Return to home
page Book Reviews, Book Lover Resources, Advice for Writers and Publishers
Home / Wisconsin Bookwatch

Wisconsin Bookwatch

Volume 6, Number 5 May 2011 Home | WBW Index

Table of Contents

Reviewer's Choice Cookbook Shelf Fiction Shelf
Memoir Shelf Religion/Spirituality Shelf Christian Studies Shelf
Social Issues Shelf Parenting Shelf Criminology Shelf
SciFi/Fantasy Shelf Civil War Shelf Music Shelf
Hobby Shelf Education Shelf Science Shelf
Interior Design Shelf Hunting/Fishing Shelf Needlecraft Shelf
Photography Shelf Homeowner's Shelf Crafts Shelf
Business Shelf Pets/Wildlife Shelf Computer Shelf
Poetry Shelf Mystery/Suspense Shelf Sports Shelf
Writing/Publishing Shelf Automotive Shelf Travel Shelf
Metaphysical Studies Shelf Self-Help Shelf Philosophy Shelf
Audiobook Shelf Music CD Shelf DVD Shelf
Biography Shelf Gardening Shelf Military Shelf
American History Shelf    

Reviewer's Choice

Diary of a Social Detective
Jeffrey E. Jessum
AAPC Publishing
PO Box 23173, Shawnee Mission, KS 66283-0173
9781934575710, $34.95,

When one is having problems with their social life, the why is not always obvious. "Diary of a Social Detective: Real-Life Tales of Mystery, Intrigue, and Interpersonal Adventure" is a collection of real world stories from Jeffrey E. Jessum as he focuses on these social mysteries, and helps people realize where the problems in their interpersonal relations truly lie. With solid advice for dealing with life's conflicts and more, "Diary of a Social Detective" is a wise read that blends wisdom and psychology, highly recommended.

The Quotable Edison
Michele Wehrwein Albion
University Press of Florida
15 Northwest 15th Street, Gainesville, FL 32611-2079
9780813035598, $24.95,

Thomas Edison was a brilliant man, and while controversy has been called for his inventive knowledge, his wit and slyness as a business man and thinker cannot be questioned. "The Quotable Edison" is a collection of quotes from Edison on countless subjects who brought his intellect to the scientific field and made major advances and changes in the many ways we live our lives today. A celebrity of his day, his sharp tongue resonates strongly. "The Quotable Edison" is a must for anyone who enjoys reading about one of the sharpest minds in history.

Only the Super-Rich Can Save Us!
Ralph Nader
Seven Stories
140 Watts Street, New York, NY 10013
9781583229231, $17.95,

To take on the corporations that are trying to consume America, the little guy needs some titans in their corner. "Only the Super-Rich Can Save Us!" blends fiction with a hope for future as consumer advocate and former presidential candidate Ralph Nader uses a bit of novel to tell of what it's going to take to face down the corporations that want to crush America under its heel for their own power. "Only the Super-Rich Can Save Us!" is a fascinating look into what America's hope just may be.

Memories for My Grandchild
Lena Tabori
Welcome Books
6 West 18th Street, Suite 4B, New York, NY 10011
9781599620961, $22.50,

Passing on wisdom to the next generation can be hard when they might not absorb the most of it. "Memories for My Grandchild: A Grandmother's Keepsake Journal" is a work book aimed at grandmothers who want to present their grandchildren with a journal of theirs to be read in the present or the future for many years to come. Designed to help share moments that are hard to share otherwise, "Memories for My Grandchild" is a finely recommended pick.

The Cookbook Shelf

Bite Me
Julie Albert & Lisa Gnat
Kyle Books
c/o National Book Network
4501 Forbes Blvd., Suite 200, Lanham, MD 20706
9781906868444, $24.95

Good cooking doesn't have to be nice. "Bite Me: A Stomach-Satisfying, Visually Gratifying, Fresh-Mouthed Cookbook" is a cookbook with an edge, as sisters Julie Albert & Lisa Gnat come at readers with a certain fresh spin on life and everything else as they offer their best recipes and advice for cooking, snarking the whole way through. Presented in full color with easy to follow instructions, the recipes are wide and varied, from more vegetable driven soups to the old school classic barbeque chicken wings. "Bite Me" is a unique cookbook that brings more flavor than just the food it's telling you how to cook.

Our Best Bites
Sara Wells & Kate Jones
Shadow Mountain
PO Box 30178, Salt Lake City, UT 84130-0178
9781606419311, $25.99,

Good cooking doesn't have to be a multiple hour long endeavor. "Our Best Bites" is a collection of recipes from two Mormon mothers, Sara Wells & Kate Jones as they offer a wide variety of recipes and cooking advice for making the most of one's cooking situation. Drawn from their popular blog, the book is presented in full color with very easy to follow directions to make the most out of one's resources. For anyone looking for a versatile cookbook with some wisdom to go with the recipes, "Our Best Bites" is a fine collection that would do well in any mother's cooking library.

French Fries
Zac Williams
Gibbs Smith
PO Box 667, Layton, UT 84041
9781423607441, $16.99, 9781432607441

The french fry has become a favorite wherever it is served. "French Fries" is a guide to the many twists that one can do with the french fry, turning the potato - among other base ingredients - into just the first break in a culinary creation. From the simplest of french fries to chili cheese fries, to chocolate dipping sauces and other more traditional pursuits, "French Fries" is a strongly recommended pick for anyone who has a love for some cut potatoes and seasoning.

The RV Centennial Cookbook
Evada Cooper
Texas State Technical College
3801 Campus Dr., Wavo, TX 76705
9781934302880, $19.95,

Out and about, one doesn't have the time or resources or complexity, but there is still a way for good home cooking. "The RV Centennial Cookbook: Celebrating 100 Years of RVing" is a simple and to the point cookbook detailing how make simple yet hearty dishes that can be made in or around an RV. Along with tips for more successful RVing, games to play within, and much more, "The RV Centennial Cookbook" is a fine read for anyone trying to get the most out of their RV experience.

Breakfast, Lunch, Tea
Rose Bakery
180 Varick Street, New York, NY 10014
9780714844657, $29.95,

Simple times of day call for simple yet delectable meals. "Breakfast, Lunch, Tea" is a cookbook from the Rose Bakery as they present many recipes that are designed for the beginning middle, and any time of the day. With plenty of recipes, appeasing the eyes as well as both the sweet and savory taste buds, as well as photos showing the heart and drive of those at the Rose Bakery, "Breakfast, Lunch, Tea" is an excellent pick for anyone who wants some simple yet delectable baking.

Squash & Zucchini
Elisbeth Bangert
4880 Lower Valley Road, Atglen, PA 19310
9780764337796, $19.99

Two families within the many types of fruit have plenty to offer those who are daring. "Squash & Zucchini: Pumpkin, Butternut, Musk, Hokkaido, & Zucchini" is a collection of recipes that blend the squash & zucchini fruit families with many different things to unlock and present new flavors for those who are searching them down and want to make the most of them. "Squash & Zucchini" is presented in full color and comes with no shortage of ideas that are both vegetarian and not-so vegetarian, highly recommended.

Maple Sugar
Tim Herd
Storey Publishing
210 Mass Moca Way, North Adams, MA 01247
9781603427357, $12.95,

Maple syrup is more than just a waffle or pancake topping. "Maple Sugar: From Sap to Syrup, the History, Lore, and How-To Behind This Sweet Treat" traces the story behind maple syrup which plays a big role in the confectionery industry in Canada and the Northeastern United States. Discussing everything form the trees that are legally allowed to be tapped for syrup, to its production in private and industrial avenues, and much more, it proves to be an everything you need or want to know about this sweet. With additional recipes to take your maple syrup further than the breakfast table, "Maple Sugar" is a must for anyone with a sweet tooth tuned to maple.

The Fiction Shelf

A Trial in Summer
Ann L. McLaughlin
John Daniel & Company
c/o Daniel & Daniel Publishers
PO Box 2790, McKinleyville, CA 95519
9781564745064, $14.95,

Idealism and honesty don't seem to last long when faced with adulthood. "A Trial in Summer" is the story of Lorie Bronson, coping with life and its pressures as she pursues photography but finds herself drawn in by the judicial career of her father and a labor conflict. Telling the story of 1930s into the 1940s in San Francisco, "A Trial in Summer" is a coming of age novel that blends themes of justice and reality all quite well. Also from John Daniel & Company press is "Shadows of a Down East Summer" (9781564744975, $14.95), a mystery from Lea Wait following two young women who in the debut of their lives in the late nineteenth century find their artistic endeavors quickly corrupted by the cruelty of murder.

Beloved of the Fallen
Savannah Kline
Ulysses Press
PO Box 3440, Berkeley, CA 94703
9781569758472, $14.95,

The power of love is one that can do more than provide wonderful feelings - it can destroy your life. "Beloved of the Fallen" tells the story of Kira Castlemaine, an attorney faced with the grief of losing her father and finding quite the spin of love to make up for her grief. But the darker truth cannot be hidden in the haze of romance forever, as author Savannah Kline masterfully blends romance and intrigue to tell a fascinating story. "Beloved of the Fallen" is a fulfilling read that will be hard to put down.

