies and television series. For the 125-plus years since his death, debate has continued about the exact crimes he may have committed during his life. Now a new historical novel based upon the life and times of Doc Holliday has breathed new life into the legend of a truly legendary figure of the American West. Victoria Wilcox's "Inheritance - Southern Son: The Saga of Doc Holliday, Book One" is a superbly crafted, 372 page work of fact-based fiction that begins with teenaged John Henry Holiday's father returning from the Civil War and a dark secret concerning his mother. Family intrigue, a courtship, a post-war career as a dentist, all set the stage for how John Henry Holliday was to eventually become one of the most famous western gunfighters of his day. Highly recommended for personal reading lists and community library collections, "Inheritance" will leave the reader looking eagerly toward the next installment of what promises to be a truly outstanding trilogy.

King of Rags
Eric Bronson
Neverland Publishing
24 NW 102nd Street
Miami, FL 33150
9780988829008 $16.95

King of Rags is the story of African-American ragtime musician Scott Joplin (1867/1868? - April 1, 1917), but not a traditional biography. Instead, it is a novel based on Joplin's varied and adventurous life; all characters, places, and incidents described are either fictitious, or in the case of Joplin's historical contemporaries, used fictitiously. King of Rags lionizes Joplin as a crusader for racial justice fifty years before his time; yet the public eschewed his political music, as did a generation of musicians who questioned songs that extolled life in rags. A character-driven historical tragedy that nonetheless celebrates Joplin's legacy, King of Rags is highly recommended.

The Poetry Shelf

A World Too Far
Mark Nathan
Hands in Wood Publishing Company
160 Egret Dr.
Satellite Beach, FL 32937
9780615646374 $12.95

A World Too Far: Stories in Poems and Songs is a compilation of brief original poems, some of which feature occasional but not rigid rhymes and rhythms, by author, songwriter, and acoustic guitarist Mark Nathan. Reflective and insightful, the poems carry the vibrancy of an idea that lingers within one's mind. Some speak openly about suffering and sorrow; others explore the small moments that bring happiness in life. A World Too Far is a choice pick for connoisseurs of creative poetry, highly recommended. "Darfur": They'd come in the night / With their knives / And their guns / There's nowhere to hide / There's nowhere to run / They say we are different / We aren't the same / Why in the world / Won't anyone come.

The Metaphysical Studies Shelf

Ann K. Gebuhr
TotalRecall Publications, Inc.
1103 Middlecreek
Friendswood, TX 77546
9781590951286 $99.95

Hildegard! is the manuscript testimony of musician Ann K. Gebuhr, and her metaphysical contact with the spiritual wisdom of Saint Hildegard of Bingen (1098 - 1179), a Christian nun, composer, playwright. Intended to complement rather than replace traditional biographies of Hildegard, or accountings of her visions. Full-color illustrations, including reproductions of the beautiful manuscript illuminations Hildegard once supervised, as well as musical scores and even the occasional recipe punctuate this tribute, communion, and expression of joy. "Central to all her work is her belief that it is through music that we best communicate with God... In some small way I hope through a detailed study of several of her chants, to help you experience her spirit and wisdom and the vision which motivated the creation of mind, body, and spirit..." Hildegard! is highly recommended for its revelation of new ways to experience the life's work and teachings of a beloved spiritual leader.

The Fantasy/SciFi Shelf

Girl Z: My Life as a Teenage Zombie
C.A. Verstraete
Intrigue Publishing
10200 Twisted Stalk Court
Upper Marlboro, Maryland 20772
9780979478895 $14.95

Girl Z: My Life as a Teenage Zombie is a dark, zombie apocalypse novel about a Rebecca, a sixteen-year-old girl who contracts the dreaded zombie virus. The symptoms manifest slowly and relentlessly, turning her life upside-down with bizarre physical changes. Even when she finds herself falling for Gabe, a handsome part-Z, she's conflicted. Worse, hungry full-Z's are an ever- present threat! Can anything stop the deadly Z transformation - and is it too late for Becca to live as a human again? Told in first person from Becca's point of view, Girl Z is a different type of zombie apocalypse story, especially recommended for fans of the genre!

