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Wisconsin Bookwatch

Volume 13, Number 2 February 2018 Home | WBW Index

Table of Contents

Reviewer's Choice Writing/Publishing Shelf Cookbook Shelf
Biography Shelf Fantasy/SciFi Shelf Christian Studies Shelf
Judaic Studies Shelf Fiction Shelf Mystery/Suspense Shelf
Graphic Novel Shelf Audiobook Shelf Music CD Shelf
DVD Shelf Education Shelf Needlecraft Shelf
Fishing Shelf Metaphysical Studies Shelf Health/Medicine Shelf
Gardening Shelf Crafts Shelf Parenting Shelf
Art Shelf Sports Shelf American History Shelf
World History Shelf Money/Finance Shelf  

Reviewer's Choice

Swept Away
Karen Hobbs
Schiffer Publishing Ltd.
4880 Lower Valley Road, Atglen, PA 19310
9780764354458, $24.99, PB, 112pp,

Since Ben Franklin brought broomcorn to America from Egypt in 1790, the humble kitchen broom has been an integral part of our daily lives. Karen Hobbs teaches broom making, gourding, and basketry at conventions and retreats around the US and in the illustrated pages of "Swept Away: The Vanishing Art of Broom Making" she draws upon her years of experience and expertise to showcase the rich and colorful history of the American broomcorn industry, as well as revealing how broomcorn is grown, harvested, and dyed, and, following her easy step-by-step instructions with photographs and illustrations, how make your own broom using one of the seven different broom patterns provided, including Kitchen, Hearth, Cobweb, Turkey Wing Whisk, and Angel Whisk brooms. More than 150 masterpieces by America's most talented artistic broom makers appear in the gallery section and feature a surprisingly diverse and colorful array of handles and stalks. An impressive compendium of broom lore and superstitions, aspiring broom makers will discover proper care methods to get the most out of their broom, and quickly learn all the broom terms needed in the glossary. Of special note is the inclusion of a recipe for Broomstick Cake! Unique and thoroughly 'user friendly' in organization and presentation, "Swept Away: The Vanishing Art of Broom Making" will prove to be a unique and enduringly appreciated addition to personal, community, and academic library collections.

The Writing/Publishing Shelf

How to Sell Books by the Truckload on Amazon!
Penny Sansevieri
4900 LaCross Rd., North Charleston, SC 29406
9781548700249, $9.99 PB, $3.95 Kindle, 230pp,

Amazon is justifiably considered to be the proverbially 800 pound gorilla of online book marketing. With the slow demise of brick & board bookstores and the dominating rise of online book marketing it is essential that authors and publishers know how to maximize the Amazon web site with respect to selling their books. In the pages of "How to Sell Books by the Truckload on Amazon!: Master Amazon & Sell More Books!" author and professional book marketing expert Penny Sansevieri teaches exactly how to use Amazon to sell books. Simply stated, "How to Sell Books by the Truckload on Amazon!" is the ultimate and 'real world practical' guide for mastering the Amazon marketing system. Follow her proven strategies and self-published authors and authors published by small or niche publishers will instantly skyrocket their book's exposure and kick their book marketing into overdrive! Penny covers such vital book marketing issues as: Achieving top visibility for a book on Amazon regardless of subject matter of genre; Increase sales through perfectly timed pre-order campaigns; Leverage a secret tool to get hundreds of reader reviews; Use Kindle Unlimited to its greatest advantage; Boost sales by knowing when to give away an e-book (this really works as a marketing for profit strategy); Learn keywords and book descriptions that will draw in tons of buyers; Identify and locate secret categories that drive bigger sales; Make sure a book is ranked #1 in its particular category. "How to Sell Books by the Truckload on Amazon!" is essential reading in this on-line era of book selling in general, and selling books on the Amazon web site in particular. It is also the primary instructional resource and reference for authors and publishers wanting to understand the inner workings of Amazon and thereby sell more books. Incidentally, buy "How to Sell Books by the Truckload on Amazon!" on Amazon and you'll also receive as a bonus: Free listings of top fiction bloggers and hundreds of bonus resources! In summation, there is no better written, accessibly organized, or more comprehensive instructional on Amazon, (and containing invaluable tips, tricks and techniques that can be applied to other online book selling web sites) and every writer and every publisher should have their own copy of this 2018 Edition of "How to Sell Books by the Truckload on Amazon!" by Penny Sansevieri.

The Cookbook Shelf

Vegan Cooking in Your Air Fryer
Kathy Hester
Page Street Publishing
27 Congress Street, Suite 105, Salem, MA 01970
9781624145087, $21.99, PB, 208pp,

Vegan and cookbook author Kathy Hester is also the blogger behind In "Vegan Cooking in Your Air Fryer" she draws upon her years of experience and expertise to provide plant-based dishes with all the decadence of fried food but without the added calories. Using little to no oil, the beautifully illustrated recipes comprising "Vegan Cooking in Your Air Fryer" result in wholesome and delicious meals with less mess, but the perfect texture, every time. The seventy-five recipes showcased in "Vegan Cooking in Your Air Fryer" range from Black Bean Avocado Chimichangas; Cheesy Hot Sauce Collard Chips; Cajun French Fry Po'Boy with Vegan Mushroom Gravy; and Banana Spring Rolls; to Weeknight Calzones; Easy Air Fry Seitan Riblets; Plain Old Tots; and Southern Fried Okra. Of special note are the techniques that yield crispy tofu to rival any restaurant! A 'must' for the personal cook book collections of vegetarians and vegans, the "Vegan Cooking in Your Air Fryer" cookbook is unreservedly recommended -- and will prove to be an immediate and immensely popular addition to community library cookbook collections.

Instant One-Pot Meals
Laura Arnold
The Countryman Press
c/o W. W. Norton & Company
500 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10110
9781682681602, $21.95, PB, 208pp,

Laura Arnold is a New York City - based food stylist and recipe developer. She currently works for The Chew, an ABC channel daytime food talk show. In the pages of "Instant One-Pot Meals: Southern Recipes for the Modern 7-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker" she draws upon her experience and expertise to compile a collection of palate pleasing, appetite satisfying, kitchen cook friendly recipes that can be prepared quickly in the modern "instant" pressure cookers -- or cooked slow in one, since these 7-in-1 appliances can also be used as a slow-cooker. The modern pressure cooker can also serve as a saute pan, a rice cooker, a steamer, a warmer, and even a yogurt maker. "Instant One-Pot Meals" will enable even the most novice of kitchen cooks to prepare and serve delicious Southern cooking by tailoring each recipe to one or more of these functions (many mains have both fast and slow options built in). The recipes comprising "Instant One-Pot Meals" range from Vanilla Yogurt with Honey and Peaches; Chicken and Sausage Gumbo; Spicy Turkey Sloppy Joes; and Pimento Cheese Dip; to Corn Bread Dressing; Peach Pepper Jelly; Brown Sugar BBQ Ribs; and Cinnamon Roll Pull-Apart Bread. Offering breakfast dishes, side dishes, sauces, stocks, and desserts, "Instant One-Pot Meals is beautifully illustrated with 75 color photographs and will prove to be an enduringly popular addition to personal, family, and community library cookbook collections. It should be noted that "Instant One-Pot Meals" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $8.85).

Super Blend Me!
Jason Vale
Crown House Publishing
81 Brook Hills Circle, White Plains, NY 10605
9780954766498, $20.95, PB, 226pp,

Jason Vale is an accomplished expert in the art and practice of juicing. In "Super Blend Me!" he draws upon his impressive expertise and personal experience to prepare a comprehensive and definitive culinary guide specifically for people who want to get super lean, super healthy and super fast -- but don t want to clean a juicer! 'Super Blend Me!' is a compendium of rich, plant-based high-protein recipes designed with physical exercise in mind. All of the ingredients for the various showcased recipes can be conveniently found in any major supermarket and are all recognizable. Readers can choose from either a 7-, 10-, 14- or full 21-day Super Blend Me! diet. Also included is a handy working journal as part of the book, so progress can be logged as a means of keeping on track. Nicely illustrated throughout, exceptionally well written, organized and presented, the recipes themselves range from Pea 'n' Pom Avo Super Blend; Cherry Vanilla Indulgence; and Mighty Minty Mango Super Blend; to Chewy Cherry Almond Balls; Super Spirulina Smoothie; and Kiwi, Kale, Cucumber Cooler. A unique, one-of-a-kind, culinary treasures, "Super Blend Me!" will prove to be an enduringly popular addition to personal, professional, family, and community library cookbook collections.

A Couple Cooks - Pretty Simple Cooking
Sona Overhiser & Alex overhiser
Lifelong Books / Da Capo Press
c/o Perseus Book Group
250 W. 57th St., Suite 1500, New York, NY 10107
9780738219691, $27.00, HC, 272pp,

A love story at its finest, Alex and Sonja Overhiser first fell for each other--and then the kitchen. In a matter of months, the writer-photographer duo went from eating fast and frozen food to regularly cooking vegetarian meals from scratch. In the process, they found they had more energy, slept better, and were happier. Together, the two unraveled a "pretty simple" approach to home cooking that kicks the diet in favor of long-term lifestyle changes. They draw upon their experience and expertise in "A Couple Cooks--Pretty Simple Cooking" to showcase nourishing recipes with a Mediterranean flair, and presented with vibrant photography. The 100 functional and creative recipes are vegetarian, with plenty of vegan and gluten-free options. At the heart of "A Couple Cooks - Pretty Simple Cooking" are the couple's top ten lessons for a healthy approach to food in the long-term, like gathering with friends and family, bouncing back from failure, and just having fun. Illustrated with a custom watercolor for each lesson, it's a beautiful coffee table book that's food for thought, at the same time providing real food recipes for eating around the table. With recipes ranging from Strawberry Lime Chia Jam; Peach Salsa Fresca; Crispy Brussels Sprouts with Pecorino; and Big Mexican Salad with Creamy Cilantro Dressing; to Chipotle Black Bean Tortilla Soup; Vegetarian Lentil Gyros; Pizza Margherita with Pecorino & Egg; and Dark Chocolate Sea Salt Skillet Cookie, "A Couple Cooks - Pretty Simple Cooking " will prove to be fun to plan menus with, as well as an enduringly popular addition to personal, family, and community library Vegetarian Cookbook collections. It should be noted that "A Couple Cooks - Pretty Simple Cooking" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $17.99).