Jay Lillie
Ivy House
5122 Bur Oak Circle, Raleigh, NC 27612
9781571975065, $15.00

Justice is something not so easy to find sometimes. "Justice" blends the many levels of justice together into a unique novel, as a homicide detective finds himself embroiled in the judicial field on the many levels that are above him, from the lawmakers to the deciders, to the Supreme court itself. Insightful and riveting reading, "Justice" is a fine novel that won't be easy to put down for fans of legal thrillers, murder mysteries, and more.

A Crooked Number
Nathan Jorgenson
Flat Rock Publishing
c/o Green Leaf
PO Box 91869, Austin, TX 78709
9780974637037, $16.95,

As you go through life, you never know when something special will happen. "A Crooked Number" is a unique perspective on human life from Nathan Jorgenson, as he tells the story of dental student Grant Thorson as he finds love when he least expects, learns a lot of lessons fast, and finds his baseball aspirations have a lot more to give him than a sore arm and a good time. "A Crooked Number" is a fun literary read that many a reader will relish.

Jack Ludlow
Allison and Bubsy
c/o International Publishers Marketing
PO BOx 605, Herndon, VA 20172-0605
9780749008802, $16.95,

From rags to riches by way of the sword. "Conquest" tells the story of the de Hauteville brothers as they pursue something greater, as the former peasants are now relied on by the pope to defend Christendom, but as their family grows in power, threats continue to come from not only the outside, but within as well. A riveting story of medieval history, intrigue, and politics, "Conquest" is a fine read that will be loved by any politically-driven historical fiction reader.

Jill Eileen Smith
c/o Baker
PO Box 6287, Grand Rapids, MI 49516-6287
9780800733223, $14.99,

Far from love, it's easy to try to accept it from other places. "Bathsheba" is the third entry in the wives of King David Series, as Jill Eileen Smith presents a work of Biblical fiction as Bathsheba, a woman separated from her husband due to wars, finds that the approaches of King David may be too much for her to resist. A read of faith, history, and passion, "Bathsheba" is a fun, enticing, and fascinating read of historical fiction, very highly recommended.

A Billion Reasons Why
Kristin Billerbeck
Thomas Nelson
7680 Goddard Street, Suite 200, Colorado Springs, CO 80920
9781595547910, $14.99,

Life doesn't like presenting straight answers. "A Billion Reasons Why" is the dilemma of Kate McKenna, a girl who has everything she could want. But when an Ex reappears in her life and offering everything she has and more, she finds her heart split as her loyalties rip her in tow directions. With a bit of faith, "A Billion Reasons Why" is a fascinating read of Christian romance that will keep readers reading til the very end.

A Man's Heart
Lori Copeland
5300 Patterson Avenue, S.E., Grand Rapids, MI 49530
9780310289852, $13.99,

When life seems like too much to handle, God may be the only one to help one through it all. "A Man's Heart" tells the story of Jules, a woman who left love behind twice and now finds her world crushing down on her as she tries to manage a failing farm while caring for children left behind by her close friend. With no where left to turn to for hope, the light of God may be the only thing to save her from going mad. "A Man's Heart" is a riveting read that shouldn't be overlooked.

The Memoir Shelf

This River
James Brown
1919 Fifth Street, Berkeley, CA 94710
9781582437217, $14.95,

When drugs dominate your life, it's hard to shake free from constant gloom. "This River" is the second memoir from James Brown, whose previous memoir was on trying to shake his addiction. This time around, he tells his story of the difficulty of sobriety, his weaknesses, and the drive to improve oneself to become a better person and role model to be a better father. "This River" is a moving and honest read, highly recommended.

Help Me to a Getaway
Knute Skinner
Salmon Poetry
c/o DuFour Editions
PO Box 7, Chester Springs, PA 19425
9781907056291, $26.95,

What makes a remote island retreat appealing? "Help Me to a Getaway" is a memoir from poet Knute Skinner who despite continued success, chose to live the rest of his days in the remote Canary islands, seeing much of Europe along the way. Telling the story of his two year journey, he describes what he holds as a Europe that has passed on and what has changed. "Help Me to a Getaway" is an excellent read for those who want to get into the mind and understand the travels of a devoted poet.

Bull Canyon
Lin Pardey
Paradise Cay
PO Box 29, Arcata, CA 95518
9781929214679, $24.95,

Challenge isn't a bad thing, as Lin Pardey and her husband Larry live off the adventure of it. "Bull Canyon: A Boatbuilder, a Writer, and Other Wildlife" is a combination book of true adventure and memoir as they find their home in an abandoned stone cottage with little in the way of luxury, but gave them what they wanted, a place to build a boat and live a simpler and more rustic life. But no place is a one hundred percent paradise. "Bull Canyon" is a riveting memoir of the path less taken for life.

Whitey from Farm Kid to Flying Tiger to Attorney
Wayne G. Johnson
Langdon Street Press
212 3rd Avenue North, Suite 290, Minneapolis, MN 55401
9781936183890, $18.95,

From nothing can come greatness. "Whitey from Farm Kid to Flying Tiger to Attorney" tells the story of Wayne G. Johnson, as he shares his story of coming from one of over a dozen kids to veteran to successful attorney. With a wide array of stories that touch on the many aspects of his life, farm life, law life, and war life, "White from Farm Kid to Flying Tiger to Attorney" is a moving read of personal success, highly recommended.

36 Letters
Joan Sohn
The Jewish Publication Society
210 Arch Street, 2nd Floor, Philadelphia, PA 19103
9780827609266, $18.00,

To know your ancestors story is to better understand them. "36 Letters: One Family's Story" is a study from Joan Sohn of her grandparents letters to one another, telling a story of coming to America and fleeing Russia as Jews. Painting a very driven and personal picture of a time long past, "36 Letters: One Family's Story" is a riveting study of family history of the challenges faced by immigrants in the nineteenth century.

The Source of All Things
Tracy Ross
Free Press
c/o Simon of Schuster
1230 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10020
9781439172971, $26.00,

Parental abuse is most horrifying due to the ultimate betrayal. "The Source of All Things" is a memoir from Tracy Ross as she reflects on her stepfather, who outwardly seemed to be the perfect father figure in her life, but in secret, abuse occurred and left Tracy taking years to truly understand it and try to put her life together after it all. A moving read of recovery, confrontation, and trying to comprehend forgiveness, "The Source of All Things" is a moving read and reminder that all tragedy is temporary.

The Religion/Spirituality Shelf

In the Whirlpool
Reid L. Neilson
The Arthur H. Clark Company
2800 Venture Drive, Norman, OK 73069
9780870623905 $29.95 1-800-842-9286

In the Whirlpool: The Pre-Manifesto Letters of President Wilford Woodruff to the William Atkin Family, 1885-1890 collects the never-before-published correspondence of Wilford Woodruff, who became president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in 1887 - a time when Utah was approaching statehood, and the American government took increasingly aggressive action against the polygamy practiced by the Mormons. Woodruff was one of those forced into hiding; he received sanctuary from William and Rachel Atkin, among others, in the 1880s. Woodruff's letters reveal a human being at a quandary - on the one hand, he felt that he and his fellow believers were being divested of the right to practice an aspect of their religion, yet at the same time he knew that American society could not accept polygamy. In the Whirlpool reveals his thoughts and reasoning, which were ultimately destined to culminate in his 1890 Manifesto that officially prohibited polygamy among the faithful. An extraordinary glimpse into the mind of a man at a crossroads, In the Whirlpool is highly recommended especially for religious studies shelves.

Inspiration for a Lifetime
Allen Klein
Viva Editions
c/o Cleis Press
2246 Sixth Street, Berkeley, CA 94710
9781573444293, $14.95,

A little light lets your pursuits of life shine all the brighter. "Inspiration for a Lifetime: Words of Wisdom, Delight, and Possibility" is a motivational spiritual read from Allen Klein as he shares with readers a wide array of quotes for finding that smile in life that will carry us forward. Taking from a wide array of sources with varying levels of prestige from Jerry Seinfeld to Oscar Wilde, "Inspiration for a Lifetime" is a wise read that will humor as it enlightens.

Taoist Shaman
Mantak Chia & Kris Deva North
Destiny Books
c/o Inner Traditions Bear & Company
PO Box 388, Rochester, VT 05767
9781594773655, $16.95,

A shaman is a wise man with certain connections to the nature of the world. "Taoist Shamans: Practices from the Wheel of Life" discusses the Taoist Shamanistic philosophy and the spiritual and philosophical lessons it can teach those willing to learn. Drawing on the expertise of teachers o the philosophy Mantak Chia and Kris Deva North, they discuss meditations and the principles of Taoist Shamanism. "Taoist Shamans" is well worth considering for students of eastern philosophy and spirituality.

