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Wisconsin Bookwatch

Volume 2, Number 1 January 2007 Home | WBW Index

Table of Contents

Reviewer's Choice Art Shelf Hunting/Fishing Shelf
Poetry Shelf Education Shelf Gaming Shelf
Psychology Shelf Fiction Shelf Music Shelf
Biography Shelf Fantasy/SciFi Shelf Christian Studies Shelf
Self-Help Shelf Social Issues Shelf Environmental Studies Shelf
Islamic Studies Shelf Civil War Shelf Theatre/Cinema/TV Shelf
American History Shelf Parenting Shelf Political Science Shelf
Religion/Spirituality Shelf Metaphysical Studies Shelf Health/Medicine Shelf
Business Shelf Travel Shelf Mystery/Suspense Shelf

Reviewer's Choice

Any Damn Fool Can Be A Farmer
Bob Knopes
Archenell Publishing
9607 Laurel Oak Place, Fairfax Station, VA 22039
0976814609 $12.95 1-703-690-2039

Bob Knopes' biography, "Any Damn Fool Can Be A Farmer: Growing Up On A Wisconsin Farm" covers the first nineteen years of his life growing up on a dairy farm just a couple of miles north of Janesville, Wisconsin. Beginning with a description of a fire that destroyed all the buildings on the farm when he was just six months old, Knopes goes on to describe farm activities and how as a young boy on a family dairy farm, he took on more and more of the tasks required in dairy farming as he grew older. Of special note is the background family information on how his Irish and German grandparents came to settle in Wisconsin and how innovations in dairy farming machinery and technology impacted life on a Wisconsin farm in the first half of the twentieth century. "Any Damn Fool Can Be A Farmer" is informative, engaging, and highly recommended reading as Knopes presents a personal account of the joys and trials arising from life on a family farm. Not only every Wisconsin community library should have "Any Damn Fool Can Be A Farmer", but academic libraries should add this superbly written work as a part of their 20th Century American History, Agricultural History, and American Biography collections.

Trilogy Moments
Joseph S. Spence, Sr.; Sheila M. Parrish-Spence; Jonathan Clarence Parrish Spence
PO Box 151, Frederick, MD 21705-0151
1424152496 $19.95

The collaborative work of Joseph S. Spence, Sr.; his wife Sheila M. Parrish-Spence; and their teenage son, Jonathan Clarence Parrish Spence, "Trilogy Moments For The Mind, Body, And Soul" is an unusual compendium of 'Epulaeryu Poetry', a new form of poetry that is inspired by, and draws metaphors from 'succulent cuisines from home cooking to exotic dishes and drinks', while blending spirituality, tranquility and self-awareness for life's diverse and unpredictable journey. A lovely volume of deftly written verse, each of which is accompanied by a brief commentary, "Trilogy Moments" is extraordinary reading and a strongly recommended addition to personal, academic, and community library American Poetry collections. "Prayers for Poets": To all poets and writers who have read my poetry and prose/I appreciate your support and the love extended as I compose/You may be from countries like England, Jamaica, the US or Italy/However, I have made you a part of my extended family//I know that there are some poets in great distress/natural disasters have affected them and have taken their best/Loss of many lives I hope not, but some are living with less/In their loss of possessions and loved ones there is stress//God I implore you to lift up their minds, bodies and souls/Only you can bring back their joy and mold them to be whole/To be in your light in a struggle and all are striving as you know/Grant them all your grace as they reckon with nature's ugly blow.

The Seasons Of Grief
Debra Butler & Paisley Woodside
Guest Cottage
PO Box 848, Woodruff, WI 54568
978-1930596658 $14.95 1-800-333-8122

"I lost a marriage and found a home./I lost a father and found a heritage./I lost a job and found a life purpose./I lost a Son, but found myself and eternity." With the assistance of Pailsey Woodside, Deb Butler has compiled a small 125-page pocket book of personal observations, journal commentaries, and poetry that helped her to deal with the tragic loss of her son. "The Seasons of Grief: What Nature Can Teach Us About Loss" is nicely illustrated throughout with the color photography of Jane Winkler, whose images are drawn from the beauty and tranquility of the outdoors. Living in Minocqua, Wisconsin, Deb provides life coaching, counseling and transformational guidance augmented by her expertise in Transpersonal Psychology. Of special note is Deb's 'Fall Visualizations: A Daily Practice', a step-by-step example of cultivating a coping mechanism for experiencing and resolving deeply felt emotions. "The Seasons Of Grief" is an ideal gift for anyone having to deal with the loss of a loved one and in need of the healing properties of nature in appreciating that life is 'cyclical and unpredictable, full and possible'.

The Art Shelf

Adam Van Doren
Samuel G. White
Hudson Hills Press
PO Box 205, 74-2 Union Street, Manchester, VT 05254
1555952720 $55.00

Enhanced with informed and informative essays by Avis Berman (a former director of the Pennsylvania Academy of fine Arts and Adjunct Associate Professor of hart History at Temple University, Philadelphia) and art historian Avis Berman, "Adam Van Doren" is a coffee table artbook and monograph by Samuel G. White (Fellow of the American institute of Architects and Adjunct Professor of Fine Arts at new York University) showcasing the watercolor paintings of Adam Van Doren. Working in the classical tradition, Van Doren's distinctive drawings are drawn from twenty years of his career and document him as an accomplished colorist with a particular affinity for architectural elements such as domes, corbels, caryatids, bays, oriels, cornices, medallions, entablatures, pediments, and other aspects of architectural distinction, shape and texture. This particular edition includes plates of Van Doren's work in Rome, Venice, Paris and New York. Enhanced with a detailed chronology of his career, a list of selected exhibitions of his work, 'Selected Collections' and 'Selected Bibliography', "Adam Van Doren" is a seminal study and a strongly recommended addition to personal, professional, and academic library Art & Architecture reference collections and supplemental reading lists.

The Hunting/Fishing Shelf

The Master Angler
Phil Rabideau
Hancock House Publishers
1431 Harrison Avenue, Blaine, WA 98230-5005
0888395612 $14.95 1-800-938-1114

A master angler in his own right, Phil Rabideau has been fishing the waters of North America for over seventy years and in "The Master Angler: Using Color Technology To Catch More Fish", draws upon his seven decades of experience and expertise to take all the 'hit-and-miss' guesswork out of lure selection. Beginning with a presentation on the physiology of fish and fish behavior, "The Master Angler" lays out the attributes of the lure and the factors in lure selection that will minimize, if not eliminate, the trial-and-error choice which lure to use for which breed of fish and in what kind of waters. This little compendium outlines both the art and science of lure selection with a very special focus on the role of color. Simply put, "The Master Angler" with its profusely illustrated and 'fisherman friendly' instructional text is a 'must read' for any dedicated fishing enthusiast.

The Poetry Shelf

Through The Ages
Michaela Sefler
PO Box 151, Frederick, MD 21705-0151
1424102510 $19.95

The poetry of Michaela Sefler draws inspiration from the ancient Qabala, biblical scripture, and the phenomena of creation to express a compelling desire for knowledge, wisdom, transcendence, unity, and completion. Carefully crafted and skillfully expressed, "Through The Ages" is a superbly presented and enthusiastically recommended compendium of inspirational poetry that can be enjoyed over and over again. 'My Legacy': My legacy outlived,/my triumph outlasted,/my vows outweighted;/yet my days are numbered./My head crowned,/my struggles told./my story written;/and my oaths remain./I live on;/I survive;/my oaths take root,/and strengthen each day./Today I see,/my hopes take form,/but not forgetting,/your wanting soul.

