Braille Book Review

March-April 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."

The Guide for Brownie Girl Scout Leaders BR 10676
by Girl Scouts of the U.S.A.
read by 4 volumes
The basic Girl-Scouting resource for adult leaders who work with girls ages six to eight. Explains the organization, goals, and program standards of Scouting. Contains a complete edition of the Brownie Girl Scout Handbook, featuring stories and interactive activities. 1993.
A handbook for adult leaders in Girl Scouting.

The Guide for Junior Girl Scout Leaders BR 10757
by Girl Scouts of the U.S.A.
4 volumes
A Girl-Scouting handbook for adult leaders who work with girls ages eight to eleven. Provides basic information on the history, goals, and organization of Girl Scouting. Contains a complete edition of the Junior Girl Scout Handbook, featuring chapters on safety and health, life skills, leadership, and activities. 1994.

Hit Me with Music: How to Start, Manage, Record, and Perform with Your Own Rock Band BR 10833
by Stephanie Powell
1 volume
Handbook on organizing and managing one's own rock music group. Powell offers both creative and technical tips on all phases of the music business: using public address systems, mixing live music, utilizing recording studios, promoting a band, negotiating contracts, and avoiding the perils of the business. For junior and senior high readers. 1995.

The Road Less Traveled and Beyond: Spiritual Growth in an Age of Anxiety BR 10853
by M. Scott Peck
3 volumes
In this sequel to Further along the Road Less Traveled (BR 9391), Peck offers additional ways in which people can lead more fulfilling lives in a world full of stress and anxiety and discusses how "we can come to exist in a closer relationship to the Holy." 1997.

Witnessing America: The Library of Congress Book of Firsthand Accounts of Life in America, 1600-1900 BR 10913
edited by Noel Rae
6 volumes
Compendium of narratives--taken from letters, diaries, memoirs, court records, pamphlets, and periodicals--documenting three centuries of the American experience. Each chapter addresses a theme: arriving, upbringing, pairing, working, housing, eating, playing, praying, erring, ailing, and departing. Some violence and some strong language. 1996.

Tolstoy's Dictaphone: Technology and the Muse BR 10922
edited by Sven Birkerts
3 volumes
Essays by nineteen writers presenting disparate perspectives on the effects of digital technology on individuals and society. Viewpoints range from optimism that e-mail will promote social cohesion to dismal predictions of the demise of literary culture. 1996.

Romeo and Juliet BR 10925
by William Shakespeare
3 volumes
A sixteenth-century romantic tragedy of two teenagers from rival families who fall in love. A sentence of exile and an impending arranged marriage force the two to flee. A friar suggests a ruse to accomplish their union, but miscommunication causes it to backfire. 1993.

Empire of Light: A History of Discovery in Science and Art BR 10926
by Sidney Perkowitz
2 volumes
A physicist explores the phenomenon of light in science and art. Recounts key research and discoveries through history, leading to the contemporary theories of relativity and quantum physics. Discusses light as both a pervasive force in human life and an aesthetic medium in art. 1996.

The Astonishing Hypothesis: The Scientific Search for the Soul BR 10927
by Francis Crick
3 volumes
Nobel laureate Crick presents his study of the brain and the nature of human consciousness. Beginning with the hypothesis that each person's identity is nothing more than "the behaviour of a vast assembly of nerve cells and the associated molecules," Crick approaches his study through visual awareness and concludes that his hypothesis is plausible but more research is needed for proof. 1994.

Reflections on a Gift of Watermelon Pickle and Other Modern Verse BR 10940
compiled by Stephen Dunning and others
1 volume
More than one hundred poems on a variety of topics. Includes "How to Eat a Poem" by Eve Merriam; "Dreams" by Langston Hughes; "Lost" by Carl Sandburg; "Sonic Boom" by John Updike; "A Patch of Old Snow" by Robert Frost; and "in Just-" by e.e. cummings. For junior and senior high readers. 1966.

Frederick Douglass: In His Own Words BR 10947
edited by Milton Meltzer
2 volumes
Sixty-six speeches and editorials by the renowned nineteenth-century abolitionist. Douglass holds forth on such topics as the myth of the contented slave, the condition of free blacks, the history of the slave trade, and the theory of racial inferiority. Includes profiles of ten of Douglass's contemporaries. For junior and senior high and older readers. 1995.

La Pastasciutta: Pasta Dishes BR 10950
by Anna Del Conte
1 volume
Twenty-three recipes for creating Italian pasta dishes, including how to make homemade pasta and various accompanying sauces. Recipes include baked lasagne, macaroni and cheese, tagliolini, tagliardi, tagliatelle, tonnarelli, spaghetti, ravioli, and sauces such as pesto, tomato, and bolognese. 1993.

Evolution Isn't What It Used to Be: The Augmented Animal and the Whole Wired World BR 10953
by Walter Truett Anderson
3 volumes
Portrays the world and humankind as in a profound evolutionary transition, because of convergence of the biosciences with information technologies. Argues that a bionic planet is emerging, as computers augment our brains and as vaccines and artificial organs modify our bodies. Explores questions of ethics and equity. 1996.

Bone Black: Memories of Girlhood BR 10958
by bell hooks
1 volume
Noted African American feminist recalls the pain and alienation of growing up female and black in a poor, rural southern family. Hooks describes attending a newly integrated school and learning society's roles for men and women. She recalls enjoying the literature that inspired her to write. Some strong language and some descriptions of sex. 1996.

