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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

New York Times Literary Treat of the Week...

(On January 28, this Blog posted an obituary notice about Louis Auchincloss, who passed away two days before at age 92. The following is about his final work.)

Auchincloss, Louis. A Voice From Old New York: A Memoir of My Youth. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

Along with being born into high society (like Edith Wharton before him) Louis Auchincloss also had the luxury of being able to do what he wanted in life regardless of peer opinion. An illuminiating French literature course at Yale University inspired his first novel. When it was rejected by Scribner's, Auchincloss turned to law specializing in trusts and estates. This memoir however shows how permanent was the writing bug's bite in that little is said about law school or the practice of it except that his early firm experience was shared with the famous Dulles brothers (Allen was an early director of the Central Intelligence Agency; John Foster served as Secretary of State under Dwight Eisenhower). Auchincloss shares remembrances of family including distant cousin Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis during her time as a book editor; and friends such as Brooke Astor who said she wore jewelry to charity project events because it was expected of her. Everyone mentioned who helped influence the five dozen books Auchincloss would produce in his lifetime are treated with kindness. This was due to Auchincloss being born at a time when people (in his words) "were not raised to show our problems or disappointments in public."

Reviewed by Librarian, Bob.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

New Non-Fiction Audiobook Arrivals!

In 1943, while World War II raged on in the Pacific Theater, Lieutenant Louis Zamperini was the only survivor of a deadly plane crash in the middle of the ocean. Zamperini had a troubled youth, yet honed his athletic skills and made it all the way to the 1934 Olympics in Berlin. However, what lay before him was a physical gauntlet unlike anything he had encountered before: thousands of miles of open ocean, a small raft, and no food or water.

Best selling author Lisa Scottoline presents her second memoir. Inspired be her weekly column in The Philadelphia Inquirer, Scottoline offers an updated account of her personal life. From her relationships with her ex-husbands to her adult daughter moving away from home, Scottoline's wit and humor will delight fans and casual listeners alike.

Award-winning Washington Post writer Jane Leavy chronicles Mickey Mantle's baseball career and explains how the legendary slugger's exploits directly affected an entire generation of Americans.

Nora Ephron, author of the immensely popular I Feel Bad About My Neck, offers an honest, hilarious critique of contemporary life and what, if anything, the future has to offer.

Gary Dell'Abate, notable for being the executive producer for The Howard Stern Show, presents a rip-roaring memoir. Here, Dell'Abate chronicles his journey though life, from his chaotic childhood to being the producer (and the butt of many jokes) of one of radio's most successful shows.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Books Soon to be published...

Awakened by PC Cast, January 4th
The Lake of Dreams by Kim Edwards, January 4th
Left Neglected by Lisa Genova, January 4th
Family Affair by Debbie Macomber, January 4th
Bird Cloud: A Memoir by Annie Proulx, January 4th
The Empty Family: Stories by Colm Toibin, January 4th
The Imperfectionists by Tom Rachman, January 4th
Under the Mercy Trees by Heather Newton, January 4th

New York Times Literary Treat of the Week....

Bush, George W. Decision Points. Crown Publishers.

Some detractors had hoped he would fade into permanent obscurity. Yet at this writing tax cuts originally formulated in the last years of George W. Bush’s presidency are being signed into law. This memoir of the 43rd president further highlights his legacy in telling the experiences and thought processes that affected Bush’s handling of major issues. He is quick to point out that those “weapons of mass destruction” in Iraq and the means of making it was a belief also held by Bill Clinton and John Kerry. Bush accuses the then governor of Louisiana and other state representatives of dragging their heels in asking for federal help in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. But he concedes that the “Mission Accomplished” speech on the aircraft carrier Abraham Lincoln in May 2003 was a major blunder given all that still needed to be accomplished in the terrorism war. Divided along themes instead of a day by day account of those two terms, the former Chief Executive weaves in family, religion, and impressions of foreign heads of state and political foes. The last part includes an affectionate salute to the late Senator Edward Kennedy.