Born in Utopia
Carmen Firan, editor
Talisman House
PO Box 3157, Jersey City, NJ 07303-3157
1584980508 $27.95

Edited by skilled translator and poet Carmen Firan, Born in Utopia: An Anthology of Modern and Contemporary Romanian Poetry is an omnibus assembly of poetry by dozens of Romanian authors. All poems are sublimely translated into English; some are from the years of the tyrannical regime of Nicolae Ceausescu, others are during the cultural proliferation that followed. A one-of-a-kind treasury of Romanian pride and literary art. "The Flower-Eater": You arrived with sixteen gladioli / to pay respects to the dead. / Under my gaze, the colors live / a secret life. / For food we need only / beauty on a plate. // In the morning: saffron. / For lunch: violets with mussels. / In the evening: pollen from sixteen gladioli. // Food is love as yet unborn. / On the table, among your flowers, / the body of the Lord, / offering itself eternally to all.

American Religious Poems
Harold Bloom
The Library of America
14 East 60th Street, New York, NY 10022
193108274X $40.00

American Religious Poems is a collection of classic American religious poems by an immense variety of authors, covering all stages of America's history and spiritual legacy. Notes, an index, a source list, and an invaluable Reader's Guide complement the poems themselves, which have been carefully selected for their intergenerational appeal. A worthy cross-section of American faith through the centuries as expressed in poetic literature, from classical narrative poems to spirituals and anonymous hymns. "God": I followed and breathed in silence. / What of its task is beheld? / My feeding thee has lent all / Which broke the current thread breeze / That kept the sprout of pregnant seas / Of weathered promising call. / The filling shades he only changes, / Tells the logos, its unearned dew / Not to feed, as if from cages, / His cloak that perfumes fragrant hew; / What of all the bulging mountains, / Sordid earth and rotting clays? / If then sense is suction fountains, / That same thought is but its ways.

Fun Being Me
Jack Wiler
CavanKerry Press
6 Horizon Road No. 2901, Fort Lee, NJ 07024
0972304592 $16.00

AIDS survivor Jack Wiler speaks of his struggle against the virus in Fun Being Me, a work of poetry that also embraces such diverse topics as what it is like to practically die and live again, money, the working life, sex, and the final reality of death. The easygoing, free-verse style treats serious topics with Everyman-style candor. A descriptive chronicle of all the daily and sometimes trivial nuances of life amid the omnipresent, harrowing threat of life's ending. "Sick of Being Sick": I was lying on my back for a month, oh I would get up / to piss or puke, but I mostly / lay and watched tv and / slept and ate. / A skeleton draped with / a ready-made shroud. // Then I began to move about. / To stir as it were in the world. / I might sit in my little white chair / in the shower or move / out to the living room / to receive a reluctant guest / or shuffle out to the / van from the AIDS center / to see a doctor or a nurse.

Terrestrial Music
John Bradley
Curbstone Press
321 Jackson Street, Willimantic, CT 06226
1931896283 $13.95

Prize-winning poet John Bradley presents Terrestrial Music, a collection of poems inspired by Pablo Neruda, Thomas McGrath, Muriel Rukeyeser, and Martin Espada. The haunting stanzas, which range from free-verse to narration approaching stream-of-consciousness, deals with the severities of social injustice, mankind's brutal impact on nature, and the power of the earth as part of the human identity - if only humankind can learn to recognize this and change its destructive ways before all is lost. "Terrestrial Music/2": I want to sleep / until we float / out of our skins / catch / on the maple's / wet leaves / dripping / onto the sleepless earth.

The Rise And Fall Of The Mind
Michael Cook
Author House
1663 Liberty Drive, Suite 200, Bloomington, IN 47403-5161
1425933009 $14.99 1-800-280-7715

"The Rise And Fall of Mind" is a 104-page collection of superbly written and highly recommended poetry by Michael Cook where each poem ranges in length fro six words to one and a half pages. The forms of the poems range from sonnets, villanelles, and pantoums, to haiku, ballad, and free verse. Witty, articulate, epigrammatic, humourous, touching, occasionally grimly descriptive, each carefully crafted verse is a masterfully presented use of language to convey emotions, ideas, contexts, and world we live in. "Pollution": There is a stench of dead fish from the lake./The children are in up to their necks,/wading sweetly through glittering white bellies/that dot the grimy waters. As the day rolls on/the waves slowly fling the dead and dying/up on the beach, where the flies wait.//My feet dig into the sand/come up with two cigarette butts./Impossible to escape a globe of trash and garbage./Breathing the air, we are one with it,/with the rotting fish, the hungry flies,/the dying earth and the bloodshot skies.

The Springs Of Creve Coeur
Martie Marshall
PO Box 151, Frederick, MD 21705-0151
1424104688 $14.95

"The Springs of Creve Coeur" is the fifth book of verse by Minnesota poet, novelist and free-lance writer Martie Marshall. Distinctive, distinguished, and documenting Marshall as a master wordsmith, these are poems that use words the way a skilled artist uses the colors of his pallette, or a musician the notes of his music, to convey images to the mind's eye of the viewer. 'The Great Ones': The great ones were stubborn./Hearts breaking, they turned away/when the iron doors of the critics/swung shut in their faces; then/walked back to their easels/or writing desks or claviers/and allowed the tears/before they rescued their/fiery visions of truth/which art only is–/or it is not. The sad/asylums welcomed the prostrate ones/until they could speak again./And they hauled reluctant Time/into their green souls' kingdom.

The Museum of Natural History
Julie Gamberg
Lynx House Books
c/o Eastern Washington University Press
705 West 1st Avenue, Spokane, WA 99201
1597660132 $14.95 1-800-508-9095

Winner of the 2005 Blue Lynx Prize for poetry, Julie Gamberg's "The Museum Of Natural History" is a slender, 62-page book of truly elegant and highly recommended verse. This is the kind of poetry that lingers on the mind with the kind of satisfaction so often sought, but so rarely found, in contemporary American poetry. 'Poison Oak': I may have gotten a touch/of poison oak hiking in low heels/on sharp rock. Sometimes//these decisions are impossible–/avoid the brush or avoid the edge./You brought wild mule's ear to punctuate/our talk, and said words such as It's already too late//that calcified like tooth./Your sunburn peels loiter at my house. How/you could have forgotten them//I have no idea. It's like the way you aks/Who's your daddy and I don't know/what the fuck you're talking about. My legs itch. Your peeling skin amasses.

The Education Shelf

Not Just Test Scores
Bob Paton
Outreach Publications
1219 - 77th Street, Brooklyn, NY 11228
0975522906 $19.95

One of the political techniques employed by Republican neo-cons these past six years has been to make up positive sounding names for some of their most blatantly special interest serving, insidiously community denigrating, personal freedoms restricting, "bait-and-switch" legislation. A perfect example of this is the so-called 'No Child Left Behind' federal education initiative that was allegedly intended to raise the general level of academic competence of all school children, but has instead wrecked havoc on public America's school systems – most especially, the funds strapped inner city schools and rural school districts across the country. Bob Paton is an experienced and dedicated teacher who has ripped back the layers of political chicanery to reveal the often tragic consequences that have resulted from the ham-fisted federal policies imposed upon the states, who in turn, impose them on the school districts, who in their turn impose them upon the classroom teachers who, in order to meet scholastic improvement quotas and deadlines, 'teach the test' instead of getting at the root causes of scholastic underachievement. To put it simply, "Not Just Test Scores: Safeguarding Our Children From Failure" should be 'must reading' for every concerned parent, teacher, administrator, and politician in this country. Not just for its accuracy in portraying what's gone wrong with the 'No Child Left Behind' generated policies and practices, but for it's sage advice and recommendations of how to solve the problems plaguing our failed and failing public school systems around the country.

