Waxing Poetic | The Reader’s Shelf

Author Colum McCann wrote in the Guardian that “poets have their fingers on a different pulse.” The creators of the following novels skillfully position poetry at the center of their tales, putting their own fingers on that very beat.

Secular Buddhism, the Christian Right, Prison Ministries, Faith Memoirs | Spirituality & Religion Reviews

A challenging and conversant exploration of Buddhism; an illuminating and erudite history of the cross over time; Stellman’s honest account will find resonance among fans of popular faith narratives; while it cannot stand on its own, this work can serve as a pocket companion to Day or a source of quiet meditation

From Debuters (Mukherjee, Hogsett) to Award Winners (Bouman, Peden, Kutscher) | Mystery Reviews

A number of the authors reviewed this month have been nominees or award winners. Of special note are several debuts with prize-winning potential, such as Abir Mukherjee’s historical A Rising Man, and Annie Hogsett’s Too Lucky To Live

Making Libraries Sing | Music Matters

Instead of focusing on a genre of music, or items to add to your collections, this column offers a shout-out to a librarian with a double life, and the work she and others do to bring music to patrons in a variety of ways.

Spring Fiction in Translation: Top Stories from Around the World

Altan’s U.S. debut is both an absorbing thriller and an intensive novel of ideas; luscious and affirmative work both the serious-minded and the lighthearted can enjoy; a well-constructed example of literary/commercial crossover that will prickle readers

JFK in Memory: Revisiting the 35th President in Time for the Centennial of His Birth

A useful compendium and reference tool for anyone interested in learning more about Kennedy’s presidency; Levingston’s bracing dual biography adds an upbeat, humanistic flavor to the intersecting lives of his subjects; a lively, well-researched book for fans of the film Jackie and TV’s The Crown

Q&A: Thomas McNamee Muses on “The Inner Life of Cats”

Thomas McNamee’s recent book, The Inner Life of Cats: The Science and Secrets of Our Mysterious Feline Companions is both an affectionate love letter to his own cat Augusta and a perceptive analysis of feline psychology and biology that shatters common assumptions about these animals.

A Bounty of Adaptations and Translations | Graphic Novels

IMMIGRANTS ARE US With attempts begun in Washington to restrict immigration, let us draw on graphic novels to better understand those who are new to this country, especially those from the Middle East.

The Voices of Islam | Collection Development

Libraries have a unique opportunity to inform users of the rich and varied experiences of the Islamic world. These 35 sources should be available in most libraries.

“Fire!!” Peter Bagge Takes on Zora Neale Hurston

Acclaimed for his biography Woman Rebel: The Margaret Sanger Story, Peter Bagge has taken on the author of Their Eyes Were Watching God with Fire!! The Zora Neale Hurston Story. In an email interview, LJ asked Bagge to share insights about this remarkable woman.