Braille Book Review

May-June 1999
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."

Help! My Apartment Has a Kitchen Cookbook: One-Hundred-Plus Great Recipes with Foolproof Instructions BR 11515
by Kevin and Nancy Mills
2 volumes
Mills says he ate out a lot as a college student, until he drained his savings and was forced into the kitchen. In a panic, he called Mom for help. She compiled these simple recipes, with tips and warnings for preparing them. She provided suggestions for basic staples--spices, canned goods, and utensils--to have on hand. 1996.

Healing Foods BR 11517
by Miriam Polunin
3 volumes
This practical guide to key foods for good health presents positive steps toward better eating habits. Profiles nutritional and therapeutic values of selected foods. Includes recipes for fifty featured items that are considered most important for a balanced diet. 1997.

Effort at Speech: New and Selected Poems BR 11533
by William Meredith
2 volumes
Meredith presents selections from his eight previously published collections, spanning 1944 to 1987, and twelve new poems. Michael Collier explains in the introduction that the title Effort at Speech is more than apt because in 1983 a stroke left Meredith with expressive aphasia--a struggle for speech. National Book Award. 1997.

A Streetcar Named Desire BR 11535
by Tennessee Williams
1 volume
In this play, a recently widowed, faded southern belle visits her bohemian sister and lusty brother-in-law in the French Quarter of New Orleans. Seeking the lost gentility of her early life, she instead faces a mental breakdown because of the insensitivity of those around her. 1947.

Second Act: Life after Colostomy and Other Adventures BR 11562
by Barbara Barrie
2 volumes
The actress known for her work on the sitcoms Barney Miller and Suddenly Susan describes her experience of being diagnosed with colorectal cancer in 1994, after ignoring symptoms for years. She details the problems and successes of the surgery and treatments that followed. Some strong language. 1997.

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof BR 11565
by Tennessee Williams
2 volumes
A play in which Big Daddy, a rich Mississippi cotton planter is dying of cancer. On his sixty-fifth birthday, he is surrounded by his family: Big Mama, his loud, garrulous wife; Cooper, his greedy older son; Brick, his younger son who is a withdrawn alcoholic; and his two sons' wives, Mae and Maggie. Strong language and explicit descriptions of sex. Pulitzer Prize. 1955.

In the Footsteps of Alexander the Great: A Journey from Greece to Asia BR 11570
by Michael Wood
2 volumes
An account of Alexander the Great's ten-year, twenty-two-thousand-mile expedition, which began in 334 B.C., and his conquest of most of the known world. Retraces the path of his arduous march, recounting historic events and assessing the legendary hero's deep and lasting impact. 1997.

The Underground Guide to Teenage Sexuality BR 11581
by Michael J. Basso
2 volumes
A recognized sex educator explains human anatomy, diseases, pregnancy, birth control, and sexuality to help young adults make educated decisions. The author encourages teens to be responsible and to accept the consequences of their actions, while stressing his conviction that abstinence is the best policy. For junior and senior high readers. 1997.

The Myth of Sisyphus and Other Essays BR 11599
by Albert Camus
2 volumes
In the title essay, the French philosopher and writer develops an affirmative attitude toward life, even though life is regarded as meaningless and absurd. The other essays also deal with the theme of affirmation in the face of absurdity. 1955.

The Number Sense: How the Mind Creates Mathematics BR 11610
by Stanislas Dehaene
3 volumes
The author explains how the structure of the human brain shapes mathematical abilities. Describes psychological studies of the way people understand and manipulate numbers. Reports on experiments involving animals and babies, as well as those who have suffered brain injuries. 1997.

The New York Times Book of Science Questions and Answers BR 11619
by C. Claiborne Ray
2 volumes
Questions divided into sections on hard and soft science include such inquiries as, "Why can you see the moon in the daytime?" "How does a fabric softener sheet work?" and "Are your odds of winning the lottery better if you play the same numbers week after week or if you change the numbers week after week?" 1997.

College Planning for Dummies BR 11629
by Pat Ordovensky
4 volumes
A guide to preparing for college. Topics include finding the right institution, visiting the campus, being interviewed for admission, paying tuition and other costs, and ten common mistakes in planning for higher education. Chapters can be read alone or in sequence. For junior and senior high and older readers. 1997.

The Rose Tattoo BR 11632
by Tennessee Williams
1 volume
This play relates, with a touch of humor, the story of a Sicilian widow finding love in a Gulf Coast community. Winner of the 1951 Tony Award for Best Play. 1950.