Cupcake Handbook
Sue McMahon, author
IMM Lifestyle Books
c/o Fox Chapel Publishing
1970 Broad Street, East Petersburg, PA 17520
9781504800921, $12.99,

The "Cupcake Handbook" is a practical cupcake specialty cookbook with over 80 festive cupcake recipes for every occasion. Bound with hard back covers in sturdy metal spiral, and filled with attractive color photographs showing utensils, ingredients, techniques, and finished products, "Cupcake Handbook" includes chapters on basic recipes, classic combinations, children's favorites, grown-up favorites, celebration cupcakes, and special diets. Some taste-tempting special cupcake recipes include: Rum-Raisin, Very Cherry, Flower Power, Blondies, Brownies, Banana and Roffee, Coffee and Walnut, Black Forest, Carrot and Raisin, Raspberry and White Chocolate, Cracklecakes, Pina Colada, Irish Coffee, Pistachio, Saffron and Raisins, Sticky Orange and Cardamom, Lime and Chile, and many more. Cupcakes designed for special celebrations include Starry Snowy Night, Chocolate Love, Merry Cupcakes, Spider Cakes and more. Cupcakes for special diets, such as gluten free treats, include Chocolate Surprise, Date and Banana, Chocolate and Prune, Honey and Bran, Date and Apple, Ginger Polenta, Halloween Webs, plus more. Baking instructions are presented in steps which are numbered, in clear, descriptive narrative. Color highlighted sidebars give information on quantity of cupcakes, ingredients and amounts needed, and different special topping ingredients. Measurements are given in standard measurements first, followed by metric equivalents. All the recipes are followed by a page of suggested substitutions, plus a page of acknowledgments, including companies with online ordering access. "Cupcake Handbook" is a current craze cookbook which takes advantage of modern tastes and delights of daily sweet celebrations.

The Potatopia Cookbook
Allen Dikker
Surrey Books
c/o Agate Publishing
1328 Greenleaf Street, Evanston, IL 60202
9781572842205, $20.00, PB, 184pp,

"The Potatopia Cookbook" showcases a beautifully illustrated collection of more than 75 creative potato recipes from Allen Dikker, who is the CEO and founder of Potatopia, the New York based, fast-casual, all-potato restaurant. While "The Potatopia Cookbook" includes some traditional potato dishes like gnocchi and shepherd's pie, but most of the thoroughly 'kitchen cook friendly' recipes are innovative creations that re-imagine the world's most popular vegetable. For example, making lasagna with paper-thin potato slices instead of noodles, or prepare truffles with mashed potatoes. "The Potatopia Cookbook also includes detailed descriptions of potato varieties, potato history, and potato preparation and storage tips. Potatoes are naturally gluten-free and (when prepared simply) very nutritious. Along with being fat-, sodium-, and cholesterol-free, potatoes are packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. "The Potatopia Cookbook" highlights these benefits in the cookbook by focusing on recipes that skip the fat in favor of keeping it healthy. The result is a hearty, wholesome celebration of all things potato. With recipes ranging from Truffled Eggplant-Stuffed Potato Skins; French Onion Soup with Crispy Potato Gaiettes; Garlicky Potato, Cheddar, and Bacon Pie; to Sake Short Rib Potato Stew; Creamy Twice-Baked Potatoes; Black and White Chocolate-Covered Potato Chips; and Sweet Potato Cobbler. Of special note is the section devoted to Basic Potato Recipes. While very highly recommended for family and community library cookbook collections, it should be noted that "The Potatopia Cookbook" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

Raw and Radiant
Summer Sanders
Skyhorse Publishing, Inc.
307 West 36th Street, 11th Floor, New York, NY 10018
9781510724747, $22.99, HC, 272pp,

Comprised of 130 kitchen cook friendly recipes and holistic tips for living a healthy life, "Raw and Radiant" is a beautifully and profusely illustrated cookbook compiled and presented by certified raw food chef, personal trainer, plant-based nutritionist Summer Sanders (who is also the curator at Strong + Radiant, and founder of Local Juicery). In addition to practical information on soaking, sprouting, making flour, natural skin and body care, entertaining, cleansing, and more, the quick and easy recipes range from Sesame Seed Milk; Watercress and Fresh Fig Salad; Rustic Flat Bread Pizza; and Hearty Raw Tacos; to Lemon Lavender Tart; Chaga Chai Latte; Pumpkin Pie Cheesecake, and Watermelon Limeade. Exceptionally 'user friendly' in organization and presentation, "Raw and Radiant" is unreservedly recommended for personal, family, and community library cookbook collections. It should be noted that "Raw and Radiant" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

The Biography Shelf

Soar: A Memoir
Gail Campbell Woolley
Agate Bolden
c/o Agate Publishing
1328 Greenleaf Street, Evanston, IL 60202
9781572842380, $16.00, PB, 312pp,

When Gail Campbell Woolley was seven, a pediatrician told her mother that Gail suffered from sickle cell anemia, a rare blood disease, and that she would be dead by age 35. While others may have responded to this horrifying news by descending into a fog of self-pity, Gail went in the opposite direction. She decided to live an eventful, exciting life that ultimately included despite a troubled home life and the systemic racism and sexism of the late 20th century academic success, an impressive career, a long and loving marriage, and the ability to leave her unmistakable stamp on every person she met. By the time she finally succumbed to her disease at age 58 in 2015, she had ground that doctor's words into dust. "Soar: A Memoir", written in the last two years of her life, is Woolley's powerfully inspiring story, and its publication checks the last item off her extraordinary bucket list, which also included traveling to every continent except Antarctica. Gail writes that from the time she was a child, she awoke every morning with the sound of the famous 60 Minutes clock ticking in the back of her mind. But those ticking seconds also formed her indomitable spirit in ways that can inspire each of us who still draw breath. Written in an engaging, no-nonsense voice with a directness that reflects her many years in journalism, Woolley's remarkable story not only will move readers to root for this irrepressible, quietly heroic woman but also will push readers to reassess their own approach to life. A deftly written and inherently engaging read from beginning to end, "Soar: A Memoir" is highly and unreservedly recommended for both community and academic library Contemporary American Biography collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Soar" A Memoir" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

So Happiness to Meet You
Karin Esterhammer
Prospect Park Books
9781938849978, $16.00, PB, 256pp,

After job losses and the housing crash that were hallmarks of what came to be known as the Great Recession, Karin Esterhammer and her family leave Los Angeles, California, to start over in a most unlikely place: a nine-foot-wide back-alley house in one of Ho Chi Minh City's poorest districts, where neighbors unabashedly stare into windows, generously share their barbecued rat, keep cockroaches for luck, and ultimately help her find joy without Western trappings. An inherently fascinating memoir and a simply compelling read from cover to cover, "So Happiness to Meet You: Foolishly, Blissfully Stranded in Vietnam" is an exceptionally well written account and one that is unreservedly recommended as a unique addition to both community and academic library Contemporary American Biography collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "So Happiness to Meet You" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

The Dead Moms Club
Kate Spencer
Seal Press
c/o Hachette Book Group
1290 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10104
9781580056878, $16.99, PB, 288pp,

Comedian, writer, and mother Kate Spencer lost her own mom to cancer when she was 27. In "The Dead Moms Club", Kate walks readers through her experience of stumbling through grief and loss, and helps them to get through it, too. But "The Dead Moms Club" isn't a weepy, sentimental story, but rather a frank, up-front look at what it means to go through gruesome grief and come out on the other side. An empathetic read, "The Dead Moms Club" covers how losing her mother changed nearly everything in her life: both men and women readers who have lost parents or experienced grief of this magnitude will be comforted and consoled. Spencer even concludes each chapter with a cheeky but useful tip for readers -- like the "It's None of Your Business Card" to copy and hand out to nosy strangers asking about your passed loved one. Candidly personal, impressively insightful, thoughtful and thought-provoking, "The Dead Moms Club" is a truly extraordinary memoir and an especially recommended addition to community and academic library Contemporary American Biography collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "The Dead Moms Club" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $11.99).

There Are No Silver Bullets
Brent Blonigan
Brown Books Publishing Group
16250 Knoll Trail Drive, Suite 205, Dallas, TX 75248-2871
9781612549453, $21.95, HC, 256pp,

An emotional memoir, "There Are No Silver Bullets: My Family, My Depression" by Brent Blonigan recounts his lifelong battle with depression. Through self-reflection and personal anecdotes, Brent examines the impact his family, culture, religion, and society have had on his life. He is bold, honest, and forthcoming as he presents his experiences and evaluates their impact on who he is today. "There Are No Silver Bullets: My Family, My Depression" sheds light on one man's depression, along with his experience of the medical system s shortcomings in diagnosing and treating it. Reflective questions at the end of each chapter offer self-examination as a tool readers can use to consider the internal and external influences that may have contributed to their own emotional reality. Brent also provides sympathy and support for those fighting the demons of depression, abuse, and adjustment disorders, along with coping strategies that he has found helpful even lifesaving over the years. An exceptionally well written and impressively candid personal account, "There Are No Silver Bullets: My Family, My Depression" is an especially recommended addition to both community and academic library Contemporary American Biography collections in general, and the personal reading lists of anyone having to deal with depression within themselves or a loved one.

The Fantasy/SciFi Shelf

Kill Before Dying
Travis S. Taylor
Baen Books
PO Box 1188, Wake Forest NC 27588
9781476782072, $25.00, HC, 336pp,

A century and a half after the Martian Separatist Wars, Alexander Moore returns to the stars with the Sienna Madira, a United States Navy supercarrier spacecraft outfitted with advanced FTL and endlessly strange, extremely effective, quantum-based weapons and remote sensing technology. And, of course, he's brought Marines, and lots of them. These are troops superbly trained for space battle, and equipped with advanced powered armor and artificial intelligence backup. Moore's task: hunt down remnant weaponry platforms left by the brilliant, mad artificial intelligence known as Copernicus, the being ultimately responsible for the Solar System-wide civil war. Now Copernicus has formed an alliance with something else out there with a similar goal: wipe humanity from the galaxy forever. "Kill Before Dying" is the fifth volume in author Travis S. Taylor's 'Tau Ceti Agenda' series. While very highly recommended, especially for community library Science Fiction collections, it should be noted for the personal reading lists of dedicates SF fans that "Kill Before Dying" is also available in a mass market paperback edition (9781481483100, $7.99) and in a digital book format (Kindle, $5.38).

Loren W. Cooper
Red Hen Press
PO Box 3537, Granada Hills, CA 91394
9781939096029, $16.95, PB, 340pp,

Zethus is a sorcerer and self-described spiritual thug for hire. He makes his living in CrossTown, a place where the many world hypothesis of modern physics manifests itself, where possibilities and probabilities overlap. Caught up in a web of intrigue as he investigates the death of his master, Corvinus, and pursued by agents that want to erase all knowledge of Corvinus's work, Zethus discovers that the key to his master's murder lies in the last project he had pursued before his death. The roots of this project lie deep in the past, at the origin of CrossTown's fractured reality. Once he understands the stakes, Zethus must make the dangerous journey to the cradle of history. The price he must pay to find the answers he seeks will threaten everything he holds dear -- including his own humanity. An impressively original and deftly scripted novel by an author with a genuine flair for imaginative and narrative driven storytelling, "CrossTown" is an expressly and unreservedly recommended as an addition to community library Science Fiction & Fantasy collections, and a 'must' for the personal reading lists of all dedicated fantasy/mystery fans.

