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Library Bookwatch

Volume 17, Number 10 October 2022 Home | LBW Index

Table of Contents

Reviewer's Choice Writing/Publishing Shelf Parenting Shelf
Education Shelf Health/Medicine Shelf Environmental Studies Shelf
Cookbook Shelf Pets/Wildlife Shelf American History Shelf
World History Shelf Civil War Shelf Military Shelf
Biography Shelf Psychology Shelf Library Science Shelf
General Fiction Shelf Romantic Fiction Shelf Western Fiction Shelf
Mystery/Suspense Shelf Fantasy/SciFi Shelf Audiobook Shelf
Library CD Shelf Native American Studies Shelf Literary Studies Shelf
Agriculture Shelf Theatre/Cinema Shelf Political Science Shelf
Architecture Shelf    


Reviewer's Choice

Plagues and Their Aftermath
Brian Michael Jenkins
http://www.brianmichaeljenkins.com
Melville House
www.mhpbooks.com
9781685890162, $16.99 PB, 224pp

https://www.amazon.com/Plagues-Their-Aftermath-Societies-Pandemics/dp/1685890164

Synopsis: With the publication of "Plagues and Their Aftermath: How Societies Recover from Pandemics", Brian Michael Jenkins (one of our leading authorities on national security and an advisor to governments, presidents and CEOs) provides a masterly account of what kind of future the planet might be facing by looking at the world's long history of epidemics and discerning what was common about their aftermath.

From a plague in Athens during the Peloponnesian War in 430 BCE, to another in 540 that wiped out half the population of the Roman empire, down through the Black Death in the Middle Ages and on through the 1918 flu epidemic (which killed between 50 and 100 million people) and this century's deadly SARS and Covid outbreaks, plagues have been a much more relentless fact of life than many realize.

The legacy of epidemics, Jenkins observes, is not only one of lives lost but of devastated economies and social disorder, all of which have severe political repercussions.

Thus, each chapter of "Plagues and Their Aftermath" draws on those historical precursors to focus on one particular aspect of their aftermath: What happens to political systems? What happens in the area of crime and terrorism? Do wars happen? What are the effects on cultures? What was the impact of widespread fear and public hysteria, of increased suspicion and scapegoating, of the spread of rumors and conspiracy theories?

Jenkins' sobering analysis is riveting and thought-provoking reading for general readers and specialists alike, and throws welcome light into what many fear is a dark future.

Critique: Impressively informative, exceptionally well written, organized and presented, "Plagues and Their Aftermath: How Societies Recover from Pandemics" is a seminal study that is quite timely given today's global pandemics of Covid 19 variants and now Monkey Pox and their impacts on the political systems of essentially every country around the world. Thoughtful, thought-provoking, and a crucially important addition to personal, professional, community, and academic library Medical/Political History collections, it should be noted for students, academicians, historians, members of the medical community, governmental policy makers, political activists, and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject that "Plagues and Their Aftermath: How Societies Recover from Pandemics" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).

Editorial Note: Brian Michael Jenkins is a senior advisor to the president of the RAND Corporation. He served in the U.S. Army's Special Forces in during the war in Vietnam, before joining RAND in 1972. In 1996, President Bill Clinton appointed Jenkins to the White House Commission on Aviation Safety and Security. Jenkins has also served as adviser to the National Commission on Terrorism. He is a frequent commentator on matters of global security and safety for major media outlets including NBC, PBS, NPR, The New York Times, The Washington Post, and others. He has a website at http://www.brianmichaeljenkins.com


The Writing/Publishing Shelf

Immersive Storytelling for Real and Imagined Worlds: A Writer's Guide
Margaret Kerrison
https://www.margaretkerrison.com
Michael Wiese Productions
12400 Ventura Blvd., #1111, Studio City, CA 91604
www.mwp.com
https://www.dreamscapepublishing.com
9781615933419, $29.95, PB, 264pp

https://www.amazon.com/Immersive-Storytelling-Real-Imagined-Worlds/dp/1615933417

Synopsis: What gets your heart rate going more: reading a story about dinosaurs, or being chased by one? The emerging discipline of immersive storytelling recognizes the power of creative works that put the viewer at the center of the action.

With the publication of "Immersive Storytelling for Real and Imagined Worlds: A Writer's Guide", theme park designer Margaret Kerrison shares tips and tricks for writers on teams tasked with bringing a narrative to life.

How do you take an idea from inspiration to manifestation? How do you move from telling a story to creating a world? "Immersive Storytelling for Real and Imagined Worlds: A Writer's Guide" is a richly illustrated instructional guide and 'how-to' manual -- the first of its kind written specifically for writers and in which Kerrison lays out the craft of immersive storytelling by using case studies to show what works, and highlights the essential role of the writer on a complex creative team.

For aspiring (and experienced) screen writers ready to take the kernel of an idea and turn it into a full-fledged experience, "Immersive Storytelling for Real and Imagined Worlds: A Writer's Guide" presents the ideal blueprint.

Critique: A complete and comprehensive course of real world practical and illustrated instruction under one cover, "Immersive Storytelling for Real and Imagined Worlds: A Writer's Guide" is impressive in its 'user friendly' commentary, organization and presentation. While unreservedly recommended for personal, professional, community, college, and university library Screen Writing collections and supplemental curriculum course lists, it should be noted for students, academia, novice/professional screenwriters and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject that "Immersive Storytelling for Real and Imagined Worlds: A Writer's Guide" is also available in a complete and unabridged audio book format (Dreamscape Media, 9781666611236, $22.99, CD).

Editorial Note: Born in Indonesia and raised in Singapore, Margaret Kerrison received her Master of Fine Arts degree in Screenwriting from the University of Southern California School of Cinematic Arts. Her career spans 14 years of experience in television, film, digital media, games, brand storytelling, location-based entertainment, and immersive experiences. She has worked as a Story Lead, Story Consultant, and Writer for multiple projects around the world, including Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge, Star Wars: Launch Bay, Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser, Avengers Campus, Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind, National Geographic HQ, and the NASA Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex's Journey to Mars: Explorers Wanted. She was a Disney Imagineer from 2014-2021. She is currently a Sr. Experiential Creative Lead for Airbnb. She has a dedicated website at https://www.margaretkerrison.com


The Parenting Shelf

Spotting Danger Before It Spots Your Teens
Gary Quesenberry
YMAA Publications
PO Box 480, Wolfeboro, NH 03894-0480
www.ymaa.com
9781594398681, $18.95, PB, 182pp

https://www.amazon.com/Spotting-Danger-Before-Spots-TEENS/dp/1594398682

Synopsis: As adults, we like to think we have a good idea of what the world may have in store for our teenagers, but the fact of the matter is there's a vast divide between what we perceive as dangerous and what our teens are actually up against. Teenagers (ages 13 - 19) face unique challenges when it comes to situational awareness.

These challenges are only exacerbated by the constant physical and biological changes teens are subjected to. As young people learn to deal with these changes, they begin to explore the limits of their individuality. Unfortunately, this process often involves rebellious behavior and unnecessary risk-taking. The key to keeping teens safe during this time is to keep them alert and engaged with their environment.

Teenagers have to understand that real personal safety isn't about being scared of what lies around the next corner. It requires confidence that if something bad were about to happen, that they have these skills: Ability to identify the problem early; Competence to develop a plan of action; Power to control their fear; Aptitude to implement that plan.

"Spotting Danger Before It Spots Your Teens: Teaching Situational Awareness To Keep Teenagers Safe" by Gary Quesenberry is specifically designed around the principles of positive communication, trust, and teamwork. It's written specifically to set parents' minds at ease and allow teens to confidently explore their independence, secure in the fact that they can spot dangerous situations before they happen and take the necessary steps to ensure their own well-being.

Critique: Every parent knows that their teenage son or daughter is vulnerable to a wide range of dangers that have only increased and become more complicated with the arrival of social media and the iPhone. But there are very few 'how to' courses on parenting that focus directly on the issue of how to prepare teenagers to recognized and avoid trouble, and deal with trouble if it simply cannot be avoided. "Spotting Danger Before It Spots Your Teens: Teaching Situational Awareness To Keep Teenagers Safe" is the one dependable and 'real world practical' instructional guide and 'how to' manual for parenting teenagers in terms of equipping them to stay safe in an increasingly unsafe world. While also available in a paperback edition (9781594398681, $18.95) and in a digital book format (Kindle, $7.02), "Spotting Danger Before It Spots Your Teens" is a positive, parenting friendly, and highly recommended addition to personal, community, and academic library Contemporary Parenting collections and studies lists.

Editorial Note: Gary Quesenberry was born in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia, where his parents taught him the value of hard work, patriotism, and commitment to family. His passion for the outdoors and patriotic spirit led him to enlist in the United States Army at the age of seventeen, where he served as an artilleryman during Operation Desert Storm. After the events of 9/11, Gary went to work as a Federal Air Marshal. There, he traveled the world in his country's service and devoted his time to studying the fields of violence and predatory behavior. In October of 2020, Gary retired from federal law enforcement and is now the CEO of Quesenberry Personal Defense Training. There he's developed numerous basic and advanced level training courses focused on mental toughness and defensive tactics. He has an extensive background in domestic and foreign counter-terror training and has worked in both the private and corporate sectors to educate others on the importance of situational awareness and personal safety. He has a dedicated website at www.garyquesenberry.com and can be followed on Instagram and Facebook at @gary.quesenberry


The Education Shelf

Theory Of College Student Development
Naijian Zhang, author
Phyllis McCluskey-Titus, author
Tony W. Cawthon, author
Charles C. Thomas, Publisher
2600 South First Street, Springfield, IL 62704
http://www.ccthomas.com
9780398093860, $53.985, PB, 328pp

https://www.ccthomas.com/details.cfm?P_ISBN13=9780398093860

Synopsis: With the publication of "Theory of College Student Development: Integrations of Knowledge, Skills and Application" by the editorial team of Naijian Zhang, Phyllis McCluskey-Titus, and Tony W. Cawthon, readers are provided with new theoretical knowledge or a reminder of the foundational and evolving theories that professionals can utilize for understanding and making sense of students' behavior.

The primary focus of "Theory Of College Student Development" is on the integration of knowledge, skills, and application of such theories in such a way as to emphasize utility and application. A unique component is its emphasis on professional competence, professional identity, and theoretical application. Unlike previously published case study books designed to reach student development theory, this text utilizes a single case that allows readers to see how a range of theories are applicable to this one case. Theories presented for application include both foundational and evolving theoretical perspectives.

The twelve chapters comprising "Theory Of College Student Development" have been written by both faculty and practitioners. Each coeditor and chapter author brings unique perspectives and lens of viewing theory and application, representing their experiences, talents, and expertise. It also features authors who represent the best of the best, and these authors challenged us to be more innovative as we reimagine the evolution of student development theory.

The editors had two specific audiences in mind: faculty and higher education practitioners. With over two hundred graduate preparation programs in the United States, most offering a student development theory course, this book will help graduate faculty, both new and seasoned, with a mechanism for teaching theory in a fun, relevant, and innovative way.

Critique: Informatively enhanced with the inclusion of a complete listing of the contributors and their credentials, "Theory of College Student Development: Integrations of Knowledge, Skills and Application" is the eighth volume in the outstanding American Series In Student Affairs, Practice and Professional Identity series from Charles C. Thomas Publisher. Especially recommended for college and university library College Education Policy & Practice collections, it should be noted for the personal reading lists of academia and education policy makers that "Theory of College Student Development: Integrations of Knowledge, Skills and Application" is also readily available in a digital book format (eBook, 9780398093877, $59.95).


The Health/Medicine Shelf

Dignity for Deeply Forgetful People
Stephen G. Post
The Johns Hopkins University Press
2715 N Charles Street, Baltimore, MD 21218
www.press.jhu.edu
9781421442495, $64.95, HC, 288pp

https://www.amazon.com/Dignity-Deeply-Forgetful-People-Caregivers/dp/1421442493

Synopsis: How do we approach a "deeply forgetful" loved one so as to notice and affirm their continuing self-identity? For three decades, Stephen G. Post has worked around the world encouraging caregivers to become more aware of (and find renewed hope in) surprising expressions of selfhood despite the challenges of cognitive decline.

With the publication of "Dignity for Deeply Forgetful People: How Caregivers Can Meet the Challenges of Alzheimer's Disease", Post offers new perspectives on the worth and dignity of people with Alzheimer's and related disorders despite the negative influence of "hypercognitive" values that place an ethically unacceptable emphasis on human dignity as based on linear rationality and strength of memory. This bias, Post argues, is responsible for the abusive exclusion of this population from our shared humanity. With vignettes and narratives, he argues for a deeper dignity grounded in consciousness, emotional presence, creativity, interdependence, music, and a self that is not "gone" but "differently abled."

"Dignity for Deeply Forgetful People" covers key practical topics such as: Understanding the experience of dementia; Noticing subtle expressions of continuing selfhood, including "paradoxical lucidity"; Perspectives on ethical quandaries from diagnosis to terminal care and everything in between, as gleaned from the voices of caregivers; How to communicate optimally and use language effectively; The value of art, poetry, symbols, personalized music, and nature in revealing self-identity; The value of trained "dementia companion" dogs.

At a time when medical advances to cure these conditions of dementia are still out of reach and the most recent drugs have shown limited effectiveness, Post argues that focusing discussion and resources on the relational dignity of these individuals and the respite needs of their caregivers is vital. Grounding ethics on the equal worth of all conscious human beings, he also provides a cautionary perspective on preemptive assisted suicide based on cases that he has witnessed. He affirms vulnerability and interdependence as the core of the human condition and celebrates caregivers as advocates seeking social and economic justice in an American system where they and their loved ones receive only leftover scraps.

Critique: Enhanced for the reader with the inclusion of an Appendix (A Caregiver Resilience Program), a fourteen page listing of References, and a nine page Index, "Dignity for Deeply Forgetful People: How Caregivers Can Meet the Challenges of Alzheimer's Disease" offers invaluable insights, information, and recommendations for anyone having care responsibilities for someone suffering from dementia. While also available for personal reading lists in a paperback edition (9781421442501, $26.95) and in a digital book format (Kindle, $20.49), "Dignity for Deeply Forgetful People: How Caregivers Can Meet the Challenges of Alzheimer's Disease" is an essential and critically important addition to personal, professional, community, college, and university library Health Policy, Medical Ethics, and Alzheimer's/Dementia collections and supplemental curriculum studies lists.

Editorial Note: Stephen G. Post, PhD, is the author of Why Good Things Happen to Good People: How to Live a Longer, Happier, Healthier Life by the Simple Act of Giving (Random House, 2008). The British Medical Journal designated his book, The Moral Challenge of Alzheimer Disease (Johns Hopkins University Press, 1995), a medical classic of the 20th century. Post is among a handful of individuals awarded the Distinguished Service Award by the national Alzheimer's Association. In 2001 he founded the Institute for Research on Unlimited Love, which researches and distributes knowledge on kindness, giving, and spirituality. He is also a Professor in the Department of Preventive Medicine at Stony Brook University, and the founder and director of the Stony Brook Center for Medical Humanities, Compassionate Care and Bioethics. His websites include at StephenGPost.com and UnlimitedLoveInstitute.org

Guidance on PFAS Exposure, Testing, and Clinical Follow-Up
Consensus Study Report
National Academies Press
500 Fifth Street, NW, Washington, DC 20001
www.nap.edu
9780309482448, $45.00, PB, 300pp

https://www.amazon.com/Guidance-Exposure-Testing-Clinical-Follow-Up/dp/0309482445

Synopsis: In tens of thousands of communities across the United States, drinking water is contaminated with chemicals known as perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS).

PFAS are used in a wide range of products, such as non-stick cookware, water and stain repellent fabrics, and fire-fighting foam, because they have properties that repel oil and water, reduce friction, and resist temperature changes. PFAS can leak into the environment where they are made, used, disposed of, or spilled.

PFAS exposure has been linked to a number of adverse health effects including certain cancers, thyroid dysfunction, changes in cholesterol, and small reductions in birth weight.

This combination medical and environmental report recommends that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) update its clinical guidance to advise clinicians to offer PFAS blood testing to patients who are likely to have a history of elevated exposure, such as those with occupational exposures or those who live in areas known to be contaminated.

If testing reveals PFAS levels associated with an increased risk of adverse effects, patients should receive regular screenings and monitoring for these and other health impacts. Guidance on PFAS Exposure, Testing, and Clinical Follow-Up recommends that the CDC, Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), and public health departments support clinicians by creating educational materials on PFAS exposure, potential health effects, the limitations of testing, and the benefits and harms of testing.

