Friday, July 20, 2007

Tempting Titles - Nonfiction - July (concluded)

Here are some more tempting titles our librarians have selected for the library recently. The books are either already in the system or on the way.

To get to the online catalog record, click on the image or the book title link. There you can place a hold request, see similar subjects or other books by the same author, read first chapters, reviews or summaries, and enlarge the image.

Dewey Decimal 700s

La Nilsson: My Life in Opera, by Birgit Nilsson

Nilsson's fame as one of the major international stars of the post-World War II opera scene makes this title essential. Her strong opinions surface in the face of quirky conductors, arrogant directors, and oblivious set designers. (Library Journal)

Rickles' Book, by Don Rickles

In classic show-biz memoir fashion, names are dropped with abandon: Robards and Newhart, Carson and Sinatra (the Chairman of the Board at his most imperious), some presidents and a pope; even Mr. Potato Head! (Kirkus Reviews)

Billy Joel: the biography, by Mark Bego

Bego wears his love for Joel's music on his sleeve, and his in-depth analysis of virtually every song in the musician's canon is enthusiastic, if a bit repetitive. (Kirkus Reviews)

Dewey Decimal 800s

Richard Lederer’s Literary Trivia by Richard Lederer

What fictional detective survived an attempted murder by his creator? (Sherlock Holmes) Who was the single mother, living on state benefits, whose wizardly series of novels has made her the richest writer in England? (J. K. Rowling) Which American poet composed and read a poem at John F. Kennedy's inauguration? (Robert Frost) Richard Lederer is the author of more than 3,000 books and articles about language. His syndicated column, "Looking at Language," appears in newspapers and magazines throughout the United States (Publisher's summary)

This Year You Write Your Novel by Walter Mosley

The process of writing a novel is like taking a journey by boat. You have to continually set yourself on course. If you get distracted or allow yourself to drift, you will never make it to the destination. It's not like highly defined train tracks or a highway; this is a path that you are creating, discovering. The journey is your narrative. Keep to it and there will be a tale told. (Book jacket)

Shakespeare the Thinker by A. D. Nuttall

Much recent historicist criticism has tended to "flatten" Shakespeare by confining him to the thought-cliches of his time, and this in turn has led to an implicitly patronizing view of him as unthinkingly racist, sexist, and so on. Nuttall shows us that, on the contrary, Shakespeare proves to be more intelligent and perceptive than his twenty-first-century readers. (Book jacket)

Fathers and Sons, the autobiography of a family by Alexander Waugh

Evelyn Waugh once wrote, "I have exhausted my capacity for finding objects of love. How does one exist without them?" Love, or the lack of it, is what this book by Alexander Waugh (Time), Evelyn's grandson, is all about. It is also about fathers and sons and four generations of Waugh writers. Arthur was a publisher and a writer. His sons, Alec and Evelyn, were both writers, with Evelyn the more critically acclaimed. Evelyn sired Auberon, a writer/journalist, who in turn begat Alexander, the current Waugh chronicler. (Library Journal)

Dewey Decimal 900s

The Republic of Pirates: being the true and surprising story of the Caribbean pirates and the man who brought them down by Collin Woodard

A fast-paced narrative that will be especially attractive to lovers of pirate lore and to vacationers who are Bahamas-bound. (Publishers Weekly)

Justinian’s Flea: plague, empire and the birth of Europe by William Rosen

Rosen offers mini-courses in microbiology, biochemistry; he explains how bacteria evolved to hitch rides on fleas, how fleas migrate to human hosts when the rat population crashes, how plague progresses and usually kills—though Justinian himself survived a bout with it. Subsequent chapters follow the plague around the Mediterranean and elsewhere, and each time, Rosen smoothly inserts relevant history—of the silk trade, of the rise of Islam, of the Romans in Britain, of the reasons the plague did not find a happy home in the desert. Rigorous, highly informative history written with passion, panache and an appealing bit of attitude. (Kirkus Reviews)

The Perfect Summer: England 1911, just before the storm by Juliet Nicolson

A best seller in Britain (and deservedly so), this quick, enjoyable read shows the inevitability of the decline of the aristocracy by blending serious history, quirky details, and an all-encompassing portrait of English society. (Library Journal)

Biographies - 92s

Backstage with Julia: my years with Julia Child by Nancy Verde Barr

The book's greatest strength lies in how Barr has captured the voice and personality of her friend and mentor; her stories about the woman, whether involving a stop for a hot dog at a roadside stand or the graceful way that Child handled mistakes, will enable readers to make a new connection to this larger-than-life figure who did so much to change the perception of food and cooking in America. (Library Journal)

The Remarkable Millard Fillmore: the unbelievable life of a forgotten president by George Pendle

In this lampoon of formal presidential biographies, Pendle claims to have been spurred on by the discovery in Africa of never-before-seen Fillmore journals, including letters and "napkin doodles." (Did paper napkins exist in 1850? Did doodling?) Pendle hits all the general chronological marks of Fillmore's life, but he fabricates the particulars in wildly imaginative fashion, complete with copious, addlepated footnotes that affirm the book's comic intent. (BookPage Reviews)

Perfect Spy: the incredible double life of Pham Xuan An, Time magazine reporter and Vietnamese Communist agent by Larry Berman

A fair-minded, consistently interesting attempt to unpack the "boxes within boxes in An's life" and a fascinating contribution to our understanding of America's defeat in Vietnam. (Kirkus Reviews)


Anonymous said...

you spelled emperor wrong.

Bill, Reference Librarian said...

Thanks! Happy to get the help.

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