Atwood Publishing
PO Box 3185, Madison, WI 53704-0185

To enhance the chances of ultimate success, parents and their young adult children must collaborate, coordinate, and work together to help the student plan and pursue their college and university goals in preparation for there eventual careers. Atwood Publishing has now provided parents and students with two invaluable guides toward these mutual aspirations: The College To Career Road Map: A Four-Year Guide To Finding Your Path, Student Edition" (978-1-891859-66-3 $17.95) and "The College To Career Road Map: A Four-Yar Guide To Coaching Your Student, Parent Edition". The team of Teres Corey Blanck, Peter Vogt, and Judith Anderson collaborate to help parents and students to make the most of each level of a four-year collegiate experience in higher education: Freshman (a time of exploration); Sophomore (including both academic and experiential activities); Junior (with an emphasis on accessible experiences); Senior (with a special focus on graduation and post-collegiate employment). A special feature of the student edition are all the opportunities to record thoughts, experiences and plans during the four year experience of a college or university education. A truly matched pair of instructional guides, both of these outstanding and informative resources are recommended for maximum coordination between a parent and their student to help insure ultimate success both academically, socially, and in terms of establishing a satisfying post-collegiate career.

The Gaming Shelf

Dangerous Weapons: The Sicilian
John Emms & Richard Palliser
Everyman Chess
c/o The Globe Pequot Press
PO Box 480, Guilford, CT 06437
185744423X $23.95 1-800-243-0495

Even in this era of the video game, chess still continues to grow in popularity world wide. This is partly because the complexities of chess seem to constantly expand and develop with each new generation of players. Now Grandmaster John Emms and International Master Richard Palliser have collaborated to focus on the variations of opening moves that are collectively referred to as 'Sicilian' in "Dangerous Weapons: The Sicilian". This 304-page instructive guide and manual offers a huge array of opening moves for both white and black piece players. Showcasing opening Sicilian moves in a new light, this simply outstanding and 'player friendly' contribution the game is enthusiastically recommended for personal, professional, academic, and community library Chess reference collections and supplemental reading lists as being suitable for both the novice and the experienced chess player.

The Psychology Shelf

Strengthening Family Resilience
Froma Walsh, Ph.D.
Guilford Publications, Inc.
72 Spring Street, New York, NY 10012
1593851863 $44.00 1-800-365-7006

Now in an updated second edition, Strengthening Family Resilience is a guide for both families and therapists by Froma Walsh, who has received awards for her leadership in the field of family therapy from the Division of Family Psychology of the American Psychological Association, the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy, and AFTA. Strengthening Family Resilience especially focuses upon the quality of being able to withstand and rebound from a crisis or persistent challenges, the key difference between families shattered by tragedy and trauma while other families survive and even grow stronger in the wake of adversity. A scholarly text of especial value to professionals and students in the field of counseling and therapy, Strengthening Family Resilience covers the key processes in resilience such as belief systems, organizational patterns, and communication processes, as well as means to facilitate the cultivation of resilience in times of greatest need, forming connections in times of dire conflict, and much more. Highly recommended.

The Fiction Shelf

The Cielo
Paul Salsini
iUniverse, Inc.
2021 Pine Lake Road, #100, Lincoln, NE 68512
0595406971 $19.95 1-800-288-4677

In the summer of 1944, members of the Italian Resistance fought against German troops in Tuscany. When the SS heard that the Allies were fast approaching the area, they began to commit ghastly atrocities against the citizens of Tuscan villages, killing all those that could not flee from their farms into the hills for safety. In "The Cielo", author and journalism teacher Paul Salsini (a writer, editor and writing coach at the 'Milwaukee Journal', and the son of Italian immigrants) provides a fact-based but fictional account of some of those villages who resisted the Germans while having to overcome their own petty differences, endure deprivation, deal with betrayal, sheltered an escaped POW, and survive a raid by the SS. Not all of them would survive their ordeal. Enthusiastically recommended reading and a welcome addition to any community library fiction collection, "The Cielo" is a superbly crafted, deeply engaging, positively gripping story of courage, endurance, and testament to the Tuscany peasantry who suffered the scourge of war upon the gorgeous landscape and peaceful people of Tuscany.

C.G. Calabres
Publish America
724 Third Street, Hoquiam, WA 98550
1424145694 $19.95

Tax consultant and world traveler C.G. Calabres presents Subway, a novel about an ordinary businessman whose midnight stroll on a New York subway platform has life-changing consequences. Mugged and left for dead on the rail bed, he is rescued and slowly nursed back to health by a mysterious bag lady. He discovers a whole new world on the other side of society, one that he prefers to his old life . When elements of his former existence try to drag him back into daily routine he despised, friends both old and new are his only chance of escape. An insightful tale of discovering and reaching for one's dream life, no matter how radical or unorthodox it may appear to others.

WMD Machete
Mark Plimsoll
Lulu Press
860 Aviation Parkway, Suite 300, Morrisville, NC 27560
0976779544 $22.96

WMD Machete is a novel written in the style of a memoir. Following an ordinary hitchhiker with two semesters of college Spanish to his name into Guatemala, WMD Machete takes a dark turn when the traveler uncovers a terrible secret that implicates his family in terrible machinations of murder and slavery. The brink of war, and an earthquake that kills 22,000 people rip apart any remaining semblance of an ordinary vacation in this fast-paced, nation-spanning saga offering a fascinating glimpse into changing cultural norms of the near future, in both the US and its steadily growing Latino population, and in South America.

Widow's Weeds
Kimberly Cifone
1663 Liberty Drive Suite 200, Bloomington, IN 47403
1420884506 $14.49 1-800-839-8640

Winner of the Writer's Digest International Self-Published Book Awards, Widow's Weeds is the dark, haunting story of a famous eccentric woman, whose sudden death spawns a preponderance of chaos as every skeleton in her closet becomes exposed in the unyielding light of day. In the wake of her passing, one man dies, another goes mad, and a third encounters an unimaginable fate. Penned in a strongly visual style by speechwriter and radio journalist Kimberly Cifone, Widow's Weeds captivates the reader's attention with its domino-like unfolding of tragic consequences. Highly recommended.

Issi's and Other Tales
Anthony Waugh
Llumina Press
PO Box 772246, Coral Springs, FL 33077-2246
1595264051 $29.95

Issi's and Other Tales is an anthology of colorful tales by author and business expert Anthony Waugh. Twelve stories ranging in setting from first-century Judea to Ireland of the sixties to modern-day Indianapolis and the inner mind of a man gradually losing his sanity, covering human love, murder, and intrigue, as well as wit and wisdom. Tantalizingly written, each story sparking curiosity to delve deeper into its tangled mystery, Issi's and Other Tales is a treat to be savored, one mysterious story at a time or all at once.

The Music Shelf

Randy Poe
Backbeat Books
c/o Hal Leonard Corporation
19 West 21st Street, Suite 201, New York, NY 10010
0879308915 $24.95 1-800-637-2852

Author and Grammy nominee Randy Poe offers a smoothly written, extensively detailed biography of rock music icon Duane Allman in Skydog: The Duane Allman Story. Covering Allman's life from his childhood fascination with music to his efforts to master the slide guitar, his recognition as an A-list player and his creation of the Southern Rock genre, to his tragic death at the young age of 24. A handful of black-and-white photographs illustrate life story, complemented by a discography of Allman's work with his own bands and on other artist's recordings, as well as snapshot summaries of the continuing lives and careers of Allman's friends and bandrates. A top-notch, involving biography of a truly passionate music maker.