Critique: A seminal and timely study of an increasingly concerning environmental contaminate, "Guidance on PFAS Exposure, Testing, and Clinical Follow-Up" is an essential and core addition to professional, medical school, hospital, and academic library medical and environmental pollution collections, as well as the personal reading lists of medical students, doctors, academia, environmental activists, governmental policy makers, and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject.


The Environmental Studies Shelf

We Are the Middle of Forever
Dahr Jamail, editor
Stan Rushworth, editor
The New Press
120 Wall Street, Floor 31, New York, NY 10005
www.thenewpress.com
www.blackstoneaudio.com
9781620976692, $28.99, HC, 368pp

https://www.amazon.com/We-Are-Middle-Forever-Indigenous/dp/1620976692

Synopsis: Although for a great many people, the human impact on the Earth (with respect to countless species becoming extinct, pandemics claiming millions of lives, and climate crisis causing worldwide social and environmental upheaval) was not apparent until recently, this is not the case for all people or cultures.

For the Indigenous people of the world, radical alteration of the planet, and of life itself, is a story that is many generations long. They have had to adapt, to persevere, and to be courageous and resourceful in the face of genocide and destruction -- and their experience has given them a unique understanding of civilizational devastation.

An innovative work of research and reportage, "We Are the Middle of Forever: Indigenous Voices from Turtle Island on the Changing Earth" places Indigenous voices at the center of conversations about today's environmental crisis. "We Are the Middle of Forever" draws on interviews with people from different North American Indigenous cultures and communities, generations, and geographic regions, who share their knowledge and experience, their questions, their observations, and their dreams of maintaining the best relationship possible to all of life.

A welcome antidote to the despair arising from the climate crisis, "We Are the Middle of Forever" brings to the forefront the perspectives of those who have long been attuned to climate change and will be an indispensable aid to those looking for new and different ideas and responses to the challenges we face.

Critique: "We Are the Middle of Forever: Indigenous Voices from Turtle Island on the Changing Earth" is comprised of twenty articulate, relevant, insightful, thoughtful and thought-provoking contributions by experts in the fields of environmental, economic, and development policy from the perspective of indigenous people. Informed and informative, exceptionally well organized and presented, "We Are the Middle of Forever: Indigenous Voices from Turtle Island on the Changing Earth" is a critically important and unreservedly recommended contribution to personal, professional, community, and academic library Environmental Studies collections and supplemental curriculum studies lists. It should be noted for the personal reading lists of students, academia, environmental activists, governmental policy makers, and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject that "We Are the Middle of Forever: Indigenous Voices from Turtle Island on the Changing Earth" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $14.05) and as a complete and unabridged audio book (Blackstone Audio, 9798212006736, $31.95, CD).

Editorial Note #1: Dahr Jamail is the author of Beyond the Green Zone: Dispatches from an Unembedded Journalist in Occupied Iraq as well as The End of Ice: Bearing Witness and Finding Meaning in the Path of Climate Disruption. He has won the Martha Gellhorn Prize for Journalism and the Izzy Award. He has a dedicated website at https://www.dahrjamail.net

Editorial Note #2: Stan Rushworth is a teacher of Native American literature and the author of Sam Woods: American Healing, Going to Water: The Journal of Beginning Rain, Diaspora's Children, and (with Dahr Jamail) We Are the Middle of Forever: Indigenous Voices from Turtle Island on the Changing Earth (The New Press). He has a website page at https://mesarefuge.org/people/stan-rushworth


The Cookbook Shelf

How To Cook Everything Fast
Mark Bittman
Harvest
c/o William Morrow & Company
www.harpercollins.com
9780544790315, $40.00, HC, 544pp

https://www.amazon.com/How-Cook-Everything-Fast-Revised/dp/0544790316

Synopsis: The secret to cooking good meals fast is to cook smart by choosing and preparing ingredients that make the most of your time in the kitchen. In this new and revised edition of "How to Cook Everything Fast", culinary expert Mark Bittman shares hundreds of simple, flavorful dishes with each of them being ready in 30 minutes or less.

But "fast" doesn't mean compromising on quality or resorting to packaged shortcuts; instead, Bittman offers savvy culinary hacks -- broiling rather than baking, using less liquid for a faster boil, and taking advantage of downtime for last-minute prep.

In the spirit of fast and simple cooking, each of the recipes comprising "How to Cook Everything Fast" have been retested and streamlined for this completely revised edition -- which has been expanded and updated to also features dozens of vegan and vegetarian options, as well as stunning all-new photography.

New favorites include Chickpea Hash with Tahini Sauce, Gooey Stovetop Lasagna, Peanut Noodles with Whatever You Have, Caramelized Bananas, and so many more. Variations, tips, quick side dishes, make-ahead components, and kitchen insights abound.

Critique: Expertly compiled of kitchen cook friendly recipes that are palate pleasing and appetite satisfying, "How to Cook Everything Fast" is a truly impressive compendium of innovative, easy-to-follow recipes for every dining occasion -- as well as presenting new strategies for becoming a faster (and-better) cook every time you use this cook book to plan a menu with.

Editorial Note: Mark Bittman (https://markbittman.com) is the author of more than thirty books, including the How to Cook Everything series and VB6: Eat Vegan Before 6:00 to Lose Weight and Restore Your Health . . . for Good. He was a food columnist, opinion columnist, and the lead magazine food writer at the New York Times, where he started writing in 1984 and remained for more than thirty years. Bittman has written for countless publications and spoken at dozens of universities and conferences; his 2007 TED talk "What's wrong with what we eat?" has almost five million views. Bittman is currently the special advisor on food policy at Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health, where he teaches and hosts a lecture series. He is also the editor in chief of Heated.

Wanda E. Brunstetter's Amish Friends No Waste Cookbook
Wanda E. Brunstetter
www.wandabrunstetter.com
Barbour Publishing
P.O. Box 719, 1810 Barbour Drive, Uhrichsville, OH 44683
www.barbourbooks.com
9781636093857, $16.99, Spiral Bound, 224pp

https://www.amazon.com/Wanda-Brunstetters-Amish-Friends-Cookbook/dp/163609385X

Synopsis: With the publication of "Amish Friends No Waste Cookbook: More Than 270 Recipes Help Stretch a Food Budget", Wanda E. Brunstetter has created a very special family cookbook for when times are hard and costs are on the rise.

In this culinary compendium, Amish and Mennonite cooks offer recipes and advice for saving money, stretching a meal, and eliminating waste in the kitchen. Over 270 recipes are divided into traditional categories from main dishes and sides to desserts and snacks.

Critique: Especially recommended for anyone struggling to feed their family as the current rising inflation is making the cost of everything rises, "Wanda E. Brunstetter's Amish Friends No Waste Cookbook: More Than 270 Recipes Help Stretch a Food Budget" is specifically and effectively designed to help families on a limited food budget to eat well and healthy. Encased in a lay-flat spiral binding and presented in full color, home cooks of all ages will find this recipe collection to be a timely addition to their both personal, family, and community library cookbook collections.

Editorial Note: Wanda E. Brunstetter (www.wandabrunstetter.com) is one of the founders of the Amish fiction genre. She has written more than 100 books translated in four languages. Wanda's ancestors were part of the Anabaptist faith, and her novels are based on personal research intended to accurately portray the Amish way of life.

Pipers Farm Sustainable Meat Cookbook
Abby Allen, author
Rachel Lovell, author
Kyle Books
c/o Octopus Publishing
236 Park Avenue, New York NY 10017
http://www.kylebooks.com
9781914239274, $39.99, 288pp

https://www.amazon.com/Pipers-Farm-Sustainable-Meat-Cookbook/dp/191423927X

Synopsis: "Pipers Farm Sustainable Meat Cookbook: Recipes & Wisdom for Considered Carnivores" by the team of Abby Allen and Rachel Lovell is an aria for proper meat. Meat as it was before it got messed with. Before animals became a unit of production in factory farms and ranches, but when they were reared humanely to produce excellent food, and were willingly given an equally excellent life.

"Pipers Farm Sustainable Meat Cookbook: Recipes & Wisdom for Considered Carnivores" explores the connection between nature and farming and the result is a mixture of hands-in-the-earth farm stories and meat-first carcass balanced seasonal recipes. Meat is revered and stretched as far as we can make it go by respecting the animal and using every part, cheek to lard, tendon to tail.

The recipes are not just meat and two veggies, but provides DIY cooking that is devised for the way we live today. Think a modernized version of warming farmhouse food, to suit the weather and our homes. Fast, fresh, surprising dishes for midweek, and slow-cooking or theater pieces shared with friends for weekends and holidays.

Far from countering the vegan spike, "Pipers Farm Sustainable Meat Cookbook: Recipes & Wisdom for Considered Carnivores" is the definition of fair, honest, sustainable food. This is a compendium in which meat is done right.

Critique: Beautifully and profusely illustrated throughout with full page color photography of finished dishes, "Pipers Farm Sustainable Meat Cookbook: Recipes & Wisdom for Considered Carnivores" is deftly organized and presented throughout the calendar year, January through December. Comprised of erudite commentary, palate-pleasing, appetite satisfying, recipes for the creation of memorable meals, "Pipers Farm Sustainable Meat Cookbook: Recipes & Wisdom for Considered Carnivores" is a culinary delight to simply browse through and create menus with. Also featuring a Glossary, 'Notes on Our Chefs', and an Index, "Pipers Farm Sustainable Meat Cookbook: Recipes & Wisdom for Considered Carnivores" is a simply outstanding and unreservedly recommended addition to personal, professional, and community library cookbook collections. It should be noted that "Pipers Farm Sustainable Meat Cookbook: Recipes & Wisdom for Considered Carnivores" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $13.99).

Editorial Note: Pipers Farm (https://pipersfarm.com) is a farm in Devon which was founded over 30 years ago as a reaction to the industrialization of meat in the 1970s and 80s. What started out as a farm and a small butchers' shop serving a loyal tribe of regular customers is now a thriving national online delivery service for truly artisan, sustainably produced British meat. The livestock are reared through regenerative farming techniques that work in harmony with nature, and this special place in Devon now counts over 40 like-minded small scale family farms as part of the Pipers Farm community. They are passionate about animal welfare, reducing food waste, rearing grass-fed native breeds and nourishing the land they work on, and ensuring that the rural communities they live and work with are given a sustainable future. It's all about family farms, not factory farms.

The Herbivorous Butcher Cookbook
Aubry & Kale Walch
Chronicle Books
680 Second Street, San Francisco, CA 94107
www.chroniclebooks.com
9781797211954, $29.95, HC, 240pp

https://www.amazon.com/Herbivorous-Butcher-Cookbook-Recipes-Plant-Based/dp/1797211951

Synopsis: Think of any go-to American meat-focused cookbook. Now, imagine it vegan. From the Guamanian brother-sister duo (Aubry & Kale Walch) behind the acclaimed and beloved vegan butcher shop, "The Herbivorous Butcher" is a compendium of 75 innovative recipes for plant-based meats and standout vegan dishes. These are butcher shop classics (but so much healthier) such as Pork Chops, Ground Beef, and Chicken Cutlets that taste and chew as good as the real thing -- perfect for vegans as well as anyone who wants to eat less meat.

Even the most novice of kitchen cooks can use these base recipes (or store-bought substitutes) to prepare super-tasty, hearty dishes that are totally vegan and range from Cherry-Glazed Rib Rack, Nashville Hot Popcorn Chicken, and Kale's Very Fine Lasagna, to BLT Couscous Crust Quiche, Nana's Chamorro Sweet Bread, Coconut Chicken Chilakells Soup, Bacon Creamed Coren, and more. Of special note is a chapter devoted to bases, butters, and sauces that will elevate any vegan dishes.

Critique: With its beautiful photography and entertaining stories, "The Herbivorous Butcher Cookbook: 75+ Recipes for Plant-Based Meats and All the Dishes You Can Make with Them" offers a glimpse of the culinary future -- and that future tastes delicious. Vegetarians and non-Vegetarians alike will prize "The Herbivorous Butcher Cookbook" as a core addition to personal, professional, family, and community library Vegetarian, Paleo, and Gluten Free cookbook collections.

Editorial Note: Sister and brother duo Aubry and Kale Walch have spent the last several years perfecting The Herbivorous Butcher's deliciously deceiving meat-free meats. Aubry has spent over a decade creating meat-free alternatives for many of the foods that she grew up with on Guam, a place where each meal consisted of at least two different kinds of meat or seafood.

After years of watching Aubry thrive, Kale Walch followed suit and became vegan. Over the past few years, he has developed a keen sense for the many ingredients and methods that go into making the most flavorful, nutritious, and satisfying meat alternatives. Together they opened The Herbivorous Butcher in 2016 in Minneapolis. They have a dedicated website at https://www.theherbivorousbutcher.com

The White House Family Cookbook
Henry Haller, author
Virginia Aronson, author
The White House Historical Association
PO Box 27624, Washington, DC, 20038
www.whitehousehistory.org
9781950273362, $45.00, HC, 420pp

Synopsis: Originally published in November of 1987, "The White House Family Cookbook" is now released in a new second edition featuring an informative Foreword by Alex Prud'Homme. Illustrated throughout in full color, this massive compendium of First Family recipes for luncheons, entrees, side dishes, desserts, and special events are drawn from and organized by the Johnson Family, the Nixon Family, The Ford Family, The Carter Family, and The Reagan Family.

Critique: Informatively enhanced with the inclusion of three page of Kitchen Notes, a three page bibliographic listing of References, and two pages of Acknowledgments, this magnificent, elegant, and substantial second edition of "The White House Family Cookbook" is especially and unreservedly recommended for personal, professional, family, and community library cookbook collections.


The Pets/Wildlife Shelf

Caribou: Wind Walkers of the Northern Wilderness
Pili Palm-Leis, author
Mark Raycroft, author/photographer
Firefly Books Ltd.
www.fireflybooks.com
9780228103974, $24.95, PB, 160pp

https://www.amazon.com/Caribou-Wind-Walkers-Northern-Wilderness/dp/0228103975

Synopsis: The story of the contemporary caribou begins during the last Ice Age, over two million years ago. This origin is appropriate; the caribou are rugged survivors, forged by icy terrain and windswept snow, enduring some of the coldest and harshest environments on the planet. Illustrated with exquisite photographs by famed wilderness photographer and writer Mark Raycroft, "Caribou: Wind Walkers of the Northern Wilderness" (along with author Pili Palm-Leis) celebrates this fascinating and breathtaking animal.

Calling tundra and boreal forests their home, there are over 2.5 million caribou worldwide with 15 subspecies, the largest of which is the boreal woodland caribou, found in Alaska and the north of Canada. Revered, hunted and domesticated by cultures across the globe for thousands of years, caribou (also known as reindeer) migrate farther than any other land mammal in search of food, with some having been documented traveling 700 kilometers.

With its towering antlers, weather-resistant coat of fur and ability to forage lichen and fungi buried deep beneath the ice and snow, the caribou are an awe-inspiring symbol of perseverance.

Critique: "Caribou: Wind Walkers of the Northern Wilderness" is a truly beautiful and impressively informative volume dedicated to the history and life-cycle of the Caribou -- and is unreservedly recommended for both the personal reading lists of anyone with an interest in the subject, as well as community library Pets/Wild Animal collections.

Editorial Note #1: Pili Palm-Leis is a published author, artist, nature lover and advocate for planet Earth. In her time spent in the presence of caribou, Pili has come to love and appreciate these peaceful animals. She is on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/Pili-Palm-Leis-Photography-1011617145563549

Editorial Note #2: Mark Raycroft (https://www.markraycroft.com/index) is a professional wildlife photographer and biologist based in Ontario, Canada. He has spent over 25 years photographing, filming and writing about caribou. His work has been featured worldwide in a range of publications including National Geographic, Canadian Geographic, Canadian Wildlife, Outdoor Canada, Field and Stream, Ranger Rick, Outdoor Life, Backpacker and Wild magazines. He also authored the award-winning book "Moose: Crowned Giant of the Northern Wilderness".

Feline Reproduction
Aime K. Johnson, editor
Michelle Anne Kutzler, editor
CABI
www.cabi.org
9781789247084, $80.00, PB, 320pp

https://www.amazon.com/Feline-Reproduction-Aime-Johnson-PhD/dp/178924708X

Synopsis: Cats are one of the most popular pets in the world, and as homes become smaller, and single-person households become more common, it is predicted that the numbers of house cats being bred and kept will only grow.

With the publication of "Feline Reproduction" compiled and co-edited by Aime K. Johnson and Michelle Anne Kutzler all aspects of reproduction in the queen and the tom are covered. Beginning with basic anatomy and normal reproduction, "Feline Reproduction" goes on to cover practical knowledge about pregnancy, neonatal care, breeding soundness exams, and semen cryopreservation. It also includes an overview of factors, diseases, and abnormal conditions affecting reproduction, such as infertility, causes of abortion and contraception.

