Featured New Nonfiction for May
The deadly sisterhood : a story of women, power, and intrigue in the Italian Renaissance, 1427-1527 / Leonie Frieda (945.06 F) -- From Leonie Frieda, critically acclaimed biographer of Catherine de Medici, comes The Deadly Sisterhood : an epic tale of eight women whose lives -- marked by fortune and poverty, power and powerlessness -- encompass the spectacle, opportunity, and depravity of Italy's Renaissance. Lucrezia Turnabuoni, Clarice Orsini, Beatrice d'Este, Isabella d'Este, Caterina Sforza, Giulia Farnese, Isabella d'Aragona, and Lucrezia Borgia shared the riches of their birthright : wealth, political influence, and friendship, but none were not exempt from personal tragedies, exile, and poverty.
Down the up escalator : how the 99 percent live in the Great Recession / Barbara Garson (339.22 G) -- The Great Recession has thrown huge economic challenges at almost all Americans save the super-affluent few, and we are only now beginning to reckon up the human toll it is taking. Down the Up Escalator is an urgent dispatch from the front lines of our vast collective struggle to keep our heads above water and maybe even--someday--get ahead. From the members of the Pink Slip Club in New York, to a California home health-care aide on the eve of eviction, to a subprime mortgage broker who still thinks it could have worked, Down the Up Escalator presents a sobering picture of what happens to a society when it becomes economically organized to benefit only the very rich and the quick-buck speculators. But it also demonstrates the wit and resilience of ordinary Americans--and why they deserve so much better than the hand they've been dealt.
Hoax : Hitler's diaries, Lincoln's assassins, and other famous frauds / Edward Steers, Jr. ; foreword by Joe Nickell (364.163 S) -- Napoleon famously observed that "history is a set of lies agreed upon," and Edward Steers Jr. investigates six of the most amazing frauds ever to gain wide acceptance in this engrossing book. The controversies that Steers presents show that there are two major factors involved in the success of a hoax or forgery -- greed and the desire to believe. Though all of the counterfeits and conspiracies featured in Hoax have been scientifically debunked, some remain fixed in many people's minds as truth. As Steers points out, the success of these frauds highlights a disturbing fact: If true history fails to entertain the public, it is likely to be ignored or forgotten.
Shakespeare saved my life : ten years in solitary with the bard / Laura Bates (365.6 B) -- Shakespeare professor and prison volunteer Laura Bates thought she had seen it all. That is, until she decided to teach Shakespeare in a place the bard had never been before — supermax solitary confinement. In this unwelcoming place, surrounded by inmates known as the worst of the worst, is Larry Newton. A convicted murderer with several escape attempts under his belt and a brilliantly agile mind on his shoulders, Larry was trying to break out of prison at the same time Laura was fighting to get her program started behind bars. Thus begins the most unlikely of friendships, one bonded by Shakespeare and lasting years—a friendship that, in the end, would save more than one life.
VB6 : eat vegan before 6:00 to lose weight and restore your health-- for good : the flexible diet you can really stick to, with more than 60 easy, delicious recipes / Mark Bittman ; foreword by Dean Ornish (641.5636 B) -- Six years ago, overweight and pre-diabetic, the author faced a directive: adopt a vegan diet or go on medication. He was no fan of a lifelong regimen of pills; his solution was the VB6 diet. Using scientific evidence to support his plan, the author, a food writer for the New York Times gives us his innovative and easy diet plan, complete with recipes. He maintains that by eating vegan every day before 6:00 p.m., you can lose weight and dramatically improve your health. Every day we learn new benefits of the vegan diet, and discover how cutting meat and animal products out can still mean a world of delicious meals. Now the author brings his expertise to vegan cooking, giving you an easy-to-follow diet plan plus 50 simple everyday recipes, exclusively vegan meals for breakfast and lunch, and as flexible as you need to be for dinner.
Body geographic / Barrie Jean Borich (B BORICH) -- A memoir from the award-winning author of My Lesbian Husband, Barrie Jean Borich turns personal history into an inspired reflection on the points where place and person intersect, where running away meets running toward, and where dislocation means finding oneself.