The Spirit of Servant-Leadership
Shann Ray Ferch & Larry C. Spears, editor
Paulist Press
997 Macarthur Blvd., Mahwah, NJ 07430
9780809105946, $24.95,

Leadership can shine through, even in servitude. "The Spirit of Servant-Leadership" is a collection of thoughts on the concept of leading as a servant in spirituality and with faith. With spiritual musings from many thoughtful writers, they address spirituality and growth as people. For those seeking a scholarly discussion of spirituality, servitude, and leadership in and everything it entails, "The Spirit of Servant-Leadership" is a thoughtful read that belongs in any community or college library spirituality collection.

The Atheist's Primer
Malcolm Murray
Broadview Press
1 Yonge Street, Suite 1900, Toronto, ON M5E 1E5
9781551119625, $32.95,

Atheism is a faith spurned by logic, and in debate, it can be easy to fall into fallacy. "The Atheist's Primer" is a discussion and critique of the common arguments levied at the modern atheist, as Malcolm Murray discusses many concepts of faith, and how they pertain to religion's common side topics, such as morality and law. A thoughtful discussion of philosophy and faith put forth by Malcolm Murray, a professor of philosophy at the University of Prince Edward Island, "The Atheist's Primer" is a must for those who want to understand atheism and modern religion.

The Christian Studies Shelf

Why Stay Catholic?
Michael Leach
Loyola Press
3441 N. Ashland Avenue, Chicago, IL 60657
9780829435375, $14.95,

With all the controversy surrounding the church, it's easier than ever to walk away from Catholicism. "Why Stay Catholic?: Unexpected Answers to a Life-Changing Question" is a discussion of modern Catholicism aimed at those ready to surrender their faith, whether to convert another or to abandon faith completely. Michael Leach hopes to answer the questions that many Catholics ask when their faith are in doubt, encouraging readers to remember what is good about faith and what they may not have known. "Why Stay Catholic?" is a wise read that any with waning faith and spirituality should strongly consider.

Recovering The Real Lost Gospel
Darrell L. Bock
B&H Publishing Group
127 Ninth Avenue, North, Nashville, TN 37234-0164
9780805464658, $16.99,

There's a certain optimism that has been lost in faith in recent years. "Recovering the Real Lost Gospel: Reclaiming the Gospel as Good News" is a Christian study from Darrell Bock, as he tries to encourage readers to use their faith as a positive force in their life, stating that instead of looking for lost gospels for the answers, to look closer at the gospel found within the Bible and remember what it brings. "Recovering the Real Lost Gospel" carries a strong message and has plenty of wisdom to help readers better appreciate the Holy Bible.

Business for the Common Good
Kenman L. Wong & Scott B. Rae
PO Box 1400, Downers Grove, IL 60515-1426
9780830828166, $18.00,

Success in business makes it all too easy to give into greed, one of the seven deadly sins. "Business for the Common Good: A Christian Vision for the Marketplace" is a guide for combining Christian ideals with successful business and making it so these ideals can co-exist well. With the combined expertise of professor of business ethics Kenman Wong and professor of Christian ethics Scott Rae, the two come together to offer fine wisdom on how to succeed and not sacrifice one's soul to do it. For any ambitious business person who holds their faith strong as well, "Business for the Common Good" is a wise read, very highly recommended.

Handle with Prayer
Charles Stanley
David C. Cook
4050 Lee Vance View, Colorado Springs, CO 80918
9780781404464, $16.99,

A bit of prayer can help Christians find their place and drive in life. "Handle with Prayer: Unwrap the Source of God's Strength for Living" is a guide to prayer and using it as a source of power and inspiration for one's life. Charles Stanley advises readers to pursue prayer with a certain authority, finding God's answers, and pushing forward when it seems no one is responding to you. "Handle with Prayer" is a thoughtful read that shouldn't be overlooked by Christians looking to make their prayers more meaningful.

When God Steps In, Miracles Happen
Neale Donald Walsch
Hampton Roads
c/o Red Wheel, Weiser, Conari
65 Parker Street, Suite 7, Newburyport, MA 01950
9781571746535, $16.95,

God's touch isn't plain for the world to see, but it can still be felt. "When God Steps In, Miracles Happen" is a work of memoir as Neale Donald Walsch brings readers a compilation of regular people who have felt God's presence in their lives, changing them for good, and leaving them more faithful than ever. With a simple, yet powerful message that God is with us and his miracles happen everyday, "When God Steps In, Miracles Happen" is an inspirational read for anyone who feels they need assurance that God is still with them.

How to Get Past Disappointment
Michelle McKinney Hammond
Harvest House
990 Owen Loop North, Eugene, Oregon 97402-9173
9780736937863, $11.99,

Life is full of disappointments and not letting them crush your spirit is key. "How to Get Past Disappointment: Finding Hope" is an inspirational guide with a Christian backing, as Michelle McKinney Hammond provides a simple thought and inspiration to readers to help them face the unfortunate events in life and look to God to look past them and live life to its fullest. With simple and spiritual wisdom, "How to Get Past Disappointment" is a very highly recommended read, not to be overlooked by those looking for faith-driven self-help books.

Grace Abounds
Edith Prendergast
Ave Maria Press
PO Box 428, Notre Dame, IN 46556
9781594712593, $12.95,

Faith doesn't stay with you without tending to it. "Grace Abounds: A Call to Awaken and Renew Your Faith" is a spiritual guide for those who want to restore their faith in Christ and remember his role in their life, as it is weakened through the course of every day life where sin is everywhere. "Grace Abounds" is a touching read that readers for those who want to remember why they are Christians.

Archangels 101
Doreen Virtue
Hay House
PO Box 5100, Carlsbad, CA 92018-5100
9781401926380, $15.95

The blessings of the angel can grant the strength one needs in the most trying of times. "Archangels 101" is a spiritual Christian guide for readers, who want to channel and seek blessings of the archangels, outlining the many angels of the faith, their domains, and their legends. For those with an interest in the archangels out of curiosity or for faith, "Archangels 101" is a thoughtful, educational, and faithful read. "Archangels 101" is a fine read, not to be missed.

The Social Issues Shelf

Family Politics
Scott Yenor
Baylor Press
One Bear Place, #97363, Waco, TX 76798-7363
9781602583054, $39.95,

Where do politics reside in the modern American home life? "Family Politics: The Idea of Marriage in Modern Political Thought" analyzes society and politics side by side. Investigating the writing and thoughts of both past thinkers like Locke and Rousseau to modern views on the family and the natural state of things. With much history and study, Scott Yenor, a professor of political science at Boise, discusses much and offers extensive research. "Family Politics" is a worthy addition to community and college library social issues collections.

The Devil's Milk
John Tully
Monthly Review Press
146 West 29th Street, Suite 6W, New York, NY 10001
9781583672310, $24.95,

Rubber, an endlessly useful material, is one with quite the nasty history. "The Devil's Milk: A Social History of Rubber" is a look at this sad history of rubber, which has called torment and trouble for the working class everywhere it has been needed throughout history. Exploitation of workers, slavery, war, and more, the material has been a cornerstone of the industrial revolution, representing both its successes and its tragedies. "The Devil's Milk" is a fascinating yet not often heard history of rubber.

The Parenting Shelf

Thriving in the 21st Century
Barbara Frank
Cardamom Publishers
PO Box 2146, Janesville, WI 53547
9780974218175, $13.95,

The burden of the future will shuffled onto future generations. "Thriving in the 21st Century: Preparing Our Children for the New Economic Reality" is a guide aimed at parents on how to educate their children to succeed in tomorrow's world where it will be harder than ever to succeed. Stating the seven skills that will most be needed to succeed in the coming years, advising how to encourage your children to pick the right career path for them, the reality of the necessity of college, "Thriving in the 21st Century" is a wise pick for any parent who wants to equip their children with a bit of financial common sense for the coming years.

The Criminology Shelf

In Cold Pursuit
Paul Echols & Christine Byers
New Horizons Press
PO Box 669, Far Hills, NJ 07931
9780882823485, $24.95

The hunt for a serial killer is a race against time, because eventually more lives will be lost. "In Cold Pursuit: My Hunt for Timothy Krajcir - the Notorious Serial Killer" follows the case of a truly vile individual who systematically killed nine women throughout the Midwest, and his rampage seemed never ending. A rookie cop dared to be the one to eventually bring the monster down, and "In Cold Pursuit" tells the story of good police work and the eventual triumph of justice.

The SciFi/Fantasy Shelf

Paul McComas
Walkabout Publishing
PO Box 151, Kansasville, WI 53139
9781456566401, $29.99,

Science fiction and fantasy earns people a certain fun fear, that what you never expect may be lurking around that corner. "Unforgettable: Harrowing Futures, Horrors, & Dark Humor" is a collection of short fiction from Paul McComas as he shares story of the unknown and what lurks around us and how our curiosity leads us to things we never expected. Going on a wide spectrum that includes everything from the traditional zombies and vampires to the more off kilter voodoo, to the speculative nature of the deep future. "Unforgettable" is an excellent collection that shouldn't be overlooked.

Bart Bare
Canterbury House Publishing
225 Ira Harmon Road, Vilas, NC 28692
9780982905401, $16.95,

It can be rough to enjoy a new home when the supernatural wants to crush you. "Wadmalaw" follows Liv and Autis Oakley as they cope with the crushing reality that their new Wadmalaw Island home is haunted by malignant spirits. They soon find however, that running is not an option as something else will follow them no matter where they go. "Wadmalaw" is a fun and riveting work of the paranormal, highly recommended.