The Christian Studies Shelf

My Soul Waits
Martin Shannon, CJ
Paraclete Press
PO Box 1568, Orleans, MA 02653
9781612619705, $14.99, PB, 176pp,

"My Soul Waits: Praying with the Psalms through Advent, Christmas & Epiphany" by Martin Shannon (an Epsicopal priest, liturgist, a member of the Community of Jesus on Cape Cod, Massachusetts) is new devotional that combines the words of the Psalms, meditations from the Church Fathers, and a prayer as a guide for the reader through the various twists and turns on the journey to our Lord's Nativity. These beloved words from Scripture mirror our own thoughts and emotions (hope and expectation, suffering and patience, confession and healing) and are as relevant for the modern spiritual reader as when they were first sung in the Temple. Inspired and inspiring, "My Soul Waits: Praying with the Psalms through Advent, Christmas & Epiphany" is unreservedly recommended reading for all members of the Christian community. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "My Soul Waits: Praying with the Psalms through Advent, Christmas & Epiphany" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

Tuning Your Heart to Worship
L. Lavon Gray
New Hope Publishers
PO Box 830711, Birmingham, AL 35283-0711
9781625915320, $14.99, PB, 176pp,

What is worship exactly? in "Tuning Your Heart to Worship", author and worship leader Lavon Gray take the reader on a 100 day theological journey into the heart of worship with one of the most soul-inspiring writers of all time -- King David. To grow in understanding of what true worship looks like in the heart of a believer, each daily devotion traces the theology of worship through a specific Scripture passage and includes L. Lavon Gray's own personal experiences and insights supporting the theological truths surrounding our acts of worship. Thoughtful and thought-provoking, inspired and inspiring, timely and timeless, "Tuning Your Heart to Worship" is a truly extraordinary read. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Tuning Your Heart to Worship" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

Walking Through Twilight
Douglas Groothuis
InterVarsity Press
PO Box 1400, Downers Grove, IL 60515-1426
9780830845187, $17.00, PB, 177pp,

Nothing is simple for a person suffering from dementia, and for those they love. When ordinary tasks of communication, such as using a phone, become complex, then difficult, and then impossible, isolation becomes inevitable. Helping becomes excruciating. In "Walking Through Twilight: A Wife's Illness--A Philosopher's Lament", philosopher Douglas Groothuis offers a intensely personal window into his experience of caring for his wife as a rare form of dementia ravages her once-brilliant mind and eliminates her once-stellar verbal acuity. Mixing personal narrative with spiritual insight, he captures moments of lament as well as philosophical and theological reflection. Brief interludes provide poignant pictures of life inside the Groothuis household, and we meet a parade of caregivers, including a very skilled companion dog. Losses for both Doug and Becky come daily, and his questions for God multiply as he navigates the descending darkness. Here is a frank and candid exploration of how one continues to find God in the twilight. A deftly written and impressively informative account, "Walking Through Twilight" is an extraordinary and highly recommended addition to church, community, and academic library collections in general, and Alzheimer's supplemental studies reading lists in particular.

Glory Happening
Kaitlin B. Currice
Paraclete Press
PO Box 1568, Orleans, MA 02653
9781612618968, $16.99, PB, 128pp,

When you have a spiritual experience and tell the story of that experience to someone, something sacred happens inside of you. That experience doesn't have to be an extravagant moment, but it can be beautiful, nonetheless. And as you store up all those stories and share them, you grow your world's boundaries. You build community and remind yourself that every moment of your life counts for something holy, good, and glorious. "Glory Happening: Finding the Divine in Everyday Places" reveals that the search for glory will bring freedom and a fresh perspective to whatever season you happen to find yourself in. "Glory Happening" is a book of stories and prayers that remind you to take a closer look at your everyday circumstances, to find the magical beauty in everyday experiences. It is an invitation to live deeply into every moment with the expectation that something good will find you at the end of the day. And once you experience glory, you have words to speak, a prayer to pray, and a story to tell. And so glory grows from person to person, and community is created around the reality that God is truly in our midst. Exceptional, inspiring, informative, extraordinary, "Glory Happening" is a rewarding read that is highly recommended for all members of the Christian community. While very highly recommended for church and community library collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Glory Happening" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $5.99).

Jesus Followers in the Roman Empire
Paul B. Duff
Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company
2140 Oak Industrial Drive, NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49505
9780802868787, $30.00, PB, 275pp,

When Jesus of Nazareth began proclaiming the kingdom of God early in the first century, he likely had no intention of starting a new religion, especially one that included former pagans. Yet a new religion did eventually develop -- one that not only included non-Jews but was soon dominated by them. How did this happen? In the pages of "Jesus Followers in the Roman Empire" by Paul Duff (Professor of Religion at the George Washington University in Washington, DC) the reader is offered an accessible and informed account of Christian origins, beginning with the teaching of Jesus and moving to the end of the first century. Professor Duff's narrative shows how the rural Jewish movement led by Jesus developed into a largely non-Jewish phenomenon permeating urban centers of the Roman Empire. Paying special attention to social, cultural, and religious contexts (as well as to early Christian ideas about idolatry, marriage, family, slavery, and ethnicity) "Jesus Followers in the Roman Empire" will help readers cultivate a deeper understanding of the identity, beliefs, and practices of early Christ-believers. Exceptionally and accessibly well written for both academia and non-specialist general readers, "Jesus Followers in the Roman Empire" is an extraordinary and informative study that is very highly recommended for students of Christian History and is a critically important addition to church, community, and academic library collections.

The Last Christians
Andreas Knapp
Plough Publishing House
151 Bowne Drive, PO Box 398, Walden, NY 12586
9780874860627, $18.00, PB, 233pp,

From its very inception, the adherents to the Christian religion have been persecuted both by those outside the Christian community as well as by members of other Christian denominations. Now today the principle sources of the persecution of Christians are by members of the Islamic faith throughout the Middle East. Inside Syria and Iraq, and even along the refugee trail, they are a religious minority persecuted for their Christian faith. Outside the Middle East, they're suspect because of their nationality. A small remnant of Christians is on the run from the Islamic State. If they are wiped out, or scattered to the corners of the earth, the language that Jesus spoke may be lost forever - along with the witness of a church that has modeled Jesus' way of nonviolence and loving one's enemy for two millennia. The kidnapping, enslavement, torture, and murder of Christians by the Islamic State, or ISIS, have been detailed by journalists, as have the jihadists' deliberate efforts to destroy the cultural heritage of a region that is the cradle of Christianity. But some stories run deep, and without a better understanding of the religious and historical roots of the present conflict, history will keep repeating itself century after century. "The Last Christians: Stories of Persecution, Flight, and Resilience in the Middle East" is unreservedly recommended reading for all members of today's Christian communities regardless of denominational affiliations. While highly recommended for church, community, and academic library collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "The Last Christians: Stories of Persecution, Flight, and Resilience in the Middle East" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

Your Marriage, God's Mission
Clint Bragg & Penny Bragg
Kregel Publications
2450 Oak Industrial Drive, NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49505
9780825444272, $15.99, PB, 256pp,

The collaborative work of Clint and Penny Bragg, "Your Marriage, God's Mission" is weekly guide for Christian couples that will help the reader pursue a lifelong spiritual journey. Engaging together by writing a marriage mission statement, through lessons drawn from military strategies, "Your Marriage, God's Mission" challenges the reader to get in step with God's commands, combat fear, and defeat the enemy's attacks in every aspect of a marriage. "Your Marriage, God's Mission" shows how to safeguard a martial relationship from division and to exercise humility. "Your Marriage, God's Mission" features innovative ideas such as assessment tools, guided exercises, and original prayers to deepen a relational intimacy and recognize how God's mission unfolds over time. Informal and practical, with links to videos of couples sharing their hard-won experience, "Your Marriage, God's Mission" is a fresh and insightful look at how any couple can discover God's mission for their marriage by discovering more of Him. Inspired and inspiring, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Your Marriage, God's Mission" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

The Judaic Studies Shelf

Early Jewish Literature: An Anthology
Brad Embry, Ronald Herms, Archie T. Wright, editors
Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company
2140 Oak Industrial Drive, NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49505
9780802866691, $125.00, 2 Volumes, 1504pp,

Collaboratively compiled and co-edited by the team of Brad Embry (Associate Professor of Hebrew Bible and Old Testament Studies at Regent University), Ronald Herms (Dean of the School of Humanities, Religion, and Social Sciences at Fresno Pacific University), and Archie T. Wright (Associate Professor of Biblical Studies at Regent University), "Early Jewish Literature: An Anthology" is a two volume study comprised of more than seventy selections drawn from the Jewish literary during the era of Second Temple. Each selection is translated by a leading scholar, and collectively these selections present both complete works and substantial excerpts of longer works that provide readers with a solid introduction to the major writings of the era including the Dead Sea Scrolls, the Old Testament Pseudepigrapha, the writings of Josephus, the writings of Philo of Alexandria, and the Apocrypha. Enhanced with the inclusion of a list of further readings on each selection, a section of maps, a glossary of biographical names, and a glossary of terms. A landmark work of simply outstanding and exceptionally informative scholarship in both breadth and scope, "Early Jewish Literature: An Anthology" is an essential and core addition to synagogue, community, college, and university library Judaic History & Studies reference collections.

The Fiction Shelf

The Lubecker
M. J. Joseph
The Peppertree Press
9781614935247, $34.95, HC, 470pp,

In his original novel, "The Lubecker", author M. J. Joseph deftly explores the dynamics of personal identity and self-knowledge in a thematically braided journey of characters toward a dramatic and unexpected finale. Joseph achieves this by plunging the reader into a world of parallel and lively narratives drawn into the roiling milieu of European history leading to the onset of World War I. "The Lubecker" also recalls many of Western Literature's most engaging philosophical and religious challenges and its most memorable and moving human struggles. Skillfully crafted, inherently engaging, "The Lubecker" showcases author M. J. Jospeh's genuine flair for narrative driven storytelling that is as extraordinarily entertaining as it is thought-provoking. While very highly recommended, especially for community and academic library Historical Literary Fiction collections, it should be noted for the personal reading lists that "The Lubecker" is also available in a paperback edition (9781614935438, $26.95).