The child catchers : rescue, trafficking, and the new gospel of adoption / Kathryn Joyce (362.7345 J) -- To tens of millions of evangelicals, adoption has become a new front in the culture wars: a test of "pro-life" bonafides, a way to reinvent compassionate conservatism on the global stage, and a means to fulfill the "Great Commission" mandate that Christians evangelize the nations. Influential leaders fervently promote a new "orphan theology," urging followers to adopt en masse, with little thought for the families these "orphans" may actually have. Christian adoption activists have added moral weight to a multi-billion dollar adoption industry intent on increasing the "supply" of adoptable children, both at home and overseas. The Child Catchers is a shocking expose; of what the adoption industry has become and how it got there, told through deep investigative reporting and the heartbreaking stories of individuals who found that their own, and their children's, well-being was ultimately irrelevant in a market driven by profit and now, pulpit command.
I can barely take care of myself : tales from a happy life without kids / Jen Kirkman (B KIRKMAN) -- That’s what everyone says to Jen Kirkman— and countless women like her—when she confesses she doesn’t plan to have children. But you know what? It’s hard enough to be an adult. You have to dress yourself and pay bills and remember to buy birthday gifts. You have to drive and get annual physicals and tip for good service. Some adults take on the added burden of caring for a tiny human being with no language skills or bladder control. Parenthood can be very rewarding, but let’s face it, so are margaritas at the adults-only pool. A beacon of hilarious hope for anyone whose major life decisions have been questioned by friends, family, and strangers in a comedy club bathroom. And it should satisfy everyone who wonders if Jen will ever know true love without looking into the eyes of her child.
Who's on worst? : the lousiest players, biggest cheaters, saddest goats and other antiheroes in baseball history / Filip Bondy (796.357 B) -- A hilarious celebration of the worst in baseball history: The boneheads, cheats, jerks and losers who make the grand old game so fun. From a delightful survey of batters who fell below the dreaded "Mendoza Line" to a rundown of managers who had long careers distinguished by relentless losing to a roster of players who took steroids but still stunk, Who's on Worst? is a thoroughly entertaining portrait of the personalities who deserve their place in baseball history as much as the immortals.
All standing : the true story of hunger, rebellion, and survival aboard the Jeanie Johnston / Kathryn Miles (941.5081 M) -- Spurred by a complex web of motivations--shame, familial obligation, and sometimes even greed--more than a million people attempted to flee the Irish famine. More than one hundred thousand of them would die aboard one of the five thousand aptly named "coffin ships." But in the face of horrific losses, a small ship named the Jeanie Johnston never lost a passenger. Shipwright John Munn, community leader Nicholas Donovan, Captain James Attridge, Dr. Richard Blennerhassett, and the efforts of a remarkable crew allowed thousands of people to find safety and fortune throughout the United States and Canada. Why did these individuals succeed when so many others failed? What prompted them to act, when so many people preferred to do nothing--or worse?
Gulp : adventures on the alimentary canal / Mary Roach (612.3 R) -- Few of us realize what strange wet miracles of science operate inside us after every meal. In her trademark style, Mary Roach investigates the beginning, and end, of our food, addressing such questions as why crunchy food is so appealing, how much we can eat before our stomachs burst, and whether constipation killed Elvis.
Saving Justice : Watergate, the Saturday night massacre and other adventures of a Solicitor General / Robert Bork (B BORK) -- In June 1973, Judge Robert Bork was plucked from a quiet life of academia at Yale University and planted in the tumultuous soil of constitutional crisis by a Nixon administration barreling toward collapse. From the ousting of Vice President Spiro Agnew to the discharge of the Watergate special prosecutor, an event known as the Saturday Night Massacre, Saving Justice offers a firsthand, insider account of the whirlwind of events that engulfed the administration during the last half of 1973 and the first few months of 1974. This important volume provides a revelatory look into the inner workings of the Justice Department during some of the most consequential months of the Nixon administration.