The Civil War Shelf

Yours for the Union
John W. Chase, author
John S. Collier & Bonnie B. Collier, editors
Fordham University Press
2546 Belmont Avenue, University
Box L, Bronx, NY 10458-5172
9780823223046 $24.00

Yours for the Union: The Civil War Letters of John W. Chase First Massachusetts Light Artillery compiles the correspondence of Civil War soldier John Chase's testimony of his duty to the Army of the Potomac. Chase was a widower with four young children to support; he enlisted as a private, and his writing reflects the daily travails of a solider who marched through mud, risked his life in battle, and struggled for food, clothing and rations. Although Chase was loyal to the Union, his writings reflect his negative opinion of abolitionists and abolitionist politicians. A handful of vintage black-and-white photographs enhance this invaluable and absorbing primary testimony of the Civil War from an ordinary volunteer's point of view.

Kansas's War: The Civil War in Documents
Pearl T. Ponce
Ohio University Press
The Ridges, Building 19, Athens, OH 45701
9780821419366 $18.65

Kansas's War: The Civil War in Documents is an anthology of primary testimonies and documents revealing the impact of the American Civil War in the state of Kansas. Situated between the North and the South, Kansas had been the center of violent strife sprung from ideological clashes and had earned the nickname "Bleeding Kansas" long before the outbreak of war. The documents reproduced in Kansas's War give an in-depth picture of the struggle for power within Kansas, border security efforts, and racial tensions, especially in the context of the state's large African American and the American Indians' claim to nearly one-fifth of Kansas' land. The viewpoints of politicians, soldiers, ordinary citizens and more is preserved in this indispensable addition to college library Civil War history shelves.

Blood Shed in This War
Michael A. Peake
Indiana Historical Society Press
450 West Ohio Street, Indianapolis, IN 46202-3269
9780871952691, $34.95,

A pharmacist with a good hand for art, Adolph Metzner rose through the military ranks all while capturing the spirit of war on paper. "Blood Shed in this War: Civil War Illustrations by Captain Adolph Metzner, 32nd Indiana" follows the history of Metzner who fought with the forces of Indiana. A pharmacist by trade, he used his time in the war, not only to fight, but use his art to capture the faces of war to show the emotion that was on both sides of it. "Blood Shed in this War" is a fascinating read of one man capturing the spirit of a country divided.

The Music Shelf

The Book of Audacity
Carla Schroder
No Starch Press
38 Ringold Street, San Francisco, CA 94103
9781593272708, $34.95,

Audacity packs a load of power into something you pay nothing for. "The Book of Audacity: Record, Edit, Mix, and Master with the Free Audio Editor" is a guide to getting the most out of your zero dollar payment, using the open source project. Audacity can be used to record voice and performance, mix tracks, create higher quality audio, sound effects, ringtones, digitize old music, and much more. "The Book of Audacity" provides a much needed how-to and instructional manual that will be worth the money you didn't spend on the program itself.

Andrew Shaylor
Merrell Publishers
38 High Avenue, 4th floor, Nyack, New York 10960
9781858945286, $50.00,

There was more to rockabilly than some good time music. "Rockin': The Rockabilly Scene" looks at the rockabilly counterculture that still lives on today, with a nod to the styles and vehicles of the 1950s. Photographer Andew Shaylor looks at how the style still lives on today, packed cover to cover with full color photos emphasizing the styles and people who have turned this upbeat, simple, and unique music to be the theme of their lives. With a bit of memoir of Shaylor's travels for these photos exposing the culture that lies beneath, "Rockin'" is a fun and very highly recommended pick for coffee table book collections.

The Hobby Shelf

The Big Book of Lionel
Robert Schleicher
Voyageur Press
400 First Avenue North, Suite 300
Minneapolis, MN 55401
9780760340264, $29.99,

For many adults, the wonders of the model railroad never truly faded. "The Big Book of Lionel" is a complete and comprehensive guide to those who call themselves fans of the Lionel company's work with model railroads and wants to better expand their own models. Looking at the production process of the trains, countless track plans for many set ups, maintenance tips, emulating classic railroads and much more, "The Big Book of Lionel" is presented in full color and proves to be a must have for model railroad keepers.

The Education Shelf

The Floating Teacher
Elizabeth Randall
Maupin House
2416 NW 71st Place, Gainesville, FL 32653
9781934338940, $14.95,

With only a cart or perhaps only a briefcase, the plight of the floating teacher is one with coping with no place to call your own. "The Floating Teacher: A Guide to Surviving and Thriving" is a guide for those teachers who have been tasked with coping with this system where they move to the class instead of the class moving to them. Drawing on her own veteran experience, she advises teachers in finding their own way to succeed with these conditions. "The Floating Teacher" should be considered by any educator who isn't blessed with a classroom of their own.

Thinking About Schools
Eleanor Blair Hilty, editor
Westview Press
c/o Perseus
2465 Central Avenue, Boulder, CO 80301
9780813344904, $55.00,

Why are schools still vital to our world? "Thinking About Schools: A Foundations of Education Reader" is a collection of essays discussing the importance of scholarship and education on the value of the educational foundation in the modern world. With plenty of thinkers offering their input, editor Eleanor Blair Hilty presents a must read, written in plain English, guide to understanding the modern educational system. "Thinking About Schools" is a vital addition to any educational studies collection in community and college libraries.

The Science Shelf

Roadside Geology of Missouri
Charles G. Spencer
Mountain Press Publishing Company
PO Box 2399, Missoula, MT 59806
9780878425730, $20.00,

You don't have to travel that far in Missouri to find a bit of geological history. "Roadside Geology of Missouri" discussing the geological history surrounding Missouri, of how this study of nearly a billion and half years of natural history can be done by pulling up to the side of the road. From ancient events to more recent earthquakes, "Roadside Geology of Missouri" will prove to be a fascinating read for anyone with a strong interest in Earth Science living in the Missouri area.

The Handy Science Answer Book
Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh
c/o Visible Ink Press
43311 Joy Road #414, Canton, MI 48187-2075
9781578593217, $21.95

Science can prove quite daunting for those with an unquenchable curiosity. "The Handy Science Answer Book" is presented in a question and answer style, divided by topic throughout. With plenty of fascinating facts all throughout, over two thousand questions are discussed with subjects ranging from the tragic like the science behind the Irish potato famine to more charming topics such as a cat's whiskers. Endlessly fascinating and entertaining, "The Handy Science Answer Book" is an excellent addition to any science collection.

The Interior Design Shelf

101 Things I Hate About Your House
James Swan
Health Communications, Inc.
3201 S. W. 15th Street, Deerfield Beach, FL 33442
9780757315671, $18.95,

Some people are more infuriated by bad design decisions than others. "101 Things I Hate About Your House" is an interior design guide from James Swam, famed interior designer who has made two decades of a career on being paid to make homes and houses look like the special places they should be. Looking at the mistakes and poor decisions in placement many people make from massive disorganization to covering windows, he presents his ideas with simple yet blunt wisdom that encourages readers to improve their lives by making the place they spend most of their time all the better. "101 Things I Hate About Your House" is a strongly recommended pick for any who want to enhance the status of their home.

Welcome Home
Rebecca DiLiberto
Chronicle Books
680 Second Street, San Francisco, CA 94107
9780811877336, $14.95,

Little superstitions and rituals are fun, regardless if you believe in them or not. "Welcome Home: Make Your House a Healthy, Wealthy, and Happy Place to Live" a book filled with little tips and tricks in the pursuit of home making, both practical and spiritual throughout. Intriguing and fascinating reading for those who have a special place for life's little oddities, "Welcome Home" is a fun read, not to be overlooked.

The Hunting/Fishing Shelf

The Complete Guide to Surfcasting
Joe Cermele
Burford Books
101 East State St., #301, Ithaca, NY 14850
9781580801676, $19.95,

The bounty of the beaches is as rich as anywhere else, and there are tips and tricks to making the most of it. "The Complete Guide to Surfcasting: Tackle, Techniques, Species, Locations, and More" is a guide to those who want to embrace the discipline of surfcasting, with plenty of detail. On choosing the right equipment - lures, baits, rods, and more, working around the rocks of the beach, the fish to catch and throw back, finding hotspots, and more, "The Complete Guide to Surfcasting" is a resource that no one going to the beach with their rod in hand should overlook.

The Needlecraft Shelf

2 Piece Patchwork
Sandy Petsche
Landauer Press
3100 101st St. Ste A, Urbandale, IA 50322
9781935726036, $24.95,

Ease of use doesn't have to limit imagination. "2 Piece Patchwork" is a guide for those who want to get into quilting yet may not be ready for complex patterns. Breaking down quilts into the simplicity of triangles and squares, Sandy Petsche equips readers well in getting to master their needle to make something special. Presented in full color, "2 Piece Patchwork" is a fine and educational read for any needlework novice.