Phoebe's Light
Suzanne Woods Fisher
c/o Baker Publishing Group
6030 East Fulton, Ada, MI 49301
9780800734855, $29.99, HC, 354pp,

"Phoebe's Light" by Suzanne Woods Fisher" is the story of Phoebe Starbuck, a young Quaker woman who has everything she wants until a secret in her great grandmother's journal threatens her future as a Nantucket captain's wife. An original, engaging, and impressively entertaining novel from beginning to end, "Phoebe's Light" showcases the storytelling talents of author Suzanne Woods Fisher and her total master of the historical fiction genre. While unreservedly recommended, especially for community library Historical Fiction collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Phoebe's Light" is also available in a paperback edition (9780800721626, $15.99) and in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

Millard Salter's Last Day
Jacob M. Appel
Gallery Books
c/o Simon and Schuster
1230 Avenue of the Americas, 14th fl., New York, NY 10020
9781507204085, $16.99, PB, 272pp,

In an effort to delay the frailty and isolation that comes with old age, psychiatrist Millard Salter decides to kill himself by the end of the day -- but first he has to tie up some loose ends. These include a tete-a-tete with his youngest son, Lysander, who at forty-three has yet to hold down a paying job; an unscheduled rendezvous with his first wife, Carol, whom he hasn't seen in twenty-seven years; and a brief visit to the grave of his second wife, Isabelle. Complicating this plan though is Delilah, the widow with whom he has fallen in love in the past few months. As Millard begins to wrap up his life, he confronts a lifetime of challenges during a single day -- and discovers that his family has a big surprise for him as well. A skillfully written and inherently engaging read from cover to cover, "Millard Salter's Last Day" is an original and extraordinary novel that will linger in the mind and memory long after the book itself has been finished and set back upon the shelf. While very highly recommended, especially for community library Contemporary General Fiction collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Millard Salter's Last Day" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $11.99) and as a complete and unabridged audio book (Blackstone Audio, 9781538504246, $34.95, CD).

Angel Falls
Derek Catron
Five Star Books
10 Water Street, Suite 310, Waterville, ME 04901
9781432837600, $25.00, HC, 328pp,

In his newest novel, "Angel Falls", journalist Derek Catron deftly weaves a thrilling tale of three unforgettable characters: Josey Angel, a Union cavalryman struggling to set aside a violent past; Annabelle Rutledge, a Southern war widow who found love in the West but little peace; and a Sioux determined to earn his warrior name -- Crazy Horse. After Annabelle is seized in a bloody Indian attack, Josey goes on a soul-searing rampage to rescue her. While Crazy Horse plots to kill the white men on his people's land, he's tormented by an unrequited love that tears at his sense of honor. The roiling conflicts climax on the bloodiest day of Red Cloud's War, when Josey and Annabelle must come together to escape tragedy. A simply riveting novel from cover to cover, "Angel Falls" will prove to be a popular and sought after addition to community library Western Fiction collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Angel Falls" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $7.99).

Title 13
Michael A. Ferro
Harvard Square Editions
2152 Beachwood Terrace, Hollywood, CA 90068
9781941861462, $22.95, PB, 398pp,

Heald Brown might be responsible for the loss of highly classified Title 13 government documents -- and may have hopelessly lost himself as well. Since leaving his home in Detroit for Chicago during the recession, Heald teeters anxiously between despondency and bombastic sarcasm, striving to understand a country gone mad while clinging to his quixotic roots. Trying to deny the frightening course of his alcoholism, Heald struggles with his mounting paranoia, and his relationships with his concerned family and dying grandmother, all while juggling a budding office romance at the US government's Chicago Regional Census Center. Heald's reality soon digresses into farcical absurdity, fevered isolation, and arcane psychological revelation, hilarious though redoubtable in nature. Meanwhile the Title13 secrets remain at large, haunting each character and tangling the interwoven threads of Heald's life. An original, narrative driven, deftly crafted read from beginning to end, "Title 13" by Michael A. Ferro reveals the author's remarkable flair for engaging dialogue and memorable characters, making "Title 13" unreservedly recommended for both personal reading lists and community library Contemporary General Fiction collections.

The Witchfinder's Sister
Beth Underdown
Charnwood Large Print / Thorpe
c/o Ulverscroft Large Print (USA), Inc.
PO Box 1230, West Seneca, NY 14224-1230
9781444835052, $35.50, HC, 408pp,

The year is 1645, and with a heavy heart, Alice Hopkins returns to the small town in Essex, England where she grew up. Widowed, with child, and without prospects, she is forced to find refuge at the house of her younger brother, Matthew. In the five years she has been gone, the boy she knew has become a man of influence and wealth -- but more has changed than merely his fortunes. Alice fears that even as the cruel burns of a childhood accident still mark his face, something terrible has scarred Matthew's soul. There is a new darkness in the town with frightened whispers are stirring in the streets, and Alice's blood runs cold with dread when she discovers that Matthew is a ruthless hunter of suspected witches. Torn between devotion to her brother and horror at what he's become, Alice is desperate to intervene -- and deathly afraid of the consequences. But as Matthew's reign of terror spreads, Alice must choose between her safety and her soul. Alone and surrounded by suspicious eyes, Alice seeks out the fuel firing her brother's brutal mission -- and is drawn into the Hopkins family's past. There she finds secrets nested within secrets: and at their heart, the poisonous truth. Only by putting her own life and liberty in peril can she defeat this darkest of evils -- before more innocent women are forced to the gallows. Now in a large print edition that is unreservedly recommended, especially for community library Historical Fiction collections, "The Witchfinder's Sister" is a superbly crafted and entertaining read that is all the more impressive when considering that it is author Beth Underdown's debut as a novelist.

The Magic Of Ramblings
Kate Field
Magna Large Print
c/o Ulverscroft Large Print (USA), Inc.
PO Box 1230, West Seneca, NY 14224-1230
9780750544337, $35.50, HC, 396pp,

When Cassie accepts a job as companion to an old lady in a remote Lancashire village, she hopes for a quiet life where she can forget herself, her past and most especially men. The last thing she wants is to be drawn into saving a community that seems determined to take her to its heart and to resuscitate hers... Frances lives a reclusive life at Ramblings, a Victorian Gothic mansion. But her nephew Barney (whose medical career ended in scandal) is now staying too. He's suspicious of Cassie, especially when she starts to steal his rich aunt's affection and maybe his own too! A consistently engaging and entertaining read from first page to last, this large print edition of Kate Field's "The Magic Of Ramblings" is especially recommended for community library General Fiction collections and personal reading lists.

The Mystery/Suspense Shelf

Murder Unscripted
Clive Rosengren
Coffeetown Press
PO Box 70515, Seattle, WA 98127
9781603816694, $14.95, PB, 240pp,

Eddie Collins is a part-time actor whose pursuits take on a new dimension when his ex-wife, Elaine Weddington, turns up dead while filming her latest movie Flames of Desire. The production's insurance company hires Eddie to represent their interests in the Americana Pictures film. Private eye is his main gig now, although he doesn't turn his back on acting jobs when they come his way. Elaine was a star of sorts, though her pictures were B-movies and never up for major awards. Encroaching middle age meant her leading-lady days were numbered, and she worked with a lot of jealous wannabes. Did one of them off her? What about her personal assistant or live-in boyfriend? While searching through Elaine's trailer, Eddie finds a list of initials with corresponding phone numbers. As he gradually ticks off the entries, he begins to form an unwelcome, less idealized version of Elaine. Then an assistant director is killed as she is about to share a damning revelation. The quest to identify one set of initials almost puts him in the hospital. Can Eddie handle the truth? Will it set him free, or kill him? A deftly crafted and inherently fascinating read from cover, "Murder Unscripted" is the first volume in author Clive Rosengren's 'Eddie Collins Mystery' series and reveals his genuine master of the genre. While "Murder Unscripted" is unreservedly recommended, especially for community library Mystery/Suspense collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that it is also available for the personal reading lists of dedicated mystery buffs in a digital book format (Kindle, $5.95) and as a complete and unabridged audio book (Blackstone Audio, 9781470833220, $24.95, CD).

A Deadly Eclair: A French Bistro Mystery
Daryl Wood Gerber
Crooked Lane Books
2 Park Avenue, 10th floor, New York, NY 10016
9781683313410, $26.99, HC, 320pp,

It's always been Mimi Rousseau's dream to open her own bistro, but it seems beyond her grasp since she's been chased back home to Nouvelle Vie in Napa Valley by her late husband's tremendous debt. Until her best friend Jorianne James introduces her to entrepreneur Bryan Baker who invests in promising prospects. Now, working the bistro and inn until she's able to pay it off and call it her own, Mimi is throwing the inn's first wedding ever. The wedding will be the talk of the town, as famous talk show host Angelica Edmonton, daughter of Bryan's half-brother, Edison, has chosen the inn as her perfect venue. Anxious, Mimi is sure things are going to turn south, especially when Edison gets drunk and rowdy at the out-of-towners' dinner, but by the evening, things begin to look up again. That is until six AM rolls around, and Bryan is found dead at the bistro with an eclair stuffed in his mouth. And the fingers point at Mimi, whose entire loan is forgiven in Bryan's will. Now it's up to Mimi to clear her name and get to the bottom of things before the killer turns up the heat again. A truly riveting read from cover to cover (and one that includes recipes!), "A Deadly Eclair" by Daryl Wood Gerb is a riveting read and the kind of deftly crafted and impressively original mystery that will prove to be an exceptionally popular addition to community library collections. For the personal reading lists of dedicated mystery buffs it should be noted that "A Deadly Eclair" is also available in a paperback edition (9781683316046, $15.99), in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99), and as a complete an unabridged audio book (Blackstone Audio, B076X6ZRSD, $14.95, 9 Hours 56 Minutes, Audible Audio).

The Cost of Living
Rachel Ward
Sandstone Press
c/o Dufour Editions, Inc.
PO Box 7, 124 Byers Road, Chester Springs, PA 19425-0007
9781910985830, $16.00, PB, 326pp,

When a young woman is attacked walking home from her local supermarket, Bea Jordan, a smart but unfulfilled checkout girl, is determined to investigate. Colleagues and customers become suspects, secrets are uncovered. While fear stalks the town, Bea finds an unlikely ally in Ant, the seemingly dull and clumsy new trainee, but risks losing the people she loves most as death comes close to home. A warm, contemporary, and deftly scripted story with likeable leads, an engaging cast of supporting characters and a dark thread running throughout, "The Cost of Living" is an extraordinarily entertaining mystery by novelist Rachel Ward and very highly recommended, especially for community library Mystery/Suspense collections and the personal reading lists of dedicated mystery buffs.

The Undesired
Yrsa Sigurdardottir
Minotaur Books
c/o St. Martin's Publishing Group
175 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10010
9781250152220, $16.99, PB, 368pp,

Aldis hates her job working in a juvenile detention center in rural Iceland. The boys are difficult, the owners are unpleasant, and there are mysterious noises at night. And then two of the boys go astray. Decades later, single father Odinn is looking into alleged abuse at the center. The more he finds out, though, the more it seems the odd events of the 1970s are linked to the accident that killed his ex-wife. Was her death something more sinister? "The Undesired" is a simply riveting and deftly crafted thriller of a read from cover to cover by Icelandic novelist Yrsa Sigurdardottir. While very highly recommended, especially for community library collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "The Undesired" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $13.99).

What Doesn't Kill You
Aimee Hix
Midnight Ink
2143 Wooddale Drive, Woodbury, MN 55125-2989
9780738754437, $15.99, PB, 264pp,

Willa Pennington thought that becoming a PI would be better than being a cop. She thought she'd never have to make another death notification or don a bulletproof vest again. She thought she could move past the pain of losing her best friend. She thought she'd be safe. But she couldn't have been more wrong. Now, agreeing to do a simple favor has brought her to a dead body, a missing person, and a battle of wits with an old friend who has dangerous secrets. If Willa can keep her focus, she could solve the murder, find the missing girl, and figure out if the person she's trusted with her life is the one trying to end it. A riveting read replete with unexpected twists and turns, "What Doesn't Kill You" showcases author Aimee Hix's complete mastery of the genre and will prove to be an enduringly popular addition to community library Mystery/Suspense collections. It should be noted for the personal reading lists of dedicated mystery buffs that "What Doesn't Kill You" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.89).

