Braille Book Review

July-August 2001
Books for Adults--Nonfiction

Books for Adults The following books were recently produced for the NLS program. To order books, contact your braille-lending library. Note: For the infomation 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 occurence, as in "some strong language." Nonfiction

Paradise Lost BR 12249
by John Milton
10 volumes (Reissue)
An epic poem based on the theme of mankind's fall from grace, loss of innocence, and the struggle to return to paradise. Elaborate symbolism is used to portray Satan's battle with God, descent into Hell, and seduction of Adam and Eve. 1993.

Irish Journal BR 12595
by Heinrich Böll
1 volume
The German author records his impressions of Ireland on a family trip made in the mid-1950s. He expresses his affection for the Irish people while he captures a country in transition before it catches up with the modern world. 1967.

Roth IRA Book: An Investor's Guide BR 12644
by Gobind Daryanani
4 volumes
Details the pros and cons of the Roth individual retirement account which, championed by Senator Roth, became law in 1998. This plan differs from the original IRA in that deposits are not tax deferred and earnings are never taxed. Discusses how to use with other retirement options. 1998.

The Healing Power of Faith: Science Explores Medicine's Last Great Frontier BR 12655
by Harold G. Koenig
3 volumes
Describes how religious faith can help prevent and heal cardiovascular disease, emotional illness, and a variety of other disorders. The author, a psychiatrist and professor, directs the Center for the Study of Religion/Spirituality and Health at Duke University. 1999.

Bookstore: The Life and Times of Jeannette Watson and Books & Co. BR 12665
by Lynne Tillman
3 volumes
History of the independent New York City bookstore owned and operated by Watson from 1978 until its closing in 1997. Based on extensive interviews, discusses the booklover who founded the enterprise and describes the writers and readers who frequented what became a legendary store. 1999.

Harvest Son: Planting Roots in American Soil BR 12668
by David Mas Masumoto
2 volumes
Sequel to Epitaph for a Peach (BR 10551). Japanese American farmer describes life and work on his family's orchard in California's Central Valley. Explores his cultural heritage by visiting his ancestral village in Japan and by recounting the arduous existence of his forebears, including those interned during World War II. 1998.

The Collected Poetry of Paul Laurence Dunbar BR 12719
by Paul Laurence Dunbar
4 volumes
Poetry by a nineteenth-century African American writer whose works transcend race. Includes the entire contents of a 1913 collection; sixty other poems, some found in manuscript form after Dunbar's death at thirty-three; and a biographical introduction by editor Joanne M. Braxton. "Sympathy" was authored during an assignment at the Library of Congress. 1993.

By the Light of the Glow-Worm Lamp: Three Centuries of Reflections on Nature BR 12721
edited by Alberto Manguel
4 volumes
Thirty-eight natural history essays about landscapes, birds, beasts, insects, and fish by such writers as Charles Darwin, Mark Twain, Henry David Thoreau, Herman Melville, Annie Dillard, Daniel Defoe, Rachel Carson, John James Audubon, Theodore Roosevelt, J.H. Fabre, and Vladimir Nabokov. 1998.

The Elements of Style BR 12727
by William Strunk and E.B. White
1 volume
A compendium of specific tips to encourage writers to be clear, brief, and bold. This fourth edition of E.B. White's revision of Strunk's classic style manual is modestly updated to accommodate gender references and to provide fresh examples. Contains a foreword by Roger Angell. 2000.

Into the Porcupine Cave and Other Odysseys: Adventures of an Occasional Naturalist BR 12731
by William W. Warner
2 volumes
Nature essays that depict outdoor wonders around the world. The author reminisces about summers he spent exploring New Jersey's Barnegat Bay in his youth, the coral reefs of Peleliu seen during his service in World War II, and solo hiking in the Maine wilderness at midlife. 1999.

Varsity Scout Leader Guidebook BR 12747
by Boy Scouts of America
2 volumes
Qualifications and responsibilities for the adult leader of Boy Scouts ages fourteen through seventeen. Explains the program and planning objectives, discusses leadership and age-appropriate behavior, and provides a parents' guide to protecting offspring from child abuse. 1996.