Covering both pet patients and nondomestic species, "Feline Reproduction" provides a thorough grounding in feline reproduction for the general veterinary practitioner, veterinary student, animal scientist, and experienced cat breeder.

Critique: Profusely illustrated and offering a listing of all the contributors and their credentials, "Feline Reproduction" is comprise of twenty-eight erudite, expert and informative articles that collectively cover all aspects of the subject. While unreservedly recommended for veterinary clinic, college and university library Feline Studies collections and supplemental curriculum studies lists, it should be noted for veterinary students, academia, pet owners, and breeders that "Feline Reproduction" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $68.71).

Editorial Note #1: Dr. Aime Johnson (https://www.vetmed.auburn.edu/faculty/johnson-aime) graduated from North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine in May of 2000. She completed a theriogenology residency at Texas A&M in 2005, and was board certified in the American College of Theriogenologists in August 2007. She joined the faculty at Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine in August 2007. Dr. Johnson's research interests are all aspects of feline reproduction and non-surgical sterilization options for companion animals.

Editorial Note #2: Dr. Michelle Kutzler (https://anrs.oregonstate.edu/users/michelle-kutzler) graduated from Washington State University with a Bachelor of Science and Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree. She went to Cornell University to pursue a theriogenology residency under the supervision of Dr. Vicki Meyers-Wallen and Dr. Rob Gilbert. Dr. Kutzler stayed on at Cornell University for a PhD under the tutelage of Dr. Peter Nathanielsz. Her thesis research investigated the effects of dexamethasone on placental vascular blood flow. Since 2002, Dr. Kutzler has been at Oregon State University in Corvallis, Oregon. She teaches numerous courses including Companion Animal Production, Mammalian Reproductive Biology, and Hormone Action. She is also on the Scientific Advisory Committee for the Alliance for Contraception in Cats and Dogs and the Chair of Scientific Committee for the 2020 International Symposium on Canine and Feline Reproduction.


The American History Shelf

1876: Year of the Gun
Steve Wiegand
Bancroft Press
PO Box 65360, Baltimore, MD 21209
www.bancroftpress.com
9781610885805, $33.00, HC, 442pp

https://www.amazon.com/1876-Wyatt-Custer-Buffalo-Created/dp/1610885805

Synopsis: With the publication of "1876: Year of the Gun: The Year Bat, Wyatt, Custer, Jesse, and the Two Bills (Buffalo and Wild) Created the Wild West, and Why It's Still With Us", veteran journalist and historian Steve Wiegand takes his readers across the post-Civil War Wild West. Wiegand introduces (or re-introduces) us to lawmen such as Bat Masterson and Wyatt Earp and outlaws such as the Younger Brothers and the James Brothers, as well as larger-than-life figures such as Buffalo Bill and George Custer.

Wiegand details the stories of these real-life legends, the aftermath and legacies they left behind, and the innumerable myths frequently attributed to them. Juxtaposing their real lives with the often-outlandish accounts of their exploits, "1876: Year of the Gun" swings from lighthearted humor to cliff-hanger suspense. It also portrays how the Wild West's initial, tantalizing promise of fame and glamour often disintegrated.

But "1876: Year of the Gun" also offers readers a unique element noticeably absent from most Wild West books: historical context.

Wiegand expands his contemporary spotlight on America's 100th birthday year to encompass what was going on in the rest of the country. On the very same day George Armstrong Custer was dying on a parched hill in southeastern Montana and immortalizing himself as both hero and villain, Alexander Graham Bell was at America's first World's Fair in Philadelphia, demonstrating his new invention he called the telephone. At the same time Wyatt Earp was moseying into Dodge City to join the town's police force, Albert Goodwill Spalding was on a pitcher's mound in Chicago, establishing baseball as the national pastime and creating a sporting goods empire. And even as the James Boys and Younger Brothers were robbing banks, Democrats and Republicans were conspiring to steal the White House from the American voter.

"1876: Year of the Gun" brings them all together in one place.

Fueled by the author's childhood interest in cowboys, train and bank robberies, and high noon shootouts, and their portrayal in iconic TV shows, "1876: Year of the Gun" is a delightful homage to famous Wild West figures who, with media help, helped shape the American character.

Critique: A fun and informative read from cover to cover, "1876: Year of the Gun: The Year Bat, Wyatt, Custer, Jesse, and the Two Bills (Buffalo and Wild) Created the Wild West, and Why It's Still With Us" takes an extraordinary approach to American history that will be particularly appreciated by readers with an interest in the histories and stories that were to define American in myth, legend, and reality. While unreservedly recommended for both community and academic library 19th Century American History collections and supplemental curriculum studies lists, it should be noted for students and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject that "1876: Year of the Gun" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $8.99).

Editorial Note: Steve Wiegand (https://tantor.com/author/steve-wiegand.html) is a veteran journalist and history writer. His 35-year-newspaper career was spent at the San Diego Evening Tribune, San Francisco Chronicle and Sacramento Bee. He is the author or co-author of 10 books, including U.S. History for Dummies, which is in its 4th edition and has been translated into Chinese and German; The American Revolution for Dummies; and The Dancer, the Dreamers and the Queen of Romania. His newest book, Danny Boy: The Uncommon Story of a Common Baseball Card and the Player On It, will be out from Bancroft Press in Spring 2023.


The World History Shelf

Himalaya: Exploring the Roof of the World
John Keay
https://www.johnkeay.com
Bloomsbury Press
www.bloomsbury.com
9781632869432, $30.00, HC, 432pp

https://www.amazon.com/Himalaya-Exploring-World-John-Keay/dp/1632869438

Synopsis: More rugged and elevated than any other zone on earth, the Himalaya embraces all of Tibet, plus six of the world's eight major mountain ranges and nearly all its highest peaks. It contains around 50,000 glaciers and the most extensive permafrost outside the polar region. 35% of the global population depends on Himalaya's freshwater for crop-irrigation, protein, and, increasingly, hydro-power.

Over an area nearly as big as Europe, the population is scattered, often nomadic and always sparse. Many languages are spoken, some are written, and few are related. Religious allegiances are equally diverse. The region is also politically fragmented, its borders belonging to multiple nations with no unity in how to address the risks posed by Himalaya's environment, including a volatile, near-tropical latitude in which temperatures climb from sub-zero at night to 80F by day.

The Himalaya has drawn an illustrious succession of admirers, from explorers, surveyors, and sportsmen, to botanists and zoologists, ethnologists and geologists, missionaries and mountaineers. It now sits seismically unstable, as tectonic plates continue to shift and the region remains gridlocked in a global debate surrounding climate change.

With the publication of "Himalaya: Exploring the Roof of the World", historian John Keay provides a striking case for this spectacular but endangered corner of the planet as one if its most essential wonders. Without an other-worldly ethos and respect for its confounding, utterly fascinating features -- John Keay persuasively argues, that the Himalaya will soon cease to exist.

Critique: A singularly unique and seminal study, John Keay's "Himalaya: Exploring the Roof of the World" is impressively informative, exceptionally well written, and thoroughly 'reader friendly' in organization and presentation. An inherently fascinating and thought-provoking read from cover to cover, "Himalaya: Exploring the Roof of the World" is especially and unreservedly recommended for community, college, and university library collections. It should be noted for the personal reading lists for anyone with an interest in Central Asian History, and Ecotourism/Kathmandu Travel Guides, the "Himalaya: Exploring the Roof of the World" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $21.00).

Editorial Note: Currently residing in Scotland, John Keay has been writing about Himalaya and traveling there since the 1960s. He wrote the two-volume Explorers of the Western Himalayas and wrote and presented a major BBC R3 documentary series on the Himalayan kingdom; other works include India: A Historyand China: A History. He has contributed to about a dozen anthologies and multi-authored works on the region and written the text for several photographic studies. He reviews for the Literary Review and the TLS. The Royal Society for Asian Affairs awarded him its Sykes medal for his "literary contribution to Asian studies" in 2009. He has been a Royal Literary Fund fellow since 2010. Himalaya, his twenty-second book, will be the summation of a lifetime's study. He has a dedicated website at https://www.johnkeay.com

Alexandrea ad Aegyptum
Sherif Borale, editor
Zeitouna
c/o American University in Cairo Press
200 Park Avenue, Suite 1700, New York, NY 10166
www.aucpress.com
9789775864314, $59.95, HC, 256pp

https://www.amazon.com/Alexandrea-ad-Aegyptum-Sherif-Boraie/dp/9775864313

Synopsis: At the end of the eighteenth century, the city of Alexandria was a small backwater with a population of less than five thousand. Then in 1801 Muhammad Ali arrived in Egypt as second in command of an Albanian contingent, part of an Ottoman force sent to reoccupy the country after Napoleon Bonaparte's invasion in 1798. By 1805, Ali had become ruler of Egypt and in a short time, he built a new modern cosmopolitan Alexandria -- a thriving commercial hub and court city, the country's unofficial capital, and home to a large number of immigrants from the surrounding Mediterranean. Alexandrea ad AEgyptum, the old Latin adage meaning "Alexandria by Egypt," re emerged, underlining Alexandria's singular separateness.

Foreign dominance was further reinforced by British colonialism beginning in 1882, until 26 July 1956, when, from the parapet of the Bourse on Muhammad Ali Square in Alexandria, Gamal Abd al-Nasser announced the nationalization of the Suez Canal. As the city's sizeable foreign community left, following the Suez War then through waves of nationalization, the international Alexandria ceased to exist.

"Alexandrea ad Aegyptum" is a beautifully illustrated anthology that brings together the work of contemporaneous writers who witnessed the stages of Alexandria's dramatic rise and growth during the nineteenth and early- to mid-twentieth centuries.

Critique: Expertly compiled and edited by Sherif Boraie (a Cairo publisher, who lives in Dahshur, Egypt), "Alexandrea ad Aegyptum" is beautifully illustrated throughout with full page photographic reproductions of antique postcards. Impressively informative, and thoroughly 'reader friendly' in both organization and presentation, "Alexandrea ad Aegyptum" is an extraordinary and unreservedly recommended addition to personal, professional, community, college, and university library Egyptian History collections and supplemental curriculum studies lists.

Espana: A Brief History of Spain
Giles Tremlett
Bloomsbury Press
www.bloomsbury.com
9781639730575, $35.00, HC, 320pp

https://www.amazon.com/Espa%C3%B1a-Brief-History-Giles-Tremlett/dp/1639730575

Synopsis: Spain's position on Europe's southwestern corner has exposed the country to cultural, political, and literal winds blowing from all quadrants throughout the country's ancient history.

Africa lies a mere nine miles to the south, separated by the Strait of Gibraltar-a mountain range struck, Spaniards believe, by Hercules, in an immaculate and divine display of strength. The Mediterranean connects Spain to the civilizational currents of Phoenicians, Romans, Carthaginians, and Byzantines as well as the Arabic lands of the near east.

Hordes from the Russian steppes were amongst the first to arrive. They would be followed by Visigoths, Arabs, and Napoleonic armies and many more invaders and immigrants. Circular winds and currents extended its borders to the American continent, allowing it to conquer and colonize much of the New World as the first ever global empire.

Spain, as we know it today, was made by generations-worth of changing peoples, worshiping Pagan, Christian, Jewish, and Muslim gods over time. The foundation of its story has been drawn and debated, celebrated and reproached. Whenever it has tried to deny its heterogeneity and create a "pure" national identity, the narrative has proved impossible to maintain.

With the publication of " Espana: A Brief History of Spain", by Guardian's Madrid journalist and author Giles Tremlett (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Giles_Tremlett), who has lived in and written about Spain for over thirty years, deftly traces every stretch of Spain's history to argue that a lack of a homogenous identity is Spain's defining trait.

Critique: Exceptionally well written, impressively comprehensive, extraordinarily well organized, and thoroughly 'reader friendly' in presentation, "Espana: A Brief History of Spain" provides an amazingly informative overview of the history of Spain from its beginnings as an identifiable country down to the present era. Enhanced with the occasion full color illustration, "Espana: A Brief History of Spain" is unreservedly recommended for community, college, and university library World History collections in general, and Spanish History supplemental curriculum studies lists in particular. It should be noted for the personal reading lists of students, academia, and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject that "Espana: A Brief History of Spain" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $24.50).

Regicide: The Trials of Henry Marten
John Worthen
Haus Publishing
https://hauspublishing.com
c/o The University of Chicago Press (dist.)
https://press.uchicago.edu
9781913368357, $29.95, HC, 224pp

https://www.amazon.com/Regicide-Trials-Marten-John-Worthen/dp/1913368351

Synopsis: Henry Marten (1562 - 26 September 1641) was a soldier, a member of parliament, an organizer of the trial of Charles I, and a signatory of the King's death warrant. Today he is a neglected figure of the seventeenth century. Yet his life was both extraordinary and emblematic: he was at the fulcrum of English history during the turbulent years of the civil war, the protectorate, and the restoration.

Imprisoned in the Tower of London and tried at the Old Bailey, Marten was found guilty of high treason, only to be held captive for years on the equivalent of death row. While he was in prison, his letters to his mistress Mary Ward were stolen and published in an attempt to destroy his reputation. Witty, clever, loving, sardonic, and never despairing, those letters offer a rare and extraordinary insight into the everyday life of a man in the Tower awaiting a sentence of death.

The attempt to expose him as immoral revealed him instead as a tender and brave man.

With the publication of "Regicide: The Trials of Henry Marten" (Professor John Worthen's revelatory biography), Marten emerges from the shadows as a brilliantly clever, lively-minded man, free of the fundamentalist zeal so common in many of his republican contemporaries. Marten never abandoned his beliefs in equality, in a representative parliament under a constitution (which he had helped to write) without a monarch or a House of Lords, and in that way can be seen as a very modern man.

Critique: Rescued from an undeserved obscurity, "Regicide: The Trials of Henry Marten" is an extraordinary and meticulously presented work of outstanding scholarship that will be especially appreciated by readers with an interest in historical British biographies. Informatively enhanced for the reader with the inclusion of illustrations, twenty-two pages of notes, and a nine page Index, "Regicide: The Trials of Henry Marten" is an especially commended addition to personal, professional, community, and academic library 17th Century English History collections and supplemental curriculum studies lists. It should be noted for students and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject that "Regicide: The Trials of Henry Marten" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $28.45).

Editorial Note: John Worthen (https://everipedia.org/John_Worthen) is Emeritus Professor at the University of Nottingham. He is the author of several books, including The Life of William Wordsworth: A Critical Biography, The Cambridge Introduction to Samuel Taylor Coleridge, and T. S. Eliot: A Short Biography.

The Kingdom of the Anglo-Saxons
Paul Hill
Pen & Sword Books
c/o Casemate (US distribution)
www.casematepublishers.com
https://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk
9781526782496, $42.95, HC, 280pp

https://www.amazon.com/Kingdom-Anglo-Saxons-Wars-Alfred-865-899/dp/1526782499

Synopsis: "The Kingdom of the Anglo-Saxons: The Wars of King Alfred 865-899" is compelling military and political history of the Anglo-Saxon kingdom in which historian Paul Hill explores England's birth amidst the devastation and fury of the Danish invasions of the ninth century. He also provides insight into the English response to the new challenges of warfare in these years of turbulence and danger.

Alfred the Great, youngest son of King AEthelwulf, took control of the last surviving Anglo-Saxon kingdom, bringing Wessex and the 'English' parts of Mercia together into a new 'Kingdom of the Anglo-Saxons'. "The Kingdom of the Anglo-Saxons is a story of betrayal and of vengeance, of turncoat oath-breakers and loyal commanders, of battles fought and won against the odds. But above all, it is a history of how England came into being.

Warfare in Alfred's England changed from attritional set-piece battles to a grander strategic concern. This is explored, demonstrating how defense-in-depth fortification networks were built across the resurgent kingdom in the wake of Alfred's victory at Edington in 878. The arrival of new Danish armies into England in the 890s would lead to campaigns quite unlike those of the Great Heathen Army of the previous generation.

"The Kingdom of the Anglo-Saxons" is also a human as well as a military story of how a king demonstrated that his right to rule was important. Alfred sought to secure the succession on his son Edward, who led his own forces as a young man in the 890s.

But not everybody was happy in Alfred's England. Despite the ever-present threat from the Danes, the greatest challenge facing Alfred arose from his own kin, centered deep in the heart of ancient Wessex. Alfred knew very well that his was not the only branch of the family who claimed a right to rule.

Critique: A work of extraordinary scholarship that reads with all the narrative style of a novel, "The Kingdom of the Anglo-Saxons: The Wars of King Alfred 865-899" is enhanced for the reader with the inclusion of an eleven page Bibliography and a seven page Index. A simply fascinating history of 9th Century Britain and the wars of King Alfred, "The Kingdom of the Anglo-Saxons: The Wars of King Alfred 865-899" will have a particular interest for students of military strategy and is unreservedly recommended for community and academic library English Medieval History collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "The Kingdom of the Anglo-Saxons: The Wars of King Alfred 865-899" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $18.99).

