"I began an earlier book with the sentence 'The First World War was a cruel and unnecessary war.' The American Civil War, with which it stands comparison, was also certainly cruel, both in the suffering it inflicted on the participants and the anguish it caused to the bereaved at home. But it was not unnecessary . . ."1) SWEET IS THE NIGHT . . . We're having a hard time keeping Adam Mansbach's Go the F**k to Sleep (9781617750250) 14.95 in stock and now, I hear he will be on David Letterman tomorrow night. I think I can safely say that David will eat this one up. Sometimes I wonder if the internet will be the ruination of the human race. Seriously. And then something like this comes along and totally redeems it: http://www.audible.com/pd?asin=B00551W570 . Why yes, that really is Samuel L. Jackson reading Go the F**k to Sleep . . .
--John Keegan, The American Civil War (9780307274939) 16.95
2) LIVIN' THING . . . I have been remiss. Even though the book has been around since 1938, I have never read Mr. Popper's Penguins (9780316058438) 6.99. And now, after being subjected to a daily barrage of TV commercials, I've learned that it's a major movie vehicle for Jim Carrey. Jim Carrey makes me go 'Meh.' Also the gags in the movie trailer look a tad dated. I know a soccer ball kicked at a man's groin is usually comedic gold, but after you've seen it several times it loses its charm. However, and I'm going to let you in on a little secret, I find penguins to be the most adorable animal in the world. I can watch March of the Penguins over and over again. For God's sake I have penguin placemats on my dining room table. My favourite Looney Tunes cartoon is when Bugs Bunny is taking a little penguin to Antarctica and the starving stowaway sez, "Penguins is practically chicken." So yeah, I'm doomed. I will eventually see this movie . . .
3) SHANGRI-LA . . . I was yelling at the television whilst watching Cash Cab the other day. The question was: "What was the name of the mythical land in the James Hilton novel Lost Horizon (9780671664275) 6.99?" I shouted myself hoarse screaming, 'Shangri-La,' at the TV screen. Of course even with a mobile shout out the contestant still got it wrong. Maybe he wouldn't have been kicked out of the Cash Cab if he had read Mitchell Zuckoff's Lost in Shangri-La (9780061988349) 26.99. I thought Ghost Soldiers (9780385495653) 16.00 by Hampton Sides recounted the most dangerous rescue of World War II. This one may have it beat. An American plane goes down in the jungles of New Guinea and there are three survivors. Unfortunately, they have landed in the territory of the Dani, which is a tribe of cannibals. They make peace with the tribe, but then everything goes to hell when their paratrooper 'rescuers' arrive on the scene. This won't be a Jim Carrey vehicle, but I wouldn't be surprised if it's made into a movie.
Odds & Sods
It always makes my job a lot easier when I can say with confidence that a regional book is well done. M. Christine Byron and Thomas R. Wilson's Vintage Views Along the West Michigan Pike (9781933926308) 35.00 is one of those books. In fact, it's been long time since I've seen a book come down the pike that in my opinion is underpriced. This book is one of them . . .
In case you're interested, we do have copies of Steve Hamilton's Misery Bay (980312380434) 24.99 that have been signed by the author. First come, first served.