Shelf Life Magazine – June 2019

Shelf June 2019The month of June is significant for many things. Of course, it heralds the first day of Summer, longest day of the summer, end of the school year, and this year personally it is significant as well. On June 9, I turn 65, and while that represents the age of retirement for many, it makes me even more determined to find various things to keep me active. As Shelf Life has been a part of my life for 21 years, the furthest thing from my mind is closing up shop here. It is my love of books and getting others to read the latest and greatest titles, that has kept my interest at peak levels. I do not see that changing in the foreseeable future.

And as you can see from this issue, there are over thirty reasons to keep reading, as there are more than a wide range of subjects featured for book lovers of fiction and non-fiction.

As always, I thank you for picking up this issue, hopefully enjoying it, and finding books to add to your must-read list. I look forward to your comments.

Paul Sutter

Like us on Facebook

*** Fiction Section ***
*** Best June Fiction ***

An Anonymous Girl
by Greer Hendricks & Sarah Pekkanen
(St. Martin’s Press – $24.99 – 375 pages)
“…follows the same intense dialogue and plot twists that made book one a must-read.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

Something in the Water
by Catherine Steadman
(Ballantine – $36.00 – 343 pages)
“…filled with massive twists, along with a plot that will keep one reading long after you wish to.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

*** Rest of  June Fiction ***

The Library of Lost and Found
by Phaedra Patrick
(Park Row – $31.50 – 352 pages)
“…the reader gets (a happy ending) too, a reward for joining Martha on her journey”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

by Laura Sims
(Scribner – $19.99 – 182 pages)
“Laura Sims’ debut as just the right touch of everything going for it.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

by James Patterson & James O. Born
(Little Brown – $36.50 – 317 pages)
“It creates an interesting read for those cannot get enough of Michael Bennett.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

A Measure of Darkness
by Jonathan & Jesse Kellerman
(Ballantine – $38.99 – 340 pages)
“…the same quality work that Kellerman has given readers in the past.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

The Winter Sister
by Megan Collins
(Atria – $35.00 – 328 pages)
“The book will appeal to lovers of psychological mystery.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

Wild Justice
by Loren D. Estleman
(Forge – $34.99 – 224 pages)
Reviewed by: John M. Milner
“… an intriguing novel that fans of the Western genre will love.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Autopsy of a Boring Wife
by Marie-Renee Lavoie
(House of Anansi Press – $22.95 – 227 pages)
“…definitely not boring, rather a lively book with plenty of heart and soul.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

The Killer Collective
by Barry Eisler
(Thomas & Mercer – $35.95 – 440 pages)
“In this case, when it rains, it pours in great writing, especially where John Rain is concerned.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Verses for The Dead
by Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child
(Grand Central – $36.50 – 350 pages)
“The ending is typical Pendergast with heart-stopping scenes featuring alligators, bullets and an almost impossible escape.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

The Good Fight
by Danielle Steel
(Delacorte Press  – $38.99 – 292 pages)
“…while far from her best book, is still worthy of your time, for whose who enjoy  a relaxing read with interesting characters and interwoven storylines.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Gale Force
by Owen Laukkanen
(Putnam – $36.00 – 372 pages)
“The intricate detail about the ship and its perils make the book a superior read.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Wolfhunter River
by Rachel Caine
(Thomas & Mercer – $22.95 – 324 pages)
“Rachel Caine once more dazzles us with her tense brand of writing, and a relentless plot you cannot get enough of.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

The Glovemaker
by Ann Weisgarber
(Mantle – $30.99 – 296 pages)
“…a think piece as well, with moral issues as well as a plot that mesmerizes.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

The Echo Killing
by Christi Daugherty
(Minotaur – $22.50 – 377 pages)
“She has created a definitive page-turner using her expertise in newspapers covering crime and murder to the fullest.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Nine Perfect Strangers
by Liane Moriarty
(Flatiron – $35.99 – 454 pages)
“Liane Moriarty is known for her dark and somewhat humorous tales, and this one is certainly one that is all that and more at times.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

*** Non-Fiction Section ***
*** Best June  Non-Fiction ***

For Alison
by Andy Parker with Ben R. Williams
(DK Books – $65.00 – 612 pages)
“…a moving story of a father’s love, and a rallying cry for common sense solutions so events like this are a thing of the past…”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

Apollo: VII-XVII
by Floris Heyne, Joel Meter, Simon Phillipson & Delano Steen Meijer
(teNeuses- $85.00 – 322 pages)
“…an absolutely breathtaking coffee table book of the highest order.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

**** Rest of June Non-Fiction ****

Bunny Boy and Me
by Nancy Laracy
(Skyhorse – $38.99 – 252 pages)
“This is one of the most enlightening and entertaining stories you will read.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

Don Cherry’s Hockey Greats and More
by Don Cherry
(Doubleday Canada – $29.95 – 244 pages)
“While he is not afraid to step on toes with his observations, there is nothing controversial about DON CHERRY’s HOCKEY GREATS AND MORE.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Inside An Honor Killing: A Father and Daughter Tell Their Story
by Lene Wold
(Greystone – $32.95 – 216 pages)
“…a book that is a rallying cry for justice, aski ng the question whether such attitudes can ever change…”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

by Wednesday Martin
(Little Brown Spark – $36.50 – 304 pages)
“Martin does a respectable job of balancing many areas, while relating scientific research with personal observation.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Jefferson: Architect of American Liberty
by John B. Boles
(Basic Books  – $45.50 – 640 pages)
Reviewed by John M. Milner

“JEFFERSON delves deeply into the President’s career in politics…”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Why We Dream: The Transformative Journey
by Alice Robb
(Houghton Mifflin Harcourt – $39.00 – 266 pages)
“…Alice Robb studies that mysterious and often magical world of dreams and what they mean for us.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

History of the World Map by Map
(DK Books – $65.00 – 440 pages)
“The maps have enough information to help paint the perfect picture.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

The Opposite of Hate: A Field Guide for Repairing Our Humanity
by Sally Kohn
(Algonquin Books – $38.95 – 262 pages)
“…provides a refreshing perspective on dealing with hate.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

The Flash The Silver Age Volume 3
(DK Books – $39.99 – 400 pages)
“…don’t speed read this book, you will want to savour every panel of the story and dialogue.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