For more about George W. Bush and his presidency, the Merrick Library has the following:

Rove, Karl. Courage and Consequence.
Bush, Laura. Spoken From the Heart.
Sanger, David. The Inheritance.
Barnett, Thomas. Great Powers.
Haass, Richard. War of Necessity, War of Choice.

Reviewed by Librarian, Bob.

Bob Feller

On December 15 Baseball Hall of Fame pitcher Bob Feller passed away at age 92. Long before sports television regularly monitored the speed of major league pitches the Iowa-born right hander had a fastball once clocked at 104 miles per hour. It enabled Feller to win 266 games all with the Cleveland Indians, lead the American League in strikeouts seven times and be the first pitcher to win twenty games before the age of 21. Feller's three no hitters included the only one ever thrown on opening day (1940), and his twelve one-hitters still astound baseball fans even after more than half a century. Bob Feller was also the first major leaguer to enlist after Pearl Harbor, eventually serving with distinction as a Navy gun captain throughout World War Two.
On June 4 the Merrick Blog reviewed "Satch, Dizzy and Rapid Robert: The Wild Saga of Interracial Baseball Before Jackie Robinson" by Timothy Gay, recalling the off-season "barnstorming" of star performers including Bob Feller. The Library also has these titles telling of baseball's history:

Golenbock, Peter. Amazin': The Miraculous History of New York's Most Beloved Baseball Team
Smith, Curt. Storied Stadiums: Baseball History Through Its Ballparks
Vincent, Fay. The Only Game In Town: Baseball Stars of the 1930s and 1940s Talk About the Game They Loved
Schlossberg, Dan. The New Baseball Catalog

Friday, December 17, 2010

Books to Movies...

Out of My Head: A Novel by Mark Polizzotti
The list author says:
"In theatres January 7th, 2011. Movie version titled "Unknown White Male"

A man awakens from a coma, only to discover that someone has taken on his identity and that no one, (not even his wife), believes him. With the help of a young woman, he sets out to prove who he is.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

New York Times Literary Treat of the Week....

Winchester, Simon. Atlantic: Great Sea Battles, Heroic Discoveries, Titanic Storms and A Vast Ocean of A Million Stories. Harper/HarperCollins.

What does the most prolific historian of a still new century choose next to explore after tackling everything from volcanoes to the Oxford English Dictionary? Write a "biography" about the Atlantic Ocean! Its name is of unknown origin and was first used in the fifth century B.C. by the Greek historian Herodotus. The Atlantic's birth is said to have been the end product of a continental split between South America and Africa. Ancient Phoenicians took the initial step in exploring the divide by visiting the coast of Spain and finding a dye from snails that was worth more than gold. Romans who conquered Britain would go no further west out of fear. It would take another fifteen hundred years before the navigator Americo Vespucci's travels along the Brazilian coast verified there was a new continent on the other side rather than the "India" hoped for by Columbus. Winchester weaves in literary perspectives about the Atlantic including Shakepeare's "The Tempest" (a new movie version starring Helen Mirren is currently out in theaters) and Melville's "Moby Dick."

Also by Simon Winchester at Merrick Library:

A Crack In The Edge Of The World
The Fracture Zone: A Return To The Balkans
Krakatoa: The Day The World Exploded
The Man Who Loved China
The Map That Changed The World
The Meaning Of Everything
The Professor And The Madman

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Books on Sale Soon

Bloody Valentine by Melissa de La Cruz, December 28th
The Life You Want by Bob Greene, December 28th
Twelve Steps to a Compassionate Life by Karen Armstrong, December 28th
Sexy Forever by Suzanne Somers, December 28th
Dead Zero by Stephen Hunter, December 28th

Friday, December 10, 2010

NYT Magazine Article

Lusty Tales and Hot Sales: Romance E-Books Thrive

Sarah Wendell, blogger and co-author of “Beyond Heaving Bosoms,” is passionate about romance novels.