Editorial Note: Paul Hill (https://www.paulhillauthor.co.uk/) is formerly the curator of Kingston Upon Thames Museum in Surrey and is well known as a lecturer, author and expert on Anglo-Saxon and Norman history and military archaeology. He has written several books on these subjects, among them The Age of Athelstan: Britain's Forgotten History, The Viking Wars of Alfred the Great, and The Anglo-Saxons at War 800-1066.


The Civil War Shelf

When Hell Came to Sharpsburg
Steven Cowie
Savas Beatie
PO Box 4527, El Dorado Hills, CA 95762
www.savasbeatie.com
9781611215908, $34.95, HC, 552pp

https://www.amazon.com/When-Hell-Came-Sharpsburg-Civilians/dp/1611215900

Synopsis: The Battle of Antietam, fought in and around Sharpsburg, Maryland, on September 17, 1862, was the bloodiest day in American history. Despite the large number of books and articles on the subject, the battle's horrendous toll on area civilians is rarely discussed. "When Hell Came to Sharpsburg: The Battle of Antietam and Its Impact on the Civilians Who Called It Home" by Steven Cowie rectifies this oversight.

By the time the battle ended about dusk that day, more than 23,000 men had been killed, wounded, or captured in just a dozen hours of combat -- a grim statistic that tells only part of the story. The epicenter of that deadly day was the small community of Sharpsburg. Families lived, worked, and worshiped there. It was their home. And the horrific fighting turned their lives upside down.

"When Hell Came to Sharpsburg" investigates how the battle and opposing armies wreaked emotional, physical, and financial havoc on the people of Sharpsburg, and providing a proper context, explores the savage struggle and its gory aftermath and explains how soldiers stripped the community of resources and spread diseases.

"When Hell Came to Sharpsburg" also carefully and meticulously follows the fortunes of individual families like the Mummas, Roulettes, Millers, and many others (ordinary folk thrust into harrowing circumstances) and their struggle to recover from their unexpected and often devastating losses.

A comprehensive study is grounded in years of careful research, Steven Cowie unearthed a trove of previously unused archival accounts and examined scores of primary sources such as letters, diaries, regimental histories, and official reports. Packed with explanatory footnotes, original maps, and photographs, Cowie's richly detailed study is essential reading for those seeking new information on the battle and the perspective of the citizens who suffered because of it.

Antietam's impact on the local community was an American tragedy, and it is told here completely for the first time.

Critique: A seminal work of simply outstanding scholarship, no personal, professional, community, college, or university library American Civil War collection can be considered comprehensive without the inclusion of "When Hell Came to Sharpsburg: The Battle of Antietam and its Impact on the Civilians Who Called it Home". It should be noted for the personal reading lists of students, academia, Civil War historians, and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject that "When Hell Came to Sharpsburg: The Battle of Antietam and its Impact on the Civilians Who Called it Home" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $15.99).

Editorial Note: Steven Cowie (https://www.stevencowie.com) has dedicated the past fifteen years to exclusively researching the battle of Antietam. Cowie earned a degree from California State University, Long Beach. As part of the Los Angeles film industry, he penned screenplays and sold his award-winning short film Lola to the Sundance Channel. His current position at a marketing firm allows him to write scripts and produce award-winning content for PBS.


The Military Shelf

A Day in Hell on the DMZ
Lou Pepi, author
Stephen Weat, afterword
McFarland & Company
PO Box 611, Jefferson NC 28640
https://mcfarlandbooks.com
9781476688398, $29.95, PB, 213pp

https://www.amazon.com/Day-Hell-DMZ-Firebase-Charlie/dp/1476688397

Synopsis: At "zero dark thirty" on January 30, 1971, units of the U.S. Fifth Mechanized Division left their firebases along the DMZ heading west along Provincial Route 9. The mission, called Dewey Canyon II, was to reopen the road from Khe Sahn Air Base to the Laotian border, in support of a South Vietnamese invasion of Laos (doomed from the start) to cut off the Ho Chi Minh Trail.

Alpha Company of U.S. 61st Infantry performed commendably in keeping Route 9 open, with just one casualty killed by friendly fire. They returned to Firebase Charlie-2 in April, exhausted but hopeful -- the Fifth was schedule to leave Vietnam in July. They patrolled the "western hills" through May as rocket attacks fell each evening. On the 21st, a direct hit on a bunker killed 30 of the 63 men inside -- 18 of whom were from Alpha Company

"A Day in Hell on the DMZ: The Rocket Attack on Firebase Charlie 2 in Vietnam, May 21, 1971" is their story, as told to Specialist Lou Pepi by members of his unit.

Critique: An invaluable contribution to the growing library of Vietnam War histories and memoirs, "A Day in Hell on the DMZ: The Rocket Attack on Firebase Charlie 2 in Vietnam, May 21, 1971" by Lou Pepi provides an on-site personal witness account in detail. Leading off with a three page listing of dedications to the men involved, "A Day in Hell on the DMZ" is informatively enhanced with the inclusion of an Afterword (Foxhole Humor) by Vietnam Veteran Stephen Wheat, a six page Glossary, three Appendices (Battalion Communication Logs; Brigade Communication Logs; After Action Report), a two page Author's Service History, a two page bibliography of Works Cited, and a one page Index. While also available for personal reading lists in a digital book format (Kindle, $13.49), "A Day in Hell on the DMZ: The Rocket Attack on Firebase Charlie 2 in Vietnam, May 21, 1971" is an invaluable and unreservedly recommended addition to community, college, and university library Vietnam War collections and supplemental curriculum studies lists.

Editorial Note: Lou Pepi was drafted into the Army in March of 1968. Returning from Vietnam he worked in the construction field and then in building code and zoning enforcement. He is the author of "My brothers have my back": Inside the November 1969 Battle on the Vietnamese DMZ".

Naval Battles of the Second World War: Pacific and Far East
Leo Marriott
Pen & Sword Books
c/o Casemate (US distribution)
www.casematepublishers.com
https://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk
9781399098984, $32.95, HC, 168pp

https://www.amazon.com/Naval-Battles-Second-World-War/dp/1399098985

Synopsis: The Second World War was a truly global conflict and maritime power played a major role in every theater of operations. Land campaigns depended on supplies transported by sea, and victory or defeat depended on the outcome of naval battles. So Leo Marriott's highly illustrated two-volume "Naval Battles of the Second World War" account of the struggle sets naval actions in the wider strategic context as well as giving graphic accounts of what happened in each engagement.

"Naval Battles of the Second World War: Pacific and Far East" is second volume and concentrates on the epic struggle between the Americans and the Japanese in the vast expanses of the Pacific where for almost four years a great maritime campaign ebbed and flowed and some of the most famous naval battles of the conflict took place.

The first part of the book covers the period from Pearl Harbor to Midway while the second covers the long and bloody campaign in the south-west Pacific where the US Navy honed its skills and turned a bloody defeat into a hard-won victory.

The final section focuses on naval operations during the American advance across the central Pacific up to the Battle of Leyte Gulf -- the greatest naval battle ever fought. Included are other actions involving the Royal Navy which, after early setbacks, would go on to play a major supporting role alongside the US Navy in the Pacific.

This concise but wide-ranging introduction to the naval war emphasizes the sheer scale of the conflict in every sea and shows the direct impact of each naval battle on the course of the war.

Critique: Profusely illustrated with historic black-and-white photography, "Naval Battles of the Second World War: Pacific and Far East" is informatively enhanced for the reader with the inclusion of a thirteen page Appendix (List of Warships), a one page Selected Bibliography, and a two page Glossary and Abbreviations list. Informed and informative, "Naval Battles of the Second World War: Pacific and Far East" is an ideal and highly recommended addition to personal, professional, community, and academic library World War II Naval Military History and Naval Military Strategy collections. It should be noted for students, academia, historians, and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject that "Naval Battles of the Second World War: Pacific and Far East" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $11.49).

Editorial Note: Leo Marriott has written numerous books on aviation, naval and military subjects including Treaty Cruisers, Catapult Aircraft, Jets at Sea and Early Jet Fighters: British and American 1944-1954. He is now retired after a fifty-year career as an air traffic controller but still maintains his pilot's license flying a syndicate-owned Cessna 172.


The Biography Shelf

The Welsh Braveheart
Phil Carradice
Pen & Sword Books
c/o Casemate (US distribution)
www.casematepublishers.com
https://www.pen-and-sword.co.uk
9781399002653, $39.95, HC, 216pp

https://www.amazon.com/Welsh-Braveheart-Owain-Glydwr-Prince/dp/1399002651

Synopsis: Like William Wallace in Scotland, Owain Glyndwr fought for his country and was only finally defeated by superior numbers and the military genius of Henry V. Yet Glyndwr was not just a freedom fighter. He was the last native-born Prince of Wales, a man who initiated the first Welsh parliament at Machynlleth and proposed an entirely independent Welsh church.

Glyndwr also laid plans for two Welsh universities, proposed a return to the far sighted and revolutionary Laws of Hywel Dda and formed a Tripartite Agreement with Henry Percy and Edmund Mortimer. It led to an invasion of England and nearly brought the reign of Henry V to an end.

And yet, despite his success and popularity, Glyndwr's rebellion seriously damaged the Welsh economy with towns destroyed and much agricultural land laid to waste. Even so, he was never betrayed by his people, despite a huge reward being offered for his capture.

Glyndwr refused at least two offers of pardon from the English crown and remains the supreme champion of the underdog.

Critique: A simply fascinating combination of biography and history, "The Welsh Braveheart: Owain Glydwr, The Last Prince of Wales" by Phil Carradice is the stuff from which block-buster movies are made. Informative enhanced with the inclusion of an Introduction and an Epilogue, "The Welsh Braveheart: Owain Glydwr, The Last Prince of Wales" also has a section of black/white illustrations, five pages of End Notes, a three page Bibliography, and a three page Index. While also available for personal reading lists in a digital book format (Kindle, $6.99), "The Welsh Braveheart: Owain Glydwr, The Last Prince of Wales" is a welcome and seminal contribution to personal, professional, community, and academic library Welsh History & Royal Biography collections and supplemental curriculum studies lists.

Editorial Note: Phil Carradice is a well-known poet, story teller, and historian with over 60 books to his credit. He is a regular broadcaster on BBC Radio and TV, presents the BBC Wales History program The Past Master and is widely regarded as one of the finest creative writing tutors in Wales. He is on Wikipedia at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phil_Carradice


The Psychology Shelf

Mental Health: From Diagnosis to Delivery
Kat McGrady, EdD, LCPC, NCC
Boys Town Press
13603 Flanagan Blvd., Boys Town, NE 68010
www.boystownpress.org
9781944882983, $33.95, Textbook Binding, 216pp

https://www.amazon.com/Mental-Health-Ed-D-LCPC-McGrady/dp/1944882987

Synopsis: Comprehensive and substantive, "Mental Health from Diagnosis to Delivery" showcases how social skills instruction can be applied and effectively incorporated into the successful care and treatment of children diagnosed with DSM-5 disorders (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition).

More than a dozen categories or types of mental disorders commonly diagnosed in children and adolescents are presented in convenient charts, along with suggested social skills, and arranged by the order and sections used in the DSM-5. Disorder types include communication, neurodevelopmental, psychotic, depressive, bipolar, anxiety, trauma, eating, addictive, personality, and other related conditions.

For each diagnosis, there is a list of suggested social and life skills. Treatment providers can broaden their treatment options by targeting and teaching the skills to build on a child's strengths and improve treatment progress. The skills are ordered according to their level of mastery - basic, intermediate, advanced, and complex.

The manual also includes the latest research on the link between social skill deficits and mental health disorders, sample treatment plans and social skill goals, plus guidance on how to implement social skills training into treatment plans across a variety of settings and levels of care. It is an excellent companion to the highly acclaimed Teaching Social Skills to Youth, Fourth Edition, also available from Boys Town Press.

Critique: Unreservedly recommended for personal, professional, clinic, and academic library Crisis Management Counseling, Behavioral Disorders in Special Education, and Educational Psychology collections and supplemental curriculum studies lists, "Mental Health from Diagnosis to Delivery" will have a particular and enduring value for youth care workers, group home caregivers, foster parents, shelter workers, family interventionists, teachers, school counselors, therapists, social workers, psychiatrists, physicians, psychologists, staff working in psychiatric settings, and other health and mental health professionals.

Editorial Note: Kat McGrady (https://sequenceservices.com/staff/kat-mcgrady/) has experience as an educator, school counselor, and mental health therapist. She currently works in private practice as a therapist and parent coach. Kat also serves as an adjunct professor for the Johns Hopkins University Master's in Education program, as well as a doctoral advisor for the Johns Hopkins University School of Education. She is also the author of "Building Resiliency in Youth: A trauma-informed guide for working with youth in schools", as well as its supplemental teen workbook and children's activity guide.

Understanding and Preventing Harmful Interactions Between Residents with Dementia
Eilon Caspi
Health Professions Press
PO Box 10624, Baltimore, MD 21285-0624
www.healthpropress.com
9781938870521, $58.32, PB, 308pp

https://www.amazon.com/Understanding-Preventing-Interactions-Residents-Dementia/dp/1938870522

Synopsis: With the publication of "Understanding and Preventing Harmful Interactions Between Residents with Dementia" by gerontologist and dementia behavior specialist Eilon Caspi, professional care providers work with Alzheimer's and Dementia patients can learn ways to avoid one of the most difficult and often tragic problems to occur in sheltered care settings when residents with memory loss act in ways that harm another resident.

Many of these episodes are preventable. Understanding what may provoke a person with dementia to respond in a physically or verbally harmful manner is the key to prevention and mitigation. "Understanding and Preventing Harmful Interactions Between Residents with Dementia" provides the first care standard for the field, presenting practical tools and instruction on how to identify contributing factors, causes, unmet needs, and triggers that commonly lead to serious distress or injury, sometimes even death.

Emphasizing compassionate, person-directed care practices, Professor Caspi describes numerous psychosocial strategies to use to prevent and de-escalate situations prior to, during, and after harmful resident-to-resident interactions. Included are dozens of real-life examples illustrating what does and does not work in addressing these episodes.

Based on extensive research and proven behavioral analysis, "Understanding and Preventing Harmful Interactions Between Residents with Dementia": Identifies 88 factors (personal triggers, interpersonal dynamics, the physical environment) that contribute to harmful interactions; Describes which factors can be modified and which cannot, and how to work with them either way; Creates opportunities for significant improvement in resident and staff well-being; Delivers useful screening and intervention tools; Provides access to downloadable assessment tools and detailed instructions on how to use them

This critical resource will inform training programs and daily practice for direct care staff, interdisciplinary teams, and long-term care administrators. The recommended approaches will help providers meet federal nursing home regulations, avoid unnecessary legal liabilities, and enjoy cost savings from reduced resident-to-resident incidents. A safer and more harmonious experience can be achieved for all who live or work in care homes.

Critique: Exceptionally well written, organized and presented, "Understanding and Preventing Harmful Interactions Between Residents with Dementia" is an ideal and seminal instruction manual and guide that will be of immense value to anyone having to care for patients and residents of sheltered care facilities for those suffering from Alzheimer's and other forms of dementia. Also available for personal reading lists in a digital book format (Kindle, $33.99), "Understanding and Preventing Harmful Interactions Between Residents with Dementia" is an essential and core addition to professional, sheltered care facilities, college, and university library Long Term Nursing, Geriatrics, and Gerontology collections and supplemental studies curriculum syllabus.

Editorial Note: Eilon Caspi, Ph.D., is the founder and director of Dementia Behavior Consulting LLC and a founding member, advisor, and board member of Elder Voice Family Advocates. He currently works as an assistant research professor at the Institute for Collaboration on Health, Intervention, and Policy, University of Connecticut. He serves as a board member of the Long Term Care Community Coalition (NYC). He co-directed the first documentary film entitled Fighting for Dignity on injurious and fatal resident-to-resident incidents in dementia (Terra Nova Films). In recent years, he dedicated his research and advocacy to the prevention of various forms of elder mistreatment such as neglect of healthcare, abuse, financial exploitation, and theft of opioid pain medications in assisted living residences and nursing homes. He has a dedicated website at http://dementiabehaviorconsulting.com/?page_id=28


The Library Science Shelf

Unpacking the Personal Library
Jason Camlor, editor
J. A. Weingarten, editor
Wilfrid Laurier University Press
www.wlupress.wlu.ca
9781771125680, $89.99, HC, 288pp

https://www.amazon.com/Unpacking-Personal-Library-Public-Private/dp/1771125683

Synopsis: Collaborative compiled and co-edited by the team of Professors Jason Camlot and J. A. Weingarten, the contributors to "Unpacking the Personal Library: The Public and Private Life of Books" collectively explore libraries at particular moments in their history across a wide range of cases, and includes Alberto Manguel's account of the Library of Alexandria as well as chapters on library collecting in the middle ages, the libraries of prime ministers and foreign embassies, protest libraries and the slow transformation of university libraries, and the stories of the personal libraries of Virginia Woolf, Robert Duncan, Sheila Watson, Al Purdy and others.