The Ending Photographic Stories of Love, Loss, Heartbreak, and Beginning Again
by Caitlin Cronenberg & Jessica Ennis
(Chronicle – $42.95 – 144 pages)
“…a massive project that took over seven years and 50,000 photos, to come up with the finished product.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Buseyisms: Gary Busy’s Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth
by Gary Busey with Steffanie Sampson
(St. Martin’s Press – $32.50 – 290 pages)
“Now he returns with his Buseyisms, teaching us no matter what life throws our way, one can fight back and survive.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Norval Morriseau Man Changing Into Thunderbird
by Armand Garnet Ruffo
(Douglas & McIntyre – $24.95 – 312 pages)
“…there are still countless more positives that brought Norval Morrisseau to such prominence and respect.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Stanley Cup: The Complete History
by Eric Zweig
(Firefly – $24.95 – 532 pages)
“…traces the history and all the teams fortunate enough to hoist the Cup on their shoulders…”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Everyone Wins – Cooperative Games & Activities for All Ages Revised and Updated 3rd Edition
by Josette and Ba Luvmour
(New Society – $16.99 – 166  pages)
“…more than 170 games that children of all ages can participate in and have lots of fun.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks


Shelf Life Magazine – May 2019

ShelfMay2019Now that the last gasps of Winter have officially gone into hibernation for another eight months hopefully, it is always interesting to look back at the season that was. This past Winter have more time to read and review books as for a six week span, I was saddled with dizziness and lightheaded feelings which kept me more indoors than out. I would have preferred other excuses to stay indoors but this was the best I could muster under the circumstances. The result of this was encountering so many more above average books as you discover in this latest issue. Publishers have a knack for representing some of the best authors out there and whether established authors or the proverbial new kids on the block, the reader is the winner in the great authors sweepstakes.

So again for your consideration, a fresh bouquet of Spring offerings, where you cannot go wrong by picking them up and enjoying them as much as the Shelf Life staff has. Let us know whether you agree.

Paul Sutter

Like us on Facebook

*** Fiction Section ***
*** Best May Fiction ***

The Dark Lake
by Sarah Bailey
(Grand Central Publishing – $34.00 – 432 pages)
“The murky atmosphere is the book’s strength, offering one riddle after another.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

Dreams of Falling
by Karen White
(Berkley – $35.00 – 404 pages)
“…a book you will fall in love with, thanks to the great characters and interspersing of past and present.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

*** Rest of May Fiction ***

Leverage in Death
by J.D. Robb
(St. Martin’s Press – $37.99 – 386 pages)
“If Robb can continue to create books this suspenseful, there is little reason to bring the series to a crashing halt.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

I Know You Know
by Gilly Macmillan
(Harper Luxe – $24.99 – 466 pages)
“Gilly Macmillan has taken a rather basic story, crafting it into a superior work of mystery fiction.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

Her One Mistake 
by Heidi Perks
(Gallery – $24.99 – 312 pages)
“…with a complex plot, keeping us guessing constantly about the outcome.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Daughters of the Lake
by Wendy Webb
(Lake Union – $21.95 – 306 pages)
“…definitely mystery/suspense/supernatural at its best.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Twenty-One Days
by Anne Perry
(Ballantine – $37.00 – 305 pages)
“It gives her fans another reason to sit patiently and await her next classic novel.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Juror #3
by James Patterson & Nancy Allen
(Little Brown – $36.50 – 333 pages)
“…a sort of change-of-pace novel from the James Patterson writing machine.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Careless Love
by Peter Robinson
(McClelland & Stewart – $29.95 – 342 pages)
“(Book twenty-five of the series) is quite an accomplishment for any author.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Give-A-Damn Jones
by Bill Pronzini
(Forge – $33.99 – 256 pages)
Reviewed by: John M. Milner
“It is a fun read and can even be seen as a fresh take on the genre..”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

Night Moves
by Jonathan Kellerman
(Ballantine – $38.99 – 400 pages)
“The series remains murder mystery at its finest.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Lawn Boy
by Jonathan Evison
(Algonquin Books  – $38.95 – 312 pages)
Reviewed by: Tori Levang
“Funny, moving and quietly inspiring…”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

House Arrest
by Mike Lawson
(AtlanticMonthly Press – $37.50 – 324 pages)
“…makes for a very arresting and enjoable novel.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

The Martin Chronicles
by John Fried
(Grand Central – $34.00 – 264 pages)
“John Fried offers a thoroughly enjoyable debut novel.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Pairing a Deception
by Nadine Nettman
(Midnight Ink – $22.95 – 230 pages)
“…the absolute mystery and the suspects that will have you turning the pages…”
Rating: 3 bookmarks

Kingdom of the Blind
by Louise Penny
(Minotaur – $35.99 – 386 pages)
“Penny writes the series with such skill and eloquence…”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

The Temp
by Michelle Frances
(Pan – $26.95 – 466 pages)
“The book charges toward a chilling conclusion, and by book’s end you may need to take deep breaths.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

*** Non-Fiction Section ***
*** Best May Non-Fiction ***

Art: The Definitive Visual Guide New Edition
Foreward by Ross King
(DK Books – $65.00 – 612 pages)
“This is more than a coffee table masterpiece. It is a book that is a reference point for all art.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

Thanks a Lot Mr. Kibblewhite: My Story
By Roger Daltrey
(Henry Holt – $39.00 – 260 pages)
“What stands out in this book is the honest and sometimes humbling assessment of Roger’s life and career.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

**** Rest of May Non-Fiction ****

Creeping Crawling: Charles Manson and the Many Lives of America’s Most Infamous Family
by Jeffrey Melnick
(Arcade  – $34.99 – 420 pages)
“The book is an interesting look at Manson and his followers, analyzing the past and how it still plays out in modern thought and culture so many years later.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

by Ingrid Fetell Lee

(Little Brown – $36.50 – 356 pages)
“In the book, she studies common-sense methods of bringing joy to our world.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Obama: An Oral History 2009-2017
by Brian Abrams
(Little A – $22.95 – 510 pages)
“…a comprehensive reassessment from those in the know.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Back to Baking 
by Anna Olson
(Whitecap – $40.00 – 332 pages)
“It will bring you back to everything tasty and totally tempting.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Iron Road West: An Illustrated History of British Columbia Railways
by Derek Hayes
(Harbour  – $44.95 – 242 pages)
“…a book packed with fascinating facts…”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

The Haunt of Fear: The EC Archives Volume 5
by Bill Gaines
(Dark Horse – $53.99 – 160 pages)
“…packed with the typically entertaining stories…”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Who Killed Tom Thomson
by John Little
(Skyhorse- $34.99 – 410 pages)
“…a real-life crime, one that puzzled people for decades.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

They Call Me George (The Untold Story of Black Train Porters And the Birth of Modern Canada)
by Cecil Foster
(Biblioasis – $22.95 – 296 pages)
“…offers a comprehensive look at the life and times of the porters, and their fight to be treated with respect..”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

