New Publications

George M. Eberhart

Hidden Realms, Lost Civilizations, and Beings from Other Worlds, by Jerome Clark (300 pages, June 2010), examines the intersection of myth and experience in this well-illustrated, engaging look at imaginary places that, at one time or another, seemed quite real to some people. A long-time chronicler of the otherworldly, Clark brings together in this volume the lore and legend of the lost colony of Lemurians living on Mount Shasta in northern California; the continent of Atlantis that psychic Edgar Cayce predicted would rise again from the ocean in the Bahamas in 1969; the demonic entities that live in the earth’s interior, as imagined by Richard Shaver in the 1940s; an alternative solar system that is home to Lunarians, Venusians, Martians, Saturnians, and Uranians; a realm populated by diminutive fairy folk; and the upper atmosphere, where ghost armies, sky serpents, and mystery airships float about. These visionary themes are worth revisiting occasionally as a reality check against our current belief systems. $24.95. Visible Ink. 978-1-57859-175-6.

My Lie: A True Story of False Memory, by Meredith Maran (260 pages, September 2010), is a disturbing yet honest personal memoir of a feminist writer who became convinced in the 1980s—amid widespread cultural and clinical acceptance that as many as one in three American women were victims of childhood sexual abuse—that her father had molested her as a child. This book describes the steps leading to her decision to tell her family and confront her father with her suspicions, as well as her journey back to reconciliation after she realized she had manufactured those memories herself, aided and abetted by a climate of uncritical belief in recovered memories, satanic ritual abuse, and the likelihood that any vague memory masks a bitter truth. Maran is far from denying that child abuse exists; it certainly does. But her point is that unfounded, unquestioning accusations can have drastic familial and social consequences—though perhaps not always as severe as the McMartin preschool case of the 1980s. Maran keeps her personal narrative on a chronological footing by inserting relevant snippets of newspaper reports and journal articles (some her own) to describe the tenor of the times. $24.95. Jossey-Bass. 978-0-470-50214-3.

The State Library and Archives of Texas: A History, 1835–1962, by David B. Gracy II (226 pages, June 2010), celebrates the centennial of the Texas Library and Historical Commission in 2009 with this in-depth history of the Texas state library agency. Gracy, who served as state archivist from 1977 to 1986, examines how the state has treated its dual functions as library and archives over the years, as well as the struggles that the library has had over appropriations, mission, and space. $45.00. University of Texas. 978-0-292-72201-9.

For a look at similar problems in Canada, see Better off Forgetting? Essays on Archives, Public Policy, and Collective Memory, edited by Cheryl Avery and Mona Holmlund (242 pages, September 2010). The contributors cover the history of archives funding in Canada, access and privacy issues, digitization, accountability and the public sphere, and archives as a resource for the present. $24.95. University of Toronto. 978-1-4426-1080-4.

A Style and Usage Guide to Writing about Music, by Thomas Donahue (105 pages, April 2010), presents guidelines on how best to write musician’s names, music titles, opus and number, catalog designation, notes and pitches, octave designation, time signatures, keyboard compass, rehearsal marks, foreign musical terms, preferred word forms, and citations. $24.95. Scarecrow. 978-0-8108-7431-2.

The Terrible Axe-Man of New Orleans, by Rick Geary (76 pages, August 2010), is the latest graphic novel in Geary’s series on 20th-century homicides. This one involves an unsolved spate of assaults and murders by an axe-wielding household intruder in New Orleans from May 1918 to October 1919. As usual, Geary conveys the flavor of the time and place with historical details about the culture and the music. He even made a site visit to the city to ensure the accuracy of his architectural renderings. The case involved a mysterious Jack the Ripper–style letter to the Times-Picayune and evidence that a mafia hitman was involved, but it has been largely forgotten today. Perhaps Geary’s treatment will spark new interest. $15.95. NBM. 978-1-56163-581-8.

UFOs: Generals, Pilots, and Government Officials Go on the Record, by Leslie Kean (335 pages, August 2010), makes a solid journalistic case for the UFO phenomenon as a genuine scientific mystery that affects aviation safety and even national security. Kean, an investigative reporter with impeccable credentials, became interested in UFO reports in 1999 when she was alerted to a report by 13 retired French generals, scientists, and aerospace experts that documented the existence of unidentified aerial objects and their potential impact on national security (the COMETA report). Kean approaches the subject as a “principled skeptic” regarding the origin of UFOs, thus stepping outside the believers vs. debunkers stalemate that has tainted ufology as a taboo topic among policymakers, the scientific community, and the mainstream media. In this book, she lets 18 generals, pilots, investigators, and witnesses from nine countries go on the record about their experiences. Their testimony is compelling enough for Kean to call for a U.S. government agency to cooperate with other countries that are already investigating UFO reports and to release information openly about them. Former White House Chief of Staff John Podesta has written a short foreword. $25.99. Harmony Books. 978-0-307-71684-2.

Copyright © American Library Association, 2010

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