"Unpacking the Personal Library" also shows how the history of the library is really a history of collection, consolidation, migration, dispersal, and integration, where each story negotiates private and public spaces.

"Unpacking the Personal Library" builds on and interrogates theories and approaches from library and archive studies, the history of the book, reading, authorship and publishing. Collectively, the chapters articulate a critical poetics of the personal library within its extended social, aesthetic and cultural contexts.

Critique: Informatively enhanced for the reader with the inclusion of an Introduction (Private, Public, and Persona Libraries in Situ and in Circulation); an eighteen page Bibliography; a four page Author Biographys; a two page listing of Copyright Acknowledgements; and a ten page Index, "Unpacking the Personal Library: The Public and Private Life of Books" is a seminal, informative, and fascinating work of collective scholarship that will be of immense relevance and interest to authors, publishers, and bibliophiles with respect to the history, diversity, and continuing relevance of libraries. While especially recommended for community, college, and university Library Science collections and supplemental curriculum studies lists, it should be noted that "Unpacking the Personal Library: The Public and Private Life of Books" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $27.99).

Editorial Note #1: Jason Camlot (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jason_Camlot) is Professor of English and Research Chair in Literature and Sound Studies at Concordia University. His recent books include Phonopoetics (Stanford, 2019), CanLit Across Media (MQUP, 2019) and Vlarf (MQUP 2021). He is also the director of the SSHRC-funded SpokenWeb research partnership that focuses on literary audio collections.

Editorial Note #2: J. A. Weingarten is a Professor in the School of Language and Liberal Studies at Fanshawe College. He is also the author of Sharing the Past (UTP, 2019), as well as more than three dozen articles, book reviews, and papers on Canadian arts and culture. His web page is at https://www.concordia.ca/artsci/english/faculty.html?fpid=jeffrey-weingarten


The General Fiction Shelf

Half Moon Ranch
Elizabeth McGinty
Lindford Western Library
c/o Ulverscroft Large Print, Inc.
www.ulverscroftusa.com
9781444849530, $23.00, PB, Large Print, 242pp

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/half-moon-ranch-elizabeth-mcginty/1141644679

Synopsis: Ashley Lang is settled with her life as a writer in LA, until she discovers her grandfather has left her his estate, Half Moon Ranch, in Denver. Now she must decide where her future lies - and handsome Levi, who cares for her grandfather's horse Stargazer, adds a further complication. Then the futures of the ranch and its employees are in danger when the lineage of Stargazer is disputed. Can Ashley save the ranch, and at what cost?

Critique: An impressively crafted, exceptionally entertaining, and original contemporary novel that will have special appeal for readers with a liking for stories about ranch life, romance, and horses, this large print paperback edition from the Lindford Western Library of "Half Moon Ranch" by Elizabeth McGinty is a true choice for both personal reading lists and community library Contemporary Fiction collections.


The Romantic Fiction Shelf

Lord Winterton's Secret
Kitty-Lydia Dye
Linford Romance Library
c/o Ulverscroft Large Print, Inc.
www.ulverscroftusa.com
9781444849554, $23.00, PB, Large Print, 264pp

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/lord-wintertons-secret-kitty-lydia-dye/1141644678

Synopsis: Virtue Browne was once childhood friends with the mysterious Lord Winterton. But now villagers avoid the crumbling wreck of his manor house on the dunes, and gossips whisper that the young lord is involved in arcane rituals. A headstrong governess too inquisitive for her own good, Virtue will encounter romance, mystery and smugglers at her first posting. Is there a logical explanation for the strange things she sees? Or will she become another soul lost in the rumored secret tunnels?

Critique: A carefully crafted historical romance by an author with an impressive knack for storytelling, "Lord Winterton's Secret" by Kitty-Lydia Dye is an extraordinarily entertaining read from beginning to end. This large print paperback edition from the Linden Romance Library series is particularly recommended for community library collections and the personal reading lists of dedicated historical romance fans.

Editorial Note: An accomplished novelist and blogger, Kitty-Lydia Dye has a dedicated website at https://kittylydiadye.blogspot.com

Someone Else's Honeymoon
Phoebe MacLeod
Boldwood Books
c/o Ulverscroft Large Print, Inc.
www.ulverscroftusa.com
9781804262405, $39.00, PB, Large Print, 362pp

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/someone-elses-honeymoon-phoebe-macleod/1141663669

Synopsis: When Charley finds herself suddenly single on Christmas Day it feels like her world has fallen apart. Forced to move back in with her parents, she embarks on a journey of re-invention. When she meets Ed, who is on honeymoon alone after being jilted at the altar by a bride he's never met, it looks like her life may be taking a turn for the better. Fate, however, has other ideas, and she and Ed are forced apart. Will she find her way back to him, or are they just not meant to be?

Critique: As a comedic romance novelist, Phoebe MacLeod, the author of "Someone Else's Honeymoon" has an impressive talent for the kind of narrative driven storytelling style that fully engages and entertains her readers from first page to last. This large print paperback edition from Boldwood Books will prove a welcome and enduringly popular addition to community library Contemporary Romance collections and the personal reading lists of dedicated romance fans looking for a fun read.

Editorial Note: Phoebe MacLeod is the author of several popular romantic comedies. She lives in Kent with her partner, grown up children and disobedient dog. Her love for her home county is apparent in her books, which have either been set in Kent or have a Kentish connection. She currently works as an IT consultant and writes in her spare time. She has always had a passion for learning new skills, including cookery courses, learning to drive an HGV and, most recently, qualifying to instruct on a Boeing 737 flight simulator.

Single All The Way
Portia Macintosh
https://portiamacintosh.com
Boldwood Books
c/o Ulverscroft Large Print, Inc.
www.ulverscroftusa.com
9781800487987, $39.99, PB, Large Print, 406pp

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/single-all-the-way-portia-macintosh/1141490055

Synopsis: When Dani's boyfriend (and boss!) dumps her for a younger model, the only silver lining she can see is to now being able to spend Christmas at home with her family after years away.

Determined to surprise them, Dani turns up unannounced in her hometown, excited to see that the festive season in Marram Bay is in full swing with Christmas lights twinkling on every corner. But disaster strikes when she finds her parents' house is empty and they appear to have gone away on holiday!

Christmas alone and single is not ideal, and when Dani starts bumping into old friends, neighbors and potential love interests, she can't face telling them the truth. So in a panic she claims to be home to throw a Christmas party for the whole town -- easier said than done with 12 days to go before Christmas!

As the fake party approaches, little does Dani know that there may be someone there under the mistletoe for her, if she can just let her guard down and see them...

Critique: A Christmas romance novel that will be enjoyed by its readers at any time of year, "Single All The Way" by novelist Portia MacIntosh is a fun and impressively well crafted novel. This large print paperback edition of "Single All The Way" is especially recommended for both personal reading lists of dedicated romance fans and community library Contemporary Romance Fiction collections.

Editorial Note: Portia MacIntosh (https://portiamacintosh.com) is a master of the romantic comedy genre including "Just Date and See", "The Meet Cute Method", "The Time of Our Lives", "Life's a Beach", "Will They Won't They", and "The Accidental Honeymoon.


The Western Fiction Shelf

Boyd Rode Alone
Matt Cole
Linford Western Library
c/o Ulverscroft Large Print, Inc.
www.ulverscroftusa.com
9781444848519, $23.00, PB, Large Print, 278pp

https://www.ulverscroft.com/store/us/search/Boyd%20Rode%20Alone

Synopsis: Alvin Boyd was a killer, but not a bad man. When he tried to escape his past, he found he stood alone. After Alvin's death, his brother, Asa, rode into town looking to avenge him. What he found was a white-hot range war. Quickly finding job as the town's deputy, Asa found it to be a tough job in this hard-fighting trail town and Asa found new enemies that included a murderous land baron and a deadly gunfighter. Caught in the dangerous crossfire between ranchers and moneymen, maddened by the murders of his brother and others, Asa Boyd's reward would be simple-the love of a beautiful woman. He had nothing to lose but his life!

Critique: One impressive thriller of a read from first page to last, "Boyd Rode Alone" is the stuff of which gunsmoke movies are made. This large print paperback edition of Matt Cole's "Boyd Rode Alone" from the Linford Western Library series is especially recommended for personal reading lists and community library Western Fiction collections.

Editorial Note: Matthew L. Cole was born in Oberlin, Ohio and grew up in Central Florida. He is the author of more than 20 books. He currently teaches English at several higher education institutes and universities. He has an author page on the Amazon website at https://www.amazon.com/Matthew-L-Cole/e/B01BZI9HKO

Massacre at Maple Bluff
Brent Larssen
Linford Western Library
c/o Ulverscroft Large Print, Inc.
www.ulverscroftusa.com
9781444848694, $23.00, PB, Large Print, 224pp

https://www.ulverscroft.com/store/us/search/Massacre%20at%20Maple%20Bluff

Synopsis: When Cade Kellerman and his gang bungled their robbery of a train and killed more than twenty passengers, they could not have known that the husband of one of those killed was himself a former bandit, who would stick at nothing to revenge himself on those he blamed for the loss of his wife. Together with an idealistic law student, Ben Walters sets out to track down and bring to justice the Kellerman Gang; even if he should lose his own life in the attempt.

Critique: A riveting vengeance trail western by Brent Larssen, "Massacre at Maple Bluff" is one of those novels that simply can't be put down until the last page is read. Of special interest to readers who enjoy a deftly crafted and original western by a skilled and imaginative novelist, this large print paperback edition from the Linford Western Library series is especially recommended for the personal reading lists of dedicated western buffs and inclusion into community library Western Fiction collections.

Editorial Note: Brent Larssen is one of the pseudonyms used by Simon Webb, who is the author of more than 30 westerns. In addition to westerns, he has written many nonfiction books, chiefly on the subjects of social history and education. The author has a dedicated website at https://www.simon-webb.com

Ambush at Skyline Ranch
Thomas McNulty
Linford Western Library
c/o Ulverscroft Large Print, Inc.
www.ulverscroftusa.com
9781444848465, $23.00, PB, Large Print, 211pp

https://www.ulverscroft.com/store/us/search/ambush%20at%20skyline%20ranch

Synopsis: Pinkerton Agent Cameron Scott arrives at the crossroads town of Willow Branch Creek seeking answers to a series of train robberies. He gets more than he bargained for when he befriends the lovely Becky Drake when defending her son from one of rancher Jim Gilson's cowpunchers. To complicate matters, an old enemy has come to town, Larry Strickland, who did prison time thanks to Cam, and now wants revenge. Things go from bad to worse and culminate in both a train robbery and a blazing gunfight at Skyline Ranch that forces Cam to use his hard-earned skill as a gunslinger to save not only his life, but that of the woman he loves.

Critique: With more plot twists and turns than a Coney Island roller coaster, "Ambush at Skyline Ranch" by Thomas McNulty is a fun read from cover to cover and will appeal to any and all dedicated western novel fans. This large print paperback edition of "Ambush at Skyline Ranch" is especially recommended for both personal reading lists and community library Western Fiction collections.

Editorial Note: Thomas McNulty has published a wide range of magazine articles and books, including a biography on Errol Flynn and genre novels such as The Adventures of Captain Graves, The Phantom Blonde, Trail of the Burned Man and Spirits of Tomahawk Canyon. He has an informative author's web page on the Amazon website at: https://www.amazon.com/Thomas-McNulty/e/B001KHDLNU

The Battle for the Bar-Q
Will Black
Linford Western Library
c/o Ulverscroft Large Print, Inc.
www.ulverscroftusa.com
9781444848786, $23.00, PB, Large Print, 234pp

https://www.ulverscroft.com/store/us/search/The%20Battle%20for%20the%20Bar-Q

Synopsis: Mitch Evans is riding to his brother's small ranch after receiving a telegram saying there was trouble brewing. But Cal Morgan, a ranch hand for the Bar-Q, has been forced by his ruthless foreman, Latham Parry, to ambush Mitch before he can get to his brother's ranch, the Bar-B. Both men shoot each other -- Mitch in the shoulder and Cal in the leg. So begins an unlikely friendship that will endure pain and hardship as well as love. All in the name of the Bar-Q.

Critique: A classic western of good guys and bad guys armed to the teeth, "The Battle for the Bar-Q" by Will Black is a terrific read from first page to last. Notably and particularly fun for any and all dedicated western fans, this large print paperback edition of "The Battle for the Bar-Q" from the Linford Western Library series is an extraordinary and recommended addition to both personal reading lists and community library Western Fiction collections.

Editorial Note: A prolific author, Will Black (the pen name of Derek Doyle) has had over 40 Black Horse Westerns novels published.

Hogan's Bluff
Harriet Cade
Lindford Western Library
c/o Ulverscroft Large Print, Inc.
www.ulverscroftusa.com
9781444848649, $23.00, PB, Large Print, 228pp

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/hogans-bluff-harriet-cade/1130032697

Synopsis: When his father is killed and his sister kidnapped following a confrontation with a powerful rancher, it falls to fourteen-year-old Zachariah Hogan to set matters straight. That this would entail his riding with a band of Sioux warriors was something that the boy could not, in his wildest dreams, ever have imagined. So it is that a youngster who has not even yet begun to shave becomes embroiled in the last action of the Great Sioux War of 1876.

Critique: Riveting, original, memorable, "Hogan's Bluff" by Harriet Cade is western action/adventure storytelling at its best. This large print paperback edition from the Linford Western Library series is very highly recommended for both the personal reading lists of dedicated western fans and community library Western Fiction collections.

Editorial Note: Harriet Cade is the pseudonym of Simon Webb, who lives on the outskirts of London, and is the author of more than thirty westerns, published under both his own name and also a number of pseudonyms; for example Brent Larssen, and Fenton Sadler. In addition to westerns. His Cade books are listed at https://www.overdrive.com/creators/1238669/harriet-cade

Bleak Winds of Destiny
Dale Graham
Lindford Western Library
c/o Ulverscroft Large Print, Inc.
www.ulverscroftusa.com
9781444848502, $23.00, PB, Large Print, 234pp

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/bleak-winds-of-destiny-dale-graham/1130032698

Synopsis: The Rebel Raiders are heading for New Mexico territory to rob the bank in Tucumcari. Major Deke Hogan, a Civil War guerrilla fighter, heads the contingent. The proceeds of the attack are intended to support the Confederacy in a last-ditch effort to regain the initiative. But destiny has played a mean trick when Hogan discovers that the surrender had been signed by General Lee three weeks previously. Now the Raiders have become nothing more than common outlaws.

Critique: A prolific and talented storyteller with a genuine mastery of the western novel genre, Dale Graham's faced pace action/adventure novel "Bleak Winds of Destiny" is now available for the personal reading lists of his legions of fans, as well as an acquisition selection for community library Western Fiction collections in a large print paperback edition from Linford Western Library. Dale Graham also has a dedicated website listing all of his novels at https://www.fictiondb.com/author/dale-graham~79068.htm

The Tumbleweed Trail
Jack Martin
Lindford Western Library
c/o Ulverscroft Large Print, Inc.
www.ulverscroftusa.com
9781444848823, $23.00, PB, Large Print, 210pp

https://www.ulverscroft.com/store/us/search/The%20Tumbleweed%20Trail

Synopsis: Jake Preston, travelling with his wife and children, takes the Tumbleweed Trail, heading for Kansas City. And if the mile after mile of inhospitable terrain was not enough to contend with, there is the added complication of a gang of marauding bandits led by the notorious Sam Brady who have vowed to kill Jake and his entire family. The family have only one hope and that is the mysterious stranger named Arkansas Smith, a man who some claim is an outlaw himself, a violator of women, a man as cold-hearted as the bitter winds that blow across the trail. But there are others who swear he is some sort of special lawman, a man bringing gun justice to those who need it. There is only one certainty and that is that blood will flow along the Tumbleweed Trail.

Critique: A classic action/adventure novel by a past master of the genre, "The Tumbleweed Trail" by Jack Martin is one terrific thriller of a read! A compulsive page turner of a western from beginning to end, "The Tumbleweed Trail" is especially commended to the attention of all dedicated western fans and this large print paperback edition from the Linford Western Library series will prove to be an enduringly popular addition to community library Western Fiction collections.