The Second World Wars (How the First Global Conflict Was Fought and Won)
by  Victor David Hanson
(Basic Books – $52.00 – 720 pages)
“He has taken a subject we thought we knew all about, finding a new way to retell history…”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Bakeland Nordic Treats Inspired by Nature
by Marit Hovland
(Greystone – $35.00 – 208 pages)
“It is the love of nature and love for things created in the kitchen that makes the book so interesting.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

I Know Better Now, My Life Before, During, and After the Ramones
by Richie Ramone with Pete Aaron
(Backbeat/Hal Leonard – $35.95 – 296 pages)
“…very down-to-earth, honest and open.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

A River In Darkness, One Man’s Escape from North Korea
by Masaji Ishikawa
(Amazon Crossing – $28.95 – 160 pages)
“…we find a story first-hand of life in htat country from a man who lived a hellish existence.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

The Baseball Game I’ll Never Forget
by Steve Milton
(Firefly – $24.95 – 192 pages)
“…offers fans a look at fifty greats of the sport and games that defined their lives and career.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Chop Suey Nation
by Ann Hui
(Douglas & McIntyre – $24.95 – 288  pages)
“…a most personal account of the Chinese restaurant, and how it has become such an ingrained part of Canadian culture…”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Vegan in th House (Flexible Plant-Based Meals to Please Everyone)
(DK Books – $32.00 – 260  pages)
“So take a walk on the vegan side with a book that will definitely have you trying the recipes again and again.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Shelf Life Magazine – April 2019 – 21st Anniversary Issue

ShelfApr2019cover.jpgWell, here we are again at another Shelf Life Anniversary. This issue signifies our 21st anniversary, and each time out I become redundant when I state, “Where did the time go?” The Spring of 1998 was when this publication was started, and through 215 previoius issues has grown in leaps and bounds to a publication I could not be prouder of. No, we are not as big circulation-wise as some newspapers and magazines, but that was never the intent. I simply want to create a publication that tried to inspire people to pick up books and read them. I wanted readers to find books that interested them and even tried to pique their interest in finding books outside their comfort zone. From the feedback, that has happened a lot, which makes me even happier. Some who had not read a book in years were encouraged to do so, and that too is another plus of Shelf Life. In a wold where reading has taken a backseat at times to texting and video games, diehard book lovers still exist and as long as they do, as long as they continue to pick us up, then this mission is far from over. I continue to thank the amazing publishers who have remained faithful to Shelf Life, sending exceptional books to review and promote. And, of course, thank you to the readers, and last but not least the incredible reviewers past and present, who were just as dedicated to books and getting the message across to read these titles.

Now, on to the books!

Paul Sutter

Like us on Facebook

*** Fiction Section ***
*** Best April Fiction ***

The Clockmaker’s Daughter
by Kate Morton
(Atria – $24.99 – 484 pages)
“…it is the telling of the tale from so many perspectives past and present, that truly rivets the reader to the story.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

The Dream Daughter
by Diane Chamberlain
(St. Martin’s Press – $24.99 – 366 pages)
“…a powerful and riveting tale, one that is truly unforgettable.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

by Jessica Barry
(Harper – $29.99 – 355 pages)
“…one of those books that once you open it, you will have the toughest time putting it down…”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

*** Rest of April Fiction ***

Fairy Tale
by Danielle Steel
(Delacorte – $38.99 – 277 pages)
“…has that Danielle steel magic, thanks in part to one of the most vile villains ever to grace the pages of her books.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

River Bodies
by Karen Katchur
(Thomas & Mercer – $22.95 – 292 pages)
“…Karen Katchur begins this series with an explosive and engrossing tale that will inspire readers to return for more.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

by Sandra Brown
(Grand Central – $35.50 – 434 pages)
“…a story with conflict, confusion, and attraction.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Miss Kopp Just Won’t Quit
by Amy Stewart
(Houghton Mifflin Harcourt – $37.00 – 310 pages)
“One cannot wait to meet the Kopp sisters again for another enjoyable visit.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

The Forbidden Door
by Dean Koontz
(Bantam – $37.00 – 434 pages)
“Koontz knows how to keep this series fresh…”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

Double Blind
by Iris & Roy Johansen
(St. Martin’s Press – $37.99 – 325 pages)
“…the sixth book in the series, containing the same intense plot and mystery…”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Red White Blue
by Lea Carpenter
(Knopf – $35.95 – 383 pages)
“…definitely a book that does not follow the rules of narration and tone.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Plum Rains
by Andromeda Romano-Lax
(Soho Press – $31.95 –  389 pages)
Reviewed by: Tori Levang
“Part science fiction, part historical fiction, PLUM RAINS is a unique and enthralling look at the present and our near future.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Cottage by the Sea
by Debbie Macomber
(Ballantine – $36.00 -337 pages)
“…succeeds on all counts, making it one of the most enjoyable books Debbie Macomber has ever written.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

After Nightfall
by A.J. Banner
(Lake Union – $35.95 – 248 pages)
“This is the ideal book if you want a mystery where nothing is in black and white and the puzzle becomes murkier the more you read.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

The Silhouette Girl
by V.C. Andrews
(Gallery – $19.99 – 360 pages)
“…in the typical style of Andrews and it offers the same sort of plot twists and characters that millions came to love over the tenure of the author.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Into the Night
by Sarah Bailey
(Grand Central – $34.00 – 416 pages)
“Sarah Bailey adds interest and intrigue the further we delve into the book.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Probably Claws
by Rita Mae Brown and Sneaky Pie Brown
(Bantam – $36.00 – 330 pages)
“…we suspend disbelief and just enjoy them for what that are…This book is far from a ‘cat’astrophe.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Points North
by Howard Frank Mosher
(St. Martin’s Press – $33.99 – 202 pages)
“The ten stories in the book sum up the writing skills of Mosher in ways few could ever duplicate.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

*** Non-Fiction Section ***
*** Best April Non-Fiction ***

Fly Girls: How Five Daring Women Defied All Odds and Made Aviation History
by Keith O’Brien
(Houghton Mifflin Harcourt – $40.00 – 338 pages)
“…the ultimate tribute to the first female flyers who looks to the skies for inspiration and challenge.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

Led Zeppelin All the Songs The Story Behind Every Track
By Jean-Michael Guesdon & Philippe Margotin
(Black Dog & Leventhal – $65.00 – 612 pages)
“…the authors review every recording they made, giving fans and casual viewers  the story behind every track.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

**** Rest of April Non-Fiction ****

The Vanity Fair Diaries
by Tina Brown
(Picador  – $26.00 – 436 pages)
“….an entertaining but ‘fair’ overview of her Vanity Fair life and times.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

SuperGirl: The Silver Age Volume Two
(DC Comics – $39.99 – 305 pages)
“Anyone who grew up with Action Comics will enjoy seeing the issues again.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Raw: The First 25 Years
by Jake Black, Jon Hill & Dean Miller
(DK Books – $32.00 – 200 pages)
“Fans will be in their glory as they look back at a quarter-century of the heroes and villians who graced the ring.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

