Friday, June 27, 2008

Music at the Bookstore 6-9pm Saturday the 28th

Tomorrow, Saturday June 28, 2008, 6-9pm:

Celtic/Folk musician Steve Haug is back!
Tea and cookies will also be available.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Send your name to the Moon!

A Big Thank You to scifilaura for pointing this one out:
The Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter team is collecting names to send to the Moon. You can add yours here - the deadline is June 27, 2008.

Cool stuff!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Food Trails

I've just finished a book on the history of trade. What do we have at the bookshop to further my knowledge? Mark Kurlansky's books 'Cod', 'Salt' and 'The Big Oyster' come to mind. I enjoy his style which is a mix of world history, personal accounts and receipes. I've learned of the international reach of cod as a foodstuff which ties in with my history of trade book.

next book I found was 'And a Bottle of Rum". How can you walk past that title. The author Wayne Curtis claims to tell 'A History of the New World in Ten Cocktails'. We start with the origin of rum and it's involvement with the slave trade. African slaves were needed for the sugar plantations, rum was traded to African chiefs. Planter's punch evolved around this time. The Daiquiri came in with Prohibition, and rum and Coca Cola? WWII. At the back of the book are recipes.

'Curry. A Tale of Cooks and Conquerors' is the last book I found on
the shelves during my first quick search. Lizzie Cunningham treats us to the origins of popular dishes such as biryani, jalfrezi and vindaloo. This is an exhaustively researched book. Each foreign invasion over India's long history contributed to its cooking styles and ingredients.And it was a two way street- think of Ian Rankin's character Rebus enjoying a curry after a long night's investigating in the pubs around Edinburgh.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Tasha Tudor, beloved children's illustrator, RIP

Tasha Tudor's website reports -

"It is with great sadness that we must tell you Tasha Tudor, 92, passed away in her Vermont home on June 18, 2008 surrounded by family and friends. We have created an online memorial website and invite all who loved Tasha to share their feelings and memories in the Memory Book section. Memorial Website


We thank you for supporting Tasha Tudor's lifestyle and artwork during her long career. We hope that Tasha's message of 'taking joy' in all that one does will be remembered as we pass through this difficult time together."

We have several of her books here in the Children's section and they are the type of book to cherish for generations. She will be missed.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Summer Reading Lists + one of my old favorites

Wow, the titles they require kids to read today! I just started receiving the summer reading lists and am ordering the books as fast as I can. Two trends are noticeable: a) there are a lot more titles required of today's kids, and b) there are more 'modern' titles (as opposed to classics - but that may be my age-bias). Oh - three trends - those making the list don't always check availability! There are a number of titles that are in the reprinting stage, which means the scant few copies at the library are IT...the booksellers can't order in what isn't printed. Cold Sassy Tree, in particular, is a problem.

The charm and the curse of the Summer Reading List is some of these books will probably make the kids groan and wish they could rent the movie and some will change the readers' lives. It's hard for a reader to know until they're into the middle of the book. Here's to the gamble represented by a new book!

One of my required reading experiences was John Hersey's Hiroshima. It is a description of the actual events during and after the first atom bomb was dropped on Hiroshima. It follows individuals as they deal with surviving the bomb and its aftermath. It is non-judgmental but bluntly and eloquently talks about consequences. It is short, but it is powerful and mind-altering and conscience-forming. I didn't really want to read this but it was required...and boy, it blew my mind.

Anyone else have a favorite out there?

Friday, June 13, 2008

Making Your Money Go Farther

Local Reisterstown author Joseph Ganem has put a number of handy calculators up on his website. Want to know whether it's better to drive further to a gas station that has cheaper gas? Are you a Mom trying to decide whether it's better to go back to work, despite the cost of daycare, gas, etc.? How much do you really save when you buy on sale? These questions and more are offered by the author of The Two Headed Quarter: How to See Through Deceptive Numbers and Save Money on Everything You Buy.

The Two Headed Quarter won a gold medal in the category "Finance/Investment/Economics" of the 2008 Independent Publisher Awards at Book Expo America this past May. Congrats to Joe and keep those tips coming!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Wine & Wizards this Friday, Tea with the Author Saturday

Tomorrow, Friday June 6, 6-9pm Wine & Wizards

New for summer - casual wine, munchies and music. Our wine is provided by Vino 100 though they cannot be with us tonight. Tea and hot drinks will be available for those who choose not to drink wine.

Our MUSIC will be provided by ACCIO BODYGUARD , a fairly new Harry Potter-themed group put together by the members of The Moaning Myrtles and The Butterbeer Experience.

Saturday, June 7th, 3-5pm Tea with an Author

Join Mohamed Mughal, author of "Resolution 786," for tea and cookies.

Adam Hueghlomm, the product of a mixed marriage, was raised as both a Muslim and a Jew. Hueghlomm’s fate unfolds through his childhood in Africa, his life as an adult in America, and his experiences during the Iraq War. Using the twenty-first century’s first war as a backdrop, Hueghlomm simultaneously participates in the twenty-second century’s most celebrated trial, a thought-provoking courtroom confrontation which charges the Lord with crimes against humanity.

Thoughtful, challenging, and smart, Resolution 786 weaves the black humor of Vonnegut through a tapestry of Kafkaesque imagery to create a vision of one man’s troubled relationship with God.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

A Kiss Before the Apocalypse by Thomas E. Sniegoski

A Kiss Before the Apocalypse, by Thomas E. Sniegoski, is an original blend of Private-Detective-Noir and Angel-Demon-Armaggedon genres. The characters are extremely well-developed, as are the scenery descriptions.

Remy is an angel that walked away from his job after the battle with Lucifer and his mates. When we meet him, he is living among humans on Earth, with a dog, a wife with a terminal illness, and a private investigator's license. One of his surveillance targets commits suicide but manages not to die. In the process of talking to his police friends about it, he finds out NO ONE is dying...and the hospitals are getting clogged. Then his former colleagues, the Seraphim, assign him to a missing persons case - the Angel of Death. Everything proceeds to go to Hell in a Handbasket.

Buffy and Angel fans will like this - but then so will Raymond Chandler, Simon Green, and Jim Butcher fans.

My absolute favorite scene was the dog trashing the living room, despite the fact that Remy told him not to. It just goes to show that you may be an angel - and able to talk to all creatures - but that doesn't mean the creatures will LISTEN.