Thursday, August 16, 2007

Nonfiction Tempting Titles - August (1 of 3)

Here are some more Tempting Titles of nonfiction goodies our librarians have selected for you to enjoy.

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 000s

Witness: one of the great foreign correspondents of the twentieth century tells her story by Ruth Gruber

"Journalist Gruber, a Ph.D. at age 19, became an international correspondent for the New York Herald Tribune in 1935, launching a career that covered the liberation of Nazi concentration camps, the establishment of Israel and the first glimpse of Siberian gulags. Gruber has a charming, feminine perspective rare to the times; combined with her knack for (very) telling details, she makes a riveting storyteller. …. Complemented by a slew of Gruber's own photographs-which succinctly record the desolation and hope of the times - this life story makes for a fascinating journey." (Publishers Weekly)

Miniature Books: 4,000 years of tiny treasures by Anne C. Bromer and Julian I. Edison

"This beautifully made, gilt-edged volume, published in association with the Grolier Club of New York, complements an exhibit traveling to four institutions. But it is more than a catalog, offering a concise and careful history of the miniature book as well as more than 260 carefully chosen full-color illustrations, most of which are examples of books reproduced in their actual size. A miniature book is generally any book smaller than three inches in height and, as shown by the examples—beginning with Babylonian tablets and ending with a Bible on a silicon chip." (Library Journal)

Mission Al Jazeera: build a bridge, seek the truth, change the world by Josh Rushing

"From gyrene to jihadi journalist—it's not the usual American career trajectory. Those who have seen the remarkable documentary Control Room will recall debut author Rushing as the Marine public-affairs officer doubtfully interpreting the American invasion of Iraq for a doubtful press corps. Located behind the lines in Qatar, Rushing found some of the most interesting and confounding questions coming from the journalists of Al Jazeera, the Arabic-language news network headquartered there. 'Al Jazeera was a hostile network, and its portrayal of the U.S.'s actions frustrated my superiors,' he recalls. Against that official line, he advanced the argument that progressive Arab journalists might be able to explain the U.S. version of things to the Arab world; for so doing, he was all but accused of treason. He left the Corps and was preparing to take a job in PR in Texas when the programming director of the new Al Jazeera English station, headquartered in D.C., called to offer him a job—whereupon, well, his difficulties truly begin, not least with the FBI. Rushing and as-told-to partner Elder turn in an earnest but often plodding narrative, but this story tells itself: Rushing is still trying to explain America to the Arab world and vice versa, and his vignettes clearly reveal what a tough job that is." (Kirkus)

Dewey Decimal 100s

Everyday Greatness: inspiration for a meaningful life – insights and commentary by Stephen Covey, compiled by David K. Hatch.

"In this powerful work, well-respected author Covey (The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People) joins forces with leadership consultant Hatch to collect inspiring stories of ordinary people who embody “everyday greatness.” This quality is quiet by nature and has more to do with character and contribution than with achievement. The stories, which the authors have gleaned from Reader’s Digest, illustrate 21 principles such as integrity, gratitude, respect, and perseverance. Covey provides commentary, reflections, and further insights on how readers can apply each principle to their own lives in today’s world." (Library Journal)

Dewey Decimal 200s

Jesus After the Crucifixion: From Jerusalem to Rennes-le-Château by Graham Simmans

"Is it possible that Jesus did not die on the cross but instead traveled to Egypt and later to the south of France to live out his days with his wife, Mary Magdalene? This is the position taken by Simmans (coauthor, Rex Deus: The True Mystery of Rennes-le-Château), who died in 2005. Simmans was well qualified to write such a book, having lived and researched for 15 years in Rennes-le-Château, the area in France where Jesus is believed to have resided. He provides a great deal of helpful information about the traditions surrounding Jesus and Rennes-le-Château. He does not, however, present scholarly arguments that prove his theory; rather, he offers more popular thoughts as to why such a theory might be considered plausible and interesting. His book will attract those who enjoy speculating about religious matters. Readers of such best-selling works as Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code and Michael Baigent and others' Holy Blood, Holy Grail would fit into this category." (Library Journal)

"Whether they stare austerely from stained-glass windows in churches or sit among the collectibles in Hallmark stores, angels are a ubiquitous part of American popular culture. In this combination of angelic history and encyclopedia, acclaimed novelist Wright (Dwelling Places ), who describes herself as a believer in angels, investigates their manifestations in Judaism, Christianity and Islam." (Publishers Weekly)

"Peters, professor of Middle Eastern and Islamic studies at NYU and author of The Children of Abraham, lucidly explains how Jewish, Christian and Muslim communities understand and interact with their sacred texts—the Tanakh, the Bible and the Qur'an. Unsurprisingly, he opens with discussions of authorship and canonization: who wrote the books, how did the sacred texts achieve their final form, and how do religious authorities discern what counts as "the Word of God"? He also takes up the question of translation, elucidating the theology that underlies the Islamic belief that "a translated Qur'an is not really a Qur'an." But the truly fascinating sections of the book investigate quirkier topics, such as the different religions' regulations about the conditions under which people are allowed to handle sacred books. One of the most interesting chapters addresses the relationship between art and text, examining how various scribes and calligraphers have illustrated holy books; Peters makes an intriguing claim about the Qur'an, suggesting that despite Islamic insistence that the meaning of the text lies solely in the words, "Qur'anic decoration"—geometric and floral imagery—may "add another layer of meaning." This is undoubtedly one of the best single volumes on the history of sacred text in the Abrahamic faiths, and many readers will find it an invaluable resource." (Publishers Weekly)

No comments:

Search the Book Talk archives!