Click on the Title for the full article.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

New York Times Literary Treat of the Week....

Cheever, Susan. Louisa May Alcott. Simon and Schuster.

If ever a parallel could be drawn between biographer and subject one finds it in this work. Louisa May Alcott's father, Bronson, was a largely unsuccessful educational reformer whose work seemed more important than his large family in Concord, Massachusetts. Susan Cheever's acclaimed writer father, John, might be seen to compliment Bronson in his absences for the sake of literature. It was fortunate that Louisa found inspiration in famous neighbors such as Ralph Waldo Emerson, who at times helped the Alcott family financially. Part of why Louisa eventually became a writer was also to keep everyone out of debt. Her experiences as a Civil War nurse in Washington, D.C. and as a seamstress and magazine editor may have given Henry James the idea to write his novel "Daisy Miller." Louisa never really enjoyed the fame and fortune she achieved writing "Little Women" and other works having lost two of her beloved sisters and becoming guardian to the daughter of one of them at age 48.

Also by Susan Cheever at Merrick Library:

As Good As I Could Be
Desire: Where Sex Meets Addiction
My Name Is Bill
Note Found In A Bottle

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

New DVDs!!

"Dancing Across Borders" - acclaimed documentary about a young Cambodian's quest to be accepted into the accaimed School of American Ballet

"Lovely Still" - romantic drama starring Martin Landau, Ellen Burstyn and Elizabeth Banks

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

New Audiobook Arrivals!

When detective Eve Dallas receives a cryptic message from a woman bleeding to death in the street, she begins to notice that her latest case has come with a number of interesting side effects: visions of the deceased, familiarity with rooms she's never seen before, and fluency in Russian. Desperate to be free of her new gifts, Eve pursues the facts until she discovers a link between Beata's disappearance and the disappearance of eight other young women.

A rookie paramedic pulls a young woman alive from her totaled car, a first rescue that begins a lifelong tangle of love and wreckage. Sheila Arsenault is a gorgeous enigma, streetwise and tough-talking, with haunted eyes, fierce desires, and a never-look-back determination. Peter Webster, as straight an arrow as they come, falls for her instantly and entirely. Soon Sheila and Peter are embroiled in an intense love affair, married, and parents to a baby daughter. Like the crash that brought them together, it all happened so fast.

Twenty years have passed since forensic medical examiner Kay Scarpetta joined the Air Force to help pay for med school. Her time in service scored an exclusive training fellowship at the Dover Air Force Base and recently propelled her into her new position as the chief of the high-tech Cambridge Forensic Center in Massachusetts. However, when Scarpetta faces the toughest case of her career, she is forced to put both her reputation and career is put on the line.

In fifteenth century Rome, Toby O'Dare, a recently retired government assassin, receives a visit from the angel Malchiah. The heavenly figure instructs O'Dare to solve a grisly murder. But during the investigation, O'Dare discovers that the city is being haunted by an ancient demon and that solving the murder may have disastrous consequences for all of Rome.

Lacey Yeager is an aspiring artist who dreams of making it big in New York City. Over the course of 20 years, she climbs the rungs of NYC's art scene, charming those she meets with her energetic personality. Although her career soars to new heights, Lacey discovers that the life of an artist isn't as glamorous as she once thought.

Monday, December 6, 2010

New DVD!

Out December 7th
"Mademoiselle Chambon" - multi-award winning drama from France with a twist on the age-old love triangle

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Author Signing. Book Revue


Wednesday, December 8th, 7pm
Host of Martha Stewart’s Everyday Baking from Everyday Food JOHN BARRICELLI will speak about and sign his new cookbook, The SoNo Baking Company Cookbook: The Best Sweet and Savory Recipes for Every Occasion.

