Tuesday, October 26, 2010

History - Rivalries and Voyages

My Thoughts Be Bloody: The Bitter Rivalry Between Edwin and John Wilkes Booth that Led to an American Tragedy by Nora Titone
The scene of John Wilkes Booth shooting Abraham Lincoln in Ford's Theatre is among the most vivid and indelible images in American history. The literal story of what happened on April 14, 1865, is familiar: Lincoln was killed by John Wilkes Booth, a lunatic enraged by the Union victory and the prospect of black citizenship. Yet who Booth really was -- besides a killer-- is less well known. The magnitude of his crime has obscured for generations a startling personal story that was integral to his motivation. This sweeping family saga revives an extraordinary figure whose name has been missing, until now, from the story of President Lincoln's death. Edwin Booth, John Wilkes's older brother by four years, was in his day the biggest star of the American stage.

The Voyage of the Beagle by Charles Darwin with introduction by David Quammen
When Charles Darwin revealed his radical theories of biology in 1859, he sparked fierce controversy that continues to this day. Here is the journal that started it all -- Darwin's gripping first-person account of his landmark voyage to South America, with his original interpretations of the Galapagos ecosystem and the impact of nature and selection. Best-selling nature writer and biography David Quammen introduces the story of the HMS Beagle, which set sail in 1831 to chart the waters off South America. Darwin, age 22, enlisted as ship's naturalist on a journey that became the defining event of his life.

Friday, October 22, 2010


Darwin in Galapagos: Footstep to a New World by K. Thalia Grant and Gregory B. Estes
In 1835, during his voyage on HMS Beagle, Charles Darwin spent several weeks in Galapagos exploring the islands and making extensive notes on their natural history. This is the first book to recreate Darwin's historic visit to the islands, following in his footsteps day by day and island by island as he records all that he observes around him.

Signature in the Cell: DNA and the Evidence for Intelligent Design by Stephen C. Meyer
One hundred fifty years ago, Charles Darwin revolutionized biology, but did he refute intelligent design (ID)? In this book, Meyer argues that he did not. Much confusion surrounds the theory of intelligent design. Frequently misinterpreted by the media, politicians, and local school boards, intelligent design can be defended on purely scientific grounds in accordance with the same rigorous methods that apply to every proposed origin-of-life theory.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Harvest Moon

Harvest Moon by Mercedes Lackey
Kidnapping Persephone should have been an easy task. But in the Five Hundred Kingdoms, nothing's ever simple -- and the wrong blonde goddess is stolen by mistake, leaving Prince Leopold without his new bride. At least until he braves the realm of the dead to get her back.

Valeria's Cross by Kathi Macias & Susan Wales
After her first love is martyred, Valeria, the daughter of Roman Emperor Diocletian is forced to marry his murderer. Can her marriage survive if it's built on religious opposition? Will she?

The Countess by Rebecca Johns

In 1611, Countess Ersebet Bathory, a powerful Hungarian noblewoman, stood helpless as masons walled her inside her castle tower, dooming her to spend her final years in solitary confinement. Her crime: the gruesome murders of dozens of female servants , mostly young girls tortured to death for displeasing their ruthless mistress. Her opponents painted her as a blood-thirsty skrata--a witch--a portrayal that would expand to grotesque proportions through the centuries.

The Lost and Forgotten Languages of Shanghai by Ruiyan Xu
Li Jing, a successful happily married businessman, is dining at a grand hotel in Shanghai when a gas explosion shatters the building. A shard of glass neatly pierces Li Jing's forehead, obliterating his ability to speak Chinese. The only words that emerge from his mouth are faltering phrases of the English he spoke as a child growing up in Virginia.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Science, Math and Cupcakes

Stars Above, Earth Below: A Guide to Astronomy in the National Parks by Tyler Nordgren
Nordgren examines a range of astronomical topics and makes the connection between them and the landscapes, processes, and cultures which can be seen and experienced within specific U.S. national parks. For each park and topic the story unfolds in three steps and the author takes us from the coast of Maine to the Yellowstone volcano, from the depths of the Grand Canyon to the heights of the Rocky Mountains, exploring the natural links between the features of the parks and those of our Universe.

