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New Publications

George M. Eberhart

Ancient Structures: Remarkable Pyramids, Forts, Towers, Stone Chambers, Cities, Complexes,compiled by William Corliss (331 pages, February 2001), is the second volume in a series devoted to archeological mysteries. This book focuses on unusual or anomalous ancient structures. Each anomaly is rated in terms of the quality of the reported data and the degree from which it deviates from accepted historical or scientific norms. The vast majority of examples are taken from archeological, historical, and anthropological journals and books. Corliss examines such antiquities as ancient Mesoamerican astronomical observatories, engineering puzzles of Maltese temples, Inca stone masoniy, the vitrified forts of Scotland, Ohio’s ancient furnace-like structures, the Great Pyramid as an information repository, the brick pyramid of Comalcalco, the pre-Columbian nature of Mystery Hill, anomalous stone towers of the Andes, and remarkable acoustical properties of Neolithic passage graves. $24.95. The Sourcebook Project, P.O. Box 107, Glen Arm, MD 21057. ISBN 0-915554-35-6.

Australia's Lost World: Prehistoric Animals of Riversleigh,by Michael Archer, Suzanne J. Hand, and Henk Godthelp (264 pages, March 2001), is a wonderfully illustrated examination of Australia’s fossil record, especially the vertebrate deposits at Riversleigh, Queensland, which is among the richest and most extensive in the world. Because Australia has been relatively isolated for the past 45 million years, it has seived as a biodiversity lab for the development of animal life seen nowhere else, including marsupial lions, 21-foot pythons, ancestral platypuses, and the huge tapir-like palorchestids. In addition to descriptions of the many animals found at the site, the authors review the geology and environment of the region, and techniques of excavation and laboratory preparation. $39-95. Indiana University. ISBN 0-253-33914-6.

George M. Eberhart is senior editor of American Libraries; e-mail: geberhart@ala.org

The Dictionary of Wordplay,by Dave Morice (293 pages, March 2001), contains more than 1,234 definitions of linguistic tricks, games, ciphers, puns, and forms. The usual anagrams, palindromes, and word squares are here, but the value of this book lies in the its obscurer definitions: beheadment sentence, double sound pun, Ernulphus curse, knave’s English, ooglification, tall writing, ’Tom Swiftie, unfolded Platonic solid, and the zzyxjoanw hoax. Unlike other authors, Morice gives a source as well as an example for each of his definitions. ”“Not a bad book,” Tom said liberally. $29.95. Teachers and Writers Collaborative, 5 Union Square West, New York, NY 10003-3306. ISBN 0-915924-99-4.

Digital Imaging: A Practical Handbook,by Stuart D. Lee (194 pages, November 2000), covers the basics of digitization, from planning and scanning to cataloging and delivery. Much emphasis is placed on estimating staff time and other costs, making this especially useful for both large and small projects. An appendix provides a selective webliography of digital image projects. $55.00. Neal-Schuman. ISBN 1-55570-405-0.

Editorial Peer Review: Its Strengths and Weaknesses,by Ann C. Weller (342 pages, March 2001), examines the editorial peer-re- view process comprehensively to determine what elements could be modified or eliminated in online publishing. Topics include rejected manuscripts, the function of editors and editorial boards, problems with authorship, the role of reviewers, reviewer biases, statistical review, and peer review in an electronic environment. After an extensive look at all the relevant literature, Weller concludes that peer review is essential and any changes should be carefully thought out before implementing them. $44.50. Information Today, 143 Old Marlton Pike, Medford, NJ 08055. ISBN 1-57387-100-1.

Einstein, Picasso: Space, Time, and the Beauty That Causes Havoc,by Arthur I. Miller (357 pages, March 2001), contrasts the early lives of Albert Einstein and Pablo Picasso in interwoven, parallel biographies. Miller finds extraordinary congruence in their personal and working lives, from their common interest in Henri Poincaré’s treatise on non-Euclidean geometry to their radical reconstructions of space and time. An intriguing examination of how art and physics interact, and what cre- ative processes were at work to inspire such discoveries as cubism and relativity. $30.00. Basic Books. ISBN 0-465-01859-9-

The Eleanor Roosevelt Encyclopedia,edited by Maurine H. Beasley, Holly C. Shulman, and Henry R. Beasley (628 pages,. January 2001), contains 237 essays by scholars of Eleanor Roosevelt and the New Deal era, journalists, and friends. Topics cover friends and ac- quaintances (Elinor Morgenthau, George Marshall), accomplishments and interests (civil rights, Is- rael, refugees), personal life (family influences, finances, Val-Kill), and politics (pro- gressivism, McCarthyism, United Nations). An excellent introduction to one of the most influential women of the 20th century. $65.00. Greenwood. ISBN 0-313- 30181-6.

The Ghosts of Evolution,by Connie Barlow (291 pages, April 2001), takes a look at what happens to the plants left behind when spe- cies go extinct, especially those that were mutually dependent on the large North Ameri- can animals that died off at the end of the last Ice Age. The survivors become to some degree anachronistic because they can no longer propagate in the same way; unless they can find an alternative method, they are similarly doomed. Barlow identifies some successful species (pawpaws, persimmons, osage oranges, gingkos, hawthorns, and oth- ers), and warns of similar unanticipated con- sequences in the future. $26.00. Basic Books. ISBN 0-465-00551-9.

Jackson's Way: Andrew Jackson and the People of the Western Waters,by John Buchanan (434 pages, January 2001), tells the story of the conquest of the Old Southwest— Tennessee, Mississippi, Alabama, Louisiana, and the Florida Panhandle—from the Ameri- can Revolution to the Battle of New Orleans in 1815. A key player in this westward ex- pansion was Andrew Jackson, whose expe- riences as a lawyer, legislator, judge, brawler, and Indian fighter epitomized the relentless drive for mastery of the southern frontier. Buchanan examines the Creek War and Jackson’s generalship at New Orleans in de- tail. A bit old-fashioned, but a good treat- ment of an understudied era. $30.00. Wiley. ISBN 0-471-28253-7.

The Lack of Money Is the Root of All Evil,by Andrew Leckey (222 pages, January 2001), offers excellent invest- ment advice from columnist and CNBC commentator Leckey, peppered with wit and wisdom from Mark Twain, who himself made two fortunes in his lifetime. Each of the 50 chapters opens with an aptly humorous quo- tation from Twain, after which Leckey provides some context from Twain’s life and times, followed by practical and concise information for today’s investor. The advice is fairly basic and bite-sized, but the literary flavor enhances the finances. $22.00. Prentice-Hall. ISBN 0-7352- 0219-2.

Measuring What Matters: A Library/LRC Outcomes Assessment Manual,by Bonnie Gratch Lindauer (96 pages, October 2000), offers suggestions on how to assess learning resource programs in a community college setting. Specific advice on aligning core library services with campus-wide goals and identifying quantitative performance indicators is supplemented with worksheets, survey examples, and statistics forms. $79-00 (plus $5.00 s/h). Learning Resources Association of California Community Colleges, POB 298, Fairfield, CA 94533-0029; www.lraccc.org. ISBN 1-929247-08-7.

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