Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Top 5 items I nicked from Manukau Library's new books trolley

List by Tosca

'I would never read a book if it were possible for me to talk half an hour with the man who wrote it.'
- Woodrow Wilson

When I'm in need of inspiration or timeout (not like the naughty corner/naughty step kind of time out, though) I sneak away downstairs and raid their collections or their new books trolley. I find that I am greatly in need of inspiration this month. Ordinarily, I am full of words that are clamouring to be given voice here in this blog, but August seems to be a solemn month for me. As a result I have posted very little. I spent some of the last couple of weeks fretting about how hard I'm finding it to write posts that are engaging and funny or even relevant. And then last night I decided to let it run its course. After all, it doesn't mean I love books any less :) So today I offer up a simple post that is less about my sense of humour and all about the books: top 5 books I nicked from Manukau Library's new books trolley that are well worth the mention. Many thanks to Shanta for letting me ooh and aah over the trolley and 'borrow' a stack of new books for the day.

Honourable mention:
  • There'll always be an England : social stereotypes from the Daily Telegraph by Victoria Mather and Sue Macartney-Snape (Nonfiction, humour)
  • The price of bacon by Jeanette Aplin (Nonfiction, autobiography)
  • Barry by Colin Thompson (Children's picture book)
  • Lemon sherbet and dolly blue : the story of an accidental family by Lynn Knight
  • The second messiah by Glenn Meade (Fiction, adventure)

  • A shot in the dark : a Jesse James Dawson novel / K. A. Stewart
    First paragraph: "Fire in the hole!" I grabbed the kid by the front of his shirt and dragged him into the water, falling on top of him to protect him further. Problem being, there was room for one man at the bottom of the pool, but not two. Half submerged as I was, the explosion was enough to deafen me, the sound wave skipping across the top of the water to smack me upside my very thick skull.

    Fiction. Fantasy. While on his annual camping trip to Colorado, Jesse James Dawson finds his vacation plans going up in smoke when a pack of creatures are summoned up from hell by an entity he had hoped never to see again. -- From back cover.

    Stories I only tell my friends : an autobiography / Rob Lowe
    First paragraph: I always had an affinity for him, an admiration for his easy grace, his natural charisma, despite the fact that for the better part of a decade my then girlfriend kept a picture of him running shirtless through Central Park on her refrigerator door. Maybe my lack of jealousy toward this particular pin-up was tamped down by empathy for his loss of his father and an appreciation for how complicated it is to be the subject of curiosity and objectification from a very young age. That said, when my girlfriend and others would constantly swoon over him, when I would see him continually splashed across the newspapers, resplendent like an American prince, I wasn't above the occasional male thought of: Screw that guy.

    Nonfiction. Autobiography. A teen idol at fifteen, an international icon and founder of the Brat Pack at twenty, and one of Hollywood's top stars to this day, Rob Lowe chronicles his experiences as a painfully misunderstood child actor in Ohio uprooted to the wild counterculture of mid-seventies Malibu, where he embarked on his unrelenting pursuit of a career in Hollywood.

    No rest for the dead : a novel / edited by Andrew F. Gulli and Lamia J. Gulli
    First paragraph: There is always that case, the one that keeps me awake at night, the one that got away. It'll always be there, gnawing at the edges of my mind. It doesn't matter that ten years have passed, it doesn't matter that the case is officially closed. An innocent woman was executed, I was the one who helped make it happen, and on the sad night when the needle was inserted into her arm, injecting her with death, part of my life ended too.

    Fiction. Crime. A serial novel featuring contributions by twenty-five masters of suspense follows detective Jon Nunn as he re-opens a ten-year-old case to discover if the wrong person was convicted and put to death for the murder of art curator Christopher Thomas.

    The urban cook : cooking and eating for a sustainable future / Mark Jensen
    First paragraph: I am the father of two beautiful children. I am a chef in a busy restaurant that I run with my partner, Pauline, and her brother, Luke. Like all of you, I think, I plan and I juggle. I siphon and filter all the messages we receive in this media-fuelled age. What we should ro shouldn't eat, do, dream or aspire to be. The place of life kicks on; it is unrelenting. But is this really how we would like our lives to run?

    Nonfiction. Cooking. Sustainable living. "Amid the hectic lives we lead today, it can be hard to find time to think about where our food comes from and the choices we make in how we shop, cook and eat. In this thoughtful, approachable book, chef Mark Jensen examines the issues surrounding good food choices. Whether it's little things in our day to day lives or bigger decisions, The Urban Cook provides information and recipes to help those aiming for planet-friendly eating. With chapters devoted to seafood, chicken, beef & veal, pork & lamb, vegetables and dessert, Jensen, a leading Sydney chef, covers the issues that he deals with every day at work and at home. This is an approachable but informative book which speaks to the strong and ongoing interest in food sources and healthy, planet-friendly choices. It examines the issues of food production, transport and use. It includes more than 100 easy, flavoursome recipes drawn from many cultures. Stylish design and beautiful scenery and food photography will appeal to urban eco-warriers, keen cooks, and anyone interested in where their food comes from." -- Publisher's description.

    The naughty corner / Colin Thompson
    First line: This is George. He is two and a half years old and he is standing in the naughty corner for using a rude word

    Children. Picture book. Sometimes it gets pretty crowded in the naughty corner ... Babies George and Cleopatra, 14-year-old Peter, 38-year old Brian, Nigel the cat, Credence the dog, and Monique, the yellow bird all of them have spent time in the naughty corner. It's meant to make them think about their behaviour, but they've turned it into a place to have fun. Ages 2+

    Tosca's comment: I'm taking this home for Mr 7 - he will LOVE it and, very probably, identify with the characters in the book who've been sent to the naughty corner.

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