The Future of Modern Music
James L. McHard
Iconic Press
PO Box 510355, Livonia, Michigan 48151
0977819507 $18.00

Freelance composer, lecturer, and music history author James McHard presents The Future of Modern Music, a guide written for music lovers of all backgrounds - including the general public, music educators, and the students today who will be the composers of tomorrow. The Future of Modern Music looks at dramatic recent changes in composition through biographical snapshots of composers such as Iannis Xenakis, Luigi Nono, Julio Estrada and many more, over ninety total; each portrayal examines the new musical ideas that shaped the composer's works. Many of the composers studied have never been scrutinized before in a single, concise text; The Future of Modern Music remedies the oversight, allowing the reader to gain an effective cross-perspective and overview of the artists worldwide who are transforming the soundscape daily.

The Biography Shelf

Pilgrim Journey
Naomi Long Madgett
Wayne State University Press
4809 Woodward Avenue, Detroit, MI 48201-1309
0916418979 $35.00 1-800-978-7323

Pilgrim Journey is the autobiography of award-winning African-American poet and author Naomi Long Madgett, from her birth at the beginning of the Harlem Renaissance to her adolescence during the 30's and the Great Depression, to her marriage in 1946 and her personal evolution as a poet. She presents her eighty-three years of success, frustration, greatness, hardship, discovery, and family bonds in plain terms prose, taking the reader on an amazing tour through most of the twentieth century. A handful of black-and-white photographs illustrate this unforgettable true story of a singularly strong-willed woman.

A Voice in the Wilderness
Michael Austin, editor
Utah State University Press
78 Old Marin Hill, Logan, UT 84322-7800
0874216346 $19.95 1-800-239-9974

A Voice in the Wilderness: Conversations with Terry Tempest Williams is a selection of interviews with naturalist, author, and activist Terry Williams, as collected by Michael Austin. The discussions cover Williams' love of wildlife, her reflections upon eroticism, art, family, literature, democracy, politics, Mormonism and much more. A mind-expanding and highly contemplative reflection upon the multifaceted dimensions of life, A Voice in the Wilderness draws the reader in with its succinctly worded insights into the foibles and paradoxes of daily life. An index allows for quick reference to key subjects in this one-of-a-kind reflective memoir.

Oozing the Moon
Dennis Roth
Fithian Press
c/o Daniel and Daniel, Publishers
PO Box 2790, McKinleyville, CA 95519
1564744604 $12.95

Cultural anthropologist, historian, social scientist, and outdoorsman Dennis Roth presents Oozing the Moon: A Sky and Night Woods Guide to the Galaxy, a memoir of his search for vision and illumination through experiencing the outdoors and the night sky. Roth used unconventional approaches to literally and metaphysically peer into the mysteries of nature: not only did he walk at night and very early morning to experience the quiet and the dark, he hung upside down from trees, squeezed his vision through cracks between leaves and branches, or contemplated the same sight night after night to personally soak in the progression of differences. Written in a day-by-day (or night-by-night) journal entry format, Oozing the Moon describes the rapturous wonder of simply contemplating natural life, the galaxy, and the expanding universe. Part memoir, part philosophical treatise, Oozing the Moon expresses undiluted joy, wonder, and appreciation of the majesty of the natural world.

The Fantasy/SciFi Shelf

Dream Angus
Alexander McCall Smith
841 Broadway, New York, NY 10003
1841958239 $18.00

Medical law professor and prolific author of the "No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency" series Alexander McCall Smith presents Dream Angus, a fantastic modern-day novel with roots in Celtic lore. Angus is the Celtic god of love, youth, and beauty who distributes dreams at night and inspires love in all who behold him. Yet he loves only the beautiful Caer; his search for her weaves him in and out of mortal dreams. Dream Angus consists of five fables that tell of Angus' quest, penned with insight, wonder, eros, and the mesmerizing rapture of dreams that connect with reality. A buoyant and sensuously enjoyable fantasy.

The Christian Studies Shelf

Home School Heroes
Christopher Klicka
B&H Publishing Group
127 Ninth Avenue, North, Nashville, TN 37234
0805426000 $14.99

Written by Christopher Klicka, a senior counsel of the Home School Legal Defense Association, Home School Heroes: The Struggle & Triumph of Home Schooling in America is the true story of mothers and fathers who braved powerful legal opposition against the practice of homeschooling, particularly in the 1980's and 90's. Klicka presents numerous true stories of his work for the Home School Legal Defense Association in which he intervened to prevent social workers or police from entering homes without a warrant or interviewing young children without a court order, or worse, taking children away from their loving parents. A devout Christian as well as a legal defense counsel, Klicka also speaks of the strength and comfort provided by God and Jesus Christ in the most dire hours of need. Home School Heroes recounts milestones of progress reached for the right to homeschool, offers practical advice concerning what to do if state agencies attempt to interfere with the legal right to homeschool a child, and is strongly recommended for any parents seeking to pass on a religious, homeschooled education in their children.

Pope Benedict XVI
Peter Seewald
Ignatius Press
PO Box 1339, Fort Collins, CO 80522
1586171518 $26.95 1-800-651-1531

Lavishly illustrated with black-and-white and full color photography throughout, Pope Benedict XVI: Servant of the Truth is a breathtakingly beautiful biography of the 265th pope, Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger. Images of Ratzinger from early childhood to his ascent through the priesthood to his first year as pontiff fill this descriptive chronicle of his challenges, achievements, and personality. Pope Benedict XVI does not perhaps the ugliest moment of Ratzinger's past - his enlistment as a child into the Hitler Youth - and goes on to cover the risks he took by choosing to cease attending Hitler Youth meetings, and by deserting military service near the end of World War II. Overall though, Pope Benedict XVI is a glowing and positive portrayal of a dedicated, public-spirited religious leader.

The Dominican Tradition
Thomas C. McGonigle, O.P. & Phyllis Zagano, Ph.D.
Liturgical Press
PO Box 7500, Collegeville, MN 56321-7500
0814619118 $14.95

Written by Thomas C. McGonigle (director of the Center for Catholic and Dominican Studies) and Phyllis Zagano (teacher for the Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies, Hofstra University), The Dominican Tradition: Spirituality in History is a history of the spiritual contributions and legacy of great preachers of the Dominican tradition, from Saint Dominic (1171-1221) himself to Thomas Aquinas, Bartolome de Las Casas, to modern-day spiritual thinker and seeker Timothy Radcliffe. A total of sixteen individuals are profiled; The Dominican Tradition pays especial note to each one's theological and spiritual writings, insights, beliefs and achievements. Accessible to readers of all backgrounds, The Dominican Tradition provides an excellent introduction to core Dominican spiritual values, and offers unmistakable evidence that the Dominican legacy is as relevant today as it was centuries in the past.

The Egyptian Origin of Christianity
Lisa Ann Bargeman
Blue Dolphin Publishing
PO Box 8, Nevada City, CA 95959-0008
1577331524 $14.95 1-800-643-0765

Literature and World Religion student Lisa Ann Bargeman presents The Egyptian Origin of Christianity, a thoughtful examination of the parallels between the modern-day Roman Catholic Church and ancient Egyptian ceremony. From the recurrence of trinities the Jesus/Osiris and Mary/Isis connections and Akhenaten's early form of monotheism, The Egyptian Origin of Christianity discusses remarkable transcendence of theological and mythological concepts in plain terms, accessible to readers of all backgrounds. Black-and-white photographs, notes, and an index round out this astute presentation.