The Godfather: The Official Motion Picture Archives
by Peter Cowie
(Carlton – $40.00 – 164 pages)
“Fans of THE GODFATHER will enjoy this nostalgic tribute to the movie that changes cinema forever.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

The American Negro Theatre and the Long Civil Rights Era
by Jonathan Shandell
(University of Iowa Press  – $70.00 – 216 pages)
“The thoroughness of htis book makes it a most enjoyable read…”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Where Do We Go From Here (Two Years in the Resistance)
by Bernie Sanders
(St. Martin’s / Thomas Dunne – $36.50 – 270 pages)
“He looks at the world during the past two years of the Trump White House.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

The Battle of Waterloo
by Peter and Dan Sanow
(Andre Deutsch – $34.95 – 160 pages)
Reviewed by John M. Milner
“…beautifully illustrated, the pages rich with paintings of the battle and key figures…”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

A Star is Born (Judy Garland and the Film That Got Away)
by  Lorna Luft and Jeffrey Vance
(Running Press – $36.50 – 248 pages)
“…the book discusses the making of the film and shaping it into a classic.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

The Cowkeeper’s Wish: A Genealogical Journey
by  Tracy Kasaboski & Kristen Den Hartog
(Douglas & McIntyre – $32.95 – 448 pages)
“One can only image the amount of time necessary to research this book.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Burning Down the Haus
by Tim Mohr
(Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill – $39.95 – 393 pages)
“The book burns with intensity in so many ways….”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

The World According to Tom Hank: A Homage to America’s Dad
by Gavin Edwards
(Grand Central – $34.00 – 345 pages)
“It is nice to read a celebrity profile that is free of negatives or controversy.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Woodstock 1969 (The Lasting Image of the Counter Culture)
Text by Ettagale Blauer & Jason Laure – Photographs by Jason Laurie
(Skyhorse – $38.99 – 140 pages)
“The authors take us back to the rock festival through words and pictures.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

The Science of Supercars
by Martin Roach, Neil Waterman & John Morrison
(Firefly – $29.95 – 224 pages)
“The book pretty well shows from almost day one the evolution of the car.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

The Hidden Life of Trees
by Peter Wohlleben
(Greystone/David Suzuki Institute – $29.95 – 272  pages)
“The book is a science lesson in these pages…”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

The Seawee Chronicles: A World at the Water’s Edge
by Susan Hand Shetterly
(Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill – $24.95US – 272  pages)
“…truly a chronicle at what we find around water’s edge…”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Shelf Life Magazine – March 2019

Shelf March 2019 coverThere are many reasons to celebrate the month of March. The first day of Spring arrives, daylight savings time is observed. St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated, but in the world, it begins for many publishing houses with the new Spring arrivals. While the first three items noted are exciting for many, personally the release of Spring titles are what Shelf Life looks forward to even more. Having seen the catalogues and requesting some of the titles, we can assure you there are many great titles arriving soon from many of the authors you can have grown to love, and anticipate new releases from. So all we can say is stay tuned to upcoming issues. Shelf Life has always promised to offer the best in books for your reading consideration, and that is something we vow to honor we hope you enjoy this latest issue.

Paul Sutter

Like us on Facebook

*** Fiction Section ***
*** Best March Fiction ***

A Noise Downstairs
by Linwood Barclay
(Doubleday Canada – $24.95 – 356 pages)
“This is certainly Barclay’s best book, with the reader hooked, not wanting to stop reading.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

When The Lights Go Out
by Mary Kubica
(Park Row – $33.50 – 332 pages)
“…picks up where others have left off, giving readers a thrill ride right to the last sentence.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

Watching You
by Lisa Jewell
(Atria – $24.95 – 325 pages)
“…another classic, packed with complex storylines and most interesting characters.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

*** Rest of March Fiction ***

Lady Be Good
by Amber Brock
(Crown – $35.00 – 279 pages)
“…she offers a poignant look at life and social concerns (of the 1950s).”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

The Waiting Room
by Emily Bleeker
(Lake Union – $21.95 – 262 pages)
“It is a book that grips you from the beginning, and at no point lets you off the proverbial hook.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

by Iris Johansen
(St. Martin’s Press – $37.99 -404 pages)
“Iris Johansen brings so much to every book, and VENDETTA is a book that begs to be read.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

Watch the Girls
by Jennifer Wolfe
(Grand Central Publishing – $34.00 – 390 pages)
“…strikes the right chord, suspense-wise.”
Rating: 4bookmarks

Crime Scene
by Jonathan & Jesse Kellerman
(Ballantine – $38.99 – 388 pages)
“…Clay is interesting enough to warrant another look in at in a future book.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Desperate Measures
by Stuart Woods
(Putnam – $37.00 – 311 pages)
“There is still lots of gas in the literary tank so to speak for Woods, keeping the book’s popularity etched in Stone.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Broken Ground
by Val McDermid
(Atlantic Monthly Press – $38.95 – 432 pages)
“…book five in the popular KAREN PIRIE series. Many call this her best.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Lethal White
by Robert Galbraith
(Mulholland/Little Brown – $38.00 – 650 pages)
“…while not as lethally engaging as the first three books, offers more of the life of Strike and Robin, and how he deals with crimes, life and love.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Dangerous Minds
by Janet Evanovich
(Bantam – $37.00 – 320 pages)
“If you want a light and amusing read, one needs only look at a book cover with the name Janet Evanovich as the author.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

by Lisa Scottoline
(St. Martin’s Press – $36.50 – 386 pages)
“Fear not, for Lisa Scottoline has penned another interesting legal tale…”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

American Ghost
by Paul Guernsey
(Talos – $21.99 – 285 pages)
“…the sort of book that is so offbeat you cannot help but find it entertaining and unique.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Jackrabbit Smile
by Joe R. Lansdale
(Mulholland – $34.00 – 256 pages)
“JACKRABBIT SMILE will make you do that, both smile and feel the tension contained in this highly recommended book.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

by David Hagberg
(Forge – $33.99- 336 pages)
“…the typical sort of action thriller you would expect from Hagberg.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Claws for Concern
by Miranda James
(Berkley – $35.00 -280 pages)
“Miranda James has created a most engaging pair with Charlie Harris and his Maine coon cat Diesel.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

*** Non-Fiction Section ***
*** Best March Non-Fiction ***

by Michelle Obama
(Crown – $40.00 – 430 pages)
“…it  would be difficult to find any fault with the book and Michelle’s telling of her life story.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