When a Parent Has Cancer: A Guide to Caring for Your Children BR 11633
by Wendy Schlessel Harpham
2 volumes
The author, a physician and mother, describes her experiences raising her children while battling lymphatic cancer and gives advice to others facing the same situation. She includes a story, "Becky and the Worry Cup," that she wrote to help her daughter cope with the illness. 1997.

The Lunch-Box Chronicles: Notes from the Parenting Underground BR 11635
by Marion Winik
2 volumes
Two years after her husband's death from AIDS, writer and public radio commentator Winik tells of raising their two small sons on her own and discusses humorously her inability to be the perfect mom. 1998.

The Tragedy of Richard III BR 11637
by William Shakespeare
3 volumes
New edition of this historical drama first published in 1594. Richard, duke of Gloucester, is a deceitful, deformed villain who treacherously plots to gain the throne. Includes explanatory notes and an interpretive essay. 1996.

Summer and Smoke BR 11639
by Tennessee Williams
1 volume
A play by the twentieth-century American dramatist, telling of the unfulfilled love of a puritanical southern woman who is a minister's daughter. 1948.

The Nawal El Saadawi Reader BR 11649
by Nawal Sa dawi
3 volumes
Collection of twenty-three essays on women's issues written by an Egyptian physician and feminist between 1970 and 1996. Covers topics that affect women worldwide including gender equality in politics, economics, and health; the impact of religious fundamentalism; and how to improve conditions for women. 1997.

Get a Life: You Don't Need a Million to Retire Well BR 11653
by Ralph Warner
3 volumes
Advises the reader not to focus exclusively on finances when preparing for retirement, but also to consider such equally important factors as health, spiritual life, interpersonal relationships, and interests outside of work. Interviews with retirees illustrate the importance of this approach. 1996.

Earth-Shattering Poems BR 11661
edited by Liz Rosenberg
1 volume
An international selection of more than forty poets presented in chronological order. Includes Sappho of ancient Greece, Charles Baudelaire of France, Pablo Neruda of Chile, and J.E. Wei of Taiwan. The editor chose poems that "shook" her. For junior and senior high readers. 1998.

Imperfect Control: Our Lifelong Struggles with Power and Surrender BR 11673
by Judith Viorst
4 volumes
Discusses issues of control that permeate nearly all facets of human existence. In ten chapters covering different phases of life from birth to death, Viorst examines situations to determine what is uncontrollable and when to exert choice. Topics include self-possession, sex, couples, parenthood, and the workplace. Some strong language. 1998.

Aphrodite: A Memoir of the Senses BR 11693
by Isabel Allende
3 volumes
In this memoir written during her fiftieth year, Allende reflects on her relationship with food and eroticism. Combines research with personal experience. Focuses on food as an aphrodisiac and its effects on lovemaking. Includes select recipes for two portions. Descriptions of sex. Bestseller 1998.

An Intelligent Person's Guide to Philosophy BR 11707
by Roger Scruton
2 volumes
British philosopher encourages readers to think about issues such as truth, freedom, morality, and God rather than merely studying the history of philosophy. 1996.

101 Classic Jewish Jokes: Jewish Humor from Groucho Marx to Jerry Seinfeld BR 11731
by Robert Menchin
1 volume
An explanation of the origins of Jewish humor followed by sample jokes. Includes some common Yiddish terms and birth names of famous Jewish comedians. 1998.

Helen Keller: Humanitarian BR 11732
by Lois P. Nicholson
1 volume
Biography of Helen Keller, who became blind and deaf at nineteen months as a result of illness. Covers her birth in 1880 through her death in 1968. Describes her education under her private teacher Anne Sullivan, her formal schooling, and her career. Includes an introduction by Jerry Lewis. For junior and senior high readers. 1996.

Roasts and Toasts: Snappy One-Liners for Every Occasion BR 11735
by Gene Perret
1 volume
Gives examples of humorous toasts for speeches and parties. The ideas are arranged by guest and occasion: the boss, retirement, weddings, birthdays, and more. 1997.

Gray Pancakes and Gold Horses BR 11746
edited by Kenneth Jernigan
1 volume
Members of the National Federation of the Blind discuss various aspects of being blind. An attorney writes about the importance of learning about body language and others describe how their "educated fingers" make them adept at skills such as sewing. 1998.


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