The Great American Kid's Afghan
Knitter's Magazine
XRX, Inc.
PO Box 965, Sioux Falls, SD 57101-0965
9781933064239, $12.95,

A little bit of color does much to add a lot of life. "The Great American Kid's Afghan" is a guide to making an afghan any kid will love as well as afghans easy enough for young would be needleworkers to help construct on their own. Plainly illustrated and easy to follow instructions will help many readers make their own decorative and colorful afghans. "The Great American Kid's Afghan" is a fine addition to any needlecraft collection, especially those with a nod for children.

The Photography Shelf

Developing Animals
Matthew Brower
University of Minnesota Press
111 Third Avenue South, Suite 290
Minneapolis, MN 55401
9780816654796, $25.00,

Photography may be the grandfather of conservation. "Developing Animals: Wildlife and Early American Photography" traces the relationship between early conservation and the rise of photography. Matthew Brower tells a story of how the advancement of photography led to the waning of the practice of taxidermy, allowing those with a curiosity in wildlife to do so with photographs instead. Stating that photography is an excellent tool for studying animals and is essential for ultimate understanding, "Developing Animals" is a choice pick for nature collections as well as photography collections.

Forever Green
Dave Pepler, author
Lien Botha, photography
Human & Rousseau
c/o International Publishers Marketing
PO Box 605, Herndon, VA 20172-0605
9780798150941, $39.95,

Plants throughout our history have proved endlessly useful and quite beautiful have been with us since the start of human existence. "Forever Green Plants in the Dream Time" is a collection of twenty five essays from by Dave Pepler, as he writes on his thoughts on the world's many varieties of flowers, their place in nature. Designed as both as a full color floral coffee table book as well as a tip book for those who keep flowers, "Forever Green Plants in the Dream Time" is an excellent pick.

The Homeowner's Shelf

Estimating Home Building Costs, revised edition
W. P. Jackson
6058 Corte del Cedro
PO Box 6500, Carlsbad, CA 92018
9781572182059, $38.00,

To build one's own home gives supreme control of their dreams, but it can be quite pricey. "Estimating Home Building Costs" is the revised edition of Craftsman's previous volume of study, designed to give construction planners wisdom and tips on providing the most accurate possible quote in a business where being too far off the mark can lead to unhappy customers and greater problems outside of that. From the costs of clearing the site to pricing the wide array of components needing, setting a comfortable overhead and much more, "Estimating Home Building Costs" is a strongly recommended resource for any construction manager whose guesswork might decide if a job is profitable or not.

The Crafts Shelf

500 Silver Jewelry Designs
Lark Crafts
c/o Sterling Publishing
387 Park Avenue South, New York, NY 10016-8810
9781600596315, $24.95,

Silver offers a subtle, more subdued appearance to its gaudier cousin gold. "500 Silver Jewelry Designs: The Powerful Allure of a Precious Metal" is a guide for those who seek to work with silver to create creative and beautiful designs of their own creation. With plenty of inspiration to draw from, the people at Lark crafts present hundreds of full color photographs to take ideas from to seek what fits them, whether they are seeking to buy or create their own accessories. "500 Silver Jewelry Designs" is a sage read for jewelry lovers, highly recommended.

Easy Beading
BeadStyle Magazine
Kalmbach Publishing
21027 Crossroads Circle
PO Box 1612, Waukesha, WI 53187-1612
9780871164209, $29.95,

Beads are a quick way to add some style to the simplest jewelry. "Easy Beading: Fast. Fashionable. Fun.: Vol 7" is a guide from the people behind BeadStyle magazine for those who want to get into using beads to adding a bit of color and substance to their pursuits in their lives. With plenty of practical advice on finding good materials, working them in, and plenty of alternative solutions, "Easy Beading" is a must for do it yourself fashion types, highly recommended.

Magical Candle Crafting
Ember Grant
Llewellyn Worldwide
2143 Wooddale Drive, Woodbury, MN 55125-2989
9780738721354, $16.95,

A little bit of magic is reachable for anyone. "Magical Candle Crafting: Create Your Own Candles for Spells & Rituals" is a guide to bit of mysticism and spirituality to spin their own candles. Outlining how to craft candles for many intents, Ember Grant gives readers a practical guide on crafting their own scented candles, with wise advice even for those who don't subscribe to the realism of the rituals. "Magical Candle Crafting" is a top pick for those who want a bit more flavor with their light.

The Business Shelf

Seeing Red Cars
Laura Goodrich
235 Montgomery Street, Suite 650
San Francisco, CA 94104-2916
9781605097275, $18.95,

What you see is what you get, and sometimes you just need to see better. "Seeing Red Cars: Driving Yourself, Your Team, and Your Organization to a Positive Future" is a business guide that focuses on the power of focus and positive thinking, as Laura Goodrich tells readers about the power of focus, and how subconsciously, our focus all too often is focused on the negative and we end up with negative results. Teaching readers on how to use their focus to push themselves and their company to the positive and using such thoughts well, "Seeing Red Cars" is a powerful read that definitely shouldn't be overlooked for those who want to understand that mind wins over matter, even in business.

Rip Off Your Necktie and Dance
Leen Zevenbergen
Global Professional Publishing
c/o Stylus Publishing
PO Box 605, Herndon, VA 20172-0605
9781906403690, $25.00,

It's easy to follow the rules so well you become restrained by them. "Rip Off Your Necktie and Dance" is a guide to the rules and when to break them and revolutionize their business and try something different in that never ending search for success. Leen Zevenbergen offers much advice on embracing innovation and going against the corporate grain - not only for more profit, but for a lot more happiness in the workplace at well. "Rip Off Your Necktie and Dance" is a valuable resource, highly recommended.

The Pets/Wildlife Shelf

Carting with Your Dog
Laura Waldbaum
Dogwise Publishing
403 S Mission St. Wenatchee, WA 98801
9781617810244, $14.95,

There are always plenty of new tricks one can teach their favorite furry friend. "Carting With Your Dog: Positive Draft Training for Fun and Competition" is a guide for teaching your dog to do their best ox impersonation and hitching a cart to the dog for fun not only for the owner, but the dog as well. With simple training, dogs can pull light loads without much stress on the canine. From gear to training tips to competition, "Carting with Your Dog" is a fine read with plenty to consider for dog lovers, highly recommended.

The Computer Shelf

Murach's ADO.NET 4, fourth edition
Anne Boehm & Ged Mead
4340 North Knoll Ave., Fresno, CA 93722-7825
9781890774622, $54.50,

Being on top of the latest technology is an excellent way to keep things flowing well. "Murach's ADO.NET 4 Database Programming with VB 2010: 4th Edition" is a guide to making the most of the upgrades in Visual Basic 2010 to create a fully functional database with ADO.NET 4. Designed as both a training guide and a reference resource, Anne Boehm & Ged Mead grant their vast expertise in walking readers in introducing the new changes in this edition of, elaborate on the finer details of on designing an easy to use and efficient database through transactions and much more. "Murach's ADO.NET 4 Database Programming with VB 2010" is a complete and comprehensive text that shouldn't be overlooked for addition to computer and technology collections. Also from Murach is their comprehensive guide on ASP.NET 4, "Murach's ASP.NET 4 with VB 2010" (9781890774608, $54.50), providing the usual intensive coverage one expects from Murach's technology series.

The Poetry Shelf

Dog Days
Linda Coggin
Zero Books
c/o National Book Network
PO Box 62188, Baltimore, MD 21264-2188
9781846945472, $12.95,

Simplicity often hides complexity. "Dog Days" is an anthology of poetry from Linda Coggin as he offers a compilation of life and wisdom through poetry, as he hopes to expose that said complexity that hides behind our life. With a unique style and voice, "Dog Days" is an excellent pick, a core addition for any general poetry collection. "Letting Go": We let her go/like a large fish/grasping for air/all fight gone./We made small gestures/of comfort/water on the lips/morphine in the veins/pillows banked./We combed her hair./And when we weren't looking/she slipped away/back into the dark waters/of the night.

A Few of Her Secrets
George Bradley
Wayweiser Press
c/o DuFour Editions
PO Box 7, Chester Springs, PA 19425
9781904130420, $16.95,

The secrets of our lives leave us pondering it all more. "A Few of Her Secrets" is a collection of poetry from George Bradley who comes at readers with a wide array of thoughts and candidness. Speaking on everything from 9/11 to the horrors of finding the truth, "A Few of Her Secrets" is well worth considering for any literary poetry lover. "The Prophet Joel on the Division of Labor": It is written your young men shall see visions,/And what else should they see,/Swept by flood tides of futurity/To irrational extremes/Of foresight; your old men shall dream dreams,/For which redundancy,/Those various elaborated evasions/Of memory and art, it seems/They have been at last provided reasons.

Julie Hanson
University of Iowa Press
100 Kuhl House, Iowa City, IA 52242
9781587299643, $17.00,

With real practical wisdom and a certain mindset about life, Julie Hanson's work captured her an Iowa Poetry Prize and a bit of fame. "Unbeknownst" is a collection of simple and straight forward wisdom in poetry, as she offers verse about life and everything else that is anything but simple. "Unbeknownst" is well worth adding to any poetry collection. "Larger": The female cardinal isn't the least bit/disappointed that the shade of red she is brown./She looks at him and thinks, Aren't we gorgeous?/Disappointment is a theme too available to me./Judgment, another./Would that I were rid of them.//I always turn to look too late into the leaves./Of course there is the one remedy./ Wait.