The Education Shelf

Simply Classical
Cheryl Swope
Memoria Press
4603 Poplar Level Road
Louisville, KY 40213
9781615382408, $24.95,

In recent decades there has been an unfortunate and growing trend away from offering a classical education to students in favor of more specialized and job/career oriented curriculums in our public school systems. We see it today in our economically distressed school districts abandoning music, art, and literature classes and programs as cost cutting measures. That's one of the reasons why Cheryl Swope's "Simply Classical: A Beautiful Education for Any Child" is such a timely and necessary book to aid both parents and teachers in the justification and implementation of a classical education for today's students. This informed and informative 277 page compendium deftly presents a definition of what a classical (and classical Christian) education consists of. Of special note is the commentary on adapting a classical education to special needs students. Enhanced with illustrative true stories and four appendices offering: Organizations and Resources; Legislation for Special-Needs Studies; Recommended Reading in Classical Education; and To Obtain Suggested Resources, "Simply Classical: A Beautiful Education for Any Child" is highly recommended and thoroughly 'user friendly' reading for parents and teachers, as well as an important addition to school, academic, and community library Educational Studies reference collections.

If It's Broken Don't Fix It
Sinhue Noriega
NorCom West
10560 South North Forty Way
South Jordan, UT 84095
9781589827226, $22.00,

The condition of our public school systems throughout the nation is one of escalating controversy, scandal, and protest. "If It's Broken Don't Fix It" by Sinhue Noriega is a 240 page compendium providing the reader with an accurate and detailed commentary on the current shortcomings and failures of American educational institutions today. Informed and informative, "If It's Broken Don't Fix It" should be considered mandatory reading for parents, teachers, school administrators, politicians, and non-specialist general readers who are concerned with the state of education in America today and seeking remedies for the complacency that supports the current status quo. Simply stated, "If It's Broken Don't Fix It" is highly recommended for personal, professional, community, and academic library Contemporary Education Studies reference collections and supplemental reading lists.

Making College Right
William Casement
National Association of Scholars
8 West 38th Street
New York, NY 10018
9780615626925 $18.00

Former philosophy professor and successful businessman William Casement presents Making College Right: Heretical Thoughts & Practical Proposals, a sharp critique of America's current higher education system. It's well known that the current college system suffers from skyrocketing costs, and that it's all too easy for students to secure a degree that leaves them in debt and fails to translate into a career. What can and should be changed? Casement scrutinizes high school advanced placement courses, the excessive obsession with college sports, the pitfalls of the "smorgasbord" liberal arts curriculum that can fail to impart cultural literacy, and the refusal of movers and shakers such as the National Collegiate Athletic Associations or the College Board to make drastically needed changes. Of particular interest is the scrutiny of high school Advanced Placement courses meant to substitute for college credits. Casement argues that AP courses need to meet more stringent accreditation standards, as well as stronger barriers to entry; many 14-16 year olds just aren't ready for college level learning, and if they're allowed in then they'll slow down the AP course for the few students who are ready. Thought-provoking and grounded in practical reality, Making College Right is an invaluable contribution to the ongoing discussion of how best to improve higher education in America.

The Christian Studies Shelf

Supernatural & Strange Happenings in the Bible
Robert C. Brenner
Brenner Information Group
c/o Brenner Microcomputing, Inc.
PO Box 721000
San Diego, CA 92172-1000
9781930199767, $27.95,

The Bible is a collection of poetry, hymns, sermons, histories, prophecies, genealogies, folk tales, legends, and morality tales. What Robert C. Brenner has done in "Supernatural & Strange Happenings in the Bible: An Engineer's Study of Scripture", is to select out about 390 biblical verses related mystical or supernatural events and analysis them from a modern metaphysical and scientific perspective. The result is an impressive 534 page compendium of thoughtful and thought-provoking commentary. It should also be noted that "Supernatural & Strange Happenings in the Bible: An Engineer's Study of Scripture" is also available in a Kindle edition ($9.99). Informed, informative, and occasionally iconoclastic, "Supernatural & Strange Happenings in the Bible: An Engineer's Study of Scripture" is highly recommended reading and an especially appropriate addition to personal and community library Biblical Studies reference collections and supplemental reading lists.