They Drew As They Pleased: The Hidden Art of Disney’s Mid-Century Era: The 1950’s and 1960’s Volume 4
Didier Ghez
(Chronicle – $65.00 – 226 pages)
“…any fan of animation or Disney in general, deserves to include this book in their library.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

Bert Riggall’s Greater Waterton: A Conservation Legacy
Edited by Beth Towe
(Fifth House – $60.00 – 312 pages)
“For those who enjoy photos of mountains, valleys, wildlife, along with a part of Canada that is nothing short of spectacular…”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

**** Rest of March Non-Fiction ****

Six Encounters with Lincoln: A President Confronts Democracy and Its Demons
by Elizabeth Brown Pryor
(Viking  – $47.00 – 480 pages)
Reviewed by John M. Milner
“…takes a look at Lincoln as President, politician, and person, through a more modern lens…”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Woody Allen Film by Film 2nd Edition
by Jason Solomons
(Carlton – $50.00 – 262 pages)
“…a serious look at the films he has made, and often the stories behind many of his films.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Unhinged : An Insider’s Account of the Trump White House 
by Omarosa Manigault Newman
(Gallery – $37.00 -334 pages)
“…adds more intrigue to the life and legacy of Donald Trump from those who knew him extremely well.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Bird Brains: The Intelligence of Crows, Ravens, Magpies, and Jays
by Candace Savage
(Greystone- $29.95 – 136 pages)
“Savage looks at these creatures from an entirely different perspective, showing us how clever they truly are.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Marvel Avengers The Ultimate Guide New Edition
by Scott Beatty, Alan Cowsill, Alastair Dougall & Melanie Scott
(DK Books – $31.99 – 220 pages)
“In this ultimate guide, key issues are featured, such as Civil War #1…”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Robert Bateman Birds
by Robert Bateman
(Firefly – $29.95 – 178 pages)
“…there is an added bonus as the master himself offers his own reflections and reminiscences about the paintings.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

The Science of Harry Potter
by Mark Brake with Jon Chase
(Racehorse – $22.99 – 202 pages)
Reviewed by Tori Levang
“Backed with scientific research and fact, the authors explain the logic-defying, the mythical, and seemingly inexplicable magic of this famous fictional world.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Tutankhamun: Egyptology’s Greatest Discovery
by Jaromir Malek
(Andre Deutsch – $50.00 – 160 pages)
“Lovers of Egyptian history will find much to appreciate…”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Medical Symptoms: A Visual Guide
(DK Books – $25.95 – 256 pages)
“The book is thorough in its analysis…”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Beautiful Bodies
by Kimberly Rae Miller
(Little A – $21.95 – 226 pages)
“…you will appreciate this book and the ways that Kimberly Rae Mill tells it like it is.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

The Ever Curious Gardener (Using a Little Natural Science For a Much Better Garden)
by Lee Reich
(New Society – $18.99 – 210 pages)
“…will take the guesswork out of planting and growing, making your garden stand above the crowd.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

**** Books for Younger Readers ****

The Story I’ll Tell
by Nancy Tupper Lee – Illustrations by Jessica Lanan
(Lee & Low Books – $24.99 – 32 pages)
“The author creates most interesting methods of letting the child know how it came into their lives, each one mystical and mythical but filled with much love.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

The Origin of Day and Night 
by Paula Ikuutaq Rumbolt – Illustrated by Lenny Lischenko
(Inhabit Media – $16.95 – 32 pages)
“…a well-written and illustrated tale, part of Inuit mythology.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Shelf Life Magazine – February 2019

Ffeb19shelfcoverebruary, being the month of love, hearts and cupids, indirectly relates to what Shelf Life is about. There are no hearts and cupids generally, but when it comes to love, we try and foster the love of books. One thing we strive to encourage most, is to go beyond your comfort level in reading, and look for books of other genres. Those who might love mysteries only, might be hesitant to open a book that has elements of fantasy or horror, but as we often discover from people who write us, they took a chance beyond what they were used to and actually liked it. The same, of course, goes for non-fiction and trying books one might not normally read. You may not like every single book of that nature, but the main thing is seeking knowledge beyond what one normally enjoys. And life, like reading, is keeping yourself open to change and new things. And what is the worst that could happen? You might find a new area for reading enjoyment. We hope that happens.

Enjoy this issue!

Paul Sutter

Like us on Facebook

*** Fiction Section ***
*** Best February Fiction ***

by Stephen King
(Scribner – $24.99 – 146 pages)
“…a departure for King in many ways…”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

The Three Beths
by Jeff Abbott
(Grand Central – $34.00 – 400 pages)
“The book is a tense tale with one twist trumping another…”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

Believe Me
by J.P. Delaney
(Doubleday Canada – $24.95 – 334 pages)
“There is psychological thriller taken to the tenth degree…”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

*** Rest of February Fiction ***

Baby Teeth
by Zoje Stage
(St. Martin’s Press – $34.99 – 304 pages)
“It makes the book a real page-turner.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

The Pharaoh Key
by Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child
(Grand Central – $36.50 – 310 pages)
“Fans of the Gideon Crew series will have the chance to see Preston and Child’s latest creation in what appears to be his swan song.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Promise Not to Tell
by Jayne Anne Krentz
(Berkley – $36.00 – 325 pages)
“Krentz writes with great passion, and between the fight for love or death, there are many other elements that make the book a tension-filled thriller.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

The Savior’s Game
by Sean Chercover
(Thomas & Mercer – $21.95 – 272 pages)
“The conclusion is promising, and brings to an end the unusual trilogy.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

by Carol Kepnes
(Lenny – $36.00 – 370 pages)
“PROVIDENCE is so engrossing, you simply will not be able to stop reading.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

Absolute Proof
by Pete James
(MacMillan – $40.99 – 560 pages)
“This departure by James is well worth the read.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

A Spark of Light
by Jodi Picoult
(Random House Canada – $32.00 – 370 pages)
“…the book is told in reverse, a captivating literary device.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

The Disappeared
by C.J. Box
(Putnam – $36.00 – 390 pages)
“Box as usual offers superior fiction and this book…is as entertaining as any book preceding it.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

The Forgotten Ones
by Steena Holmse
(Lake Union Publishing – $21.95 – 337 pages)
Reviewed by Tori Levang
“…the novel’s unique storytelling provides a realistic and deeply moving experience.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

The 17th Suspects
by James Patterson & Maxine Paetro
(Little Brown – $38.00 – 354 pages)
“Patterson and Paetro continue with their compelling stories…”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

The Flight Attendant
by Chris Bohjalian
(Doubleday – $35.95 – 357 pages)
“Bohjalian’s book may have some improbable moments, but the frantic age of the plot negates any mediocre twists.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Robert B. Parker’s Old Black Magic
by Ace Atkins
(Putnam – $36.00 – 320 pages)
“…has that same magic that Parker gave us for so many years.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