Editorial Note: Jack Martin is the pseudonym of British author Gary M. Dobbs who has an author's page on Wikipedia at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gary_M_Dobbs

Halo Moon
Jim Jones
Five Star Books
c/o Gale Cengage Learning, Inc.
20 Channel Center Street, Boston, MA 02210
www.gale.com/five-star
9781432892685, $25.95, HC, 281pp

https://www.amazon.com/Halo-Moon-Jim-Jones/dp/1432892681

Synopsis: As Jared Delaney rides home from a cattle drive to Colorado, he is haunted by a nightmare of menace and impending change, signified by the moon encircled by a hazy band of light -- what is called a halo moon.

When he arrives in Cimarraon, he is shocked to discover that his friend and mentor, Sheriff Nathan Averill, has been murdered. Against his wife's wishes, he agrees to seek vigilante justice to avenge Nathan's death. Estranged from his family and friends, Jared travels the perilous trail to vengeance, unaware that a truly evil man is stalking him and his family at the same time.

Refusing to accept the counsel of those close to him, he finds moral guidance from an unlikely source -- a young man with a checkered past who is on the run from the law. Will the end justify the means? How many people will die along the way?

Critique: A carefully crafted and riveting read from cover to cover, "Halo Moon" by Jim Jones a part of his 'Jared Delaney Western' series and is western fiction at its action/adventure, vengeance quest best. Original, entertaining, "Halo Moon" is especially recommended for both personal reading lists and community library Western Fiction collections.

Editorial Note: Jim Jones is an award winning Western novelist who is also an award-winning Western singer/songwriter: International Western Music Association 2014 Male Performer of the Year; IWMA Song of the Year Award, 2019; Western Writers of America Spur Award, 2013, 2017 & 2021. Rustler's Moon, Jim's first novel, was a finalist in two categories for the 2009 New Mexico Book Awards, Best Historical Fiction and Best First Book.

The Case of Duffy's Revenge
Ethan J. Wolfe
Five Star Books
c/o Gale Cengage Learning, Inc.
20 Channel Center Street, Boston, MA 02210
www.gale.com/five-star
9781432892661, $25.95, HC, 257pp

https://www.amazon.com/Illinois-Detective-Agency-Duffys-Revenge/dp/1432892665

Synopsis: Book three of 'The Illinois Detective Agency', Ethan J. Wolfe's "The Case of Duffy's Revenge" picks up where book two ("The Case of the Stalking Moon") leaves off, with the murder of James Duffy's future wife in the town of Miles City, Montana.

The Agency is naturally outraged and Agency Director Charles Porter sends James Duffy, Jack Cavill, and Joseph Goodluck to Miles City to investigate. Porter and his personal assistant, Miss Potts, also make the trip. In Miles City they meet with Sheriff Bates, who provides details of what happened. During the Miles City founding day celebration, Duffy's future wife, Sylvia Trent, attended the dance with a family friend. Sometime during the festivities, Sylvia went missing and wasn't found until the next day by a stable hand in the loft. Sylvia was raped and murdered by strangulation.

An investigation leads to one suspect, a man by the name of Robert Peru. A cowboy at the Trent Ranch, Peru disappeared after the dance, along with four of his friends. Peru rides a very distinctive, Appaloosa horse. Peru, a Mormon, had family in Salt Lake City, Utah, and having no other leads, that is where Duffy, Cavill, and Goodluck go.

Critique: Of particular interest to readers with an interest in historical mysteries set in the Old West, "The Illinois Detective Agency: The Case of Duffy's Revenge" is a deftly crafted work of suspense that is an appropriate and recommended addition to personal the personal reading lists of dedicated western/mystery fans, and community library Western Fiction collections.

Editorial Note: Ethan J. Wolfe is a pen name of novelist Al Lamanda who has a dedicated website at https://www.bookseriesinorder.com/al-lamanda


The Mystery/Suspense Shelf

Crime for the Books
Kate Young
https://www.kateyoungbooks.com
Crooked Lane Books
2 Park Avenue, 10th floor, New York, NY 10016
www.crookedlanebooks.com
9781639101085, $29.99, HC, 336pp

https://www.amazon.com/Crime-Books-Jane-Book-Mystery/dp/163910108X

Synopsis: Lyla Moody and her book club, the Jane Does, are hosting a Halloween party at Magnolia Manor, tailored after Agatha Christie's A Murder is Announced, but when the lights come on after the staged murder, a real victim lies dead with a gunshot wound in her chest. The victim was an estranged relative of Elaine Morgan, operator of the B&B, who'd earlier been seen arguing with her about the fate of the property. Suspicion immediately falls on Elaine, and she's arrested.

The Jane Does members believe Elaine is innocent, and when they get the chance to team up with police officer Rosa Landry (a member of the club) they jump on it. But then, the club discovers that two more murders have been brazenly predicted online and in the Sweet Mountain Gazette -- and that one of the intended victims is Rosa.

Lyla thinks she knows who the killer is, but the only way to find out is by laying a trap using Rosa as bait. But, like an Agatha Christie mystery, the truth is never what it seems. Lyla and her trusty book club will have to sleuth out the killer before Rosa meets her final chapter.

Critique: An impressively original mystery and part of novelist Kate Young's 'A Jane Doe Book Club Mystery' series, "Crime for the Books" is a simply riveting 'whodunnit' populated by inherently interesting characters and a roller coaster of a plot line. With a special attraction for fans of the cozy mystery genre and amateur female sleuthing, "Crime for the Books" is particularly and especially recommended for community library Contemporary Mystery collections and is available for personal reading lists in a digital book format (Kindle, $13.99).

Editorial Note: Kate Young is a member of Sisters in Crime and the Guppy Chapter. She has a dedicated website at https://www.kateyoungbooks.com

A Death in Didlinton
Carol MacLean
Linford Romance Library
c/o Ulverscroft Large Print, Inc.
www.ulverscroftusa.com
9781444849523, $23.00, PB, Large Print, 303pp

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/a-death-in-didlinton-carol-maclean/1141644680

Synopsis: A suspicious death (and a gorgeous new neighbor) are not exactly what Poppy was expecting when she arrives at her usual holiday cottage by the sea! Drawn into solving the mystery with the attractive Simon by her side, Poppy discovers intrigue and danger in sleepy Didlinton, which draw ever closer the more she investigates. With not only her estranged mother arriving unexpectedly, but also Simon's ex-girlfriend turning up to cause trouble, will Poppy manage to both solve the case and find love?

Critique: A fun and memorable blending of mystery, romance, and suspense, "A Death in Didlinton" by author Carol MacLean is a romance and mystery lover's delight from cover to cover. This large print paperback edition of Carol MacLean's thoroughly entertaining novel is highly recommended for both personal reading lists and community library Mystery/Suspense collections.

Editorial Note: A prolific and accomplished author Carol MacLean has an informative Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/carolcmaclean/ and an impressive listing of her novels at https://www.goodreads.com/author/list/6021757.Carol_MacLean

The Unkept Woman
Allison Montclair
Minotaur Books
c/o St. Martin's Publishing Group
www.minotaurbooks.com
www.blackstoneaudio.com
9781250750341, $27.99, HC, 320pp

https://www.amazon.com/Unkept-Woman-Sparks-Bainbridge-Mystery/dp/1250750342

Synopsis: The Right Sort Marriage Bureau was founded in 1946 by two disparate individuals - Mrs. Gwendolyn Bainbridge (whose husband was killed in the recent World War) and Miss Iris Sparks who worked as an intelligence agent during the recent conflict, though this is not discussed. While the agency flourishes in the post-war climate, both founders have to deal with some of the fallout that conflict created in their personal lives.

Miss Sparks finds herself followed, then approached, by a young woman who has a very personal connection to a former paramour of Sparks. But something is amiss and it seems that Iris's past may well cause something far more deadly than mere disruption in her personal life. Meanwhile, Gwendolyn is struggling to regain full legal control of her life, her finances, and her son -- a legal path strewn with traps and pitfalls.

Together these indomitable two are determined and capable and not just of making the perfect marriage match.

Critique: With its memorable characters, original storytelling, and author Allison Montclair's distinctive style of narrative driven mystery fiction, "The Unkempt Woman" has a very special appeal to readers with an interest in historical mysteries and amateur female sleuths. A fun read from cover to cover for all dedicated mystery buffs, "The Unkempt Woman" is unreservedly recommended for community library Mystery/Suspense Fiction collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "The Unkempt Woman" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $14.99) and as a complete and unabridged audio book (Blackstone Audio, 9798200912629, $31.95, CD).

Editorial Note: Allison Montclair (https://www.bookseriesinorder.com/allison-montclair/) grew up devouring hand-me-down Agatha Christie paperbacks and James Bond movies. As a result was her becoming addicted to tales of crime, intrigue, and espionage. She now spends her spare time poking through the corners, nooks, and crannies of history, searching for the odd mysterious bits and transforming them into novels of her own. She is the author of the Sparks & Bainbridge historical mystery series, which begins with The Right Sort of Man.


The Fantasy/SciFi Shelf

The Face of the Waters
Robert Silverberg
Spectra
c/o Three Rooms Press
561 Hudson Street, Suite 33, New York, NY 10014
www.threeroomspress.com
9781953103277, $16.99, PB, 396pp

https://www.amazon.com/Face-Waters-Robert-Silverberg/dp/1953103278

Synopsis: After a human offense against the natives of Hydros, the human population of the island of Sorve are ordered to leave. Forbidden on all other islands, in a flotilla of ships they seek the semi-mythical island of the Face of the Waters. During their journey they are forced to learn more about themselves, leading to questions about both religion and the purpose of Man. At the end of this novel, science fiction author Robert Silverberg deftly addresses what it means to be human, and explores what unites and divides humanity.

Critique: Originally published in October 1991, this new paperback edition of "The Face of the Waters" is published with the author's full support, and brings Silverberg's brilliant novel back into the must-read science-fiction canon. Highly recommended for personal and community library Science Fiction & Fantasy collections after decades of being out of print, this classic Silverberg novel is now once again available to a whole new generation of dedicated science fiction buffs -- and is a 'must' for the legions of Robert Silverberg fans.

Editorial Note: Robert Silverberg (www.robert-silverberg.com) is a now near legendary author in the science-fiction genre, with four Hugo Awards and six Nebula Awards to his name. He was inducted into the Science Fiction and Fantasy Hall of Fame in 1999 and named a Grand Master by the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America Guild in 2005. His short story "Needle in a Timestack" was adapted for the screen by Oscar-winning writer John Ridley (12 Years a Slave) in 2021, and additional projects are slated to finally bring more Silverberg writing to the screen. He has a Wikipedia page at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Silverberg

Daughter of Redwinter
Ed McDonald
Tor Books
c/o Tor/Forge Books
120 Broadway, 22nd Floor, New York, NY 10271
www.tor-forge.com
9781250811714, $27.99, HC, 352pp

https://www.amazon.com/Daughter-Redwinter-Chronicles-1/dp/1250811716

Synopsis: Raine can see and speak to the dead, a gift that comes with a death sentence. All her life she has hidden, lied, and run to save her skin, and she's made some spectacularly bad choices along the way. But it is a rare act of kindness (rescuing an injured woman in the snow) that becomes the most dangerous decision Raine has ever made.

Because the woman is fleeing from Redwinter, the fortress-monastery of the Draoihn, warrior magicians who answer to no king, and who will stop at nothing to reclaim what she's stolen. A battle, a betrayal, and a horrific revelation force Raine to enter the citadel and live among the Draoihn. She soon finds that her secret ability could be the key to saving an entire nation. Though she might have to die to make it happen!

Critique: Launching 'The Redwinter Chronicles', a new action/adventure fantasy series from veteran author Ed McDonald, "Daughter of Redwinter" is an impressively crafted novel that is a compulsive page turner of a read from cover to cover. With a special appeal to fans of Epic Fantasy, "Daughter of Redwinter" will leave its readers looking forward to the next installment of a truly fun read. While unreservedly recommended for community library Science Fiction & Fantasy collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Daughter of Redwinter" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $14.99).

Editorial Note: Ed McDonald (https://edmcdonaldwriting.com) is the author of the Raven's Mark series of novels. He studied Ancient History and Archaeology at the University of Birmingham, and Medieval History at Birkbeck College, University of London. Ed is passionate about fantasy tabletop roleplay games and has studied medieval swordsmanship since 2013

The Year's Best Fantasy: Volume One
Paula Guran, editor
https://paulaguran.com
Pyr
https://www.pyrsf.com
9781645060482, $21.95, PB, 456pp

https://www.amazon.com/Years-Best-Fantasy-One/dp/1645060489

Synopsis: With the publication of "The Year's Best Fantasy: Volume One", dedicated fantasy fans can escape on a journey from the ordinary to the extraordinary with award-winning fantasy editor Paula Guran.

This is a superbly curated collection of fantasy themed short stories by contributors that collectively explores myth and fable, dark and light -- an heroic creature facing a dangerous demon; an earthly love facing the mossy decay of death. With additional tales of living ball gowns and timid monsters, of modern witches and multidimensional magic, the twenty-four original stories comprising "The Year's Best Fantasy: Volume One" will transport the reader to fantastical realms that push the limits of imagination to alternative realities mirroring much of our own.

Critique: An inherently fascinating, entertaining, and just plain fun read from cover to cover, "The Year's Best Fantasy: Volume One" is especially and unreservedly recommended for personal, community, and college Science Fiction & Fantasy collections. It should be noted for the reading lists of all dedicated fantasy fans that "The Year's Best Fantasy: Volume One" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $15.99).

Editorial Note: Paula Guran (https://paulaguran.com) was senior editor for Prime Books for seven years. Previously, she edited the Juno fantasy imprint from its small press inception through its incarnation as an imprint of Pocket Books. In addition to the annual Year's Best Dark Fantasy and Horror series, she's edited many other anthologies. In an earlier life she produced weekly email newsletter DarkEcho (winning two Stokers, an IHG award, and a World Fantasy Award nomination), edited Horror Garage (earning another IHG and a second World Fantasy nomination), and has contributed reviews, interviews, and articles to numerous professional publications.


The Audiobook Shelf

The Science of Storytelling
Will Storr, author
James Clamp, narrator
https://willstorr.com
Dreamscape Media
https://www.dreamscapepublishing.com
9781690585107, $22.99, CD (6 Discs, 8 Hours 51 Minutes)

https://www.amazon.com/Science-Storytelling-Will-Storr/dp/1690585102

Synopsis: How do master storytellers compel us? There have been many attempts to understand what makes a good story, but few have used a scientific approach.

In "The Science of Storytelling: Why Stories Make Us Human and How to Tell Them Better", Will Storr applies dazzling psychological research and cutting-edge neuroscience to our myths and archetypes to show how we can tell better stories, revealing, among other things, how storytellers (and also our brains) create worlds by being attuned to moments of unexpected change.

Storr's superbly chosen examples range from Harry Potter to Jane Austen to Alice Walker, Greek drama to Russian novels to Native American folk tales, King Lear to Breaking Bad to children's stories. With chapters such as "The Dramatic Question" and "Plot, Endings, and Meaning" and a practical, step-by-step appendix dedicated to "The Sacred Flaw Approach,"

"The Science of Storytelling" is destined to become an invaluable resource for writers of all stripes, whether novelist, screenwriter, playwright, or writer of creative or traditional nonfiction.

Critique: With this Dreamscape Media complete and unabridged audio book production that combines the impressive storytelling skills of author Will Storr with the equally impressive narrative skills of James Clamp, "The Science of Storytelling: Why Stories Make Us Human and How to Tell Them Better" is a very strongly advised addition to personal, professional, community, college, and university library audio book and Playwriting/Screenwriting instructional reference collections.

Editorial Note #1: Currently residing in Kent, England, Will Storr is an award-winning journalist and novelist whose work has appeared in The Guardian, Sunday Times, The New Yorker, and The New York Times. His books include Selfie: How the West Became Self-Obsessed and The Unpersuadables: Adventures with the Enemies of Science. He has a dedicated website at https://willstorr.com

Editorial Note #2: James Clamp works from his fully equipped professional ISDN and Source Connect capable studios in the USA and Europe, specializing in Commercials, Promo's, Corporate Videos, eLearning Modules and Training Narrations. He's proficient at many accents including RP, Cockney, Northern English, Australian, Scottish, South African, French and Russian. He has a dedicated website at https://willstorr.com

Mad, Bad and Dead
Sherryl Clark, author
Kirsty Gillmore, narrator
Aurora
c/o Ulverscroft Large Print, Inc.
www.ulverscroftusa.com
9781787829459, $98.95, MP3-CD,

https://www.ulverscroft.com/store/us/search/mad,%20bad%20and%20dead

Synopsis: Already struggling to juggle co-running Candlebark's pub/bistro along with her new childcare responsibilities, what Judi doesn't need right now is more stress. Yet, as usual, it arrives in spades: she starts receiving threatening, late night phone calls before discovering one of her best employees, Kate, shot dead in her bed.

