American Immigration: An Encyclopedia of Political, Social, and Cultural Change. 2d ed. 4 vols. Sharpe Reference. 2013. 1272p. ed. by James Ciment & John Radzilowski. photos. maps. bibliog. index. ebook available. ISBN 9780765682123. $399. REF
Updating the 2001 edition, this encyclopedia covers many of the same topics included in the original work but often from the perspective of a post–9/11 world. Five broader subject areas (causes, history, social/political, nations of origin, international perspectives) and primary documents are treated in individual articles by academic writers from around the world. Spread over four hefty volumes, the articles trace American immigration from the earliest migrators to the most recent arrivals. The reasons for their treks and the implications for them and for the country form the basis for essays such as “German-Speaking Political Refugees and Economic Migrants” in the subsection on second-wave immigrants, as well as more recent articles about bilingual education from Society, Culture and Politics. The editors do a commendable job of integrating what has been debated and documented about immigration since the attacks in 2001, but the book is not overwhelmed with an emphasis on examining the phenomenon solely within this context. The last section, “Primary Documents,” is a real boon for researchers and includes everything from Colonial correspondence to a 2013 framework from the Senate on immigration reform. The cross-references at the end of each article are particularly helpful, as are the sections for further reading that appear after each article and as a whole at the end. A substantive index and a few black-and-white illustrations and photos complete the text. VERDICT A must for those libraries that want to update the original, and a useful purchase for any other collection that supports a curriculum in need of immigration materials.
Howard, Pierce J. The Owner’s Manual for the Brain: The Ultimate Guide to Peak Mental Performance at All Ages. 4th ed. Morrow. Apr. 2014. 1056p. ISBN 9780062227355. pap. $29.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062227362. REF
Cognitive researcher Howard intends with this revised and updated edition to bridge the gap between those books consisting mainly of scientific research reports and those containing only how-to information. According to the author, this book is aimed at readers in five categories: “lifelong learners, educators, consultants, managers and psychologists.” It is meant to be used as a resource to answer questions, not to be read straight through. The text is divided into sections that cover the “framework for exploring mind-brain concepts,” our movement through life stages, everyday wellness, how the brain learns, creativity and problem-solving, intelligence and personality traits, and states of consciousness. Subheadings make it easy to find relevant topics, and applications for that topic are listed along with suggested print and web resources. VERDICT This useful look at all the facets of the brain and its inner workings will be an excellent resource for those curious about how this organ works and for those looking for a more readable interpretation of the scientific studies done on it.
van Wyk, Ben-Erik. Culinary Herbs and Spices of the World. Univ. of Chicago. 2014. 320p. illus. index. ISBN 9780226091662. $45; ebk. ISBN 9780226091839. REF
Entries in this comprehensive encyclopedia that is published in association with the Royal Botanic Gardens cover herbs and spices from all around the globe and with a huge variety of uses. Introductory material offers an overview by country as well as an accounting of herbs and spices by type, e.g., salad herbs, condiments, etc. The main body of the book lists plants in alphabetical order by scientific name, though common names are found easily enough in the vast index. Each entry offers the various names of the plant, descriptions, history, growing techniques, culinary uses, chemical composition, notes, and a list of references. Covering from bay (laurus nobilis) or paprika (capsicum annuum) to black currant (ribes nigrum), leeks (allium fistulosum), and lettuce (lactuca sativa), the material is accompanied by full-color photographs of the plants and of related products. VERDICT This beautiful, thorough, well-written and -researched text will be of interest in any public or academic library reference collections as well as to chefs, gardeners, lovers of food, culinary adventurers, and anyone who enjoys a good encyclopedia.
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The 50 States. 3d ed. 2 vols. Salem. 2013. 1210p. ed. by Rodney Carlisle. illus. maps. index. ebook available. ISBN 9781619252080. $225. REF
Doyle, Peter. World War II in Numbers: An Infographic Guide to the Conflict, Its Conduct, and Its Casualties. Firefly. 2013. 224p. photos. index. ISBN 9781770851955. $29.95. REF
This Is Who We Were: In the 1960s. Grey House. 2013. 607p. ed. by Grey House. photos. maps. bibliog. index. ISBN 9781619252486. $150; ebk. ISBN 9781619252493. REF
Language & Linguistics
Dictionary of Untranslatables: A Philosophical Lexicon. Princeton Univ. (Translation/Transnation). Mar. 2014. 1344p. ed. by Barbara Cassin & others. bibliog. index. ISBN 9780691138701. $65; ebk. ISBN 9781400849918. REF