The Western Wind
by Samantha Harvey
(Grove Press – $38.95 – 304 pages)
“…she takes her fiction soaring to a new novel with a historic tale of epidemic proportions.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

You Don’t Own Me
by Mary Higgins Clark & Alafair Burke
(Simon & Schuster – $35.99 -272 pages)
“…certainly one of the best of the series.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

The Collector’s Apprentice
by B.A. Shapiron
(Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill – $38.95 – 342 pages)
“…book twenty-nine in the series that shows no signs of letting up, nor of Kenyon deciding to draw it to a close.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

*** Non-Fiction Section ***
*** Best February Non-Fiction ***

by Bob Woodward
(Simon & Schuster – $39.99  – 420 pages)
“The book has become a best seller because people cannot get enough of Trump for better or worse.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

@The Stormpilot
Pictures by Santiago Borja
(teNeues – $60.00 – 164 pages)
“There is nothing routine about these photos, showing cloud formations with such intimacy and depth.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

**** Rest of February Non-Fiction ****

Marvel Studios Visual Dictionary
by Adam Bray
(DK Books  – $39.00 – 200 pages)
“This book is a must-own for Marvel lovers everywhere.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Cowgirl Power: How to Kick! Ass in Business and Life
by Gay Gaddis
(Center Street – $34.00 – 272 pages)
“Power to the cowgirls of the world, who learn that with Gay Gaddis on their side, they are one step closer to success.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Hell’s Princess: The Mystery of Bell Gunness Butcher of Men
by Harold Schechter
(Little A – $35.95 -326 pages)
“…has created an interesting story of her life and times.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Buffy Sainte-Marie: The Authorized Biography
by Andrea Warner
(Greystone- $36.00 – 300 pages)
“…you will understand her life and times, and contribution to culture and music.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

Iconic Magazine Covers
by Ian Birch
(Firefly – $49.95 – 256 pages)
“There have been many magazine covers over the decades both controversial and visual appealing.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Children of Nazis
by Tania Crasnianski (Translated by Molly Grogan)
(Arcade – $35.95 – 238 pages)
“…more chilling than any fiction you might read.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Dodge City: Wyatt Earp, Bat Masterson and the Wickedest Town in the American West
by Tom Clavin
(St. Martin’s Press – $41.99 – 384 pages)
Reviewed by John M. Milner
“…readers get a chance to learn the true history of many of the icons of this particular genre…”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

This Will Only Hurt A Little
by Busy Philipps
(Touchstone – $35.99 – 312 pages)
“So it’s time to get busy and seek out this most entertaining and amusing book.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Grit and Glory: Celebrating 40 Years of the Edmonton Oilers
by Schultz Nicholson
(Viking – $40.00 – 310 pages)
“…follows the evolution of the team, along with every player who donned an Edmonton jersey.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

The Desert and the Sea
by Michael Scott Moore
(Harper Wave – $34.99 – 464 pages)
“The book is certainly an eye-opener to the world around us…”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Star Wars: Women of the Galaxy
by Amy Ratcliffe
(Chronicle – $42.95 – 232 pages)
“…paying homage to the women who have been integral parts of the movies, comics, fiction, and basically anything associate with the film.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

by Fay Weller and Mary Wilson
(New Society Publishers – $17.99 – 200 pages)
“…(offers) a beacon of light and hope in these totally turbulent times. Change begins with opening the pages of this enlightening book.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Hockey Fight in Canada
by David Shoalts
(Douglas & McIntyre – $22.95 – 212 pages)
“…the author looks back at the blockbuster decision for Rogers Media back in 2013 to have exclusive rights to the broadcasts.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

The World of the Rock
by Steve Pantaleo
(DK Books – $31.99 – 160 pages)
“This tribute to the Rock, rolls proudly from first page to last.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Shelf Life Magazine – January 2019

jan19coverWelcome to 2019 and Happy New Year to all! Hard to believe another year has passed into the ether as they say, but hopefully this year will be memorable for everyone out there.  A new year also brings a new selection of books, where one again, we fulfill our praise to offer reviews of the best in books. As always, hopefully we inspire you to head to your bookstore and purchase many of the titles. There is little question they are worthy of your attention and hard-earned money. Keep those emails coming with your suggestions and comments about our choices. In the immortal words of the late comedic legend Jackie Gleason, “and away we go!”

Enjoy this issue!

Paul Sutter

Like us on Facebook

*** Fiction Section ***
*** Best January Fiction ***

The Policeman’s Daughter
by Trudy Nan Boyce
(Putnam – $37.00 – 338 pages)
“This is one detective truly worth her Salt!”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

by Rosie Walsh
(Mantle – $24.99 – 344 pages)
“…vastly different from the majority of books on store shelves.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

The Bad Daughter
by Joy Fielding
(Doubleday Canada – $32.00 – 356 pages)
“…very good, a great mystery both entertaining, and one that becomes a total page turner.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

*** Rest of January Fiction ***

Dark Sacred Night
by Michael Connelly
(Little Brown – $38.00 – 448 pages)
“It is books like DARK SACRED NIGHT that reinforces precisely why we enjoy any book written by Michael Connelly.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

The Other Lady Vanishes
by Amanda Quick
(Berkley – $36.00 – 342 pages)
“Amanda Quick can take any genre and do wonders with it.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Shattered Mirror
by Iris Johansen
(St. Martin’s Press – $36.00 – 339 pages)
“…a tense and powerful reading experience…”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

White Rose Black Forest
by Eoin Dempsey
(Lake Union – $19.75 – 258 pages)
Reviewed by Tori Levang
“Intense and emotional, and based on true historical events, the book straddles the line between the genres of historical fiction and thriller.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Give Me Your Hand
by Megan Abbott
(Little Brown – $22.99 – 342 pages)
“…will definitely linger in your mind as the story is intense…”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

All We Ever Wanted
by Emily Giffin
(Doubleday Canada – $32.00 – 334 pages)
“…the typical superior chick-lit that Emily Giffin is noted for.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

Vince Flynn Red War
by Kyle Mills
(Emily Bestler/Atria – $22.00 – 370 pages)
“…continues the quality work of the series…”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Under My Skin
by Lisa Unger
(Park Row Books – $22.99 – 365 pages)
“…will definitely get under your skin, but in a positive way…”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

A Darkness Absolute
by Kelley Armstrong
(Random House Canada – $29.95 – 454 pages)
“Armstrong writes the characters with dark elements that add to the chilling nature of the book.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

A Darkness of the Heart
by Gail Bowen
(McClelland & Stewart – $32.00 – 272 pages)
“…shows another side of Bowen’s writing prowess, adding new dynamics to her life and times…”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