Once again, Judi finds herself at the center of a murder investigation, as well as the hunt for the Kate's fourteen year-old daughter who has been missing since the murder. Add in the uncertainty of her relationship with D.S. Heath and the fact that her estranged mother's nursing home keeps calling to urge her to visit, and Judi might finally be at breaking point.

Critique: A dead employee. A missing child. Anonymous phone calls in the dead of night. Sherryl Clark's suspense thriller of a novel is brought vividly to life with the narrative vocal skills of Kirsty Gillmore in this complete and unabridged audio book from Aurora. "Mad, Bad and Dead" will prove to be an immediate and enduringly appreciated addition to community library audio book collections. (1 Disc, 10 Hours, 35 Minutes)

Editorial Note #1: Sherryl Clark has had 40 children's and YA books published in Australia, and several in the US and UK, plus collections of poetry and four verse novels. She has taught writing at Holmesglen TAFE and Victoria University. "Trust Me I'm Dead", her debut adult crime novel, was shortlisted for the CWA Debut Dagger and the CWA John Creasey Dagger Award. It is followed by "Dead and Gone" in the Judi Westerholme series. She has a dedicted website at https://sherrylclarkcrimewriter.com

Editorial Note #2: Kirsty Gillmore is a Voice Director, Casting Director, Sound Designer and the owner of Sounds Wilde. She was selected as a Voice Director for Games for the BAFTA Breakthrough UK programme for 2021. Her directing and casting work spans games, animation and audio drama. She has a dedicate website at https://www.soundswilde.com

Let It Snow
Beth Moran, author
Rosalind Steele, narrator
Boldwood
c/o Ulverscroft Large Print, Inc.
www.ulverscroftusa.com
9781802806366, $93.95, MP3-CD

https://www.ulverscroft.com/store/us/search/Let%20It%20Snow

Synopsis: After the end of a long-term relationship, local weather girl Bea Armstrong has been avoiding her family, and their inevitable 'I-told-you-sos.' But with Christmas fast approaching, she is finally on her way home to Charis House, the school in Sherwood Forest that her mum and dad run in their old family home. And to top it all off, the insufferable Henry Fairfax (who her parents have always wanted her to marry) has also been invited.

Relief comes in the shape of a last minute interview for her dream job. There are just a few minor problems. The interview is in Scotland, Bea has no car, and the snow is falling already. The only solution is for Henry to drive her. Could this Christmas get any worse?

But during an unforgettable two day interview, a stay in a log cabin and a nightmare journey through the snow, Henry turns out to be nothing like she thought. And when Bea's first love and recent ex shows up, Bea has a difficult choice to make!

Critique: Rosalnd Steele's superb vocal skills as the narrator are perfectly suited to author Beth Moran's narrative style of storytelling that brings "Let It Snow" to life in the mind's eye of the listener in this complete and unabridged audio book edition from Boldwood. With flawless production skills, "Let It Snow" is an ideal and recommended addition to personal listening lists and community library audio book collections. (1 Disc, 9 Hours, 50 Minutes).

Editorial Note #1: Beth Moran (https://bethmoranauthor.com) initially worked as a biochemist and then taught antenatal classes before becoming an author. She enjoys writing contemporary women`s fiction set in and around Sherwood Forest, where she lives with her family.


The Library CD Shelf

The Shape of Strings
Wayne Alpern
Privately Published
$12.00 CD / $8.91 MP3

https://www.amazon.com/Shape-Strings-Wayne-Alpern/dp/B0BDVD763M

Composer, arranger, and scholar Wayne Alpern presents The Shape of Strings, a cross-genre album combining jazz and classical music techniques into a creations that transcend genre boundaries. A sweeping, extraordinary instrumental work showcasing the incredible talents of the String Orchestra of New York City, The Shape of Strings is a treasure for both personal and public library collections, and makes an excellent gift for connoisseurs. The tracks are Reinvention 1, Reinvention 2, Reinvention 3, Serenade 1, Serenade 2, Serenade 3, Divertimento 1, Divertimento 2, and Divertimento 3.

The Lost Souvenir Collection
Hank Snow with special guest artist Jimmie Snow
Country Rewind Records
www.countryrewind.com
$10.98 CD / $9.49 MP3

https://www.amazon.com/Lost-Souvenir-Collection-Hank-Snow/dp/B0B6CVCBW7

The Lost Souvenir Collection is a music album gathering newly discovered recordings by "The Singing Ranger", Canadian-American country music artist Clarence Eugene "Hank" Snow. Hank Snow's baritone voice is the highlight of this emotional and inspiring showcase of roots and country music. The Lost Souvenir Collection is "must-have" for country music connoisseurs and highly recommended for public library collections. The tracks are Down The Trail of Achin' Hearts, I Don't Hurt Anymore, The Rhumba Boogie, How Do You Think I Feel, Tangled Mind, The Wreck Of The Old '97, Conscience I'm Guilty, Precious, Calypso Sweetheart, Loose Talk, Among My Souvenirs, Rainbow, Caribbean, Hobo Bill's Last Ride, Tell The World He's Coming, and Me And My Friends Fiddle.

Always
Dan Chadburn
Privately Published
$TBA CD / $9.49 MP3

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0B4X735VS

Award-winning music artist Dan Chadburn presents Always, a new age solo piano album and his ninth in the contemporary instrumental genre. The songs on Always are Chadburn's original compositions, with the sole exception of Chadburn's arrangement of the classic song O Shenandoah. Extraordinarily beautiful and bordering on the mystical, Always is an emotionally moving collection highly recommended especially for personal and public library collections. The tracks are Always, Uncharted Waters, O Shenandoah, Turning Point, Yesteryear, Minuet, Uncertainty, Missing You, The Wishing Well, Sacred Breath, Synchronicity, and Final Curtain.

Feels Like Home: Songs from the Sonoran Borderlands
Putumayo World Music
www.putumayo.com
$14.98 CD / $9.49 MP3

https://www.amazon.com/Feels-Like-Home-Borderlands-Linda-Ronstadts/dp/B0BC25DY5G

Feels Like Home: Songs from the Sonoran Borderlands - Linda Ronstadt's Musical Odyssey is a music CD created as a companion to acclaimed singer Linda Ronstadt's new book, "Feels Like Home" (9781597145794, $35.00). A music selection co-curated by Linda Ronstadt and Putumayo founder Dan Storper, Feels Like Home features songs that influenced Ronstadt's childhood as well as some of Ronstadt's interpretations of classical Mexican songs. An extraordinary tour of the music that shaped Ronstadt's life in the Sonoran borderlands of the Southwest, Feels Like Home is highly recommended. The tracks are Barrio Viejo, El Sueno, Canadian Moon (New Version), Across the Border, The Dreamer, Naninan Upirin, I Never Will Marry, Piel Canela, and Voy Caminando.

Joy
Ernesto Cervini
ernestocervini.com
Three Pines Records
tprrecords.ca
$14.99 CD / $9.49 MP3

https://www.amazon.com/Joy-Ernesto-Cervini/dp/B0B8KMCZ9Y

Juno-winning drummer and composer Ernesto Cervini presents Joy, a music album inspired by Louise Penny's "Gamache" series of books. The songs of Joy are crafted to express powerful themes of goodness, courage, and love. A few of the tracks feature vocalists; the rest are instrumental. Evocative and soul-stirring, Joy is a wondrous addition to public library music collections and also makes an excellent gift. The tracks are Three Pines, Surprised by Joy, Myrna, Sandalwood and Rosewater, Clara, Roar and Havoc, Ruth's Rosa, The Moth, Oliver & Gabri, Bella Bella, Peter Morrow, The Beautiful Mystery, Lacoste, Beauvoir, and I'm FINE.

Rich in Symbols II
Chet Doxas
chetdoxas.com
Justin Time
justin-time.com
$TBA CD / $9.03 MP3

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0BBSRHMBV

Rich in Symbols II is a music album inspired by artistic masterpieces from The Group of Seven (also known as the Algonquin School), a Canadian school of landscape painters. The songs feature Chet Doxas on saxophones and clarinet, Jacob Sacks on piano and mellotron, Joe Grass on pedal steel, guitar, and banjo, Zack Lober on bass, and Eric Doob on drums. The music is majestic, wistful, and breathtaking, much like the natural beauty captured in classic landscape paintings. Exploring the nuances of the art as well as the question "What does it mean to be Canadian?", Rich in Symbols II is a treasure for both personal and public library collections. Highly recommended. The tracks are The Slopes of Sainte- Tite-Des-Caps, Snow Clouds, The Jack Pine, Tree Trunk, North Shore Lake Superior, House of Ypres, and The Front of Winter.


The Native American Studies Shelf

Indigenous Firsts
Yvonne Wakim Dennis, author
Arlene Hirschfelder, author
Paulette F. Molin, author
Visible Ink Press
43311 Joy Rd., #414, Canton, MI 48187-2075
www.visibleinkpress.com
9781578598076, $74.95, HC, 496pp

https://www.amazon.com/Indigenous-Firsts-Achievements-Multicultural-Collection/dp/1578598079

Synopsis: "Indigenous Firsts: A History of Native American Achievements and Events" is an encyclopedic compendium that includes Native American Medal of Honor recipients, Heisman Trophy recipients, U.S. Olympians, a U.S. vice president, Congressional representatives, NASA astronauts, Pulitzer Prize recipients, U.S. poet laureates, Oscar winners, and more.

Also listed is the first Native American magician, all-Native comedy show, architects, attorneys, bloggers, chefs, cartoonists, psychologists, religious leaders, filmmakers, educators, physicians, code talkers, and inventors.

The luminaries include Jim Thorpe, King Kamehameha, Debra Haaland, and Will Rogers, along with less familiar notables such as Native Hawaiian language professor and radio host Larry Lindsey Kimura and Cree/Mohawk forensic pathologist Dr. Kona Williams. Their stories plus the stories of 2000 other people, events, places and more are eloquently presented with the publication of :Indigenous Firsts: A History of Native American Achievements and Events".

Critique: Informatively enhanced with the inclusion of an eight page bibliography of Further Readings; a two page listing of Selected Websites; a six page list of Native-Owned Museums; and a thirty-nine page Index, "Indigenous Firsts: A History of Native American Achievements and Events" is an extraordinary and unreservedly recommended addition to highschool, community, college and university library Native American Studies collections. It should be noted for students, academia, and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subjects of Native American Biographies, Demographics, and History, that "Indigenous Firsts: A History of Native American Achievements and Events" is also available in a paperback edition (9781578597123, $32.95) and in a digital book format (Kindle, $14.99).

Editorial Note: Since 1989 Visible Ink Press has published popular references built by experts, packed with facts, handsomely illustrated, with great indexes and appendices. These big bold beautiful books satisfy the hunger for information and thirst for answers that stretch the mind and challenge readers' preconceptions. They inform and entertain in the areas of science, history, minority studies, and the paranormal. The Visible Ink Press editorial and design community brings decades of experience to helping readers reach a higher level of enlightenment.

Warrior Spirit
Herman J. Viola
University of Oklahoma Press
2800 Venture Drive, Norman, OK 73069
www.oupress.com
9780806180311, $19.95, PB, 164pp

https://www.amazon.com/Warrior-Spirit-American-Heroism-Patriotism/dp/0806180315

Synopsis: For decades, American schoolchildren have learned only a smattering of facts about Native American peoples, especially when it comes to service in the U.S. military. They might know that Navajos served as Code Talkers during World War II, but more often they learn that Native Americans were enemies of the United States, not allies or patriots. With the publication of "Warrior Spirit: The Story of Native American Heroism and Patriotism", author Herman J. Viola sets the record straight by highlighting the military service (and major sacrifices) of Native American soldiers and veterans in the U.S. armed services.

American Indians have fought in uniform in each and all of our nation's wars. Since 1775, despite a legacy of broken treaties, cultural suppression, and racial discrimination, indigenous Americans have continued to serve in numbers that far exceed their percentage of the general U.S. population. "Warrior Spirit" introduces readers to unsung Native American heroes ranging from the first Native guides and soldiers during the Revolutionary War to those servicemen and servicewomen who ventured to Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan.

This outstanding record of service begs a question: Why do American Indians willingly serve a country that has treated them so poorly? Native veterans invariably answer that they are a warrior people who have a sacred obligation to defend their homeland and their families.

Critique: Of special and informative value to readers of all ages who are interested in the subject, "Warrior Spirit: The Story of Native American Heroism and Patriotism" by Herman J. Viola (Director of Quincentenary Programs in the National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution) is a unique resource that is especially and unreservedly recommended for highschool, community, and academic library Native American Studies and American Military History collections and supplemental curriculum studies lists. It should be noted by students, academia, and non-specialist general readers that "Warrior Spirit: The Story of Native American Heroism and Patriotism" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $13.23).

Amelia Stone Quinton and the Women's National Indian Association
Valerie Sherer Mathes
University of Oklahoma Press
2800 Venture Drive, Norman, OK 73069
www.oupress.com
9780806180274, $55.00, HC, 306pp

https://www.amazon.com/Amelia-Quinton-Womens-National-Association/dp/0806180277

Synopsis: With the publication of "Amelia Stone Quinton and the Women's National Indian Association: A Legacy of Indian Reform", Professor Valerie Mathes provides the first full account of Amelia Stone Quinton (1833-1926) and the organization she co-founded, the Women's National Indian Association (WNIA), offering nuanced insights into the intersection of gender, race, religion, and politics in our shared history. Professor Mathes also shows how Quinton was a true force for reform and progress who was nonetheless constrained by the assimilationist convictions of her time.

The WNIA, which Quinton cofounded with Mary Lucinda Bonney in 1879, was organized expressly to press for a "more just, protective, and fostering Indian policy," but also to promote the assimilation of the Indian through Christianization and "civilization." Charismatic and indefatigable, Quinton garnered support for the WNIA's work by creating strong working relationships with leaders of the main reform groups, successive commissioners of Indian affairs, secretaries of the interior, and prominent congressmen.

The WNIA's powerful network of friends formed a hybrid organization: religious in its missionary society origins but also political, using its powers to petition and actively address public opinion. Professor Mathes follows the organization as it evolved from its initial focus on evangelizing Indian women (and promoting Victorian society's ideals of "true womanhood") through its return to its missionary roots, establishing over sixty missionary stations, supporting physicians and teachers, and building houses, chapels, schools, and hospitals.

With reference to Quinton's voluminous writings (including her letters, speeches, and newspaper articles) as well as to WNIA literature, Professor Mathes draws a complex picture of an organization that at times ignored traditional Indian practices and denied individual agency, even as it provided dispossessed and impoverished people with health care and adequate housing. And at the center of this picture we find Quinton, a woman and reformer of her time.

Critique: Informatively enhanced for the reader with the inclusion of a Foreword by Lori Jacobson, a listing of Abbreviations, sixty-four pages of Notes, a fourteen page Bibliography, and a six page Index, "Amelia Stone Quinton and the Women's National Indian Association: A Legacy of Indian Reform" is a seminal work of meticulous scholarship that is unreservedly recommended for community, college, and university library Native American Studies and Women Social Activist Biography collections and supplemental curriculum studies lists. It should be noted for the personal reading lists of students, academia, historians, and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject that "Amelia Stone Quinton and the Women's National Indian Association: A Legacy of Indian Reform" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $20.370.

Editorial Note: Valerie Sherer Mathes, Professor Emerita of City College of San Francisco. Among the several books she has authored or edited is "Helen Hunt Jackson and Her Indian Reform Legacy". She has an Author's Page on the Amazon website at: https://www.amazon.com/Valerie-Sherer-Mathes/e/B001HOIE7Y


The Literary Studies Shelf

Mary Shelley: A Very Short Introduction
Charlotte Gordon
Oxford University Press
198 Madison Avenue, New York, NY 10016-4314
www.oup.com/us
9780198869191, $11.95, PB, 160pp

https://www.amazon.com/Mary-Shelley-Short-Introduction-Introductions-dp-0198869193/dp/0198869193

Synopsis: In 1816, when eighteen-year old Mary Godwin began writing Frankenstein, the idea that a woman could dream up such a tale was as far-fetched as raising a being from the dead. But Mary wasn't just any woman. The daughter of two notorious radicals, Mary had become an outcast from English society when she was only sixteen. A lifelong advocate for the rights of women, she refused to be governed by social conventions, running away with a married man, having children out of wedlock, and authoring books, stories, and essays that broke literary conventions.

With the publication of "Mary Shelley: A Very Short Introduction", Charlotte Gordon explores the context, background, and important themes contained in Shelley's most famous novel, Frankenstein, as well as demonstrating the importance of her work after Frankenstein.