Having a Little Talk with Capital P
Jim Daniels
Carnegie Mellon
5032 Forbes Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15289-1021
9780887485312, $15.95,

Jim Daniels has fostered a certain love for poetry with his twelfth volume, "Having a Little Talk with Capital P", who despite his experience, comes with a simple to understand yet serene writing with his work. With a certain understanding and dedication to reality, "Having a Little Talk with Capital P" is an excellent anthology that shouldn't be overlooked. "The Tenured Guy Handles the Evidence": In a class full of smooth faces/hers cracked into lines/like your own.//She's a sing-songy rhymer:/"Drunk Drivers Go to Jail."/God would get them/for killing innocents. Don't preach,/you told her, My son, she said,/was killed by a drunk driver.//That's truth. It's what I feel./You gave her the standard advice:/Show don't Tell. Image over//Abstraction. She brings in pictures of her son, and a pile/of his clothes -- dumps them//on your desk with a drop slip.

These Mountains
Rivka Miriam
PO Box 8531, New Milford, CT 06676-8531
9781592642496, $14.95,

To hear voices around the world is to better understand the voices. "These Mountains: Selected Poems of Rivka Miriam" is a collection of work from celebrated and prolific poet Rivka Miriam, who has been pushing poetry throughout her life. Award winning, she offers a unique perspective of a second generation Holocaust survivor and woman of Israel. "These Mountains" is an excellent collection, very much worth considering. "Oh, My Mother": Oh, my mother, whose milk bleats like a lamb,/Oh, My mother, whose milk is pure as she,/Oh, my mother, who keeps her milk from the blade/Who holds it to her breasts/so it won't be slaughtered.

The Mystery/Suspense Shelf

Murder in Black and White
Loretta Jackson & Vickie Britton
160 Madison Avenue, New York, NY 10016
9780803477193, $23.95,

Some grudges never die, even when decades have passed. "Murder in Black and White" is a mystery following Sheriff Jeff McQuede as the most unusual burglary occurs, when a single black and white photo is found and soon enough, bodies begin to show up. McQuede finds himself rushing to find the man in the photographs and learn the connections before more people turn up dead. "Murder in Black and White" is a riveting old-school style mystery that is as fun as it is entertaining.

David Fingerman
L&L Dream Spell
9781603182645, $14.95,

Going straight and getting a job isn't the easiest thing in the world to do. "Spyder" follows rough and criminal Spyder as he attempts to become normal, a task that isn't easy for a drug dealer coping with a dead girlfriend (who he's at fault for) and plenty of people who prefer he keep up that career in his life. As he realizes how deep he is in and sees that crawling out may be impossible, "Spyder" is a read that mirrors the reality of the underworld, very highly recommended reading.

The Camera Never Lies
Elizabeth Goddard
PO Box 719, Uhrichsville, OH 44683
9781602606272, $10.99,

There's more to a portrait than taking a snapshot. "The Camera Never Lies" follows professional photographer Polly Perkins as she copes with his somewhat dull family portrait business. But when she takes her trade to a friend's wedding, the dullness of the portrait business will be welcomed, as it's on her to solve a murder before another body shows up. "The Camera Never Lies" is an excellent read and very highly recommended.

He Trots the Air
Marilyn M. Fisher
Bedside Books
c/o American Book Publishing
5442 So. 900 East, #146, Salt Lake City, UT 84117-7204
9781589827943, $19.95,

Horse racing can attract a bit of foul play. "He Trots the Air" is another Connie Holt mystery from Marilyn M. Fisher as she delves deeper into the equine world as Connie finds out who is drugging horses and finds herself pulled into the art world as well, as surrounding man's constant companion. For horse lovers and mystery lovers, "He Trots the Air" should prove quite the excellent pick.

The Sports Shelf

Between the Hedges
Stephen Davison
The Black Staff Press
c/o DuFour
PO Box 7, Chester Springs, PA 19425
9780856408564, $34.95,

There's a certain allure of long distance road racing has that a simple oval track can't reproduce. "Between the Hedges: A Celebration of 40 Years of Road Racing" is a collection of full color photos focusing on motorcycle road racing in the United Kingdom, looking at the machines, the people riding them, and the allure of the people attracted to the event. Discussing these favorite tracks throughout the region, "Between the Hedges" is a strongly recommended photography book for anyone seeking to gain an understanding of this phenomena that is familiar yet foreign to Americans.

The Runmakers
Frederick E. Taylor
The Johns Hopkins University Press
2715 North Charles Street, Baltimore, MD 21218-4363
9781421400105 $24.95

The Runmakers offers a new way to analyze baseball statistics. Lifelong baseball fan Frederick E. Taylor presents the concept of potential runs per game (PRG), a calculation that takes into account batters getting on base, advancing runners, and driving in runs; PRG also distinguishes between leadoff and second batters from those in the middle of the order. The Runmakers walks the reader through the statistical system step by step, and also divides the history of major league baseball into eight eras, according to differences in runs scored per game. Taylor compares the results of the PRG to those calculated from other statistics, player-by-player and position-by- position, leading to the conclusion that the PRG is more accurate overall and debunking the widely held concept of clutch hitting. The Runmakers is an absolute "must-have" for anyone who loves to analyze the ins and outs of baseball and its star players.

The Writing/Publishing Shelf

Grace Dane Mazur
AK Peters
5 Commonwealth Road, Suite 2C, Natick, MA 01760
9781568817156, $29.95,

What are the limits of our imagination? They exist, but can we even comprehend them? "Hinges: Meditation on the Portals of Imagination" is an analysis of the drive of the creative, that those who dare enter it and what spurs them to create and push forward their ideas to make the most of everything around them. Grace Dane Mazur, as she asks the questions of why, the many whys that surround us and tries to find some semblance of reason behind it all. "Hinges" is an utterly fascinating read that explores the mind and what pushes us to create when we're already facing so much.

The Automotive Shelf

Monopoly on Wheels
William Greenleaf
Wayne State University Press
4809 Woodward Avenue, Detroit, MI 48201-1309
9780814335123, $24.95,

Henry Ford changed America forever with his drive for business. "Monopoly on Wheels: Henry Ford and the Selden Automobile Patent" traces the history of the rise of Henry Ford's monopoly and the legal challenge of George Selden, who patented a design for a motorized carriage before the automobile industry began to take off. Telling the story of this challenge and how Henry Ford led the charge against him and its effects that are felt to this day, "Monopoly on Wheels" is a fascinating piece of history dealing with one of the most important events of the twentieth century.

The Travel Shelf

A Travel Guide to the War of 1812 in the Chesapeake
Ralph E. Eshelman
The Johns Hopkins University Press
2715 North Charles Street, Baltimore, MD 21218-4363
9780801898365 $65.00 hc
9780801898372 $24.95 pbk

A Travel Guide to the War of 1812 in the Chesapeake is designed expressly to help plan historic tours along the waters and shores of the Chesapeake Bay, where Americans battled the British in the War of 1812 to protect the freedom and independence earned in the Revolution. Recommended trips by car, bike, foot, or boat are organized geographically, and presented with black-and-white photographs and maps. Packed with invaluable information concerning the addresses, phone numbers, websites, parking availability, hours of operation and entrance fees for a wide variety of sites, A Travel Guide to the War of 1812 in the Chesapeake lives up to its title and is very highly recommended for the history-minded Chesapeake vacationer.

Road Biking Ohio
Celeste Baumgartner
Falcon Guides
c/o Globe Pequot Press
PO Box 489, Guilford, CT 06437
9780762739639, $16.95,

A good bike route is accommodating yet presents quite the scenery. "Road Biking: Ohio" is a detailed guide highlighting the best paths throughout the state to present bike enthusiasts with trips that will challenge them as well as let them soak in the nature around them. Outlining the hazards that each of the paths offer, detours, lodging, and much more, "Road Biking: Ohio" is a must for anyone with a love of biking who lives in or will be in Ohio.

Chicago City Guide
Karla Zimmerman
Lonely Planet Publications
150 Linden Street, Oakland CA 94607
9781741794120, $18.99,

The Second city has plenty to see and enjoy for the traveler looking to call it home or just passing through. "Chicago City Guide" is a tourism guide from Lonely Planet, explaining the many sights and sounds that await any who want to see what Chi-Town has to offer. From beer tasting to its legendary pizza, everything from artistic sights and sounds, pop culture curiosities, sports, lodging, and much more. "Chicago City Guide" is an excellent tourism guide, something to keep on hand as you travel through Chicago.

The Metaphysical Studies Shelf

The Fool's Journey
Cynthia Campbell Williams
Angel House
c/o Stark House Press
2200 O Street, Eureka, CA 95501
9781933586373, $15.96,

The Tarot have more behind them then simply some cards. "The Fool's Journey: Tarot Tales for Modern Minds" is a collection of stories focused on the many archetypes found in the Tarot Major Arcana and the lessons it has to teach us all. Good, evil, wisdom, foolishness are just some of the explored ideas that have much to entertain as they have to educate. "The Fool's Journey" is a fun read and highly recommended.