The Crooked Staircase
by Dean Koontz
(Bantam – $37.00 – 434 pages)
“…will take the reader further into the world of suspense and intrigue…”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Twisted Prey
by John Sandford
(Putnam – $39.00 – 388 pages)
“…Sandford again proves why his books become better each time…”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

Cat Flap
by Alan S. Cowell
(St. Martin’s Press – $32.50 – 230 pages)
“For those who enjoy books with animals as a main theme, they will definitely enjoy CAT FLAP.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Seek
by Anthony O’Neill
(Skyhorse – $29.99 -216 pages)
“…it advances the story to areas (Louis) Stevenson may have envisioned if he had penned another book.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

by Sherrilyn Kenyon
(Tor – $36.50 – 660 pages)
“…book twenty-nine in the series that shows no signs of letting up, nor of Kenyon deciding to draw it to a close.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Big Woods
by May Cobb
(Midnight Ink – $21.95 –  300 pages)
“Keep an eye out for future books from this author. She is just getting started.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

*** Non-Fiction Section ***
*** Best January Non-Fiction ***

My Squirrel Days
by Ellie Kemper
(Scribner – $32.99  – 240 pages)
“…so much to savour in this entertaining autobiography.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

Full Disclosure
by Stormy Daniels with Kevin Carr O’Leary
(St. Martin’s Press – $36.50 – 270 pages)
“You will be pleasantly surprised at Stormy’s savvy and honesty.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

Canoes: A Natural History in North America
by Mark Neuzil & Norman Sims
(Fitzhenry & Whiteside – $40.00 – 372 pages)
“…the authors provide a scholarly and historical approach to one of the oldest modes of transportation.”
Rating: 5 bookmarks

**** Rest of January Non-Fiction ****

Little Shoes: The Sensational Depression-Era Murders That Became My Family’s Secret
by Pamela Everett
(Skyhorse – $37.99 – 232 pages)
“…takes bold steps in reassessing a classic crime.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

A Season in the Sun: The Rise of Mickey Mantle
by Randy Roberts & Johnny Smith
(Basic Books – $36.50 – 304 pages)
“…should be required reading for children who one day envision themselves as sports stars.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Unshackling America: How the War of 1812 Truly Ended the American Revolution
by Willard Sterne Randall
(St. Martin’s Press – $41.99 – 452 pages)
Reviewed by John M. Milner
“…Randall’s brilliant tome does substantially more than simply tackle the subject of the War of 1812.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

Star Wars: The Complete Visual Dictionary New Edition
by James Lucerno, David West Reynolds, Ryder Windham, Jason Fry & Pablo Hidalgo
(DK Books – $35.00 – 352 pages)
“With over 350 pages of the best in Star Wars, the book will entertain, illuminate, and mesmerize every fan of the movies.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Happy Down Below
by Dr. Oliver Gralla
(Greystone – $22.95 – 224 pages)
“It makes HAPPY DOWN BELOW a book to be shared by men and women in terms of sexuality, creating a more fulfilling life and intimate moments.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Kate How To Dress Like a Style Icon
by Caroline Jones
(Carlton Book – $40.00 – 210 pages)
“…you might feel like a queen after learning fashion tricks of the trade.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

The Silver Age Doom Patrol Volume One
(DC Comics – $39.99 – 380 pages)
“You will feel no doom and gloom reading this book, rather a nostalgic happiness in being reunited with the issues that brought the Doom Patrol to the comic buying public.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Tina Turner: My Love Story
by Tina Turner with Deborah Davis & Dominik Wichmann
(Atria – $34.99 – 262 pages)
“This is quite the autobiography, told from the hear with much heart and soul.”
Rating: 4 1/2 bookmarks

Adele: The Other Side – The Stories Behind Her Songs
by Caroline Sullivan
(Carlton Books – $33.95 – 160 pages)
“Fans of the singer will enjoy the photos and words that relate to her songs and her amazing career.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

The Science of Cooking (Every Question Answered To Perfect Your Cooking)
by Dr. Stuart Farrimond
(DK Books – $39.00 – 256 pages)
“The book notes how you can take your cooking skills to the next level, transforming the way you cook.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

100 Nature Hot Spots in British Columbia (The Best Parks, Conservation Areas and Wild Places)
by Lyndsay Fraser and Christina Smuth
(Firefly – $29.95 – 244 pages)
“…this book is your guide to the best British Columbia has to offer.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Going the Distance – The Life and Works of W.P. Kinsella
by William Steele
(Douglas & McIntyre – $34.95 – 293 pages)
“…an honest assessment and retelling of the life of a literary legend.”
Rating: 4 bookmarks

Beyond Forgetting – Celebrating 100 Years of Al Purdy
Edited by Howard White & Emma Skagen
(Harbour Publishing – $22.95 – 173 pages)
“If Al Purdy were alive today, he would certainly appreciate the comments and the observations of his life and times.”
Rating: 3 1/2 bookmarks

Shelf Life Magazine – December 2018

december2018coverWelcome to the 13th Annual Books as Holiday Gifts special issue. We’re not superstitious around here, because the books included in the issue are far from unlucky. In fact, reading them will be your lucky day, because all of them are perfect for your own library or for giving to others as holiday gifts. Books make the perfect present, as they are always welcome whether at Christmas, for birthdays, or any other occasion. In fact, you don’t need an excuse to give someone a book. Or you can treat yourself. They are welcome any time of year. In that regard, we offer a cross-section of books for many interests, and hope our choices will end up as your choices as well. As in the case with previous Books as Holiday Gifts special issues, no bookmarks are given as all books are highly recommended.

All of us at Shelf Life wish you, your families and friends, all the best of the holiday season. May the spirit of the season embrace you and remain in your heart year round.

Enjoy this issue!

Paul Sutter

Like us on Facebook

*** Fiction Section ***

The President is Missing
by Bill Clinton & James Patterson
(Little Brown/Knopf – $39.00 – 515 pages)
“…(keeps) the reader breezing from one chapter to the next.”

Island of the Mad
by Laurie R. King
(Bantam – $37.00 – 302 pages)
“…has something for everyone, a solid mystery with added touches of vital history.”

The Switch
by Joseph Finder
(Dutton – $37.00 – 390 pages)
“…a finely-tuned and well-crafted tale that will keep your pulse well into the book.”

The Last Night Out
by Catherine O’Connell
(Severn House – $37.95 – 298 pages)
“O’Connell tells the story in mesmerizing style.”

Sometimes I Lie
by Alice Feeney
(Flatiron Books – $34.99 – 262 pages)
“…a dazzling work that contains one puzzle after another, one that begs to be solved as quickly as possible.”