The Innocents
David Putnam
Oceanview Publishing
595 Bay Isles Road, 120-G, Longboat Key, FL 34228
9781608092574, $26.95, HC, 336pp,

Bruno Johnson, a newly minted LA County Sheriff Violent Crimes detective, gets the worst assignment possible - infiltrate a sheriff's narcotics team that may be involved in murder for hire. Gain their trust and be brought into the scheme. If he succeeds, he will have to arrest and testify against his fellow deputies -- if he lives that long. To make matters worse, before Bruno leaves home on the first day of this assignment, he answers the door to find an ex-girlfriend. Without explanation, she hands him a baby girl only weeks old. The child is his. Stunned and terrified, he now faces immediate fatherhood as well as the traitor-like charge to take down his colleagues. Juggling his complex home life, Bruno tackles his assignment to discover that no one is who they seem to be and that his boss, Lieutenant Wicks, might be involved. His mission is further complicated when an attractive female deputy, recently transferred from Public Affairs, is also put on the case. She has no street experience, and Bruno carries the extra burden of watching her back -- a tough assignment made tougher by personal attraction. As Bruno gets deeper and deeper into the corruption, he doesn't know whom to trust, and in the end, confides in the wrong person. Another riveting novel by an author with a genuine flair for narrative driven fiction, "The Innocents" by David Putnam will prove to be an enduringly popular addition to community library collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "The Innocents" is also available in a paperback edition (9781608092949, $16.99) and in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

The Wench is Wicked / Blonde Verdict / Delilah was Deadly
Carter Brown
Stark House Press
1315 H Street, Eureka, CA 95501
9781944520335, $19.95, PB, 296pp,

Al Wheeler is a homicide lieutenant with the sheriff's department of Pine City, near Los Angeles. Writing under the pseudonym Carter Brown, English-born Australian mystery novelist Alan Geoffrey Yates, (1 August 1923 - 5 May 1985) wrote 52 Wheeler novels from 1954 to 1984 (and nearly 300 novels altogether). Now back into print after 30 years for the benefit of a new generation of appreciative readers, Stark House Press is re-publishing three of the best of the Wheeler short stories from the 1950s: "The Wench is Wicked"; "Blonde Verdict", and "Delilah was Deadly". This trilogy of stories under one cover will serve to introduce dedicated mystery buffs to a true master of the detective fiction format and is unreservedly recommended for personal reading lists, as well as proving to be an enduringly popular addition to community library Mystery/Suspense collections.

The Last Man in Tehran
Mark Henshaw
Touchstone Books
c/o Simon & Schuster
1230 Avenue of the Americas. New York, NY 10020
9781501161261, $24.99, HC, 336pp,

New Red Cell Chief Kyra Stryker has barely settled into the job when an attack on an Israeli port throws the Middle East into chaos. The Mossad (Israel's feared intelligence service) responds with a campaign of covert sabotage and assassination, determined to protect the homeland. But evidence quickly turns up suggesting that a group of moles inside Langley are helping Mossad wage its covert war. Convinced that Mossad has heavily penetrated the CIA's leadership, the FBI launches a counterintelligence investigation that threatens to cripple the Agency -- and anyone who questions the official story is suspect. With few officials willing to help for fear of getting accused, Kyra turns to her former mentors (the now-retired Red Cell Chief Jonathan Burke and his wife, former CIA Director Kathryn Cooke) to help uncover who is trying to tear the CIA apart from the inside out. Another deftly crafted and riveting read from Mark Henshaw, "The Last Man in Tehran" is part of the author's outstanding 'Red Cell' series. While unreservedly recommended, especially for community library Suspense/Thriller collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "The Last Man in Tehran" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

The Woman in the Camphor Trunk
Jennifer Kincheloe
Seventh Street Books
c/o Prometheus Books
59 John Glenn Drive, Amherst, NY 14228
9781633883635, $15.95, PB, 304pp,

"The Woman in the Camphor Trunk" is set in the Los Angeles Chinatown of 1908, and broadly considered to be the most dangerous beat in LA. That's where police matron Anna Blanc and her former sweetheart, Detective Joe Singer, discover the body of a white missionary woman, stuffed in a trunk in the apartment of her Chinese lover. If news about the murder gets out, there will be a violent backlash against the Chinese. Joe and Anna work to solve the crime quietly and keep the death a secret, reluctantly helped by the good-looking Mr. Jones, a prominent local leader. Meanwhile, the kidnaping of two slave girls fuels existing tensions, leaving Chinatown poised on the verge of a bloody tong war. Joe orders Anna to stay away, but Anna is determined to solve the crime before news of the murder is leaked and Chinatown explodes. A simply riveting read from cover to cover, "The Woman in the Camphor Trunk" showcases author Jennifer Kincheloe as a true master of the genre and an impressively skilled novelist. While very highly recommended and certain to be an enduringly popular addition to community library Mystery/Suspense collections, it should be noted for the personal reading lists of dedicated mystery buffs that "The Woman in the Camphor Trunk" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99), as well as a complete and unabridged audio book (Jennifer R Kincheloe, Ltd, B077W3CHC2, $21.83, 10 Hours 52 Minutes, Audible Audio Edition).

Claws for Concern
Miranda James
Berkley Books
c/o Penguin Group
375 Hudson Street, 4th floor, New York, NY 10014
9780425277782, $26.00, HC, 288pp,

Charlie Harris is busy enjoying his new grandson when a mysterious man with a connection to Charlie's family starts visiting the library, bringing with him troubling questions about an unsolved murder. Charlie may be a proud new grandfather, but he and Diesel still have work to do at Athena College and the small Mississippi town's public library. He's too busy to deal with true-crime writer Jack Pemberton, who wants Charlie as the subject of his latest book--and who won't take no for an answer. A more appealing proposition for Charlie is spending time helping a kind, elderly man navigate the library's genealogical database. But he's shocked when he learns that the visitor's search is focused on a member of his own family: his late aunt's husband. Charlie befriends the man and considers inviting him to stay in his home, but he's soon given reason to question that notion. Jack is certain that Charlie's new houseguest was involved in a shocking homicide that took place years ago in a small town near Athena. As this cold case heats up, Charlie and Diesel have to uncover a killer who may already be too close to home. "Claws for Concern" is the ninth and latest addition to mystery novelist Miranda James simply outstanding 'A Cat in the Stacks Mystery' series and will prove to be an enduringly popular addition to community library Mystery/Suspense collections. It should be noted for the personal reading lists of dedicated mystery buffs that "Claws for Concern" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $12.99) and as a complete and unabridged audio book (Tantor Audio, 9781515956501, $24.99, CD).

Killing Pace
Douglas Schofield
Minotaur Books
c/o St. Martin's Publishing Group
175 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10010
9781250120557, $25.99, HC, 272pp,

Questions have plagued Lisa Green for the past two months since she crawled barefoot and bleeding from the wreckage of a catastrophic car accident. Her boyfriend Roland has been nursing her back to health under close watch. Lisa has amnesia. They both know that, but only Lisa knows that she hasn't lost her ability to reason. And reason tells her that she is not Roland's girlfriend. She is his prisoner. Escape is her only option, and Lisa must figure out who she can trust and how to stay alive. It's bad enough that she's been held against her will, but worse, it seems that she wasn't randomly chosen. There's more to her story than kidnapping, and the details appear to cross borders and continents. With organized criminals hard on her heels, Lisa must expose her enemies before they choose their next victim. Another deftly crafted and inherently riveting novel by a skilled master of the mystery genre, "Killing Pace" by Douglas Schofield will prove to be another enduringly popular addition to community library Mystery/Suspense collections. It should be noted for the personal reading lists of dedicated mystery buffs that "Killing Pace" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $13.99).

The Graphic Novel Shelf

Star Trek: Waypoint
Dayton Ward, et al.
IDW Publishing
2765 Truxton Road, San Diego, CA 92106
9781684050178, $19.99, PB, 160pp,

"Star Trek: Waypoint" is a graphic novel anthology short stories run the entire gamut of Star Trek's history. These original Start Trek short stories are set during the Original Series, The Next Generation, Voyager, Deep Space Nine, Enterprise, and more. Favorite Star Trek characters are featured along with new one. Originally published as a six issue mini-series, this graphic novel compilation of "Star Trek: Waypoint" is an absolute 'must read' for the legions of dedicated Start Trek fans. While this IDW Publishing graphic novel edition of "Star Trek: Waypoint" is highly and unreservedly recommended for personal and community library collections, it should noted for the personal reading lists of Star Trek fans that "Star Trek: Waypoint" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $7.99).

Helena Crash: Fueled by Coffee
Fabian Rangel Jr., author
Warwick Johnson-Cadwell
IDW Publishing
2765 Truxton Road, San Diego, CA 92106
9781684050109, $15.99, PB, 112pp,

An original science fiction action/adventure novel set in a dystopian future where coffee has been outlawed, aliens have settled in amongst us, and two gangs are fighting it out for supremacy, Helen Crash is making her living as a finder and courier of illegal black market contraband. A riveting read by author Fabian Rangel Jr., and featuring the distinctive art style of illustrator Warwick Johnson-Cadwell, "Helena Crash: Fueled by Coffee" is a original, dynamic, impressively entertaining read from cover to cover. While especially and unreservedly recommended as a popular addition to community library graphic novel collections, it should be noted for the personal graphic novel reading lists of graphic novel enthusiasts that "Helena Crash: Fueled by Coffee" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $5.99).

Tales from the Crypt #1: The Stalking Dead
William Gaines, author
Miran Kim, illustrator
Super Genius
c/o Papercutz
160 Broadway, Suite 700E, New York, NY 10038
9781629914619, $14.99, HC, 72pp,

Zombies on Wall Street! A vampire elected president! What can possibly be more frightening than real life? These three all-new tales comprising "Tales from the Crypt #1: The Stalking Dead" are done in the grand tradition of the original EC classic horror comics series. The Crypt-Keeper is back, along with the Old Witch and the Vault-Keeper, to scare the belfry-bats out of you! In the true 'Tales from the Crypt' tradition, readers will witness the most loathsome people doing the most vile, evil, and gruesome things to their victims, only to eventually have the tables turned on them in shock endings that's will actually surprise and mortify the reader. It's old-school poetic justice with the darkest of twists and some truly horrible puns! Author William Gaines effectively collaborates with illustrator Miran Kim to produce an inherently fascinating and consistently entertaining graphic novel that will linger in the mind and memory long after the book itself has been finished and set back upon the shelf! It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Tales from the Crypt #1: The Stalking Dead" is also available in a paperback edition (9781629914602, $9.99).