Vice: New and Selected Poems BR 12756
by Ai
2 volumes
Fifty-eight selections from five books published between 1973 and 1993 and eighteen new poems. In dramatic monologs, the speakers explore terror, desperation, and other raw emotions on topics such as abortion, beatings, child and wife abuse, politics, and race. National Book Award--Poetry. 1999.

Rocks of Ages: Science and Religion in the Fullness of Life BR 12768
by Stephen Jay Gould
2 volumes
The popular science writer and paleontologist offers a proposal for healing the rift between religion and science. Gould insists that the concerns of the two domains are properly different and that agreement to a principle of respectful noninterference between them could result in peaceful and even productive coexistence. 1999.

Old Fences, New Neighbors BR 12788
by Peter R. Decker
2 volumes
Explores the conflicts between the new and old west using the author's adopted county of Ouray, Colorado. Complex land-use issues driven by population explosion are forcing many long-term ranchers out of business. Discusses the history and the changes in the small agricultural town of Ridgway, which characterize the entire region. 1998.

Connections to the World: The Basic Concepts of Philosophy BR 12794
by Arthur C. Danto
3 volumes
A survey of modern philosophy and guide to problems in metaphysics and epistemology by a professor emeritus of philosophy at Columbia University. Examines the work of Plato, Berkeley, Descartes, Hume, and Wittgenstein, while exploring the topics of the singularity of philosophical thought, understanding, knowledge, and the world. 1989.

The Mercy: Poems BR 12822
by Philip Levine
1 volume
Thirty-seven poems in free verse celebrate human dignity and the value of work on the journey from youth to old age, innocence to knowledge, defeat to triumph, and inevitably from life to death. In the title poem, the author's mother arrives in the United States; the final work describes her funeral. 1999.

Oh, Wow! BR 12825
edited by Marc Maurer
1 volume
In this collection of personal accounts, members of the National Federation of the Blind discuss the importance of being given the opportunity to try, as well as the value of training and belief. In the title article Maurer discusses how key it is to recognize the significance of small triumphs and successes. 2000.

I Can Feel Blue on Monday BR 12826
edited by Marc Maurer
1 volume
This collection of vignettes "tells what blindness is and, perhaps equally important, what it is not." In the title article math professor Abraham Nemeth, the originator of the braille code for mathematics and sciences, describes his English teacher's frustration because Nemeth could not feel the color of a piece of paper. 2000.

For the Love of Books: One Hundred Fifteen Celebrated Writers on the Books They Love Most BR 13101
compiled by Ronald B. Shwartz
4 volumes
In brief essays, 115 writers--mostly American, British, and Canadian--identify three to six works that influenced or affected them most deeply and explain why. Respondents to editor Shwartz's invitation, arranged alphabetically, include Dave Barry, Rita Dove, Penelope Fitzgerald, Pete Hamill, Elmore Leonard, Ved Mehta, Joyce Carol Oates, Mario Puzo, and Kurt Vonnegut. 1999.

Preferred Lies and Other Tales: Skimming the Cream of a Life in Sports BR 13103
by Jack Whitaker
2 volumes
Reminiscences from a member of the Sportscasters Hall of Fame, who has been announcing televised sports events for almost fifty years. Includes tales of the first Super Bowl in 1967, the Triple Crown career highlight of Secretariat in 1973, golfing, tennis, racing, and baseball as well as some major players. 1998.

Lead Us into Temptation: The Triumph of American Materialism BR 13104
by James B. Twitchell
3 volumes
An analysis of late-twentieth-century consumer culture, arguing that, for Americans, consumer goods have replaced religion and bloodlines as signs of social identity. The author looks at the way logos define and unite subcultures, and maintains that the ownership of material goods provides many people with whatever sense of inner security they may possess. 1999.