Atlantis and 2012: The Science of the Lost Civilization and the Prophecies of the Maya by Frank Joseph
Based on more than 25 years of research around the globe and statements from Edgar Cayce about Atlantis and its Pacific sister civilization of Lemuria, Frank Joseph reveals that the Mayan calendar was brought to Mexico by survivors of Atlantis. Uncovering the Atlantean influences in both ancient Mesoamerican culture and ancient Egyptian culture, he links the demise of Atlantis with the birth of the Olmec civilization in Mexico (the progenitors of the Maya), the beginning of the first Egyptian dynasty, and the start of the Mayan calendar.

Professor Stewart's Hoard of Mathematical Treasures by Ian Stewart
Professor Stewart presents a new and magical mix of games, puzzles, paradoxes, brainteasers, and riddles. He mingles these with forays into ancient and modern mathematical thought, appallingly hilarious mathematical jokes, and inquiries into the great mathematical challenges of the present and past.

The Art of Cupcakes: More than 40 Festive Recipes by Noga Hitron
Weddings...birthday parties...Valentine's Day dinner...family get-togethers... There's a fancifully decorated cupcake for every occasion in this imaginative collection. Choose from an assortment of tiny treats that feature sweet fondant hearts, daisies, monsters, animals, lollipops, and even a baby booty!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Cussler readalikes

Did you really like Clive Cussler's books like Lost Empire? Are you looking for other authors like her? Check out these suggested titles below! If you're a member of an OCLN library then just click on the link to place it on hold.

Cure by Robin Cook
With her young son's potentially fatal neuroblastoma in complete remission, New York City medical examiner Laurie Montgomery returns to work, only to face the case of her career. The investigation into the death of CIA agent Kevin Markham is a professional challenge-and has Laurie's colleagues wondering if she still has what it takes after so much time away. Markham's autopsy results are inconclusive, and though it appears he's been poisoned, toxicology fails to corroborate Laurie's suspicions. While her coworkers doubt her assassination theory, her determination wins over her husband, fellow medical examiner Jack Stapleton, and together they discover associations to a large pharmaceutical company and several biomedical start-ups dealing with stem-cell research. Laurie and Jack race to connect the dots before they are consumed in a dangerous game of biotech espionage.

Santa Fe Edge by Stuart Woods
If you run into trouble in Santa Fe, Ed Eagle is the man to see. Ed Eagle, the six-feet-six, take-no-prisoners Santa Fe attorney, has recovered from his encounters with Mexican organized crime and-more treacherously-his ex-wife, Barbara. Now a mysterious new client has come his way, one who may shed light into some dark corners of Ed's past...and put him in danger once more.

Bad Blood by John Sandford
One late fall Sunday in southern Minnesota, a farmer brings a load of soybeans to a local grain elevator- and a young man hits him on the head with a steel bar, drops him into the grain bin, waits until he's sure he's dead, and then calls the sheriff to report the "accident." Suspicious, the sheriff calls in Virgil Flowers, who quickly breaks the kid down...and the next day the boy's found hanging in his cell. Remorse? Virgil isn't so sure, and as he investigates he begins to uncover a multigeneration, multifamily conspiracy-a series of crimes of such monstrosity that, though he's seen an awful lot in his life, even he has difficulty in comprehending it...and in figuring out what to do next.

Crossfire by Dick Francis

Shell-shocked and missing a foot-lost to an IED during his tour of duty in Afghanistan-Captain Tom Forsyth has been sent "home" by the army and, at loose ends, returns to his estranged mother's house for the first time since he joined up at seventeen. But Josephine Kauri, the "first lady of British racing," has always put the horses she trains first and her family last. Tom soon finds himself strained to the breaking point with his mother and stepfather. But there's another reason for the stifling tension at Kauri House Stables: Josephine is being blackmailed for a hefty sum every week-and forced to make her horses lose. Retirement is not an option, as she has been warned that it will result in the thing she most fears: exposure and ridicule . . . and prison, when the government finds out what she's been hiding. Tom sets out to discover and defeat this hidden enemy using his finely honed military skills. But can he save his mother's reputation and career, or will he find himself caught in the cross fire?

Want more readalikes on different authors? Send your requests/suggestions/comments to me at aboivin@ocln.org