Braille Book Review

September-October 1998
Books for Adults--Nonfiction

Books listed in this issue of Braille Book Review were recently sent to cooperating libraries. The complete collection contains books by many authors on fiction and nonfiction subjects, including biographies, classics, gothics, mysteries, romances, and others. Contact your cooperating library to learn more about the wide range of books available in the collection.

To order books, contact your cooperating library.

Note: For the information of the reader, a notice may appear immediately following the book description to indicate occurrences of strong language, explicit descriptions of sex, or violence. The word "some" before any of these terms indicates an occasional or infrequent occurrence, as in "some strong language."

A Course in Miracles: Combined Volume BR 10835
by Foundation for Inner Peace
14 volumes
Designed to help readers increase awareness of love in their lives. Explains theoretical concepts on which the course is based and includes a workbook with lessons for each day of the year and a teacher's manual. Subject of Return to Love (BR 9979). 1975.

Original Meanings: Politics and Ideas in the Making of the Constitution BR 11184
by Jack N. Rakove
6 volumes
Explores the ideological and political assumptions that underlie the "original meanings" of the Constitution and the resulting ambiguities. Critiques the method that looks solely to the founders' intent for adapting the document to modern circumstances. Examines specific issues, such as federalism and the influence of James Madison. 1996.

Inventing Mark Twain: The Lives of Samuel Langhorne Clemens BR 11190
by Andrew Hoffman
7 volumes
Life of the beloved American writer and humorist who died in 1910 at the age of seventy-four. Hoffman explores the persona of Clemens's alter ego Mark Twain, an idealized public image used not only as a vehicle for self-promotion but also to rewrite a painful past. Some strong language. 1997.

Deep Atlantic: Life, Death, and Exploration in the Abyss BR 11199
by Richard Ellis
4 volumes
Chronicles the history of exploration in the Atlantic Ocean. Then describes a voyage to the depths of the Atlantic to reveal the exotic and wondrous creatures residing on the ocean floor. 1996.

William Cooper's Town: Power and Persuasion on the Frontier of the Early American Republic BR 11205
by Alan Taylor
8 volumes
Portrays the life of wealthy land speculator and politician William Cooper, who rose from humble origins to prominence as the founder of Cooperstown, New York. The spectacular rise and later decline of Cooper's fortunes inspired the writings of his author son, James Fenimore Cooper. 1995.

The Politics of Rage: George Wallace, the Origins of the New Conservatism, and the Transformation of American Politics BR 11223
by Dan T. Carter
7 volumes
History of the Alabama governor and conservative leader, whose national political career was cut short by a gunshot in 1972 that left him paralyzed. Carter traces Wallace's role in launching a conservative movement that allowed Republicans to dominate American politics in the 1980s and 1990s. Some strong language. 1995.

Cooking with Too Hot Tamales: Recipes and Tips from the Television Food Network's Spiciest Cooking Duo BR 11225
by Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger
2 volumes
Restaurant owners and radio and television hosts, the authors present recipes for Spanish and Latin American dishes from drinks and snacks to desserts. Turkey tamales with fresh cranberry salsa, quinoa salad, chile crab cakes, and sweet potato fries are a few examples. 1997.

A Commotion in the Blood: Life, Death, and the Immune System BR 11228
by Stephen S. Hall
7 volumes
An examination of the techniques and intricacies associated with immunotherapy, which uses the body's own cells to combat cancer and other diseases. The progressive use of immunology is discussed, beginning with "Coley's Toxins." The author also supplies a glimpse into the politics involved with scientific discoveries. 1997.

The Perfect Vehicle: What It Is about Motorcycles BR 11237
by Melissa Holbrook Pierson
2 volumes
Motorcycle enthusiast delivers an exposition on this two-wheel vehicle and its riders. Pierson communicates the thrill of the sport, distinguishing between real and imaginary dangers. She wittily intersperses her personal experiences throughout the account. 1997.

The Wisdom of the Body BR 11243
by Sherwin B. Nuland
4 volumes
Companion to How We Die (BR 9461). A surgeon explores the mystery of life and the human body. Discerns an inherent "spirit" in the organic structure, through which humans maintain themselves and survive. Examines the body's major systems, recounting case studies involving the body's responses to diseases and treatments. 1997.

Falling from Grace: Can Pro Basketball Be Saved? BR 11244
by Terry Pluto
3 volumes
A scathing look at the National Basketball Association. The author decries the on-court behavior of the NBA's new generation of players and the overall state of the game. Pluto reinforces his remonstrations of the NBA with quotes from basketball luminaries Charles Barkley, Willis Reed, Chuck Daly, and many others. Some violence and some strong language. 1995.

Resurrection: The Struggle for a New Russia BR 11260
by David Remnick
4 volumes
Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist describes the post-Cold War struggle to establish a new Russian state. He provides close-up portraits and detailed reporting on war-torn Chechnya, the return of Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, and the reelection of Boris Yeltsin in 1996. He argues for greater Western involvement in Moscow's haphazard efforts to control corruption and entrench democratic freedoms. 1997.

Lost in Place: Growing Up Absurd in Suburbia BR 11279
by Mark Salzman
2 volumes
The author's memoir of his offbeat teenage years spent in conventional suburban Connecticut. He describes his early fascination with things oriental--the Chinese language, martial arts, and Zen--and recounts his adolescent foibles. Depicts his troubled relationship with his curmudgeonly father. Strong language. 1995.