The Judaic Studies Shelf

A Genesis of Religious Freedom
Melvin I. Urofsky
George Washington Institute for Religious Freedom
c/o Smith Publicity
1930 E Marlton Pike, Suite I-46
Cherry Hill, NJ 08003
9781939706003, $29.95,

Despite what is constantly ranted over talk radio, America was not founded as a Christian nation. The founding fathers who enacted the American Constitution were keenly aware of the hazards of creating a state religion and deliberately instituted a practical policy of separating the power of the government from the authority of any particular religious theology, doctrine, or church. This separation not only protected religious freedom of Christian Americans from each other, it also protected non-Christian citizens, and most especially Jewish Americans. "A Genesis of Religious Freedom: The Story Of The Jews Of Newport, RI And Touro Synagogue" is a 130 page compendium presenting the history of the first Jewish community to be founded in Colonial America, along with the establishment of the first synagogue in Newport, Rhode Island. Superbly and profusely illustrated throughout with full color photography, "A Genesis of Religious Freedom" is an impressive history of the 250 year old Touro Synagogue. Of special note is the inclusion of President George Washington's letter of 1790. Informed and informative, "A Genesis of Religious Freedom" is a well deserved and highly recommended addition to personal, synagogue, academic, and community library American History and Judaic Studies reference collections and supplemental reading lists.

Jews in Berlin, updated edition
Andreas Nachama, Julius H. Schoeps, & Hermann Simon
Berlinica Publishing LLC
255 West 43rd St., Suite 1012
New York, NY 10036
9781935902607 $23.95

Now in an updated, English-language 2013 edition (the original German edition was published in 2002), Jews in Berlin is thoughtful and thorough history of Jews who called Berlin home over the course of 750 years, as well as present-day Jewish life in Berlin. Jews in Berlin traces Jewish influence upon Berlin's culture, literature, and advancement in the sciences, as well as the severe depression of the 1930's inflamed anti-Semitism, culminating in horrific genocide. Yet today, immigrant Jews from Russia and Israel are a vibrant part of modern Berlin, continuing the legacy of Jewish contributions to the cosmopolitan capital. A handful of photographs and an index round out this scholarly reference and resource, highly recommended for Judaic Studies shelves.

The Biography Shelf

'Light Horse Harry' Lee In the War for Independence
Jim Piecuch & John Beakes
Nautical & Aviation Publishing Company of America
845A Lowcountry Blvd.
Mt. Pleasant, SC 29464
9781877853739, $26.95,

Henry Lee III (January 29, 1756 - March 25, 1818), also known as Light-Horse Harry Lee, was an early American patriot who served as the ninth Governor of Virginia and as the Virginia Representative to the United States Congress. During the American Revolution, Lee served as a cavalry officer in the Continental Army and earned the nickname "Light-Horse Harry". It should also be noted that Lee was also the father of the famed Civil War Confederate general Robert E. Lee. Knowledgeably co-authored by Jim Piecuch (Associate Professor of History, Kennesaw State University, Georgia) and military historian John Beakes, "'Light Horse Harry' Lee In the War for Independence" is an informed and informative, 268 page biography that provides a detailed and documented history of Lee's military exploits. Of special note is the concluding chapter focusing on Lee's personal life after the end of the American Revolutionary War. Enhanced with a two page section of illustration, and appendix (The Lees of Virginia), an extensive ten page bibliography, and a comprehensive index, "'Light Horse Harry' Lee In the War for Independence" is a work of impeccable scholarship and highly recommended for both academic and community library American Biography reference collections, as well as to the attention of non-specialist general readers with an interest in the American Revolution in general, and 'Light Horse Harry' Lee in particular.