A regular on The Martha Stewart Show and host of Everyday Food on PBS, John Barricelli has become a household name in the world of baking. Since its opening in 2005, John’s SoNo Baking Company & Café—nestled between the marinas of Water Street in South Norwalk, Connecticut—has quickly become a sought-after destination for artisanal breads, specialty cakes, delicate pastries, and much more. Featuring nearly
150 carefully written, foolproof recipes for sweet and savory breads and baked goods, The SoNo Baking Company Cookbook is a masterful, comprehensive, and inviting cookbook with accessible recipes ranging from rustic favorites to sophisticated indulgences.

A third generation baker, John Barricelli graduated from the Culinary Institute of America and worked at River Café, Le Bernardin, and the Four Seasons Restaurant. He owned and ran Cousin John’s Café and Bakery in Brooklyn for ten years. John worked at Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, becoming a featured chef on Everyday Food, and in 2008 he became host of the spin-off Everyday Baking from Everyday Food. In 2005, John opened the SoNo Baking Company & Café in South Norwalk, Connecticut.

2010's Best Cookbooks: Real-Life Labors Of Love.

Put simply, 2010 was a monster year for cookbooks. It's the last thing you'd expect in the heyday of the food blog, the TV tie-in, the crowd-sourced recipe. But what we have here is an overwhelming display of carefully crafted books produced after years of research, recipe-testing and tireless detective work.

Visit this link for the full article:

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Author Signing - Book Revue


Tuesday, December 7th, 7pm
Historical mystery novelist PETER QUINN will speak about and sign his new novel, The Man Who Never Returned.

On the sultry evening of August 6, 1930, in the first summer of the Great Depression, Joseph Force Crater, recently appointed a justice of the New York State Supreme Court by Governor Franklin Roosevelt, bid two dinner companions good night and hailed a cab. Off he went into history, myth, and urban legend. Now, eighty years later, Judge Crater’s disappearance remains one of the most enduring and fascinating unsolved mysteries in the chronicles of Gotham.

In The Man Who Never Returned Peter Quinn brings back Fintan Dunne, the relentless, skeptical ex-cop/detective from Hour of the Cat, an puts him on the Crater case. The year is 1955, the silver anniversary of the Judge’s vanishing and a last golden moment for solving the puzzle before the people and clues follow Crater into the
fast-receding past. In a search full of unexpected twists, Dunne uncovers the shocking truth.

Peter Quinn is the author of two novels, Hour of the Cat and Banished Children of Eve, and an acclaimed collection of essays, Looking for Jimmy: A Search for Irish America. He served as chief speech writer for New York Governors Hugh Carey and Mario Cuomo. As well as publishing articles and reviews in The New York Times, Wilson
Quarterly, American Heritage and other publications, Quinn has been a commentator in Ric Burn’s New York: A Documentary Film; the Academy Award-nominated Passion of St. Rose; and The American Experience: Stephen Foster. He co-wrote McSorley’s New York, which won a local Emmy, and was an advisor for Martin Scorsese’s Gangs of New York.
Born, raised, and educated in the Bronx, he now lives in Hastings-on-Hudson.

New York Times Literary Treat of the Week....

Morris, Edmund. Colonel Roosevelt.

"Colonel" was the form of address preferred by Theodore Roosevelt after leaving the Presidency in 1909. "Bully" was the term used by detractors to describe Roosevelt's efforts to get the office back. The "Colonel" had helped bring the Executive branch out of the isolationism of a previous century to world involvement in a new one. He felt his former friend William Howard Taft and eventually Woodrow Wilson were trying to turn back the clock especially in the face of unavoidable war. When conflict came, Roosevelt offered to reorganize the "Rough Riders" which had made him a national hero only to be told he was behind the times about "the art of war." It fell to Roosevelt's four sons to carry the family mantle into battle which tragically resulted in Quentin, the youngest, being shot down over France. Privately never getting over that loss, it tolled the end of Roosevelt as an influence in America which Morris details thoroughly in this last part of his history of the twenty-sixth president.

Other Books by Edmund Morris at Merrick Library:

Dutch: A Memoir Of Ronald Reagan
Theodore Rex