The Journey Out: A Guide for and about Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Teens BR 11284
by Rachel Pollack and Cheryl Schwartz
1 volume
The authors give advice to teenagers on various aspects of discovering one's sexuality: dating, myths and stereotypes, religion and spirituality, homophobia and harassment, finding self-acceptance, and coming out to family and friends. Some strong language and some descriptions of sex. For junior and senior high readers. 1995.

The Figured Wheel: New and Collected Poems, 1966-1996 BR 11292
by Robert Pinsky
3 volumes
A compendium of the first four books by the U.S. poet laureate, with twenty-one new poems. The title poem, "The Figured Wheel," with its image of the wheel of life, illustrates the all-encompassing scope of the poems. 1996.

The Collected Poems BR 11302
by Reynolds Price
3 volumes
The South's well-known contemporary writer combines three of his older works of poetry with an additional collection. The latter poems were written after his near-fatal bout with spinal cancer. Throughout the work are themes of friendship, family, and death. 1997.

The Welcome Table: African-American Heritage Cooking BR 11307
by Jessica B. Harris
3 volumes
Presents more than two hundred recipes along with historical information about cookery from around the country. Besides traditional ingredients, suggests healthy substitutes to guard against hypertension. Also includes a glossary and a list of favorite restaurants and mail-order sources. 1995.

Even in Quiet Places BR 11313
by William Stafford
1 volume
Posthumous collection of four chapbooks from 1990 to 1995 by an award-winning poet. Stafford's poem "Pretty Good Day" supplies the line for the title Even in Quiet Places, which alludes to secluded areas of retreat. Nature is an important force in many of Stafford's poems. Contains an afterword by Stafford's son, Kim, who is his literary executor. 1996.

Kora and Ka: With Mira-Mare BR 11329
by Hilda Doolittle
1 volume
Two experimental pieces written in 1930 by the imagist poet "H.D." set in Monte Carlo. In the first, Kora is John Helforth's companion while he recovers from a nervous breakdown. His Ka, from the Egyptian concept of shadow-soul, also accompanies them. In "Mira-Mare," Alex explores the beach setting. The eleven-page introduction by Robert Spoo provides literary commentary. 1996.

Fresno Stories BR 11333
by William Saroyan
1 volume
A collection of eleven of the author's humorous short stories that span the length of his career. Each story revolves around ethnic families in Fresno, California, in the early part of the century. 1936.

The Cricket on the Hearth and Other Christmas Stories BR 11334
by Charles Dickens
2 volumes
Three short Christmas tales written in the 1850s. In "The Cricket on the Hearth" and "The Holly-Tree," misunderstandings between lovers are cleared up in time to make the holiday cheerful. Similarly, in "The Haunted House," lovers are eventually united. 1994.

The Time Bind: When Work Becomes Home and Home Becomes Work BR 11342
by Arlie Russell Hochschild
3 volumes
A sociology professor examines a large American corporation that has family-friendly policies to find out why most of its employees aren't taking full advantage of them. 1997.

Divided to the Vein: A Journey into Race and Family BR 11345
by Scott Minerbrook
3 volumes
A writer for U.S. News & World Report examines his family history. Growing up in the North with a black father and a white mother in the fifties, Minerbrook recalls incidents of prejudice from both races. Having never felt completely accepted, in middle age Minerbrook travels to rural Missouri to confront his white relatives. Some strong language and some violence. 1996.

Plays: Intrigue and Love and Don Carlos BR 11346
by Friedrich Schiller
3 volumes
Two late-eighteenth-century dramas by a German poet, philosopher, and historian. Intrigue and Love is an early work (1783) of class conflict and social protest. Don Carlos (1787) is a tragedy reflecting the dramatist's love for a married woman. In these dramas, Schiller voices his opposition to tyranny and appeals for more idealistic goals and humanitarian ways. 1787.

In the Huddle with-- Steve Young BR 11355
by Matt Christopher
1 volume
In this biography of Steve Young, quarterback of the San Francisco 49ers, the author emphasizes that the athlete had to struggle throughout his career to be number one. Through hard work and determination, Young eventually became the starting quarterback while earning a law degree in the off season. For junior and senior high readers. 1996.

Summer for the Gods: The Scopes Trial and America's Continuing Debate over Science and Religion BR 11356
by Edward J. Larson
4 volumes
A historical account of the 1925 Scopes "monkey" trial, when the state of Tennessee prosecuted John Scopes for teaching evolution in a public school. The courtroom arguments featured the famous orators William Jennings Bryan and Clarence Darrow debating religion and the state's right to dictate school curriculum. 1997.

Ruth, a Portrait: The Story of Ruth Bell Graham BR 11357
by Patricia Cornwell
3 volumes
Written by a popular crime novelist--a family friend--this account of the wife of evangelist Billy Graham begins with Ruth Bell's early life in China as a child of missionaries. Because she wanted to follow in her parents' footsteps, it took persuasion on Graham's part to convince her to marry him and become his helpmate. 1997.

The Information Superhighway BR 11371
by Marin and Kathlyn Gay
1 volume
Provides an overview of the services of the Internet. Introduces issues of government control, trade and business, education, and privacy. Also discusses electronic mail, listservs, and personal communication. Problems such as piracy, copyright infringement, and obscenity on the Internet are presented briefly. For junior and senior high readers. 1996.


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