At the Edge of the Great Void
Pierre Christin, author
Jean-Claude Mezieres, illustrator
Cinebook Ltd.
c/o National Book Network (dist.)
4501 Forbes Boulevard, Suite 200, Lanham, MD 20706
9781849183345, $11.95, PB, 48pp,

Jean-Claude Mezieres and Pierre Christin created Valerian in 1967 after working in the USA together, one as a cowboy, the other a teacher. While Valerian is Mezieres' only comic series, he has worked as an illustrator in many other areas, including designs and sets for The Fifth Element, and he was awarded the Grand Prix du festival d'Angouleme in 1984. Christin also works in collaboration with other artists such as Tardi and Bilal and writes novels and film scripts. Continuing the science fiction adventures of Valerian and Laureline, "At the Edge of the Great Void" is the latest title in their outstanding graphic novel series. This time the intrepid duo who are seeking the lost planet of Earth find themselves somewhere at the edge of known space and wanting to launch into the Great Void as the next step in their search. The Great Void is that inscrutable, shapeless, ever-changing place where the expanding universe springs forth, where new planets and new life forms are created. It's also, according to the gods of Hypsis, the place where Galaxity's Earth was sent and is being kept prisoner. Valerian and Laureline begin a discreet investigation, but it doesn't take long before they start finding obstacles in their path, placed by the rulers of Rubanis - and their mysterious master. A solidly entertaining read from cover to cover, "At the Edge of the Great Void" is very highly recommended for all dedicated SF action/adventure fans. It should be noted that "At the Edge of the Great Void" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $11.19).

The Dead Man
Leo, author
Rodolphe, illustrator
Cinebook Ltd.
c/o National Book Network (dist.)
4501 Forbes Boulevard, Suite 200, Lanham, MD 20706
9781849183611, $11.95, PB, 48pp,

The latest graphic novel in the simply outstanding 'Trent' series by author Leo and artist Rodolphe, "The Dead Man" continues the adventures of Canadian Mountain Police sergeant Philip Trent. This time, in pursuit of a killer, Trent comes across a young woman in dire straits in the Canadian wilderness. She is searching for her step-brother. It seems that the young man might be the killer Trent is searching for. Another thoroughly entertaining story with unexpected twists and turns, "The Dead Man" is highly recommended for personal and community library graphic novel collections. It should be noted that "The Dead Man" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $5.99).

Iznogoud's Nightmares
Rene Goscinny, author
Tabary, illustrator
Cinebook Ltd.
c/o National Book Network (dist.)
4501 Forbes Boulevard, Suite 200, Lanham, MD 20706
9781849183604, $13.95, PB, 56pp,

We've all played that game. 'Well, if I were in charge...' We've all imagined what we'd do if we were president of this or minister of that. For the evil Iznogoud, though, it's not just a game. As Grand Vizier, he can pretty much decide that he will be anything he wants to -- except the Caliph, of course. But, since it's Iznogoud, every single one of his decisions is inevitably going to go astray and bring disaster. For example, when imagining if he were the Minister of Divorce and decides to allow women the right to divorce their husbands his own harem walks out on him! Another superbly entertaining graphic novel from the team of Goscinny and Tabary, "Iznogoud's Nightmares" is unreservedly recommended for the personal reading lists of all dedicated Iznogoud fans, as well as community library graphic novel collections.

Fire Punch 1
Tatsuki Fujimoto
Viz Signature
c/o Viz Media
1355 Market Street, Suite 200, San Francisco CA 94103
9781421597171 $12.99 pbk / $8.09 Kindle

Fire Punch 1 is the debut volume of a dystopian black-and-white manga (Japanese graphic novel) series, superbly translated into English and presented with its art "unflipped" (in the original right-to-left style) by the Viz Signature imprint of Viz Media. The story follows orphaned siblings Agni and Luni, adrift in a bleak world cursed by the merciless Ice Witch. Agni and Luna are "blessed" humans with powerful special abilities, but some humans who are "blessed" place little value on the lives of others. When another of the "blessed" attacks Agni and slaughters the siblings' village, Agni struggles to survive and vows revenge. In this grim world, the "blessed" can bring hope or destruction to the suffering masses! Fire Punch is highly recommended, especially for connoisseurs of dystopian fiction. It should be noted that Fire Punch is intended expressly for mature readers, and carries a parental advisory due to explicit content - there are scenes of extreme violence as well as sexual situations.

The Audiobook Shelf

Year One
Nora Roberts, author
Performed by Julia Whelan
Brilliance Corporation
PO Box 887, Grand Haven, MI 49417
9781531834449 $44.99

The unabridged audiobook rendition of the first novel in the post-apocalyptic "Chronicles of the One" series, Year One is set in a world radically transformed by an unfathomable change - one that decimated half the world's population, destroyed the electrical grid, toppled national governments, and brought the power of magick. Yet magick can be a force for protection or a blight of unimaginable corruption. A handful of survivors band together and seek to escape the ravaged New York City, heading west in search of an unknown frontier. Superbly performed by Julia Whelan, Year One is thought-provoking, engrossing, and highly recommended. 10 discs, 12 hours 24 min.

A Game With No Rules
Michael Atamanov, author
Neil Hellegers, narrator
Tantor Media, Inc.
6 Business Park Road, Old Saybrook, CT 06475
9781515908104, $42.99, CD,

The Empire is splitting at the seams. The Great Houses refuse to obey the Throne World and have begun to conduct increasingly independent politics. Sensing the weakness of the central government, even the most loyal star systems of the Imperial Core are refusing to take orders from above. Is this just a string of coincidences, or a coordinated campaign? Can a disjointed humanity rally around a strong leader to deflect an alien invasion? Who of the many figures in intergalactic politics can rise to this challenge? And is there a basis to the creeping rumors that some influential aristocrats have joined forces with the enemy and allied with the aliens? The fourth and final book in Michael Atamanov's science fiction action/adventure series 'Perimeter Defense' series, "A Game With No Rules" is superbly narrated by Neil Hellegers in a flawlessly produced, complete and unabridged audio book from Tantor Media. Providing a complete 'theatre of the mind' experience, "A Game With No Rules" is unreservedly recommended listening for the legions of Michael Atamanov fans in general, and community library audio book collections in particular. Of special note is the Epilogue which casts an incredible and unpredicted twist to the entire story.

Rogue Angel: Death Looms
Alex Archer
Graphic Audio
7520 Standish Place, Suite 100, Rockville, MD 20855
9781628515633, $19.99, MP3 CD,

While looking for ghosts among Mardi Gras revelers in New Orleans, Annja Creed is asked to help recover sacred objects stolen from a church. Instead, her efforts lead her into a vast conspiracy and blackmail scheme that stretches thousands of years into the past. Joined by Garin Braden, who has his own score to settle, Annja follows the path of seven ancient coins into the lair of Spider, one of history's deadliest assassins. Will Annja and Garin find Spider's legendary treasure, or fall into her web, never to see the light of day again? Superbly produced with a full cast that is deftly augmented with cinematic music and digital sound effects, it should be "Rogue Angel: Death Looms" is an original story written specifically for GraphicAudio by Alex Archer and is available in no other format. Especially and unreservedly recommended for the personal listening of dedicated action/adventure fans, and certain to be an enduringly popular addition to community library audio book collections. (5 CDs, 5 Hours).

The Simple Truth
David Baldacci
Read by Jonathan Marosz
Hachette Audio
1290 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10104
9781478994633 $20.00

Now available for the first time as an unabridged audiobook on CD, The Simple Truth is a gripping legal thriller about a mysterious sequence of murders targeting everyone involved with convicted criminal Rufus Harms and his appeal - including the brother of protagonist John Fiske, a cop turned attorney. What do these killings have to do with the crime Harms committed twenty-five years ago? The one person who may truly know the answer is a prison escapee, desperately running for his life! Suspenseful to the very end, The Simple Truth is a choice pick for mystery and crime drama connoisseurs, highly recommended. 11 CDs, 13 hours.

The Music CD Shelf

Deborah Offenhauser
Privately Published

Soundscapes is a music album featuring the compositions and piano talent of Deborah Offenhauser, enriched with contributions from associates including the guitar, drums and percussion, oboe, flute, cello and violin. The result is a rich, reflective audio tapestry, highly recommended especially for connoisseurs of instrumental new age music. The tracks are "Decidedly Joyful", "Free Radical", "Nothing Can Touch You Now", "Irrational Exuberance", "Tanz", "Special Palace", "Through a Glass Darkly", "Rosemont Theme", "Air", "The Gloaming", "it is Written (Kirjutatud On)", "Tanninim (Sea Creatures)", and "The Wonderful Unfoldment". 65 min. 50 sec.

Silent Whispers
Kaveh Karandish
Privatley Published
$15.99 CD / $14.99 download

Silent Whispers is an instrumental album featuring the piano music of Iranian-American immigrant Kaveh Karandish, enriched with the collaboration of additional world-class musicians. Brimming with passion and Karandish's genius talent for blending elements from different musical traditions and cultures, Silent Whsipers is glorious, life-affirming, and profoundly inspirational. Highly recommended, especially for connoisseurs of quality original instrumental music. The tracks are "Silent Whispers", "Southern Sunrise", "Passion Dance", "My Dream", "Kaveh & Sherif", "Moments", "Sunset Sparrows", "Zaagros Zephyr", "Delicate Dreams", "Shiraz Nights", "Traveler", "Desert Dance", "Jaan e Jaanaan", and "Golden Dreams (Variation)".

They Were Here
Byron Metcalf & Jennifer Grais
Dr. Bam's Music
$15.99 CD / $9.03 MP3

They Were Here is a music album of sweeping beauty, crafted in celebration of the bond between humans and horses. Polyrhythmic drumming, didgeridoo, and orchestral synth-scapes accented with beautiful vocal pieces craft an album of exceptional beauty. They Were Here embraces the shamanic expression of the animal as spirit guide, and stirs the soul with its call to imagination and reflection. Highly recommended. The tracks are "They Were Here", "Opening to Freedom", "Soul of Mestengo", "Near and Far Away", "Womb of the Serpent", "Run", and "Song for Solo". 61 min. 48 sec.

Ay Que Boogaloo!
Spanglish Fly
Chaco World Music

Ay Que Boogaloo! is the latest album by Latin boogaloo group Spanglish Fly, who relish in transforming their chosen genre with elements of bolero, New Orleans funk, swing jazz, Arabic chant, and more. Lively, energetic, and embracing pluralism, Ay Que Boogaloo is a joy to experience and highly recommended for multicultural and world music collections. The tracks are "Bugalu Pa Mi Abuela", "New York Rules", "You Know I'm No Good/Chica Mala Mambo", "Ojala-Inshallah", "La Clave 'E Mi Bugalu", "Boogaloo Shoes", "Mister Dizzy Izzy", "Chain of Fools", "Coco Helado", and "How Do You Know/Como Sabes".