The Self-Help Shelf

The Winner's Brain
Jeff Brown & Mark Fenske
Da Capo Press
11 Cambridge Center, Cambridge, MA 02142
9780738214696, $15.00,

Is success all in the mind? "The Winner's Brain: 8 Strategies Great Minds Use to Achieve Success" discusses the mindset of successful people and advises them to embrace these ideas and habits to push themselves towards success far more often in their lives. Risk and reward, staying focused, good memory, and health are all important factors which can keep one successful even after a string of failures. "The Winner's Brain" is a highly recommended read for anyone who wants to put positive thinking to good business.

The Philosophy Shelf

Dune and Philosophy
Jeffery Nicholas
Open Court
70 East Lake Street, Suite 300, Chicago, IL 60601
9780812697155, $19.95,

Dune has gained quite the following, and it's for more than being entertaining. "Dune and Philosophy: Weirding Way of the Mentat" breaks down Dune and the philosophy that was woven into it by its famed author Frank Herbert. From concerns of genetics, religion, politics, the pressures of scarce resources, the concepts explored by scientific resurrection, and much more, "Dune and Philosophy" is a fine compilation of literary studies and philosophy and provides much to think about for both fans of the novels and speculative philosophers as well.

The Audiobook Shelf

Lost Temple
Tom Harper, author
Francis Greenslade, narrator
Bolinda Publishing
186 S Long Swamp Rd, Jackson, ME 04921
9781742148403 $98.95

Lost Temple is the audiobook adaptation of a dramatic and dangerous adventure. Sam Grant, a disgraced ex-special ops soldier who has adopted his survival skills to free-lance work, has been entrusted with the secrets of an archaeologist's life's work - transcripts of mysterious writing hidden within a cave on Crete. If the writing were to be translated, it could reveal the path to a discovery of unimaginable proportions. Both the CIA and the KGB want to get their hands on it. With the aid of a genius Oxford professor and a beautiful Greek archaeologist with a mysterious past, Grant must race against time to solve the mystery before the secrets hidden within the writing manifest as one of the deadliest threats to the modern world! Theater and television performer Francis Greenslade brings this exciting and highly recommended audio odyssey to rousing life. 10 CDs, 12 hours 9 minutes.

The Music CD Shelf

When Harry Tries to Marry
108 Pics
c/o Flipswitch (publicity)
PO Box 2207, Bloomington, IN 47404-2207

When Harry Tries to Marry: The Motion Picture Soundtrack captures the unique blend of upbeat Hollywood and Bollywood blockbuster enthusiasm that characterized the romantic movie following Harry, an Indian-American seeking happiness (and trying to avoid heartbreak) through an arranged marriage. The excitement, uncertainty, pits and valleys of Harry's journey make for an extraordinary musical journey, in this energetic and lively album. Highly recommended. The tracks are "Love is Everywhere" (3:33), "She's the Latest One" (3:48), "Aao Naache Gaaye" (5:38), "Setting Sun" (4:23), "It's Coming Back" (3:36), "Dulhe Raja" (4:13), "Hot as Hell" (1:51), "Garden of Eden" (4:02), "It's in the Way" (2:28), "You Were Mine" (2:58), "There's Something about Harry" (2:10), "Bhang Chadi" (4:07), "Chasing Sleep" (4:00), "Pull Me Up" (4:38), "Shake That Thang" (3:37), "Live a Little" (3:57), "Settle for Me" (3:52), "Blame it on the Night" (2:44), "Desperately" (3:09), and "Score Theme" (2:48).

Songs to the Earth
Annette Cantor
Source Being Productions
c/o The Creative Service Company (publicity)
4360 Emerald Drive, Colorado Springs, CO 80918
No ISBN $12.89

Annette Cantor blends musical and spiritual traditions in Songs to the Earth, an album celebrating the beauty, divinity, and sacred aspects of nature. Elements of Gregorian chants, a consummate cello performance, and wooden flute and percussion rhythms from Native American tradition form a reverent whole in this excellent album for meditation, contemplation, or simply relieving stress. Highly recommended. The tracks are "Gaia Dreaming" (10:03), "Water Blessing" (8:31), "To the Great Mother of Compassion" (5:09), "Ave Generosa" (7:53), "Healing Prayer" (9:12), "Forest Meditation" (8:19), and "In Gratitude" (8:28).

Joy of the Journey
Jimmy Eugene
Whiss Records, LLC
c/o Bozeman Media (publicity)

Jimmy Eugene's fifth album, Joy of the Journey, coincides with the release of his first book "On the Journey Back" which chronicles his life from his days as a teen runaway to his career as an oral surgeon and work as a recording artist. He discovered the joy of music after a near-fatal car crash that forced him to be confined to his bed for a month; since then, inspiration has led him to create over five hundred songs. Joy of the Journey is a musical tour through memories, and an emotional tribute to the people who have aided Jimmy Eugene the most along his amazing life journey, and perfect to listen to while reading "On the Journey Back". The tracks are "Baby Boomers", "Friday Nights", "Image of a Man", "Sweet Memories", "Lost In Your Touch", "Time Sure Looks Good On You", "Stay In Your Own Backyard", "Dad's Gift", "Eyes Can and Do Lie", "Joy of Life", "Tear Stained Letter", and "Since I Met You Girl".

Men of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir
Mack Wilberg, Conductor
Intellectual Reserve, Inc.
50 E. North Temple Street, Salt Lake City, UT 84150
c/o Leigh Dethman (publicity)

Men of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir: Orchestra at Temple Square is a trailblazing audio CD recording that combines men's choral singing with the inspirational musical style that has earned the Mormon Tabernacle Choir renown. Passionate praise for God resounds in this extraordinary anthology of popular songs, spirituals, folk, and church hymns. Men of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir is enthusiastically recommended for anyone who loves to listen to expertly performed men's chorus music. The tracks are "We Have Met to Worship" (3:41), "Brightly Beams Our Father's Mercy" (5:21), "The Morning Trumpet" (2:34), "Fight the Good Fight with All Thy Might" (1:45), "Evening (Aftonen)" (3:44), "Land-Sighting (Landkjenning)" (5:53), "Dance a Cachuca, Fandago, Bolero (Finale from The Gondoliers)" (2:36), "Alleluia" (6:06), "Pilgrims' Chorus from Tannhauser" (3:50), "Lullabye (Goodnight, My Angel)" (3:52), "Hush, Little Baby" (4:38), "You Raise Me Up" (4:37), "Beautiful Savior" (3:59), "There Is a Balm in Gilead" (4:41), and "He's Got the Whole World in His Hands" (4:50).

Jacob and Matthew Band
World Library Publications
3708 River Road, Suite 400
Franklin Park, IL 60131-2158

Trust is the latest album from the dedicated and pious men of Jacob and Matthew Band, encapsulating devotion to God and the lifelong service of ministry in its harmonious offerings. Jacob and Matthew Band reaches out to teenagers and adults alike in this outpouring of faith, love, and heartfelt spirituality. Highly recommended. The tracks are "All I Need" (6:17), "Take This Life" (3:44), "Come Alive" (3:50), "Stumble" (3:45), "Desire" (4:12), and "People, Wake up!" (5:57).

The DVD Shelf

Spirit Lands: An American Desert Odyssey
David Fortney, cinematographer
John Huling and R. Carlos Nakai, music
Janson Media
88 Semmens Road, Harrington Park, NJ 07640
9781568394004 $24.95

Janson Media presents Spirit Lands: An American Desert Odyssey, a stunningly beautiful DVD showcase of some of the most awe-inspiring wonders of the American desert. Emmy Award- winning cinematographer David Fortney spent four years filming landscapes, traveling to all of America's desert locations and seven national parks in the process; Native American music by John Huling and R. Carlos Nakai adds an exemplary touch to the captivating camerawork. Spirit Lands has no narration, but a handful of timeless texts, quotations, and prayers by Native American Wisdom Keepers enhance this wonderful and immersive journey. An excellent gift for nature lovers, Spirit Lands is the next best thing to experiencing the beauty of American deserts landscapes firsthand. 52 min. Also highly recommended is Janson Media's "Theodore Roosevelt: A Cowboy's Ride to the White House" (9781568394047, $24.95, 75 min.), a documentary biography of the rough-and-tumble cowboy-turned-President destined to establish pioneering conservation efforts and America's National Parks, filmed on-location at the Roosevelt ranches.

Earth From Above
307 North Michigan Avenue, Suite 500, Chicago, IL 60601
$34.99 each / $59.99 6-DVD set

Three exceptionally beautiful programs in Questar's "Earth From Above" series feature captivating aerial photography of the Earth's natural majesty. Each program is hosted by world- renowned photographer Yann Arthus-Bertrand, filmed in high definition, and available in two- disc pack: disc one has the feature on Blu-ray, while disc two offers the same feature in DVD and digital copy formats. "Amazing Lands" (107 min.) draws the viewer on a whirlwind tour of regal landscapes, from African savannah to the icy reaches of Antarctica. "Stunning Water" (199 min.) lives up to its title with unforgettable footage of the Earth's seas, coasts, and freshwater sources - as well as a dire warning of the terrible ecological dangers that threaten the planet's water resources. "Life" (94 min.) offers a glimpse of the biodiversity, and a caution against expanding human development that threatens to destroy natural habitats around the world. All three volumes are superb picks for public library collections, and also serve as excellent gifts for anyone who loves nature photography.