Escape To Freedom
Irie Glajar
Positive Imaging, LLC
9016 Palace Parkway, Austin, TX 78748
9780985687618, $13.49,

Irie Glajar was born in the eastern European country of Romania in 1955. He escaped from his communist dominated homeland in 1981. After spending several months in a political refugee camp in Italy, he immigrated to the United States, became a citizen, and a teacher of mathematics in Austin, Texas. "Escape To Freedom: Chronicles of a Life on Two Continents" is a 278 page personal memoir in which he candidly chronicles his life before, during, and after his escape from one of the most oppressive communist countries behind the Iron Curtain that split Europe in two during the post World War decades before the ultimate collapse of the Soviet Union. Informed and informative, this personal memoir of struggle and success reads as dramatically as any novel. As the story of a life lived in 'interesting times', "Escape To Freedom" is a riveting read and highly recommended for personal reading lists and community library 20th Century American Biography collections.

The Martial Arts Shelf

Asian Martial Arts
Michael A. DeMarco, editor
Via Media Publishing
941 Calle Mejia, #822
Santa Fe, NM 87501
9781893765047, $24.95,

There is so much more to the martial arts of Asia than breaking boards with fists or the kung fu moves in old Chinese movies. Compiled and edited by Michael A. Demarco, "Asian Martial Arts: Constructive Thoughts and Practical Applications" is a 200 page compendium comprised of 35 articles celebrating the twenty-year run of the 'Journal of Asian martial Arts'. Enhances with black-and-white photos, an 'Afterward' article 'The Secrets of an Asian Martial Arts Publisher' by DeMarco, "Asian Martial Arts: Constructive Thoughts and Practical Applications" is an informed and informative read and a highly recommended addition to personal, academic, and community library Martial Arts Studies reference collections.

The Gardening Shelf

Apprentice To A Garden
Evelyn J. Hadden
Less Lawn Press
16275 County Road 47
Plymouth, MN 55446
9780981969800, $11.99,

In "Apprentice to a Garden: a New Urban Gardener Goes Wild", Evelyn J. Hadden chronicles four years of gardening adventures and moments of succinct illumination when she toiled in her first to transform her uninspiring and lifeless urban into a lovely 'no mow' plot filled with hundreds of wood and herbaceous plants, along with decorative rocks ranging in size from pebbles to table-tops. There is even a home-made pergola. But "Apprentice To A Garden" isn't really another horticultural instruction guide, rather it is a series of reflective commentaries that are part essay and part memoir in content. Some chapters chronicle the seasonal work employed, other chapters are more philosophical with respect to 'lessons learned'. Enhanced with nineteen whimsical line drawings based upon old photos of the garden by artist Shari Zimmerman, "Apprentice to a Garden" is a delight to read -- especially on those days when inclement weather won't permit puttering in a garden of one's own.

The Woodworking Shelf

Biscuit Joiner
A. William Benitez
Positive Imaging, LLC
9016 Palace Parkway, Austin, TX 78748
9780985687625, $19.95,

A biscuit joiner (or sometimes plate joiner) is a woodworking tool used to join two pieces of wood together. A biscuit joiner uses a small circular saw blade to cut a crescent-shaped hole (called the mouth) in the opposite edges of two pieces of wood or wood composite panels. An oval-shaped, highly-dried and compressed wooden biscuit (beech or particle wood) is covered with glue, or glue is applied in the slot. The biscuit is immediately placed in the slot, and the two boards are clamped together. The wet glue expands the biscuit, further improving the bond. In "Biscuit Joiner: A Woodworker's How-To Guide To Biscuit Joinery: Reintroducing My Favorite Joinery Tool With Four Project Plans", woodworking expert Bill Benitez draws upon his many years of experience and expertise to write a nicely illustrated, thoroughly 'user friendly', 156 page instruction manual that takes the novice woodworker through all the steps necessary for using the biscuit joiner on any woodworking project. From choosing the right biscuit joiner for the job, to detailed instructions and drawings for four complete woodworking projects, to drawings and descriptions of the various joints that can be created, "Biscuit Joiner" is informed, informative, and highly recommended for personal, professional, school woodshop class, and community library woodworking reference collections.