Can a Catholic Be a Democrat?
David Carlin
Sophia Institute Press
Box 5284, Manchester, NH 03108
1933184191 $14.95 1-800-888-9344

Can a Catholic Be a Democrat? How the Party I Loved Became the Enemy of My Religion is the personal testimony of devout Catholic David Carlin, who became increasingly alienated from the changes in the Democratic party. In the 1960s, Carlin observed wealthy, secular, and ideological Democrats steer the party away from its pro-life and religious constituencies and form connections with NOW, Hollywood, and the abortion lobby. Carlin openly questions the Democratic party's position on human issues of life, sex, faith, morality, and suffering, and explains in depth how he came to the conclusion that the Democratic party and the Catholic Church are irreconcilable. Though the reader may not agree with Carlin's arguments, it greatly behooves open-minded thinkers of all faiths to contemplate them at length, and evaluate what personal values are embraced through voting for a specific candidate, and what it truly means to be a Democrat.

The Mystery of Christian Marriage
Fr. Peter Jeffery, CSSp
Paulist Press
997 MacArthur Boulevard, Mahwah, NJ 07430
0809144190 $18.95 1-800-218-1903

Moral theologian Fr. Peter Jeffery, whose work included serving on the social and bioethical committees of the Catholic Bishops of England and Wales as well as thirteen years of service in Nigeria, wrote The Mystery of Christian Marriage seeking to answer the question, "What is God's vision of Christian marriage?" In an era when marriage is increasingly secularized, and its theological dimension is neglected in favor of its psychological, sociological, and anthropological dimensions, modern-day evaluation of the institution appears to focus on sexual morality rather than marital theology. The Mystery of Christian Marriage strives to balance that error by exploring the theological concepts of covenant in the context of conjugal love, the mystery of two as one flesh, the ecclesiology of the Christian family, marital sacrament, and much more. Clarifying its citations of scripture with numerous notes, The Mystery of Christian Marriage is a profoundly reflective theological discourse.

Seven Things They Don't Teach You In Seminary
John Killinger
The Crossroad Publishing Company
481 Eighth Avenue, Suite 1550, New York, NY 10001
082452392X $16.95 1-800-395-0690

Theologist, churchman and former seminary professor John Killinger presents Seven Things They Don't Teach You In Seminary, a no-nonsense guide to the practical, real-world truths that every prospective minister should know - truths that are driven home through sometimes bitter experience. Among the important real-world lessons that Seven Things They Don't Teach You In Seminary expounds are "Churches Are Really Institutions, Not Centers of Spirituality", "Every Successful Minister Is Drowning in a Sea of Minutiae", "There Is a Meanness in Some Church Members that Is Simply Incredible", and "The Calling to Be a Minister Transcends All the Problems that Being a Minister Entails". An absolute "must-read" for anyone contemplating any type of church career or service.

Poor Old God, He Always Gets the Blame
Arlene Claire Cartwright
Vantage Press Inc.
419 Park Avenue South, 18th floor, New York, NY 10016
0533152135 $12.50 1-212-736-1767

When things go very badly, it is all too common for God to be blamed - "It's all in God's plan," "God is testing me," "The Lord gives, and the Lord takes away." In Poor Old God, He Always Gets the Blame, author Arlene Claire Cartwright dares to take the role of His defense attorney, and questions whether He really is to blame for everything that goes wrong. Poor Old God, He Always Gets the Blame constructs God's defense through a close scrutiny of the Bible's Old and New Testaments, and shows the reader a new means of looking at the joyful journey that is life. A positive testimony of reinforcing faith through accepting personal responsibility, Poor Old God, He Always Gets the Blame challenges the reader to reexamine how he or she perceives the world, and is highly recommended.

The Self-Help Shelf

Everyday Greatness
Stephen R. Covey, author
David K. Hatch, compiler
Rutledge Hill Press
PO Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000
140160241X $24.99 1-800-251-4000

Written by the author of the bestselling "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People", Everyday Greatness: Inspiration for a Meaningful Life is a guide to mentally transforming one's life through creating one's own dream, focusing on a purpose, and teaming with others as needed to make the vision a reality. Numerous insights, quips, and proverbs from famous people pepper Everyday Greatness, adding extra punch to its points on the virtues of humility, dedication, empathy, adaptability, and more. The core text draws upon the author's lifelong wisdom, alternating between overviews of positive traits to cultivate in oneself and vignettes written by others that lend a palpable dimension to life lessons. A highly recommended repository of insight and drive, that flavors its wisdom with subtle humor. "Originality is unexplored territory. You get there by carrying a canoe - you can't take a taxi." - Alan Alda

Love and Freedom
Philip Ferranti M.Ed.
iUniverse, Inc.
2021 Pine Lake Road, #100, Lincoln, NE 68512
0595394868 $18.95

Written by Philip Ferranti M.Ed., founder of Transformation Seminars, Love and Freedom: Pathways to Personal Transformation is a self-help guide to achieving freedom from dependency. Chapters describe in plain terms how to empower onself and rise above psychosocial conditioning, the virtue that is independence, interdependence whether in friendships or other relationships as a process of personalization, and much more. Love and freedom offers practical tools for life-assessment and solid, tested strategies for living life day-to-day in the present with out the harangues of an overactive mind, false identities, negative emotions, or inaccurate ideas. A straightforward guide to truly becoming one's own person.

The Social Issues Shelf

When Invisible Children Sing
Dr. Chi Huang with Irwin Tang
Tyndale House Publishers
351 Executive Drive, Carol Stream, IL 60188
1414306164 $19.99 1-800-323-9400

When Invisible Children Sing is the true story of five street of La Paz, Bolivia, by Dr. Chi Huang, a doctor who traveled to work with orphans and children in need for a year. A heart-rending portrait of children abandoned and betrayed by the very institutions meant to protect them, When Invisible Children Sing describes the slow process of rehabilitation, and the shining power of hope. There are 70 million "invisible" street children in the world; When Invisible Children Sing is the story of how help was extended a few, and offers insights into how more can be given aid, one child at a time.

The Market for Virtue
David Vogel
Bookings Institute Press
1775 Massachusetts Avenue, NW., Washington DC 20036
0815790775 $19.95

Written by Professor of Business Ethics (Haas School of Business) David Vogel, The Market for Virtue: The Potential and Limits of Corporate Social Responsibility is a scholarly examination of a politically charged and highly polarized debate concerning what corporate social responsibility can, cannot, and must accomplish in a modern capitalist economy. Chapters explore answers to and differing perspectives on the questions "Is there a business case for virtue?" and "What is the demand for virtue?" as well as examining corporate responsibility with regard to both the environment and human rights. Extensively researched, The Market for Virtue is an invaluable resource offering a serious-minded, in-depth discussion of a complex issue. Enthusiastically recommended especially for college library shelves, and invaluable reading for activists, businessmen, and legal personnel grappling with all dimensions of the interests and responsibilities of corporations.

The Environmental Studies Shelf

The Muskegon
Jeff Alexander
Michigan State University Press
1405 South Harrison Road, Suite 25, East Lansing, MI 48823-5202
0870137867 $24.95

Award-winning environmental journalist Jeff Alexander presents The Muskegon: The Majesty and Tragedy of Michigan's Rarest River, part history, part environmental scrutiny, part wake-up call to the Muskegon River's vital role in both the environment and to local communities that have relied on it for fisheries, tourism, and hydroelectric power. A handful of black-and-white photographic plates illustrate this evenhanded look at all sides of modern environmental issues surrounding the river, from controversies over where and to what extent dams should be built or kept along its length, to pollution runoff problems, to conflicts between those who want to use the river for industry and sports fishermen, and much more. The Muskegon is also a contemplative piece on the river, observing its splendor and glory even as it chronicles man's use and overuse. A highly recommended in-depth case study for environmental studies reading lists and reference shelves.

