October 2009 Large Print

 Why Our Health Matters by Andrew Weil

Discusses what has gone wrong with the American way of health to create the crisis in which the author feels the U.S. is embroiled and offers a solution that calls for a completely new culture of health and medicine.

 Soul of a Dog by Jon Katz

As Katz continues his zestful, moving, and immensely popular chronicle of life on Bedlam Farm, he conducts a running inquiry into the question of whether animals have souls. He looks to Aristotle, Aquinas, and Jeremy Bentham; muses on the evolution of human and animal relationships; and talks with a preacher; but mostly he carefully observes his beloved animals and assesses the profound joy and solace they arouse in himself and others. In his latest irresistible and thoughtful farm dispatches, Katz shares his adventures with Rose, a serious and hardworking border collie, and Lenore, a loving Lab; marvels over an unusually bold chicken named Henrietta; puts up with his jeering goats; and submits to the blatant manipulation of his crafty steer, Elvis, all the while contemplating the mysteries of animal consciousness. As close as our bonds with animals become, Katz avers, we must recognize and respect how divergent our inner lives are from theirs. And though we must take responsibility for animals, Katz has no doubt that we need them more than they need us.–Seaman, Donna Copyright 2009 Booklist

 A Big Little Life by Dean R. Koontz

She arrived with her name, Trixie. I joked sometimes that it sounded more like a stripper than a dog. But if it sounded more like a stripper than a dog, it sounded more like an elf or a fairy than a stripper. Elves and fairies are magical beings , and so was she. A heartwarming memoir of a very special dog.

 Traveling with Pomegrenates by Sue Monk Kidd

In a probing literary collaboration that moves from Greece to their home in Charleston, S.C., novelist Kidd (The Secret Life of Bees) and her daughter, Taylor, explore and record the changing stages of a woman’s life. At 50, Kidd, a wife and mother who had found fulfillment as a writer in recent years, was approaching menopause and anxious about tapping the “green fuse,” or regenerative energy, for the next step in her life. Traveling to Greece with her daughter, Taylor, 22, when the latter graduated from college in 1998, Kidd recognized that her daughter, who had just received a stinging rejection from a graduate school, was also undergoing another kind of wrenching transformation-from child to adult faced with decisions about what to do with her own life. In passages narrated in turn by Kidd and Taylor, the two create a gently affectionate filial dance around the other, in the manner of the fertility myth of Persephone and her mother, Demeter. In travels through Greece, Turkey and later France, Kidd and Taylor found strength and inspiration on their respective journeys in the lives of Athena, the Virgin Mary and Joan of Arc, but mostly through a new understanding and appreciation of each other. Although the “maiden-mother-crone” symbolism grows repetitive and forced, their’s is a moving journey. (Sept.) Publisher’s Weekly

 Spartan Gold by Clive Cussler

If you’re reading a novel, and you meet a fella called Hadeon Bondaruk, you just know it: this guy’s a villain. Villains get the really cool names. Our heroes, on the other hand, a husband-and-wife team of professional treasure hunters, are Sam and Remi Fargo, OK names but not as memorable which kind of describes the novel, too: OK but not memorable. While exploring the Great Pocomoke Swamp in Delaware, Sam and Remi find, hidden away at the edge of a river, a World War II-era German mini-submarine. But how did it get there? And could the bottle of wine they find inside the sub really be part of a set of bottles on which the emperor Napoleon fashioned a map showing the hidden location of a pair of solid gold pillars, originally hidden in the Pennine Alps 2,500 years ago? Well, of course it could, and soon the Fargos are fighting for their very lives against the enormously powerful Bondaruk, who has a real taste for some old wine. The story moves at a brisk clip, and Hadeon is a scenery-chewing villain, but, finally, the book feels flat. If you read thrillers, you’ve seen most of this before, and done better, too (imagine, say, what James Rollins might do with this story). For Cussler devotees.–Pitt, David Copyright 2009 Booklist

 The White Queen by Philippa Gregory

The queen of British historical fiction (The Other Boleyn Girl) kicks off a new series with the story of Elizabeth Woodville Grey, whose shifting alliances helped the War of the Roses take root. The marriage of 22-year-old Yorkist King Edward IV to 27-year-old widow Elizabeth brings a sea change in loyalties: Elizabeth’s Lancastrian family becomes Edward’s strongest supporters, while Edward’s closest adviser, the ambitious earl of Warwick, joins with Edward’s brother George to steal the English crown. History buffs from Shakespeare on have speculated about this fateful period, especially the end of Edward and Elizabeth’s two sons, and Gregory invents plausible but provocative scenarios to explore those mysteries; she is especially poignant depicting Elizabeth in her later years, when her allegiance shifts toward Richard III (who may have killed her sons). Gregory earned her international reputation evoking sex, violence, love and betrayal among the Tudors; here she adds intimate relationships, political maneuvering and battlefield conflicts as well as some well-drawn supernatural elements. Gregory’s newest may not be as fresh as earlier efforts, but she captures vividly the terrible inertia of war. (Aug.) Publisher’s Weekly

 A Vote of Confidence by Robin Lee Hatcher

Beautiful and single Guinevere Arlington knows her “place” in the early 20th century. She just refuses to stay there. As she runs for mayor–and falls in love with her opponent–Gwen realizes winning may come at too high a price.

The Missing by Beverly Lewis

The reigning queen of Amish fiction is back with another tale of secrets, love, and relationships between “Plain Folk” and Englishers. Determined to find her mother who left the community, 21-year-old Grace Byler decides not to marry her fiance and meets Englisher Heather Lange, who has come to the community because of her own mother. Together they travel in search of Grace’s mother. Verdict Lewis has penned another touching novel with well-drawn characters and a compelling plot. It is sure to be in high demand by the author’s many fans and anyone who enjoys Amish stories. Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.

 206 Bones by Kathy Reichs

Awaking bound in an underground tunnel, forensic anthropologist Temperance “Tempe” Brennan struggles to put together the events leading up to her abduction. She remembers accompanying her ex-husband, Montreal detective Andrew Ryan, to Chicago to check out a cold case-where she learned that someone has accused her of bungling her initial postmortem. Professional feathers ruffled, Tempe returns to Quebec to clear her name. Her fellow examiners are also on edge as a new pathologist displays an unerring ability to find errors in their work. Verdict This 12th forensic thriller in the series (after Devil Bones) will delight fans of medical mysteries by Patricia Cornwell and Tess Gerritsen. Reichs is a forensic anthropologist, and she’s a heck of a lot of fun to read. Highly recommended. [See Prepub Alert, Library Journal 4/1/09.]-Karen Kleckner, Deerfield P.L., IL Copyright 2009 Reed Business  Information.

 Plain Perfect by Beth Wiseman

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