Creating Kaleidoscope Designs
Peggy Flores
Crystal Productions
PO Box 2159, Glenview, IL 60025-6159
9781562906719 $29.95

Creating Kaleidoscope Designs is a crafting DVD that teaches viewers how to incorporate mirror imaging techniques into crafting beautiful, symmetrically patterned kaleidoscopic designs. Dividing paper into triangular sections, flipping designs, and coloring the results with markers, colored pencil, or paint can result in geometric images that capture a unique visual brilliance, in this hands-on how-to tutorial. Creating Kaleidoscope Designs lives up to its title and is an excellent, highly recommended addition to enhance hobby and crafts DVD libraries.

Lionel Nation 6
TM Books & Video
PO Box 279, New Buffalo, MI 49117
9781936890026 $19.99

Lionel Nation 6 is a DVD of all-new footage of Lionel model trains. From the operation of classic steam switchers, to individual cars such as Milk and Cattle Cars, Merchandise Car, and Poultry Dispatch, to the step-by-step building process of a Lionel Postwar layout, Lionel Nation 6 is packed with up-close, fascinating footage of extraordinarily lifelike replicas. Operating tips pepper this excellent addition to model railroad hobbyist DVD collections, and a bonus featurette offers original 16 mm color film originally shot in the 50s of layouts and collections of TCA charter members. Also highly recommended for model railroad hobbyists is "Maintenance & Repair Guide for Lionel Electric Trains & Accessories" (9781936890033, $9.99), a no-nonsense, easy-to-follow DVD guide to keeping one's model trains in the best possible condition.

Flabs 2 Abs
Craig and Matt Lewandowski
c/o 411 Video Information (publicity)
PO Box 1223, Pebble Beach, CA 93953

Flabs 2 Abs: 30 Day Body Transformation is a diet, exercise, and weight training DVD designed to promote weight loss and improve overall fitness through positive lifestyle changes. The hosts themselves show step by step how they improved their bodies and lost 25 pounds over a 30 day period. Flabs 2 Abs opens with a nutrition program structured around eating five small meals daily, each roughly 3 hours apart, and emphasizing the selection of healthy foods. The exercise program begins with recommendations for cardio that revolve around taking walks. (Light jogging or a workout on an elliptical machine also fit with the program). The weight training section is optional; six workouts are presented, and each can be modified according to the viewer's needs and physical limits. Exercises that require space-consuming equipment can be skipped in favor of exercises that require little or no equipment; incorporating as much of the weight training segment as possible into one's program promotes improved muscle tone. Overall, Flabs 2 Abs is a very well-rounded fitness program, adaptable to viewers of all skill and experience levels, and enthusiastically recommended. 90 min.

Energy Healing for Beginners
Ann Marie Chiasson, MD
Sounds True Audio
413 South Arthur Avenue, Louisville, CO 80027
9781604070989 $19.95

Energy Healing for Beginners: Ten Essential Practices for Self-Care lives up to its title with step- by-step walkthroughs of ten useful techniques in this wellness practice. Techniques discussed include full-body sensing (how to become aware of and respond to imbalances in one's energy field), abdominal breathing, toe tapping (a grounding practice useful for promoting balance in one's energy field), the healing practice of sacred touch, and more. Mind-body physician Dr. Ann Marie Chiasson hosts this relaxing, enlivening, and user-friendly instructional DVD. 67 min.

Looking for Palladin
Monterey Media Inc.
566 St. Charles Drive, Thousand Oaks, CA 91360-3901
9781569943564 $26.95

Set in the rich local culture of Guatemala, Looking for Palladin is an award-winning movie on DVD following prideful Hollywood agent Josh Ross (played by David Moscow) on a search for Oscar-winning actor Jack Palladin (played by Ben Gazzara). The two have never met, but the retired actor was once married to Josh's deceased mother. Josh's poorly concealed contempt of the actor he searches for as well as the local populace makes for a wry, topsy-turvy story of a search turned unexpectedly complex, and is a recommended pick for public library DVD collections. Bonus content includes a "making of" featurette and brief actor biographies. 115 min., rated R for language.

2012 The Odyssey
Sharron Rose
Sacred Mysteries
PO Box 1146, Ashland, OR 97520

On December 21st, 2012, the Mayan calendar ends. What does this mean for America and the world? 2012 The Odyssey is an eye-opening documentary following author Sharron Rose on her travels across the United States, as she speaks to a medley of experts concerning the Mayan prophecy. A diversity of groups believe that the present age is ending and the birth of a new age lies on the horizon - but exactly how will this transition take place, and is it something to be feared or embraced? 2012 The Odyssey is ultimately an uplifting account, as much about hope as it is about anticipating transformation, and is highly recommended for metaphysical studies DVD collections.

The Biography Shelf

The World's Richest Man
Jerry Wolman
Heritage Special Edition
c/o 3rd and Long Productions
11300 Rockville Pike, Suite 112, Rockville, MD 20852
1934696455, $25.95,

From nothing to everything is the essence of the American Dream. "The World's Richest Man: The Remarkable True Story of a Man Who Dreamed of Soaring and Touched the Lives of Thousands..." is an autobiography covering the life of Jerry Wolman, who went from a simple man of construction to owning the Philadelphia Eagles and becoming a local celebrity. But no greatness lasts forever. Poignant and to the point, "The World's Richest Man" is a rags to riches to rags story with a lot of simple wisdom that shouldn't be overlooked.

The Gardening Shelf

Sepp Holzer's Permaculture
Sepp Holzer
Chelsea Green Publishing Company
PO Box 428, White River Junction, VT 05001-0428
9781603583701 $29.95

Sepp Holzer's Permaculture: A Practical Guide to Small-Scale, Integrative Farming and Gardening outlines the farming methods of author Sepp Holzer, who cultivates over 100 acres on the steep mountains of Austria, 5,000 feet above sea level. Emphasis is placed on key principles of permaculture - cultivating a diversity of crops (rather than just focusing on one), ecological sustainability, wasting as few resources as possible, and promoting overall hardiness and self- sufficiency in a modern era where cheap energy, stable climates, and surplus fertilizer can no longer be the expected norm. Chapters address issues of landscape design, how pigs can fit into a permaculture system ("On the Krameterhof, where there is a great deal of rough terrain and the soil is so stony in some places that it cannot be ploughed, the pigs are indispensable as living ploughs"), tips for cultivating fruit trees and mushrooms, garden-specific advice, and more. Enhanced with color photography throughout, Sepp Holzer's Permaculture is a hands-on, extremely useful guide enthusiastically recommended for gardeners and small farmers everywhere.

The Military Shelf

A Warrior's Quilt of Personal Military History
Brigadier General Albin F. Irzyk
Ivy House Publishing Group
5122 Bur Oak Circle, Raleigh, NC 27612
9781571975058 $24.95

A Warrior's Quilt of Personal Military History is the military memoir of Brigadier General Albin F. Irzyk USA (Ret.), offering an up-close and personal perspective of profound historical events. Chapters tell true stories from World War II (such as the liberation of Ohrdruf, the first concentration camp freed by the Allies), the Cold War, and the Vietnam War. Reflections upon great military leaders such as Maj. Gen. John S. Wood and Gen. George S. Patton enhance this immersive testimony, written to be accessible to lay readers and military historians alike. Highly recommended.

The American History Shelf

Assault on the Deadwood Stage
Robert K. DeArment
University of Oklahoma Press
2800 Venture Drive, Norman, OK 73069
9780806141824 $24.95

Assault on the Deadwood Stage: Road Agents and Shotgun Messengers in an in-depth study of crime and combative measures in the Old West, specifically the rash of robberies perpetrated upon the stagecoaches traveling to and from the 1870s boomtown of Deadwood in Dakota territory. When George Armstrong Custer's 1874 expedition into the Black Hills discovered gold, it sparked a mad rush to Deadwood, and multiple stage companies sprang up to meet transportation needs. This in turn attracted robbers, who perpetrated holdups and killings. For two years, thieves spread terror upon the roads, until lawmen, stage company agents, and railroad agents finally put a stop to their plunder. Assault on the Deadwood Stage explores all sides of the violent story - who the outlaws and their opponents were, and what became of both sides after the criminal heyday ended, and even a look at how the sordid events became incorporated into Buffalo Bill's Wild West show in the 1880's, which was known for its rendition of a shotgun robbery featuring an actual Deadwood stagecoach. Assault on the Deadwood Stage is an excellent addition to American West history collections and a superb resource for anyone interested in learning the truth behind stagecoach robbery stories, and 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

Copyright ©2001

Site design by Williams Writing, Editing & Design