The Military Shelf

We Lucky Few
Larry Cuddeback & Cheyeen Cuddeback Miller
Camp Pope Publishing
PO Box 2232, Iowa City, IA 52244
9781929919499, $29.95,

With the passage of the years we are now seeing the generation that fought for America in the bitter battles of World War II passing from the scene. That's just one reason why "We Lucky Few: Portraits of Courage & Sacrifice from SE Iowa" is such an unexpected treasure. This 325 page compendium of interviews with more than 100 World War II veterans from southeastern Iowa showcases the contributions of men and women to the war effort and military engagements of such wide ranging battlefields as the South Pacific, North Africa, the invasion of Europe at Normandy, and the confronting the enemy in Tokyo Bay. Here are the unforgettable and personal stories of soldiers, airmen, marines, paratroopers, POWs, nurses, pilots, civil servants, and merchant marines as told in their own words. "We Lucky Few" is an iconic contribution to the growing library of World War II memoirs, biographies, and histories -- and would well serve as a template for similar efforts elsewhere in the country while we still have WWII veterans among us.

The Divorce Shelf

Picture Your Divorce To See The Right Decisions
Terry McNiff
J. P. Reammard Publishing
1895 Avenida Del Oro, #4422
Oceanside, CA 92056
9780983062752, $29.99,

In "Picture Your Divorce To See The Right Decisions", author Terry McNiff draws upon his many years of experience and expertise working with couples who divorce to deal with the emotional and financial stresses involved to create a 148 page compendium replete with charts and diagrams on how divorcing men and women can avoid angry conflicts while separating from their former relationship. Strongly recommended for anyone contemplating or already involved in a divorce action, it should be noted that "Picture Your Divorce To See The Right Decisions" is also available in a Kindle edition ($9.99).

The Crafts Shelf

Fabulous Stamped Frames
Melanie Muenchinger
306 East Parr Road
Berne, IN 46711
9781596355798, $14.95,

Created and compiled by paper crafts expert Melanie Muenchinger, "Fabulous Stamped Frames: Creative Greeting Card Designs & Inspiration" is a profusely illustrated, 64 page compendium of 36 hand-made card projects laid out in twelve consecutive chapters. Each project comes with a step-by-step tutorial and includes a detailed list of materials required. Each versatile stamp set features a 3 3/4 x 5-inch frame image that can be rotated to either portrait or landscape positions and is large enough to perfectly fit an A2-size card. Of special note are the images and sentiments included with each stamp set utilized to complete these 36 fun and creative projects. "Fabulous Stamped Frames: Creative Greeting Card Designs & Inspiration" is highly recommended for both novice and experienced crafters and hobbyists.

The Needlecraft Shelf

Learn Decorative Machine Stitching
Linda Turner Griepentrog, author
Sharon Frank, editor
Annie's Publishing
306 East Parr Road, Berne, IN 46711
9781592174867, $14.95,

"Learn Decorative Machine Stitching" is a creative collection of 14 stitching projects complete with specific instructions and patterns, along with many handy hints and guides to help a sewing crafter through the needed skills and steps to learn practical application of decorative stitching. Craft projects and patterns include a card party, a bib, a sampler set of bookmarks, ornaments with buttons, a quilted case, a circular decorated table covering, a baby wrap, a little black bag, a gift card holder, a lingerie keeper, a gift bag, a stitch decorated belt, a striped tote bag, and a set of place mats and napkins. All projects have complete step by step instructions, required supplies, patterns and added tips, plus beautiful colored photos of the finished project. In the beginning of "Learn Decorative Machine Stitching," seven pages of general instructions cover basic stitching lessons and skills for many machines with color photo illustrations of different stitches for examples. Added topics include thread tactics, needle nuances, tension headaches, stabilizer smarts, foot notes, stitching straight, program mode, and bobbin work, plus highlighted sidebars with special added tips. "Learn Decorative Machine Stitching" is filled with practical tips, techniques and great projects that can be tackled by novice stitchers as well as experienced seamstresses. In addition, helpful pattern updates can be found by checking

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