The Islamic Studies Shelf

Islam & Muslims
Mark Sedgwick
Intercultural Press
100 City Hall Plaza, Suite 501, Boston, MA 02108
1931930163 $24.95 1-866-372-2665

Dr. Mark Sedgwick (associate professor of modern Middle East history, American University in Cairo) introduces Western readers to the Islamic world and explores the various different Muslim societies in Islam & Muslims: A Guide to Diverse Experience in a Modern World. Accessible to lay readers of all backgrounds, regardless of personal familiarity with Islam, Islam & Muslims briefly surveys the faith's history but is much more strongly concerned with Muslims in the present day - from world view and worship practices to family practices, daily life, the intersection of Islam and politics including the unfortunate reality of Islamic political violence. An evenhanded, straightforward evaluation, to be commended especially for its close scrutiny of the cultural differences that at first glance make Islamic and Muslim practices alien to Westerners, and Western culture confusing to or misinterpreted by Muslims.

Islam and the Moral Economy
Charles Tripp
Cambridge University Press
32 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10013-2473
0521682444 $27.99 1-800-872-7423

Charles Tripp (Reader in Politics with reference to the Middle East, University of London) applies logistical, journalistic, and scholarly principles of debate and accuracy in Islam and the Moral Economy: The Challenge of Capitalism, a seasoned exploration of how the principles of capitalism have greatly challenged and changed the Muslim world over the past sixty years. Chapters scrutinize economic development among Muslim societies and nations in depth, from Islamic socialism to social critics, and the development and efficiency of advanced economic institutions and banks. Of especial note is a final chapter about incidents of violence in reaction to capitalistic changes. Islam and the Moral Economy is an advanced economic treatise that squarely frames critical issues confronting Islamic society and the world in the twenty-first century - in particular, how to charter capitalism in the future so that acceptance is not read as subordination and active involvement can become part of self-definition.

The Civil War Shelf

On the Skirmish Line Behind a Friendly Tree
Stacy Dale Allen, editor
Farcountry Press
PO Box 5630, Helena, MT 59604
1560373229 $19.95 1-800-821-3874

On the Skirmish Line Behind a Friendly Tree is personal memoir of Civil War veteran William Royal Oake, who left his family farm in Iowa to fight for the Union at the young age of eighteen. He fought in twenty major battles, was captured and incarcerated as a prisoner of war, and suffered injury during the course of his service. When he turned sixty-nine, he penned his experiences at length, from the day he volunteered for the army to the day he returned home, hardened from the brutal realities of his service. On the Skirmish Line Behind a Friendly Tree is his collected writings as discovered by his family eighty years after his death, and they offer a one-of-a-kind literate, thoughtful, serious-minded insider's view of the terrible war. Black-and-white photographs and extensive clarifying notes by editor Stacy Dale Allen enhance this invaluable primary source and welcome addition to Civil War studies and testimony shelves.

The Theatre/Cinema/TV Shelf

Gospel of the Living Dead
Kim Paffenroth, Ph.D.
Baylor University Press
One Bear Place, #97363, Waco, TX 76798-7363
DeChant Hughes & Associates (publicity)
1440 North Kingsbury, Chicago, IL 60622
1932792651 $19.99 1-800-710-3217

Kim Paffenroth (Associate Professor of Religious Studies, Iona College) presents Gospel of the Living Dead: George Romero's Visions of Hell on Earth, a literary exploration of director George A. Romero's hellish zombie horror films such as "Night of the Living Dead" (1968) "Dawn of the Dead" (1978), and "Day of the Dead" (1985), as well as the more recent "Land of the Dead" (2005). Written with scholarly rigor, Gospel of the Living Dead inspects how Romero uses Christian imagery from the Bible and Dante in the macabre examination of the dark sides of human nature - both living and unliving. Romero's zombie films comment upon man's cruelty and inhumanity to man, as well as the degeneration of the social contract into the strong devouring the weak into ruthless individual anarchy. A thoughtful scrutiny of the underlying artistic expressions driving Romero's pop culture horror films.

Adapting Henry James to the Screen
Laurence Raw
The Rowman & Littleman Publishing Group
4501 Forbes Boulevard, Suite 200, Lanham, MD 20706
0810857073 $50.00

Written by Laurence Raw, a senior lecturer in the Department of American Culture and Literature at Baskent University, Turkey, Adapting Henry James to the Screen is an exploration of classic novelist Henry James' signature works as conveyed in movies. Suggesting that most James adaptations have worked to refocus attention away from the classical narrative itself to the audience's interaction with that narrative, Adapting Henry James to the Screen covers numerous movies based on James' works, from "Berkeley Square" (1933) to "I'll Never Forget You" (1951), "The Turn of the Screw" (1974, 1989, 1992, 1995, and 1999), "The American" (1998), and many more. An extensive bibliography and index round out this scholarly, in-depth literary and cultural analysis of the tenuous media transition of immortal stories.

Finding Lost: The Unofficial Guide
Nikki Stafford
ECW Press
2120 Queen Street East, Suite 200, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, M4E 1E2
1550227432 $17.95 1-800-888-4741

Finding Lost: The Unofficial Guide is a treasure trove of insights and foreshadowings revealed about the pop culture sensation that is the hit television series "Lost". Covering seasons 1 and 2, and extrapolating mysteries of season 3 therefrom, "Finding Lost" includes an in-depth episode guide, chapters on the real John Locke and Jean-Jacques Rousseau as well as how they compare to fictional ones, biographies of all the major actors on the show, summaries of the show's many literary references, black-and-white photographs of the filming locations in Hawaii including a detailed map for dedicated Lost fans interested in undertaking their own tour in Oahu, and much more. A lucidly written "must-have" guide, and the perfect giftbook for "Lost" series enthusiasts! Also highly recommended are author Nikki Stafford's guides to other popular television shows: "Bite Me! An Unofficial Guide to the World of Buffy the Vampire Slayer" and "Uncovering Alias: An Unofficial Guide".

The American History Shelf

Seven Superstorms of the Northeast
James Lincoln Turner
Down the Shore Publishing
Box 3100, Harvey Cedars, New Jersey, 08008
0945582951 $32.00

Teacher and weather writer James Lincoln Turner presents Seven Superstorms of the Northeast And Other Blizzards, Hurricanes & Tempests, an in-depth survey of some of America's most severe and dramatic superstorms during the late 19th century and the first half of the 20th century. From The Blizzard of 1888 to The Great Appalachian Storm of 1950, each of the seven superstorms profiled (plus two massive hurricanes in August 1893) are described in both meteorological and human terms. Vintage black-and-white photographs throughout Seven Superstorms of the Northeast add an extra immersive touch to this captivating true chronicle of the beauty, majesty, and ruthless appetite for destruction of nature's strongest storms, accessible to lay readers and weather science experts alike.

The Parenting Shelf

Children with Visual Impairments
M. Cay Holbrook, Ph.D., editor
Woodbine House
6510 Bells Mill Road, Bethesda, MD 20817
1890627402 $18.95 1-800-843-7323

Special education expert M. Cay Holbrook, Ph.D. applies her years of experience educating visually impaired children in the updated second edition of Children with Visual Impairments, a jargon-free resource especially for parents of children who are blind, legally blind, or have low vision. Especially focusing on children from birth through age 7, Children with Visual Impairments covers issues such as treatment options and medical problems, the development of a visually impaired child, how to nurture self-esteem, legal issues, cultivating literacy, helping children learn Braille and becoming familiar with it oneself, dealing with problems of orientation and mobility, and much more. Children with Visual Impairments is enthusiastically recommended not just for parents, but also for anyone in contact with a blind child, and for library and educational reference shelves.