The DVD Shelf

The Commander: The Complete Collection
Acorn Media
c/o RLJ Entertainment

The Commander: The Complete Collection gathers all episodes of the British television series about a talented and strong-willed woman who has earned her place as New Scotland Yard's highest-ranking female officer after 20 years of service with London's Metropolitan Police. Her commitment to justice has also swayed the attention of her superiors - not always in a good way - and threatens to put her life in danger! Gripping and intensely character-driven, The Commander: The Complete Collection is highly recommended, and a "must" for connoisseurs of the genre. Bonus materials include an interview with star Amanda Burton, a character retrospective with creator Lynda La Plante, and a supporting cast featurette. It should be noted that The Commander is intended for mature audiences, due to the presence of coarse language, sexual situations, nudity, graphic images, and violence. 17 episodes on 7 DVDs, SDH subtitles, widescreen.

The Education Shelf

Colleges That Pay You Back: 2018 Edition
Robert Franek, et al.
The Princeton Review
c/o Random House Inc.
1745 Broadway, New York NY 10019
9781524757830, $22.99, PB, 480pp,

College is a major financial investment, and one that too many students enter into blindly. With the publication of "Colleges That Pay You Back: 2018 Edition", The Princeton Review erases that uncertainty with an informative and reliable guide to colleges and universities where students get the best return on their tuition investment. These schools offer generous financial aid, excellent academics, and valuable career-building experiences for a successful post-college outcome! "Colleges That Pay You Back: 2018 Edition" features: Top-value picks chosen based on 40+ data points, including academics, cost of attendance, financial aid, and post-grad salary figures; Profiles of 200 schools that offer fantastic value, with insight into their career services offerings; 7 Unique Ranking Lists; The top 25 schools with the Best Alumni Network, Best Career Placement, Top Financial Aid, and more; The highest-paying majors and great schools that offer them; Starting and mid-career salary information for graduates of each school; Percentages of alumni who report having meaningful jobs and who majored in science/technology/engineering/math (STEM) fields. A unique and reliable reference, "Colleges That Pay You Back: 2018 Edition" is unreservedly recommended for family, community, school district, and academic library Educational Reference collections.

The Magic of Play
The Care Courses School
PO Box 10526, McLean, VA 22102-8526
MOP-13N9, $50.00, PB, 84pp,

"The Magic of Play" explores the role of play in children's learning and development as well as ways to create and manage a play-based early childhood program. "The Magic of Play" will enable the reader to: identify key components of a "learning-through-play" early childhood environment that supports imaginative, creative play for all children, including those with disabilities; describe strategies to motivate children effectively; identify strategies to encourage children's resourcefulness and creativity; identify strategies to encourage and support event-based, block, and playground play; describe the role of active and rough and tumble play; explain the importance of play in an adult's life; identify key components of a meaningful play environment for children of different cultures; describe strategies for managing common play challenges. Exceptionally well written, organized and presented, "The Magic of Play" is especially recommended reading for classroom teachers, and is unreservedly recommended for college and university library Teacher Education instructional reference collections and supplemental studies reading lists.

The Needlecraft Shelf

Complete Book of Sewing Techniques
Wendy Gardiner, author
Sian Irvine, photographer
Coral Mula, illustrator
Companion House Books
c/o Fox Chapel Publishing
903 Square Street, Mount Joy, PA 17552
9781620082362 $19.99

The "Complete Book of Sewing Techniques" teaches step by step instructions for over 30 essential sewing techniques, with copious color photographs and illustrations. The book is divided into three parts: Sewing Essentials, Basic Techniques, and Style Techniques. Simply and clearly written narrative paired with precise matching illustrations and photos, "Complete Book of Sewing Techniques" is a helpful tool for the beginning, intermediate, and even advanced seamstress. Section 1, Sewing Essentials, covers sewing machines, sergers, fabrics, threads and notions, interfacings and stabilizers, paper patterns, and measuring guides. Helpful hints and relevant guides or measurement displays are presented in sidebars tinted pink and/or green. Examples of light weight, medium weight, and heavy weight fabrics are shown along with knit fabrics and specialty fabrics. In the pattern section, there is a helpful measuring guide, plus green sidebar guides to sizing measurements for imperial and metric patterns. There is also a helpful guide to pattern alterations. The Basic Techniques section covers hand stitching, machine stitching, corners and curves, seams, and seam finishes. Frequent helpful hints sidebars highlighted in pink add handy tips and information to the seamstress. The Style Techniques section contains information on hemming, facings and bands, darts, pockets, waistbands, collars, sleeves, cuffs, zippers, buttonholes, fastenings, tucks and pleats, linings and interlinings, gathers and ruffles, fancy edges, elastic and casings, straps and ties, applique, and making curtains and blinds. The "Complete Book of Sewing Techniques" is a veritable encyclopedia of sewing knowledge and techniques which can offer specific guidance to even advanced seamstresses as well as beginners. The photo illustrations are beautifully organized and color coded for clarity and beauty. The "Complete Book of Sewing Techniques" has a place on every seamstress' handy instructional bookshelf.

Sew-It-Yourself Home Accessories: 21 Practical Projects to Make in a Weekend
Cheryl Owen, author
Paul Bricknell, Photography, plus Shutterstock
IMM Lifestyle Books
c/o Fox Chapel Publishing
903 Square Street, Mount Joy, PA 17552
9781504800938 $16.99

"Sew-It-Yourself Home Accessories" contains instructions and templates for 21 practical projects that are easily made over a weekend. Filled with bright color photo-illustrations, each project is well documented from start to finish, every step along the way. Starting with project title, finished project photo, and list of materials and instructions for cutting out, the narrative continues to step by step instructions for making each home sewing projects. Helpful tips are also highlighted and illustrated. Beginning with illustrated lists of materials, supplies and tools, plus demonstrations of special techniques for many of the projects, projects include a chenille sofa pillow, a coffeepot cozy, an egg coaster, a pear doorstop, quilted oven mitt, stacked pincushion, headphones case, kimono clothespin bag, laptop case, hanging storage tub, tablet sleeve, a toiletry bag, wall organizer, and more. Large colored photos of projects and steps for making them are helpful to beginners and intermediate seamstresses. Full of clear instructions, creative ideas, and colorful realizations of sewing craft projects, "Sew-It-Yourself Home Accessories" is an ideal how-to book for the practical home sewing crafter.

Add One Stitch Knitting
Alina Schneider
250 Wireless Boulevard, Hauppauge, NY 11788
9781438010892, $18.99, PB, 128pp,

In the pages of "Add One Stitch Knitting: All the Stitches You Need in 15 Projects", knitting expert and blogger Alina Schneider demystifies the knitting process and helps aspiring needlecrafters to learn 15 essential knitting stitches with her easy, step-by-step, illustrated guide. Starting with the simple knit and purl stitches, each individual lesson will help novice knitters to combine these building blocks to create more complex stitches such as moss, waffle, rib, seed, and more. Build your skill set and create lots of beautiful, stylish projects, including: Garter stitch: Scarf; Seed stitch: Headband; Moss stitch: Cowl; Broken rib: Baby blanket; Waffle stitch: Phone case; Andalusian stitch: Summer top; 3 x 1 Seed rib stitch: Pom-pom hat -- and much more! Crystal clear photos and easy-to-follow lessons give beginners and refreshers all the tips they need to create beautiful and modern knit pieces making "Add One Stitch Knitting:" an ideal and unreservedly recommended addition to personal and community library knitting instructional reference collections.

The Fishing Shelf

Fly Fishing the Greater Yellowstone Backcountry
Bruce Staples
Stackpole Books
5067 Ritter Road, Mechanicsburg, PA 17055-6921
9780811716208, $29.95, PB, 288pp,

Bruce Staples, of Idaho Falls, Idaho, has fly-fished the Greater Yellowstone area for thirty-five years. Yellowstone National Park is one of the most crowded parks in the country, and for good reason: breathtaking scenery, amazing wildlife, and for anglers, great fishing. Yet, even a short hike from the road or trailhead into the backcountry of the park and the surrounding area can put anglers into even better fishing, often in solitude. Drawing upon his impressive expertise and years of experience, Staples has created "Fly Fishing the Greater Yellowstone Backcountry", a guidebook that focuses on backcountry fishing opportunities in Yellowstone Park and surrounding areas in Wyoming, Montana, and Idaho (Greater Yellowstone Area). In addition to full color photographs of the destinations, Staples has also included essential information for each stream or lake, including maps and written directions, flies, gear, and timing. An exceptionally well organized and presented instructional guide and reference, "Fly Fishing the Greater Yellowstone Backcountry" is ideal for planning truly memorable fishing excursions anywhere in the Greater Yellowstone territory. While highly recommended for community library Fishing/Hunting collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Fly Fishing the Greater Yellowstone Backcountry" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $15.65).

The Metaphysical Studies Shelf

Extraordinary Dreams
Kimberly R. Mascaro
McFarland & Company
PO Box 611, Jefferson NC 28640
9781476668826, $29.95, PB, 186pp,

Kimberly R. Mascaro has practiced psychotherapy focused on dreamwork, anxiety, women's recovery, trauma, grief and loss for 20 years and has served as a faculty associate at Arizona State University for 11 years. Some see dreams as communications with another reality and others see them as insignificant random phenomena. Dreams range from the mundane of day-to-day events to the extraordinary, including visions, lucid dreaming, out of body experiences, interactions with the deceased, precognition, sleep paralysis and vivid hallucinations during transitions between sleep and wakefulness. Drawing on individuals' reports, and drawing upon her years of experience and expertise, Mascaro explores the phenomena and the significance of extraordinary dreams in the pages of "Extraordinary Dreams: Visions, Announcements and Premonitions Across Time and Place", making it an extraordinary and unreservedly recommended addition to personal, community, and academic library Metaphysical Studies and Dream Studies instructional reference collections. It should be noted for students, academia, and non-specialist general readers that "Extraordinary Dreams" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $15.99).

The Health/Medicine Shelf

Am I My Body's Keeper?
Michael Kaufman
Urim Publications
c/o Lambda Publishers
527 Empire Boulevard, Brooklyn, New York 11225
9789655242669, $26.95, HC, 300pp,

Dr. Michael Kaufman is a distinguished scholar and author and studied at Yeshiva and Mesivta Torah Vodaath, Telshe Yeshiva, Brooklyn College, and the University of Louisville. In "Am I My Body's Keeper?: Torah, Science, Diet and Fitness -- for Life" he has written an instructional guide specifically for those readers who find it almost impossible to stay 100% healthy and fit with a modern lifestyle that includes long hours of sitting in an office chair, balancing a family, and accomplishing everything else on a daily to-do list. To deal with this conundrum, Dr. Kaufman shows how to extend our lives by living healthy and fit. "Am I My Body's Keeper" provides a simple guide to changing our lifestyles, from the sedentary one characterizing most of society to an active one emphasizing physical activity and healthy eating. The simple lifestyle changes advocated in the pages of "Am I My Body's Keeper?" will give readers vim and vigor, health and fitness during those additional years of life they will be gaining. Based upon the timeless teachings of the Jewish sages as well as scientific research, "Am I My Body's Keeper" is a 'real world practical' guide for good, healthy living for both men and women of any age. Thoroughly 'user friendly' in tone, content, organization and presentation, "Am I My Body's Keeper?" is a life-changing, life-enhancing instructional guide and manual that is unreservedly recommended for personal, community, and academic library Health & Medicine collections and supplemental studies reading lists.

