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Staff Picks

Don't forget to check out our staff picks for kids!

July 9, 2012

The Big Necessity: The Unmentionable World of Human Waste and Why It Matters

The Big Necessity: The Unmentionable World of Human Waste and Why It Matters
by George, Rose
363.72 GEO

You could own a $5,000 luxury toilet with heated seats, warm air dryer and remote control. Or you could, like billions of people in the world, rely on a bush, ditch, latrine or open ground. Follow Rose George as she travels the world exploring this most important, intimate and taboo of subjects—human waste.

She investigates the sewage problems facing many nations: the threat of antiquated sewers; the controversial use of biosolids--guess what that word really means--in agriculture; the visionaries who struggle to bring basic sanitation to the slums of India and villages in Africa; the rural farmers in China who love their biogas digesters that run on pig and human waste. Above all, she emphasizes the importance of sanitation to public health and economic and social stability.

As you read about the people she meets and the range of “facilities” (or lack thereof) she investigates, you will discover that this is an endlessly fascinating subject. And you will never take your toilet for granted again.

— Recommended by Nicole James, College Avenue Library


July 2, 2012

The Dawn Patrol

The Dawn Patrol
by Winslow, Don

If somebody had told me that I’d read a book about grown men surfing in California, I wouldn’t have believed it. So it’s a tribute to Winslow’s storytelling abilities that he was able to draw me into this story of the Dawn Patrol, a group of men who have cemented their friendships through the sun, surf, and sand of the southern California beaches. Boone Daniels is haunted by the missing girl he was unable to find during his days as a policeman. Now all he wants to do is surf and do enough private investigation work to pay (a few of) the bills. When an attractive lawyer comes to him with a lucrative offer if he will investigate an insurance claim, Boone’s reluctant, but he does need the money. Things get complicated when it begins to look as though his investigation will implicate a friend or two of his. Not to mention that Boone may miss surfing the biggest, baddest wave to come along in years. It’s a life-changer, that wave is, and nobody in the Dawn Patrol is likely to emerge from it unscathed. It’s vintage Winslow and a terrific read—but I’m still not buying a surfboard.

— Recommended by Cheryl Holtsclaw, West Indianapolis Library


June 25, 2012


by Richards, Keith
780.91 Richards RIC

“I imagined everything. I never thought it would happen.”

Keith Richards’ autobiography opens with a 1975 flashback to a Fordyce, Arkansas, road house where he and fellow Rolling Stones guitarist Ronnie Wood, in preparation for an upcoming concert in Dallas, “hung in the john” for forty minutes and “got high.”

Born in 1943, an only child to factory workers, Mr. Richards grew up in London’s lower-income area of Dartford. Given the consumption of drugs and alcohol, the perennial bad boy of rock and roll exhibits amazing recall. He discusses his falling-out with “Sir” Mick, his twenty-nine year marriage to former model Patti Hansen, post-war rationings, hating school and after-school beatings.

He recalls fondly his beloved maternal grandfather, Gus, a jazz musician, introducing him to a “sweet lovely little lady,” a gut-string classical Spanish guitar and a chance meeting at a Dartford train station with former primary “mate,” Mick Jagger, who at one time lived a few doors away, that changed his life.

Life is available in large-print, e-book, downloadable audiobook, and cd, on which it is narrated by actor Johnny Depp.

— Recommended by Kathleen Rivenburg, Flanner House Library


June 18, 2012

Money Rules:  The Simple Path To Lifelong Security

Money Rules: The Simple Path To Lifelong Security
by Chatzky, Jean
332.024 CHA

Having experienced tough economic times, the time is right to follow Money Rules, The Simple Path to Lifelong Security. Author Jean Chatzky, the financial editor for NBC’s Today Show and the personal finance contributor for Prevention and Newsweek Magazine, has come up with 94 Rules to obtain financial security in and despite tough economic times.

She begins by stating two basic principles. First, that personal finance is more personal than it is finance and secondly money is simple – people make it complicated. The author gathered her own set of Money Rules along with the money rules from financial advisers, analysts, bankers, accountants, and lawyers and came up with 94 rules to live by.

Despite wisdom to the contrary, your home and retirement are no longer your greatest asset. According to Ms. Chatzky, Rule Number One is that your job is your most important investment. Breaking the Rules into 7 parts, the author explains how to make, keep, spend, invest and protect your money and assets.

This would be a great gift to give.

— Recommended by Peggy Wehr, Fountain Square Library


June 11, 2012

Kilt Dead

Kilt Dead
by Dunnett, Kaitlyn

Liss MacCrimmon is a dancer with a Scottish-American touring company until a leg injury abruptly ends her career. Struggling to adjust to life without dancing, she returns to her childhood home town, Moosetookalook Maine. Her aunt has a shop there which sells all things Scottish, and Liss has taken on the task of running it while Aunt Margaret travels. With a business degree, she is sure that she can improve sales while building a new life for herself. Unfortunately, nosey neighbor Mrs. Norris is found murdered in the store, and Liss becomes the prime suspect when it’s discovered that she’s the retired teacher’s beneficiary. Since the police aren’t even looking for anyone else, she’s forced to do her own investigating with the help of Dan Ruskin, an old high school friend. Kilt Dead is the first in a series of “cozy” mysteries with titles such as Scone Cold Dead and The Corpse Wore Tartan. Think Agatha Christie or Jessica Fletcher with a Scottish flavor and a big yellow cat named Lumpkin.

— Recommended by Georgia Silvers, Warren Library