Between Mothers and Sons: Women Writers Talk about Having Sons and Raising Men BR 13110
edited by Patricia Stevens
2 volumes
Mothers' memoirs about the challenges and pleasures of guiding a boy into adulthood. In "Soldier Son," a liberal, pacifist woman recounts the stressful process of understanding and coming to terms with her conservative, gun-loving offspring. Some strong language. 1999.

Blessed Assurance: A History of Evangelicalism in America BR 13115
by Randall Balmer
2 volumes
Examines how religion has shaped American life, from evangelicalism in colonial times to the advent of the religious right in the late twentieth century. Explores the effects of the First Amendment on culture and how religious movements in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries influenced subsequent politics. 1999.

Animal ER: Extraordinary Stories of Hope and Healing from One of the World's Leading Veterinary Hospitals BR 13136
by Tufts University School of Veterinary Medicine
2 volumes
Anecdotes from an animal emergency room, where specialists handle all kinds of patients: dogs hit by cars or mauled in fights, cats with cancer, exotic species, and creatures with mystery ailments that require medical sleuthing. Workers must also deal with the issue of putting pets to sleep for financial reasons. 1999.

A Spoonful of Ginger: Irresistible Health-Giving Recipes from Asian Kitchens BR 13155
by Nina Simonds
3 volumes
Recipes inspired by the Asian holistic philosophy of eating meals that are good for you, seasonally appropriate, and flavorful, with a balance of yin and yang--the complementary forces that cool or warm the body. Discusses foods that help relieve various medical conditions; includes formulas for herbal tonics. 1999.

The Race: The Uncensored Story of How America Beat Russia to the Moon BR 13156
by James Schefter
3 volumes
Longtime space reporter recounts the cold war race to the moon, providing behind-the-scenes details about NASA. Chronicles the successes and failures of both the Russians and the Americans. Explains how U.S. scientists finally won the competition by placing a man on the lunar surface in 1969. Some strong language. 1999.

Rome Reshaped: Jubilees 1300-2000 BR 13159
by Desmond O'Grady
2 volumes
Chronicles seven centuries of Roman Catholic jubilees--twenty-six periods of celebration designated by the church since 1300. Explores associated pilgrimages to Rome and efforts at worldwide spiritual renewal. Anticipates papal efforts to reassert the universal relevance of the Holy See during Jubilee 2000, the first to coincide with a millennium. 1999.

The Final Harvest: Medjugorje at the End of the Century BR 13167
by Wayne Weible
2 volumes
A sympathetic account of the apparitions at the village of Medjugorje in Bosnia-Herzegovina, where the Blessed Virgin Mary reportedly appeared regularly between 1981 into 1999. Discusses the Virgin's pleas for humankind's spiritual renewal, the experiences of pilgrims, and the possible impact of these events upon the world. 1999.

Risks of Faith: The Emergence of a Black Theology of Liberation, 1968-1998 BR 13181
by James H. Cone
2 volumes
A professor of systematic theology at Union Theological Seminary evaluates the black liberation struggle over thirty years in the context of Christ's teachings. Argues that the African American church provides a foundation for political and social activism. Identifies Martin Luther King Jr. as one of the nation's most important theologians. 1999.

James Joyce BR 13182
by Edna O'Brien
2 volumes
An Irish writer pays tribute to the author of Ulysses (BR 10287) in this short biography. Describes him as "a tragic man with a staggering genius for whom humor was a weapon." She discusses his self-imposed exile and his elopement with an uneducated girl, and evaluates their influence on his writing. 1999.

Dog Heart: A Memoir BR 13185
by Breyten Breytenbach
2 volumes
The lyrical reminiscences of the South African poet, writer, and ex-revolutionary about the country of his childhood. He recalls folk heroes and political events under apartheid while exploring external and internal landscapes. 1999.

Braille: Into the Next Millennium BR 13188
by National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped
4 volumes
Essays examining the history and future of braille include such topics as the development of the literary, Nemeth, and music codes; braille production; legal issues; library service; and literacy and computer access concerns. Edited by Judith Dixon, with a foreword by Frank Kurt Cylke and a preface by Kenneth Jernigan. 2000.


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