Composer to Composer: Conversations about Contemporary Music BR 10960
by Andrew Ford
3 volumes
Wide-ranging interviews with thirty composers, mostly British and Australian. The speakers discuss their own work, attitudes, and views as well as politics, art, and religion. They provide insights into their inner lives and motivations. 1993.

The Opening of the American Mind: Canons, Culture, and History BR 10961
by Lawrence W. Levine
2 volumes
Refutes the neoconservative view that the "democratization of the university" has led to "the collapse of the entire American educational structure." Argues that college curricula have always evolved to reflect the values of general society. Predicts continued academic diversity in America's multicultural society. 1996.

Cultures in Conflict: Christians, Muslims, and Jews in the Age of Discovery BR 10962
by Bernard Lewis
1 volume
A perspective on the historically eventful year of 1492, when Columbus discovered America and Catholic Spain vanquished Islam and expelled the Jews. Examines the significance of Christian Europe's ascendancy and expansion, as well as the implications for the development of the twentieth-century world. 1995.

Straight Talk about Teenage Suicide BR 10966
by Bernard Frankel and Rachel Kranz
1 volume
Explores the "rising epidemic" of teenage suicide from social, family, and personal perspectives. Discusses circumstances and motives that incline young people to consider ending their lives. Offers advice for getting help. For junior and senior high readers. 1994.

Stop Osteoarthritis Now! Halting the Baby Boomers' Disease BR 10970
by Harris H. McIlwain and Debra Fulghum Bruce
2 volumes
This handbook on osteoarthritis offers a self-help treatment plan that involves moist heat and medication; a prevention program that emphasizes exercise and weight control; various techniques in stress reduction; and advice on nonstandard treatments, such as nutritional supplements and acupuncture. 1996.

Two Teenagers in Twenty: Writings by Gay and Lesbian Youth BR 10983
edited by Ann Heron
2 volumes
Forty-one essays by gay and lesbian youth ranging in age from twelve to twenty-four. The authors relate their experiences in dealing with their sexuality and the difficulties encountered in "coming out" to family and friends and finding a network of support. Some strong language and some descriptions of sex.For senior high and older readers. 1994.

The American Bar Association Guide to Home Ownership: The Complete and Easy Guide to All the Law Every Home Owner Should Know BR 10984
by American Bar Association
2 volumes
Explanation of the legal framework of rights and duties associated with home ownership. Discusses forms of ownership, deeds, titles, insurance, taxes, and the financial side of owning a home. Gives tips on avoiding liability, remodeling without getting swindled, and resolving problems with neighbors. Addresses special concerns of aging home owners. 1995.

The Passions of Fatherhood BR 10987
by Samuel Osherson
2 volumes
A psychotherapist recounts his own personal and intimate experiences as a father. Depicts the love, anger, excitement, and frustration of being a parent and offers insights and guidance for effective fathering. Advises fathers to get to know their children and to give them their time and encouragement. 1995.

This Noble Land: My Vision for America BR 10988
by James A. Michener
3 volumes
A celebrated author assesses the state of America and identifies nine major problems that threaten the nation's survival in the twenty-first century. Laments social fragmentation, educational decline, unfair distribution of wealth, and other adverse trends. Calls for a return to traditional values combined with increased social spending. 1996.

Slaughterhouse: Bosnia and the Failure of the West BR 10989
by David Rieff
3 volumes
Depicts persecution and genocide of the Muslims in Bosnia starting in 1992. Decries the acquiescence of Western nations in failing to intervene and the inaction of United Nations peacekeepers who simply enforce the status quo. Strong language and violence. 1995.

This Wild Darkness: The Story of My Death BR 10993
by Harold Brodkey
1 volume
A novelist chronicles his passing life and the indignities of his infirmity as he lies dying with AIDS. He ponders his youthful experiences with homosexuality, his devotion to his wife, his love for his writing career, and his "passage into nonexistence." Strong language. 1996.

Selected Poems: The Centenary Edition BR 10997
by Edna St. Vincent Millay
1 volume
This gathering of poems begins with "Renascence," a poem Millay entered in a contest in 1912 and that brought her immediate recognition. The simplicity and accessibility that sometimes prompted critics to pass over her poems is the very skill that also created her appeal and made her work popular for nearly forty years. Her lyricism is discussed in an extensive introduction. 1991.

How to Travel with a Salmon and Other Essays BR 11054
by Umberto Eco
2 volumes
Forty-one pieces give Eco's curmudgeonly commentaries on the follies of modern life. His topics include telegrams, fax machines and cellular phones, private and public libraries, and sequels. One lengthy parody entitled "Stars and Stripes" is a science fiction tale of intergalactic sex and espionage. Some violence and some descriptions of sex. 1994.

Dizzy Gillespie and the Birth of Bebop BR 11074
by Leslie Gourse
1 volume
Life of the jazz trumpeter who pioneered a progressive style of jazz known as bebop in the 1940s and 1950s. The author discusses how Gillespie, along with such musicians as Charlie Parker and Thelonious Monk, introduced to jazz more complex harmonies, adventurous improvisation, and quicker tempos. For junior and senior high readers. 1994.

Sonnets from the Portuguese: A Celebration of Love BR 11081
by Elizabeth Barrett Browning
1 volume
These forty-four sonnets by the Victorian author were probably written mostly during her courtship with Robert Browning. They represent one of the most famous sonnet sequences executed in English and include the well-known "How do I love thee? Let me count the ways." For high school and older readers. 1986.


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