The Political Science Shelf

Democracy and the Constitution
Walter Berns
American Enterprise Institute
1150 - 17th Street, NW, Washington, DC 20036
0844742392 $20.00

Democracy and the Constitution is a compilation of essays by scholar and historian Walter Berns (recipient of the 2005 National Humanities Medal) concerning such issues as natural law, civil rights, states' rights, multiculturalism, patriotism, the First Amendment, the role of academic and religious institutions, and especially, a solid defense of the strengths of the American Constitution as a governing and socially binding document. Berns particularly notes that lawyers and judges are crucial in shaping the living constitution, as any serious question of constitutional law is sure to be presented to the court system in due time. Examining the lessons of history as well as contemporary legal and governmental theory, Democracy and the Constitution is a vibrant contribution to political science shelves and especially recommended for college library collections.

Going Dirty
David Mark
Rowman & Littlefield
4501 Forbes Boulevard, Suite 200 Lanham, MD 20706
0742545008 $24.95

Written by David Mark (editor-in-chief of Campaigns & Elections magazine), Going Dirty: The Art of Negative Campaigning is a no-nonsense history of negative campaigning in American politics, with especial attention paid to case studies of notable races during the modern era of television. In particular, Going Dirty notes campaign negativity has increased sharply since September 11, 2001, with commercials routinely suggesting that political opponents are irresolute in pursuing the war on terror. Going Dirty explores incidents when negative campaigning has backfired, most often due to non-credible charges or the attackers failure to correctly gauge the sentiments of the electorate, and incidents when negative campaigning has been remarkably successful, which are common enough to explain its persistence as an electoral tactic. Accessible to lay readers and political scientists alike, Going Dirty is a nonjudgmental, thorough, insider's history of an undeniably strong aspect of the American political institution, and highly recommended.

The Religion/Spirituality Shelf

The Instruction Manual for Receiving God
Jason Shulman
Sounds True
PO Box 8010, Boulder, CO 80306-9886
1591795192 $22.95 1-800-333-9185

Spiritual awakening teacher Jason Shulman presents The Instruction Manual for Receiving God, a spiritual self-help guide that focuses upon making oneself available to receive the presence of God, rather than seeking God. Drawing upon the Kabbalist and Buddhist Dharma traditions embraced by Shulman, The Instruction Manual for Receiving God consists of 108 "seed passages", each a brief insight into divine mysteries of life, death, and wonder. The Instruction Manual for Receiving God is not meant to be read as a blueprint or lecture book; instead, each of the seed passages is meant to be pondered at length, perhaps absorbed individually over the course of days or weeks, in order to motivate contemplation of the divine and help open up one's heart and spirit. An inspirational and insightful tool. "Ecstasy is not something separate from fear. Ecstasy is something that includes fear in the price of being human."

Birds Divine Messengers
Andrea Wansbury
Findhorn Press
c/o Independent Publishers Group
814 North Franklin Street, Chicago, IL 60610
1844090744 $16.95 1-800-888-4741

Physiotherapist and counselor Andrea Wansbury passes on the spiritual lessons that can be learned from our avian friends in Birds Divine Messengers, a reminder that connection to the divine lies within all of us, and the creations of nature. Chapters discuss birds as spiritual communicators, birds in mythology, folklore and superstition, how birds have helped humanity over the millennia, the functional beauty and simplicity of feathers and eggs, and much more. An appendix of symbolic and folklore connotations attached to different species of birds, as well as notes and a quick reference guide to the type of inspirational message is commonly connected to different bird sightings, round out this deeply reverent and respectful guide.

Sky Above, Earth Below
John P. Milton
Sentient Publications
1113 Spruce Street, Boulder, CO 80302
1591810280 $15.95

Written by meditation teacher and workshop leader John P. Hamilton, Sky Above, Earth Below: Spiritual Practice in Nature is a simple guide to healing one's physical and spiritual body and creating a new relationship with oneself through meditation and connecting with nature's healing energy. Chapters walk the reader through how to experience the joys of meditation, a 10-minute practice designed to restore internal balance, means by which to cut through mental clutter to clarity and spaciousness, and much more. Written out of boundless reverence for the Earth and life itself, Sky Above, Earth Below transfers the wisdom of Taoism into simple terms accessible to all readers regardless of personal background.

How Should We Talk About Religion?
James Boyd White, editor
University of Notre Dame Press
310 Flanner Hall, Notre Dame, IN 46556
0268044074 $40.00 1-800-621-2736

How Should We Talk about Religion? is an anthology of essays by fourteen esteemed scholars concerning the fundamental question: how should we talk about religion, whether regarding our own religion or the faiths of others? Taking its genesis from a year 2000 seminar that examined that very question, How Should We Talk about Religion is written in the languages of a variety of academic disciplines, the essays explore the Christian experience in Spanish America, the intersection between religion and philosophy, the definition of "fundamentalism" in religious discourse, monotheism versus pluralism, a look at the meaning of geometry in Islamic art, and much more. A welcome contribution to religious studies reference shelves, due to its meticulous cross-examination of how to properly frame debates of the most profound magnitude.

Forbidden Religion
Douglas Kenyon, editor
Bear & Company
c/o Inner Traditions
One Oak Street, Rochester, VT 05767
1591430674 $18.00

Edited by Douglas Kenyon, the editor and publisher of the bimonthly journal "Atlantis Rising", Forbidden Religion: Suppressed Heresies of the West is an expose of hidden religions banned by the orthodox Church, from the time prior to Christ to the turbulent times of the Cathars and the Templars, to the Masons of the New World and much more. From connections between the roots of Western faith and ancient Egyptian religion, to the true identities of the three magi, to the real clandestine organization behind the secrets in the popular novel "The Da Vinci Code", Forbidden Religion covers a mind-expanding plethora of little-contemplated history affecting modern concepts of faith. Black-and-white photographs and a glorious section of inset color plates illustrate this one-of-a-kind survey of the nether corners of Western religious history.

The Metaphysical Studies Shelf

Science and the Soul
Dudley C. Gould
Paragon House
1925 Oakcrest Avenue, St. Paul, MN 55113
1557788596 $19.95

After the loss of his wife, author Dudley C. Gould sought to understand the mystery of what happens to the soul after death. The result of his labors is Science and the Soul: What We Can Know, a comprehensive review of scientific evidence and religious literature dealing with what comes after death. Chapters explore human understanding of out-of-body experiences, energies and electricity, and quantum mechanics in relation to the human spirit. An assembly of quotes by famous thinkers about existence after death rounds out this contemplative and serious-minded inquiry.

The Afterlife of Leslie Stringfellow
Stephen Chism
The University of Arkansas Press
McIlroy House, 201 Ozark Avenue, Fayetteville, AR 72701
096351525X $14.95 1-800-626-0090

The Afterlife of Leslie Stringfellow: A Nineteenth-Century Southern Family's Experiences with Spiritualism is the true story of a well-educated, nineteenth-century family's contact with their deceased son Leslie Stringfellow. Over the course of fifteen years, their connection to the beyond through seance messages and "automatic writing" guided their actions in the recovery of an inheritance and the adoption of an orphan girl who grew up to be an active suffragist and newspaper editor. Stringfellow also described his personal afterlife and a detailed survey of the geography of paradise. In 191, Stringfellow's mother and her adopted daughter contacted Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, the creator of Sherlock Holmes, who urged them to publish their manuscript and even proposed and experiment concerning his own deceased son, Kingsley Doyle, who was killed in World War I. A handful of vintage black-and-white photographs round out this compilation of extensive research including some letters published for the first time. A "must-have" for metaphysical studies shelves concerned with what comes after death.

