Jouzel, Jean & others. The White Planet: The Evolution and Future of Our Frozen World. Princeton Univ. 2013. 336p. tr. from French by Teresa Lavender Fagan. illus. notes. bibliog. index. ISBN 9780691144993. $29.95; ebk. ISBN 9781400844692. SCI
The earth’s ice—glaciers, ice sheets, ice caps, ice platforms—chronicles the history of its climate. That history is read through the strata of the ice, and the captured bubbles of ancient atmosphere each stratum contains. Glaciologists and climatologists Jouzel, Claude Lorius, and Dominique Raynaud here describe how this evidence was discovered and is being understood by scientists. This book was originally published in 2008 in France (Plan è te blanche) and has been adapted and revised in Fagan’s translation, keeping it up to date. The authors relate their studies of the ice sheets and glaciers, and provide explanations of how the science works, discussing the climate history discovered in the ice, and the warming trends that have been observed therein. More than a third of the book is dedicated to the relationship between ice and global warming.VERDICT Highly recommended for all serious collections on glaciology and climate change and for anyone who wants to know more about the science of discovering ancient climates.—Betty Galbraith, Owen Science & Engineering Lib., Washington State Univ., Pullman
Wilson, Edward O. Letters to a Young Scientist. Norton. 2013. 192p. illus. index. ISBN 9780871403773. $21.95; ebk. ISBN 9780871407009. SCI
Wilson (biology, emeritus, Harvard; The Social Conquest of Earth) embraces the role of éminence grise here, aiming to instruct and inspire. In five thematic sections, he presents 20 “letters” (five- to ten-plus pages each) examining the scientist’s role in the 21st century, the foundations and credos that remain in place, and the manner in which the field has changed. He weaves in his own autobiography—including lessons on ants—as he advises on subjects such as finding your specialty and having a mentor. Some of the science lessons are very basic, e.g., he assumes readers know little or nothing about Linnaeus or Darwin, but others are broad and inspiring. Most intriguing may be his urging readers to indulge in daydreaming to aid their scientific thinking, as well as his idea that “the right question is intellectually superior to finding the right answer.” A piece near the end on “The Making of Theories” is very rewarding. A reference to the “radical leftist writers” who disliked his blockbuster, Sociobiology (1975), may hint at an ornery nature, but the book is largely amiable. VERDICT Although the title and small format may suggest the book as a gift for graduates, it ought to be on the shelves of all high school and public libraries, as well as some undergraduate collections.—Margaret Heilbrun, Library Journal
West, Kevin. Saving the Season: A Cook’s Guide to Home Canning, Pickling, and Preserving. Knopf. Jun. 2013. 560p. ISBN 9780307599483. $35; ebk. ISBN 9780307957689. cooking
Journalist West, who is certified as a master food preserver by the University of California Cooperative Extension, explores the various preserves available through the four seasons. Each base recipe includes variations to please any palate; the recipe for Black Mission Fig Jam offers directions to flavor it with Syrah, Madeira, or Smoky Black Tea. While the cookbook’s four-season concept skews toward the availability of fruits and vegetables in Southern California’s long growing season, appendixes of peak seasons by region and tables of fruit varieties provide extensive information for cooks in any region. More than just recipes, the book also contains stories of the author’s travels throughout the States, as well as regional preserving traditions. Verdict A lot of information is packed into this not-so-little cookbook, covering the basics of preserving along with easy to advanced recipes. The combination of recipes and musings makes this a great read both in and out of the kitchen.—Kristi Chadwick, Emily Williston Lib., Easthampton, MA
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The following titles are reviewed in the May 1 print issue. Visit Book Verdict for the full reviews.
Chace, Teri Dunn. How To Eradicate Invasive Plants. Timber. May 2013. 336p. photogs. index. ISBN 9781604693065. pap. $24.95. GARDENING
Oudolf, Piet & Noel Kingsbury. Planting: A New Perspective. Timber. 2013. 280p. illus. index. ISBN 9781604693706. $39.95. GARDENING
Nocito, Anton & Lynn Marie Hulsman. Make Your Own Soda: Syrup Recipes for All-Natural Pop, Floats, Cocktails, and More. Clarkson Potter: Crown. May 2013. 144p. illus. index. ISBN 9780770433550. pap. $14.99; ebk. ISBN 9780770433567. COOKING
HEALTH & MEDICINE
Kelly, James. Where Night Is Day: The World of the ICU. ILR: Cornell Univ. (Culture and Politics of Health Care Work). 2013. 248p. bibliog. ISBN 9780801451683. $24.95. MED
Bell, Jim. The Space Book: From the Beginning to the End of Time, 250 Milestones in the History of Space & Astronomy. Sterling. (Sterling Milestones). May 2013. 528p. illus. notes. index. ISBN 9781402780714. $29.95. SCI
Hirschfeld, Erik & others. The World’s Rarest Birds. Princeton Univ. (WildGuides). 2013. 352p. illus. maps. index. ISBN 9780691155968. $45. NAT HIST