The Gardening Shelf

Worms Eat My Garbage
Mary Appelhof and Joanne Olszewski
Storey Publishing
210 Mass MoCA Way, North Adams, MA 01247
9781612129471 $14.95 pbk / $9.99 Kindle

Also available in a Kindle edition ($9.99), Worms Eat My Garbage is a classic how-to guide to worm composting (a process anyone can use to recycle food scraps into nutrient-rich fertilizer), now completely revised and updated for the 35th anniversary of its publication. Featuring easy- to-follow instructions and space-conscious suggestions that urban dwellers and others with limited-size yards can apply, Worms Eat My Garbage is enthusiastically recommended for gardeners of all skill and experience levels.

Growing Fruit in Northern Gardens
Sara Williams & Bob Bors
Coteau Books
2517 Victoria Avenue, Regina, SK, Canada, S4P 0T2
9781550509137, $39.95, HC, 320pp,

From pincherries to haskaps, tree fruits to vine fruits, and everything in between, renowned horticulturists Bob Bors and Sara Williams delve into the science of growing and maintaining fruit plants for northern gardeners to collaborative create "Growing Fruit in Northern Gardens", a profusely illustrated compendium of instructional information that gives each specific fruit plant its own chapter. "Growing Fruit in Northern Gardens" is a beautifully designed reference guide, complete with charts and color photographs, as it showcases and describes the plants and their history, planting, care, and any problems (such as insects and disease) that are typically associated with growing them. With the help of "Growing Fruit in Northern Gardens", even the most novice of northern climate gardeners will be able to decide which plants would work best in their own gardens, and harvest the fruits of their success. Exceptionally and extraordinarily 'user friendly' in organization and presentation, "Growing Fruit in Northern Gardens" is very highly recommended for personal reading lists, as well as community and academic library Gardening instructional reference collections.

The Crafts Shelf

Crafting Gratitude
Maggie Oman Shannon
Viva Editions
2246 Sixth Street, Berkeley, CA 94710-2219
9781632280343, $18.95, PB, 288pp,

Rev. Maggie Oman Shannon believes that crafting for us and those we love can be used as a meditative practice to appreciate the incredible, overflowing richness of life. That's why when she wrote "Crafting Gratitude: Creating and Celebrating Our Blessings with Hands and Heart" she insured that each meditative craft, from novice to expert, is infused with stories like how Gratitude Bundles can represent prosperity and physical health, Spirit Houses from Southeast Asia can be a symbol of a happy home, a Values Bracelet can help you reinforce your best professional traits, or Flower Mandalas can be an affirmation of nature. With other crafts involving aromatherapy, journaling, dream catchers, and a variety of household items, anyone can invigorate their own lives with Crafting Gratitude for family, health, prosperity, the Divine, and much more. Accompanied by a carefully curated list of recommended reading, helpful websites, and how-to guides, these forty practices will resonate with and prompt the aspiring crafter to begin, or continue, exploring gratitude. While highly recommended and certain to be a popular addition to senior center and community library instructional reference crafting collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Crafting Gratitude" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $10.99).

Big Book of Weekend Beading
Jean Power, editor
Natalie Corgrove, Umbreen Hafeez, Cheryl Owen, and Julie Smallwood, authors
CompanionHouse Books
c/o Fox Chapel Publishing
903 Square Street, Mount Joy, PA 17552
9781620082829 $19.99

"Big Book of Weekend Beading" contains step-by-step instructions for over 30 quick beading projects, plus a helpful beginning section on materials, tools, and techniques for beading. All four main sections of "Big Book of Weekend Beading" are filled with specific color photos of materials, techniques, tools, and instruction steps, plus finished product photos. Beading is a popular hobby among adults and teens, and a project guide like this one is extremely appealing. "Big Book of Weekend Beading" is divided into four general sections of quick beading projects: General Beading, Stringing, Bead Embroidery, and Wirework. There are eight or more beading projects in each section, with complete lists and color photos of materials, photo illustrated step by step instructions, and a finished project portrait photo. Some of the projects include a bead fringed throw, a square stitch belt, a loom bracelet, a bead-fringed lamp shade, eyeglass chain, an elastic necklace, an embroidered shawl, flower embroidered napkins, chandelier earrings, a charm bracelet, a decorated candle, and a beaded key ring, plus many more. Hours of pleasant beading and crafting are contained within the slim 183 pages of "Big Book of Weekend Beading" with its helpful instructions, tips, and information, including lists of suppliers, and templates for projects. "Big Book of Weekend Beading" is a first class instruction manual for a popular pastime that is sweeping the nation, a perfect activity for quiet winter weekends.

The Parenting Shelf

Inspiring Wonder, Awe, and Empathy
Deborah Schein
Redleaf Press
10 Yorkton Court, St. Paul, MN 55117-1065
9781605544847, $29.95, PB, 156pp,

In the pages of "Inspiring Wonder, Awe, and Empathy: Spiritual Development in Young Children", early childhood educator Deborah Schein offers a series of thoughtful practices for child care providers to nurture a child's spiritual development as an extension of social-emotional learning. "Inspiring Wonder, Awe, and Empathy" helps classroom teachers and caregivers to introduce young children to a system that begins with love and leads to a strong sense of self, ignites wonder and learning, and allows for the emergence of empathy that leads to personal wholeness. Teachers, parents, daycare attendants, and Kindergarten assistants can provide support and strengthen children's self-awareness through deep connections, increased social awareness, and pro-social behaviors, such as kindness, caring, empathy, and reverence. Spiritual development moments help children to grow, explore, play, and ask big questions. A unique and extraordinary contribution to the growing library of Early Childhood Education literature, "Inspiring Wonder, Awe, and Empathy" is an especially recommended addition to parental, school district, community, college, and university library collections and supplemental studies reading lists.

The Art Shelf

Ralph Fasanella: Images of Optimism
Marc Fasanella & Leslie Umberger
Pomegranate Communications, Inc.
19018 NE Portal Way, Portland, OR 97230
9780764979507, $35.00, HC, 128pp,

A self-taught painter, Ralph Fasanella (September 2, 1914 - December 16, 1997) was an activist whose megaphone was his paintbrush. His images, filled with symbolism, chronicle life in early twentieth-century New York, the American labor movement, the complex bonds of family, and the political injustices and social inequities of his time. "Ralph Fasanella: Images of Optimism" showcases nearly seventy of Fasanella's vibrant images of social conscience. An informative essay by Leslie Umberger articulates Fasanella's life of action and the deep-seated drive behind his work, and Marc Fasanella (the son of Marc Fasanella and a professor of art, architecture, and design for thirty years) offers personal perspectives on this unique artist of the people. Of special note is a chronology provided by Paul S. D'Ambrosio. "Ralph Fasanella: Images of Optimism" is a fascinating and informative perspective showcasing the work of a significant American artist and is unreservedly recommended for personal, community, and academic library 20th Century American Art History collections in general, and Ralph Fasanellar supplemental studies reading lists in particular.

The Sports Shelf

Skiing New Mexico
Daniel Gibson
University of New Mexico Press
MSC05 3185, 1 University of New Mexico, Albuquerque NM 87131-0001
9780826357564, $19.95, PB, 132pp,

Impressively informative and thoroughly 'user friendly' in organization and presentation, "Skiing New Mexico: A Guide to Snow Sports in the Land of Enchantment" by Daniel Gibson is the ideal guide to recreational skiing and snowboarding in the Land of Enchantment. Included are thousands of helpful details on the state's downhill ski resorts and cross-country and backcountry venues. Each individual ski area is profiled in a separate chapter that includes details on facilities and services such as childcare and instructional options; statistics like average snowfall, vertical drop, and lift capacity; transportation options, including shuttle and bus services; and prices of lift tickets, rental equipment, and lessons."Skiing New Mexico" also includes historical facts about each ski area and its founders, suggestions for best runs by type of terrain, activities off the slopes, and notes on his favorite places to stay and eat. The separate chapters on cross-country and backcountry downhill skiing are equally informative. While very highly recommended for community library collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Skiing New Mexico" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

The American History Shelf

Prairie Power
Sarah Eppler Janda
University of Oklahoma Press
2800 Venture Drive, Norman, OK 73069
9780806157948 $29.95 pbk / $28.45 Kindle

Prairie Power: Student Activism, Counterculture, and Backlash in Oklahoma 1962-1972 is a scholarly examination of student activism in Oklahoma, including its links to grassroots socialist radicalism, anti-draft protests, countercultural expression, and more. These "prairie power" free speech advocates are compared and contrasted against student protesters on the East Coast. Also scrutinized are the extreme efforts with which state officials worked to repress "agitators". Notes, a selected bibliography, and an index round out this excellent contribution to Oklahoma and American History shelves, highly recommended especially for public and college library collections.

The World History Shelf

No Way Out: The Irish in Wartime France 1939-1945
Isadore Ryan
Mercier Press
c/o Dufour Editions, Inc.
PO Box 7, 124 Byers Road, Chester Springs, PA 19425-0007
9781781174876, $32.00, PB, 352pp,

After the Germans invaded in 1940, at least 2,000 Irish people found themselves trapped in France. Intent on staying alive, most kept their heads down, but some became involved to varying degrees. "No Way Out: The Irish in Wartime France 1939-1945" by Isadore Ryan is an historical collection and collection of their experiences and misadventures in France during the traumatic years of World War II. An inherently fascinating and informative read from beginning to end, it is interesting to note that Isadore Ryan is a financial journalist and editor, resident in Paris for over 20 years. While very highly recommended for both community and academic library 20th Century European History collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "No Way Out: The Irish in Wartime France 1939-1945" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $12.99).

The Money/Finance Shelf

Invest Like You Give a Damn
Marc de Sousa-Shields
New Society Publishers
PO Box 189, Gabriola Island, BC, Canada, V0R 1X0
9780865718487 $18.99 pbk / $12.98 Kindle

Invest Like You Give a Damn lives up to its title as a practical-minded, reader-friendly guide to sustainable and responsible investing - that is, investing in companies not only as a foundation for one's retirement, but also as a foundation for a better world according to one's highest ethical and moral principles. Peppered with true-life stories, Invest Like You Give a Damn goes the extra mile to be thoroughly accessible to readers with little or no experience in matters of finance. "Financial advisors are people too, so they will have their planning and investment biases. Getting to know their investment approach and philosophy is key. You need to divine and understand this thoroughly before committing to using their services. Are they a Buy-and-Hold Polly? Or are they a Treasury Bill Conservative?" Invest Like You Give a Damn is "must-read" for anyone and everyone seeking to plan for their financial future, highly recommended.

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

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