Over the course of her long career, Shelley developed a distinctive voice, and a political and philosophical stance. Exploring key themes throughout Shelley's work, Gordon shows how she devoted herself to the propositions her mother, Mary Wollstonecraft, outlined in A Vindication of the Rights of Woman: that women are equal to men; that all people deserve the same rights; that human reason and the capacity for love can reform the world; and that every person is entitled to justice and freedom.

Critique: Handily pocket sized (4.25 x 0.5 x 6.5 inches), "Mary Shelley: A Very Short Introduction" by Professor Charlotte Gordon is a succinct and informative introduction to the life and extraordinary accomplishments of Mary Shelley (30 August 1797 - 1 February 1851). While very highly recommended for personal, professional, community and academic library British Literary History & Biography collections, it should be noted for students and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject that "Mary Shelley: A Very Short Introduction" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $6.99).

Editorial Note #1: Charlotte Gordon (https://www.charlottegordonbooks.com) is the Distinguished Professor of English at Endicott College. An award-winning author, her work has appeared in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and the Washington Post, among other publications. Her latest book, Romantic Outlaws: The Extraordinary Lives of Mary Wollstonecraft and Mary Shelley (2015) won the National Book Critics Circle award. She is also the author of Mistress Bradstreet: The Untold Story of America's First Poet (2005), and The Woman Who Named God: Abraham's Dilemma and the Birth of Three Faiths (2009). Most recently, she has written the Introduction to Penguin's re-issue of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein.

Editorial Note #2: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Their expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Agatha Christie: A Companion to the Mystery Fiction
J. C. Bernthal, author
Elizabeth Foxwell, editor
McFarland & Company
PO Box 611, Jefferson NC 28640
https://mcfarlandbooks.com
9781476676203, $49.95, PB, 456pp

https://www.amazon.com/Agatha-Christie-Companion-McFarland-Companions/dp/1476676208

Synopsis: The undisputed and legendary "Queen of Crime," Dame Agatha Christie (15 September 1890 - 12 January 1976) is the bestselling mystery novelist of all time. As the creator of such immortal detectives Hercule Poirot and Jane Marple, she continues to enthrall new generations of readers around the world and is drawing increasing attention from scholars, historians, and critics.

But Christie wrote far beyond Poirot and Marple. Hers was a varied life including war work, archaeology, and two very different marriages provided the backdrop to a diverse body of work. "Agatha Christie: A Companion to the Mystery Fiction" is an encyclopedic companion and reference that summarizes and explores Christie's entire literary output, including the detective fiction, plays, radio dramas, adaptations, and her little-studied non-crime writing. It details all published works and key themes and characters, as well as the people and places that inspired them, and identifies a trove of uncollected interviews, articles, and unpublished material, including details that have never appeared in print.

Critique: Whether it is the casual reader looking for background information on their favorite mystery, or the dedicated scholar tracking down elusive new angles in the life and literature of Agatha Christie, this comprehensive compendium about her work will provide the most comprehensive and up-to-date information yet available. While absolutely and unreservedly recommended as a core addition to community, college, and university library Literary Studies, it should be noted for students, academia, and the legions of Agatha Christie fans that "Agatha Christie: A Companion to the Mystery Fiction" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $22.49).

Editorial Note #1: J. C. Bernthal (https://cambridge.academia.edu/JCBernthal) is a visiting fellow at the University of Suffolk, UK. He has authored or edited several volumes on Agatha Christie and in 2020, won the Popular Culture Association's George N. Dove Award for advancing crime fiction scholarship.

Editorial Note #2: Elizabeth Foxwell (https://elizabethfoxwell.com) serves as managing editor of "Clues: A Journal of Detection", which is a premier academic journal on mystery, detective, and crime fiction.


The Agriculture Shelf

Resilient Agriculture, second edition
Laura Lengnick
New Society Publishers
www.newsociety.com
9780865719507, $34.99, PB, 368pp

https://www.amazon.com/Resilient-Agriculture-Second-Cultivating-Changing/dp/0865719500

Synopsis: Climate change presents an unprecedented challenge to food and farming in the U.S. and beyond. Damaging weather variability and extremes capture the headlines, but more subtle changes caused by hotter summer nights, warmer winters, and a longer growing season have far-reaching effects on the land, people, and communities that feed us.

Now in a significantly expanded and fully updated second edition, "Resilient Agriculture: Cultivating Food Systems for a Changing Climate" takes the reader beyond the headlines and the hype to shine a light on agricultural climate solutions with the power to cultivate new American foodways that are just, sustainable, regenerative, and resilient.

The updated content includes: Current and expected changes in regional weather patterns that disrupt food and farming; New adaptation stories from sustainable, climate-smart, organic, and regenerative farmers and updates on the producers featured in the first edition; Real-world applications of resilience thinking that connect the dots between food justice, sustainable development, regenerative economy, and planetary health; A companion website with stories, videos, issue briefs, reading guides, and more.

Whether working in food and farming or are simply an interested eater, this new second edition of "Resilient Agriculture" will take you on a journey into real-world resilience solutions with the power to regenerate the well-being of land, people, and community no matter the challenges ahead.

Critique: Informatively enhanced with the inclusion of twenty-six pages of Notes and a ten page Index, this second edition of "Resilient Agriculture: Cultivating Food Systems for a Changing Climate" is a timely and invaluable addition to personal, professional, community, college, and university library Sustainable Agriculture, Agronomy, and Climate Change collections and supplemental curriculum studies lists. It should be noted that "Resilient Agriculture" is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $16.99) for agricultural students, academia, farmers, ranchers, agricultural professionals, and non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject.

Editorial Note: Laura Lengnick (https://www.wildabundance.net/bios/laura-lengnick/) is an award-winning soil scientist with 25 years of experience working as a researcher, policy maker, educator, and farmer to put sustainability values into action in agriculture and food systems. She is also the founder and principal at Cultivating Resilience, LLC, in Asheville, NC.

The Berry Grower
Blake Cothron
New Society Publishers
www.newsociety.com
9780865719651, $39.99, PB, 336pp

https://www.amazon.com/Berry-Grower-Organic-Production-Century/dp/0865719659

Synopsis: "The Berry Grower: Small Scale Organic Fruit Production in the 21st Century" by Blake Cothron is an innovative DIY guide for growing and marketing organic small fruits and berries that offers intelligent strategies and solutions for successful small-scale, non-chemical fruit production in the 21st century.

"The Berry Grower" covers: Berry rowing history, innovations, and 21st-century challenges in modern fruit farming; Creating your own market farming reality; Farm planning for efficiency and profitability; Factoring in climate change, drought, and extreme weather; Soil fertility, efficient weed management, and organic pest control; Modern tools of the trade for efficiency in harvesting, fruit handling, and packing; Fruit profiles including raspberries, blackberries, strawberries, currants, gooseberries, figs, tomatoes, and more, including new cultivars; Innovative marketing methods and thinking beyond fresh fruit with multi-product strategies to maximize profit; Learning from other experts through interviews with successful growers and marketers from diverse areas around the USA.

Critique: Informatively illustrated and exceptionally well organized, "The Berry Grower: Small Scale Organic Fruit Production in the 21st Century" covers everything from the market garden and small farm to the homestead and backyard. Simply stated, "The Berry Grower" is an essential guide for both new and aspiring organic small fruit growers and seasoned farmers looking to produce high-quality organic fruits and products for local markets and self-sufficiency. While also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $16.99), "The Berry Grower" is unreservedly recommended for personal, professional, community, and academic library Sustainable Agricultural & Horticultural Studies collections and supplemental curriculum studies lists.

Editorial Note: Blake Cothron (https://newsociety.com/pages/author-blake-cothron) owns Peaceful Heritage Nursery, a 4-acre USDA Certified Organic research farm, orchard, and edible plant nursery. He shares his two decades of experience in organic agriculture and horticulture through magazine articles, public speaking engagements, and blogging. Blake is the author of Pawpaws: The Complete Growing and Marketing Guide.


The Theatre/Cinema Shelf

French Film History, 1895-1946
Richard Neupert
University of Wisconsin Press
728 State Street, Suite 443, Madison, WI 53706-1418
www.uwpress.wisc.edu
9780299337704, $42.95, HC, 392pp

https://www.amazon.com/French-History-1895-1946-Wisconsin-Studies/dp/0299337707

Synopsis: With the publication of "French Film History, 1895 - 1946", Professor Richard Neupert addresses the creative and often unexpected trajectory of French cinema, which continues to be one of the most provocative and engaging cinemas in the world.

Tracing French film and its developments from the earliest days, when France dominated world cinema, up through the Occupation and Liberation, Professor Neupert outlines major players and films that made it so influential. Paris held a privileged position as one of the world's hubs of scientific, social, and cultural experimentation; it is no wonder that the cinema as we know it was born there in the nineteenth century.

This detailed study presents French cinema's most significant creative filmmakers and movies but also details the intricate relations between technology, economics, and government that helped shape the unique conditions for cinematic experimentation in the country.

Professor Neupert also explains the contexts behind the rise of cinema in France, including groundbreaking work by the Lumiere family, Georges Melies, and Alice Guy; the powerhouse studios of Pathe and Gaumont; directors such as Rene Clair, Germaine Dulac, Marcel Pagnol, and Jean Renoir; and an array of stars, including Max Linder, Jean Gabin, Josephine Baker, and Michele Morgan.

The first fifty years of French film practice established cinema's cultural and artistic potential, setting the stage for the global post - World War II explosion in commercial movies and art cinema alike. French film and its rich history remain at the heart of cinematic storytelling and our movie-going pleasure.

Critique: A seminal work of dedicated research and meticulous scholarship, "French Film History, 1895 - 1946" is an extraordinary, impressive, detailed and informative history of early French filmmaking. Informative enhanced for the reader with the inclusion of a List of Illustrations and Acknowledgements, an Epilogue (Toward a New Era in French Cinema), a ten page Bibliography, and a twenty-one page Index, "French Film History, 1895 - 1946" is an essential and indispensable addition to personal, professional, community, college, and university library Cinematic History collections and supplemental curriculum studies lists.

Editorial Note: Richard Neupert is the Charles H. Wheatley Professor of the Arts in the Department of Theatre and Film Studies at the University of Georgia. He is also the author of A History of the French New Wave Cinema, French Animation History, and, most recently, John Lasseter. He has a website at https://www.drama.uga.edu/directory/people/richard-neupert

Making Hollywood Happen
Charles Drazin
University of Wisconsin Press
728 State Street, Suite 443, Madison, WI 53706-1418
www.uwpress.wisc.edu
9780299337001, $34.95, HC, 224pp

https://www.amazon.com/Making-Hollywood-Happen-Finances-Wisconsin/dp/0299337006

Synopsis: Filmmaking is a business -- someone has to pay the bills. For much of the cinema industry's history, that role was shouldered by the studios. The rise of independent filmmakers then led to the rise of independent financiers. But what happens if bad weather closes down a production or a director's vision pays no heed to the limitations of time and money?

That's when Film Finances would come into play. The company was founded in London in 1950 to insure against the risk that a film would exceed its original budget or not be completed on time. Its pioneering development of the "completion guarantee" (the financial instrument that provides the essential security for investors to support independent filmmaking) which ultimately led to the creation of many thousands of films, including some of the most celebrated ever made: Moulin Rouge (1953), Dr. No (1962), The Outsiders (1982), Pulp Fiction (1994), Slumdog Millionaire (2008), La La Land (2016), and more.

Film Finances's role in filmmaking was little known outside the industry until 2012, when it opened its historical archive to scholars. Drawing on these previously private documents as well as interviews with its executives, "Making Hollywood Happen: Seventy Years of Film Finances" by Charles Drazin tells the company's story through seven decades of postwar cinema history and chronicles the growth of the international independent film industry. Focusing on a business that has operated at the meeting point between money and art for more than seventy years, this lavishly illustrated volume goes to the heart of how the movie business works.

Critique: A very special and very unique contribution to the growing library of Cinematic History, "Making Hollywood Happen: Seventy Years of Film Finances" is the newest addition to the Wisconsin Film Studies series. A fascinating historical study that will have a very special appeal to readers with an interest in how films are financed, "Making Hollywood Happen: Seventy Years of Film Finances" provides an extraordinary wealth of informed and informative insights -- making it an essential and unreservedly recommended addition to personal, professional, community, and academic library Cinematic Studies collections and supplemental curriculum lists.

Editorial Note: Charles Drazin (https://www.charlesdrazin.com) is an archival consultant for Film Finances Ltd. He previously taught at Queen Mary, University of London, and has published several books on film history, including In Search of The Third Man, Korda: Britain's Only Movie Mogul, and The Faber Book of French Cinema.


The Political Science Shelf

After Populism
William C. Pratt
South Dakota Historical Society Press
900 Governors Drive, Pierre, SC 57501-2217
https://www.sdhspress.com
9781941813362, $34.95, HC, 338pp

https://www.amazon.com/After-Populism-William-C-Pratt/dp/1941813364

Synopsis: Populism was a farmer-led movement that called for sweeping economic reforms and became a major American political force in the 1890's. Though short lived, Populism's heyday has received ample attention from historians of the Northern Great Plains. But how did agrarian radicals and left-of-center farmers' groups in the region respond to the massive political changes of the twentieth century?

"After Populism: The Agrarian Left on the Northern Plains 1900-1960" is collection of essays by historian and academician William C. Pratt that sheds light on this period by tracking the evolution of rural activism and its impact across space and time. This broad, analytical history of agrarian movements on the northern plains pays close attention to local particularities and variations from national and even international trends.

"After Populism" explores farmers' relationships to Socialist groups; the persistence of radicalism in isolated plains communities; agrarian radicals' involvement in local affairs; women's roles in radical farm groups; the importance of the Farmers Union in regional and national politics; repeated, unsuccessful attempts at third-party organizing; and the gradual decline of progressive farm protest in the late twentieth century.

Professor Pratt's work builds on research in collections from throughout the Great Plains, as well as documents from the Russian State Archive of Social and Political History in Moscow and Federal Bureau of Investigation records. In addition, he pulls from decades of personal interviews and site visits, allowing him to add colorful anecdotes that help bring his subjects to life on the page.

Critique: Informative enhanced with the inclusion of a twenty page Epilogue (Using History to Make History?: Progressive Farm Organizing during the Farm Revolt of the 1980s), ninety-seix pages of Notes, and a twenty-one page Index, "After Populism" is a essential reading for students, academia, and historians of the Northern Great Plains, as well as non- specialist general readers with an interested in the history of American farm politics. A seminal work of meticulous and seminal scholarship, "After Populism: The Agrarian Left on the Northern Plains 1900-1960" must be considered an essential and core addition to community, college, and university library 20th Century American Political History collections in general, and supplemental curriculum 20th Century Agrarian Political History studies lists in particular.

Editorial Note: William C. Pratt is Professor Emeritus of History at the University of Nebraska at Omaha. He was the Distinguished Fulbright Lecturer in American History at Moscow State University (2000) and a Senior Fulbright Lecturer in American Studies at the University of Warsaw (2007).


The Architecture Shelf

Pretty Good House
Dan Kolbert, et al.
The Taunton Press
63 South Main Street, Newtown, CT 06470
www.taunton.com
9781641551656, $34.99, HC, 256pp

https://www.amazon.com/Pretty-Good-House-Michael-Maines/dp/1641551658

Synopsis: With the publication of "Pretty Good House: A Guide To Creating Better Homes", such a dwelling is described by the team of Dan Kolbert, Emily Mottram, Michael Maines, and Christopher Briley as: A house that's as small as possible; Simple and durable, but also well designed; Insulated and air-sealed; And above all is affordable, healthy, responsible, and resilient.

"Pretty Good House" provides a framework and set of guidelines for building or renovating a high-performance home that focus on its inhabitants and the environment -- but keeps in mind that few people have pockets deep enough to achieve a "perfect" solution. The essential idea is for homeowners to work within their financial and practical constraints both to meet their own needs and do as much for the planet as possible.

Critique: Profusely and informatively illustrated in full color throughout, "Pretty Good House: A Guide To Creating Better Homes" is a coffee-table style volume (8.5 x 0.75 x 11 inches, 1.95 pounds) that is exceptionally well written, expertly organized, and thoroughly 'reader friendly' in presentation. Enhanced for the reader with the inclusion of an informative eight page Introduction, a three page Glossary, and a three page Index, "Pretty Good House: A Guide To Creating Better Homes" is an especially and unreservedly recommended addition to personal, professional, community, and academic library Residential Architecture collections and supplemental Green Design & Sustainability curriculum studies lists.


James A. Cox, Editor-in-Chief
Diane C. Donovan, Editor
Midwest Book Review
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Oregon, WI 53575-1129
phone: 1-608-835-7937
e-mail: mbr@execpc.com
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