Lessons From The Light
Kenneth Ring
Red Wheel/Weiser
368 Congress Street, 4th floor, Boston, MA 02210
1930491115 $16.95 1-800-423-7087

The 'Near-Death Experience' is the subject of television fiction, family folklore, and considerable scientific research. "Lessons From The Light: What We Can Learn From The Near-Death Experience" by Kenneth Ring (Professor Emeritus of Psychology, University of Connecticut, and co-founder of the International Association of Near-Death Studies) provides an analytical overview of the phenomena known as a 'Near Death Experience'. This newest edition features an extensive foreword by Caroline Myss in addition to the original 1998 foreword by Bruce Greyson. After an extended introduction, 'Living and Dying in the Light of the Near-Death Experience', Professor Ring organizes his material into fourteen distinctive chapters that include 'Journeys to the Light', 'Eyeless Vision: Near-Death Experiences in the Blind'; 'They Come by Light: Healing Gifts and the Near-Death Experience'; and 'Crossing Over into the Light'. Enhanced with notes, references, two appendices ('Bibliography on NDE Literature' and 'Resource Suggestions'), and a comprehensive index, "Lessons From The Light" is a work of impressive and articulate scholarship, making it a seminal contribution to Near-Death studies and an important addition to professional and academic library reference collections and supplemental reading lists.

The Health/Medicine Shelf

Beauty by Nature
Brigitte Mars
Healthy Living Publications
PO Box 99, Summertown, TN 38483
1570671931 $19.95 1-888-260-8458

Herbalist and natural medicine expert Brigitte Mars presents Beauty by Nature, a guide for improving one's appearance with aromatherapy, essential oils, herb facials, massage, yoga postures, improved diet, and other methods that are not only good for the body, but also good for the environment. Covering all aspects of external body care, from natural remedies to treat acne, dry or oily skin, and prevent wrinkles to keeping one's eyes healthy, applying beneficial natural deodorants and fragrances, keeping teeth and nails in good condition and much more. Beauty by Nature is a guide for everyone, men as well as women, young and old alike. Its emphasis on avoiding high-sugar, over-processed diet or harsh drug and chemical remedies in favor of more unprocessed foods, particularly fruits and vegetables, and natural or herbal options is a welcome supplement to personal health and self-care reference shelves.

The Business Shelf

Conscious Business
Fred Kofman
Sounds True Audio
413 South Arthur Avenue, Louisville, CO 80027
1591795176 $24.95 1-800-333-9185

Written by Fred Kofman (co-founder and president of Axialent consulting company), Conscious Business: How to Build Value Through Values is a straightforward guide to applying conscious awareness to its fullest extent, recognizing the needs of others, and effectively expressing one's own needs order to build responsibility, integrity, leadership, and reputation - all of which are invaluable tools to a business' continued success. Drawing from real-world examples by such famous companies as Microsoft, Yahoo!, and much more, Conscious Business reveals how being mindful of fundamental human virtues and even "spiritual" questions such as "Who am I?" and "What is my real purpose here?" are positive, empowering assets. A clarion call for balancing fiscal obligations with ethical and moral responsibilities for increased success in all dimensions of business life.

Branded Customer Service
Janelle Barlow & Paul Stewart
Berrett-Koehler Publishers
235 Montgomery Street, Suite 650, San Francisco, CA 94104-2916
1576754049 $19.95

Written by chief executives Janelle Barlow and Paul Stewart, Branded Customer Service: The New Competitive Edge is a no-nonsense guide filled with strategies, exercises, and real-world examples to teach the reader how to harness the power of branded customer service. Unbranded customer service can potentially harm one's business, even when it is of good quality; branded customer service helps foster repeat business and word-of-mouth referral, among its many other advantages. Chapters discuss how to link the world of branding to one's customer service, how to embed on-brand service into the DNA of one's organization, tips, tricks, and techniques for supporting one's brand from within, and much more. Accessible to readers of all backgrounds, Branded Customer Service is a "must-read" especially for business executives, marketers, and even small business owners with the power and need to foster lasting improvements in this dimension of their chosen enterprise.

The Entrepreneurial Conversation
Edward G. Rogoff, Ph.D. and Michael Corbett with Perry-Lynn Moffitt
Pinnacle Books Inc.
1375 Broadway, Suite 600, New York, NY 10018
0966738373 $14.95

Authors Edward G. Rogoff and Michael Corbett combine their expertise in The Entrepreneurial Conversation: The Powerful Way to Create Mutually Beneficial, Long-Term Business Relationships, a guide to promoting dialogues that converge toward creative solutions to business problems in a non-adversarial way. Tips, tricks, and techniques from steering conversations away from confrontations that put either or both parties on the defensive, and toward positive consensus-building outcomes range from the simple importance of being a great listener to making time to speak face-to-face to the perils of excessive small talk. Point-by-point recommendations for keeping conversations on track make The Entrepreneurial Conversation an asset to a reader who frequently engages in work- or job-related conversations, whether the reader is personally an entrepreneur or not.

The Travel Shelf

The Ultimate Kauai Guidebook
Andrew Doughty
Wizard Publications
PO Box 991, Lihue, HI 96766-0991
0971727953 $15.95

Now in an updated sixth edition, The Ultimate Kauai Guidebook: Kauai Revealed is an advertising-free, in-depth guide to the "Garden Island" of Hawaii. Packed with full-color photography throughout, The Ultimate Kauai Guidebook covers the top sights, popular activities from golfing to parasailing, skydiving, snorkeling, whale watching and more, and recommendations on where to dine and where to stay. Maps, testimonies from firsthand experience, safety tips and an index for easy reference round out this enthusiastically recommended guide for anyone seeking to get the most out of a visit to sunny Kauai.

The Mystery/Suspense Shelf

Drawing Dead
Rick Gadziola
ECW Press
2120 Queen Street East, Suite 200, Toronto, Ontario, Canada M4E 1E2
1550227386 $24.95

Written by private investigator Rick Gadziola, Drawing Dead: A Jake Morgan Mystery is the story of a poker-dealing ex-cop who just can't seem to win. Unexpectedly thrust in the center of a lethal conflict between dirty cops, he tries to help Vice squad member Laura Bulloch stay alive. As attempts on his life mushroom, he tries to walk away from the bloodshed, but an unshakable antagonist trails him and will not be denied. A dark, suspenseful, at times outright wicked murder mystery, sure to captivate enthusiasts of the genre.

In the Breath of God: Mendez II
Edward Hancock II
Publish America
PO Box 1476, Gilmer, TX 75644
1424113776 $19.95

The literal meaning of the Hebrew phrase commonly translated as "Let there be light" is "Light in me, Be!" - as if God breathed light into the world, just as He breathed life into man. In the spirit of this metaphor, Texas native Edward Hancock II presents In The Breath of God: Mendez II, a mystery novel about a man brought back from the brink of death by the inexplicable power of Heaven. Lieutenant Alex Mendez and his wife Detective Lisa Mendez become privy to the hidden possibilities of a secret old as time itself, hidden in the innocent soul of their four-year-old daughter. At the same time, a string of terrible homicides shocks the small east Texas community in which they live, and the prime suspect is the most unlikely of candidates - a seventeen-year-old boy with spina bifida. Biblical allusions crisscross this dogged and intricate story of personal demons, suffering, and the quest for answers; In the Breath of God is an attention-seizing read, skillfully plotted and executed from first page to last.

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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