Saturday, March 04, 2006

Preview Shelf -- Youth Director Shares Educational Columns

Crawfordsville District Public Library youth director Kathy Fredrickson is offering patrons an article from the February 5th Journal and Courier. Columnist Doreen Nagle writes "Use fun to bring back the love of reading" as she notes that children can turn away from reading in favor of other pastimes. She says, One reason older kids start to lose interest in reading is that so much of what they have to read is dry. Find out about your children's curriculum, then take them to the library or bookstore to pick out books that are more to their liking on the same subjects. She lists activities parents can do with their children. Such activities are what take place in our youth department. That's why so many families visit to check the expanding program schedule.

Dinarzad's Children is an anthology of contemporary Arab American fiction edited by Pauline Kaldas and Khaled Mattawa. There are tales about Muslims and Christians, recent immigrants and fully assimilated Americans, teenagers and grandmothers, a good addition to the diverse body of American literature. The PEN anthology Strange Times, My Dear aids an understanding of Iran's contemporary culture with a wide selection of prose and poetry. For the first time, in translation, selections from the works of forty writers from three generations, both men and women, are available after that country had been off-limits to Americans for 25 years.

An Alchemy of Mind by Diane Ackerman combines an artist's eye with a scientist's hand to elucidate the magic and mysteries of the human mind. In addition to explaining memory, thought, emotion, dreams, and language acquisition, she reports on the latest discoveries about trauma and male versus female brains.

Are Men Necessary? is Maureen Dowd's exploration into the mysteries and muddles of sexual combat in America. She shows how feminist triumphs backfired on women, and how women's lib has been less a steady trajectory than a confusing zigzag. Al Franken's new book is The Truth (with jokes), and the dust cover says he wants to set aside partisan bitterness and talk about the better future Americans can build together for their children.

A book about where we live, A Tiny Home To Call Your Own by Patricia Foreman and Andy Lee, explains techniques to live well in just right houses. Another new book featuring stunning homes built or remodeled to be healthier to live in and easier on the environment is Redux (defined as brought back, restored, revived) by Jennifer Roberts. Leslie Clagett's The Smart Approach to the Organized Home targets less clutter and more storage. Jane Jarrell's Simple Hospitality is a hint book with a philosophical approach to practical, successful and happy events.

Hidden Kitchens from NPR's Morning Edition Kitchen Sisters Nikki Silva & Davia Nelson offers stories, recipes, and comments as the two adventurously cross the country in search of secret, long-lost, or odd kitchen setups. How to Break an Egg has 1,453 kitchen tips, substitutions, and clever techniques from the editors and readers of Fine Cooking magazine.

House Calls and Hitching Posts by Dorcas Hoover contains stories from Elton Lehman's medical practice among the Amish in Ohio. One Woman's Army is Janis Karpinski's experience as the first female general ever to command troops in a combat zone; she was made responsible for the Abu Ghraib scandal, and she asks why she was the most prominent target of the investigations as her 3,400 US forces were rebuilding a civilian prison system left in shambles by Saddam Hussein

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