A Stranger In the House
by Shari Lapena
(Doubleday Canada – $24.95 – 305 pages)
“There are even more nifty twists, so don’t be a stranger to this book when looking for a great mystery to read.”

Perfect Remains
by Helen Fields
(Avon – $21.99 – 408 pages)
“If you can get over your squeamishness, you will be rewarded with a very creative tale.”

The Return
by Joseph Helmreich
(St. Martin’s Press – $36.99 – 248 pages)
“THE RETURN’S complex, multi-dimensional characters are relatable to the readers, and the fast pace of the novel keeps readers constantly on the edge of their seats.”

Robert B. Parker’s Revelation
by Robert Knott
(Putnam – $36.00 – 326 pages)
“…a true revelation of a book, superbly illustrating the Wild West days, and the lawlessness that became a trademark of the times.”

The Hot War: Armistice
by Harry Turtledove
(Del Rey – $38.99 – 430 pages)
by John M. Milner
“…takes us along for a thrilling ride to discover just how this war might end, who might survive, and what comes next.”

Red Alert
by James Patterson & Marshal Karp
(Little Brown – $36.50 – 352 pages)
“Of the five books from the series, this may be the best.”

Too Close to Breathe
by Olivia Kiernan
(Dutton – $35.00 – 292 pages)
“…will take your breath away, with superior writing and great pacing.”

by Jenna Jameson & Jamie K. Schmidt
(Skyhorse – $22.99 – 266 pages)
“SPICE is not just a fluff novel, but rather works on many fronts…The honest writing is the perfect spice in this book.”

The Greek Escape
by Karen Swan
(Macmillan – $24.99 – 420 pages)
“…the book is a true escape into a world where love and happiness may be fleeting, but are worth the risk.”

Kings of Broken Things
by Theodore Wheeler
(Little A – $21.95 – 330 pages)
“..tense and written with raw realism…”

By Invitation Only
by Dorothea Benton Frank
(William Morrow – $21.99 – 390 pages)
“I makes for a memorable tale of love, family and hope.”

Artic Gambit
by Larry Bond
(Forge – $36.50 – 333 pages)
“As realistic as it gets, the book is definitely one that will rivet you to the pages.”


*** Non-Fiction Section ***

In Pieces
by Sally Field
(Grand Central Publishing – $38.00 – 406 pages)
“…candid and honest portrayal of her life and times, one that definitely is a must read for all her fans.”

The Beatles: The Band That Changed the World
by Terry Burrows
(Carlton – $49.95 – 186 pages)
“…let this book be one that you hastily add to your library.”

War Against Crime! Volume 1 The EC Archives
(Dark Horse – $65.99 – 210 pages)
“With exceptional artwork and stories, these stories beg to be read once again.”

Live Long and… What I Learned Along the Way
by William Shatner with David Fisher
(Thomas Dunne/St. Martin’s Press – $34.99 – 214 pages)
“Shatner offers serious advice about romance, wealth, and staying debt-free.”

Whiskey in a Teacup (What Growing Up in the South Taught Me About Life, Love and Baking Bisquits)
by Reese Witherspoon
(Touchstone – $45.00 – 306 pages)
“the book is filled with plenty of recipes that offer definitive Southern comfort.”

Vegan Recipes from Spain
by Gonzalo Baro
(Grub Street – $32.95 – 196 pages)
“…this book will provide a delightful and tasty difference.”

The Story of Food: An Illustrated History of Everything We Eat
by Giles Coren
(DK Books – $45.00 – 360 pages)
“…you will have a deeper appreciation for the sort of foods we take for granted.”

If I Could Tell You Just One Thing
by Richard Reed
(Canongate – $41.95 – 346 pages)
“The strength of the book is in the uniqueness of answers.”

Waterfalls of Ontario Third Edition
by Mark Harris – Photographs by George Fischer
(Firefly – $29.95 – 262 pages)
“… the spectacular photos from George Fisher makes this a go-to nature book.”

Women Who Rock: Beyoncé to Bessie, Girl Groups to Riot Grrl
Edited by Evelyn McDonnell
(Black Dog & Leventhal – $45.50 – 404 pages)
“This book truly rocks in more ways than one.”

by David Itzkoff
(Henry Holt – $39.00 – 530 pages)
“…this first truly comprehensive look at the life and times of comedic genius Robin Williams brings into very sharp perspective what motivated and moved him.”

The Word Detective (Searching for the Meaning of It All At the Oxford English Dictionary)
by John Simpson
(Basic Books – $36.50 – 368 pages)
“In a word, this book is a fascinating work, one that definitely can be described in one word-classic.”

Wilding – The Return of Nature to An English Farm
by Isabela Tree
(Picador – 38.99 – 274 pages)
“The book looks at how letting nature police itself so to speak became the rallying cry for their life.”

The Living Forest: A Visual Journey Into the Heart of the Woods
by Joan Maloof – Photography by Robert Llewellyn
(Timber Press  – $60.00 – 260 pages)
“The photography of Robert Llewellyn is stunning, bringing the subject to life with such intensity that we swear we are sitting in the middle of the forest.”

For You To Two (Dr. Ruth’s Rules for Real Relationships)
by Dr. Ruth K. Westheimer with Pierre A. Lehu
(Amazon Publishing – $21.99 – 150 pages)
“She gets to the heart of the matter, talking about love in this technological era.”

*** Illustrated Books for Younger Readers ***

If you are looking for books for children of younger ages in your life, the following books would make the perfect gifts for them. On a variety of topics, there is something for all ages from four to ten, though other ages might like them, too.

by S.E. Hume – Illustrations by Jessica Bromley Bartram
(Fitzhenry & Whiteside – $19.95 – 32 pages)
“Charles is a most entertaining story…”
(Ages 4-8)

Hungry for Science – Poems to Crunch On
by Kari Lynn-Winters & Lori Sherrit-Fleming – Pictures by Peggy Collins
(Fitzhenry & Whiteside – $18.95 – 32 pages)
“This is a great way to make children see science in a new light…”
(Ages 4-8)

The Christmas Wind
by Stephanie Simpson McClellen & Brooke Kerrigan
(Red Deer Press – $19.95 – 32 pages)
“…this story will resonate and feel just as important no matter what time of year it is read.”
(Ages 5-10)

The Spirit Trackers
by Jan Bourdeau Waboose – Illustrated by Francois Thisdale
(Fifth House – $18.95 – 32 pages)
“…a most colourful book that the myths and legends of Indigenous people.”
(Ages 5-10)

Here Comes Rhinocerous
by Heinz Janisch & Helga Bansch – Translated by Evan Jones
(Fitzhenry & Whiteside – $18.95 – 32 pages)
“Reading this book will provide an important lesson…”

Previous Older Entries