"What an astonishing thing a book is. It's a flat object made from a tree with flexible parts on which are imprinted lots of funny dark squiggles. But one glance at it and you're inside the mind of another person, maybe somebody dead for thousands of years . . ."GIORGIO B. TSOUKALOS -- ANCIENT ALIEN EXPERT
Hello, I'm Giorgio. You may know me as the creator of the History Channel show, Ancient Aliens. I'm the guy with the freaky hair and the fake orange tan. I have some bad news. B. Traven Jr. is missing. I suspect that he has been kidnapped by aliens from the Peliades cluster, who have been collecting human DNA, and he has been cryogenically frozen for the decade long trip back to their home world. So instead, I, Giorgio, will be your guide as we explore this alternate reality that I like to call the book industry.
Firstly, I am intrigued and eager to read Tom Perrotta's new book, The Leftovers (9780312358341) 25.99. The premise is that 'The Rapture' has come and gone, and we are following the stories of those 'Left Behind.' Some critics believe that this is social satire. But to a trained eye, it is obvious what Mr. Perrotta is really doing here. Human beings with traces of alien DNA were the ones who suddenly disappeared. They have been called back to the mothership. Then, those who have been supposedly 'raptured' will be used to seed a planet in the Alpha Centauri system. Sometimes these things are so patently clear . . .
Tennis great Rafael Nada has a new title called Rafa (9781401324513) 27.99 that has been selling quite well. I know what you're thinking. How can Giorgio possibly tie this in to ancient aliens? Well it's actually quite obvious. No pure human being could possibly be as good a tennis player as he is. However, Rafael grew up in Manacor, Spain, where he was exposed to the effects of the Ark of the Covenant. Ancient aliens buried the Ark there after Moses fled Egypt, and as you well know, the Ark was a small nuclear reactor. The radiation seeped into the nearby ground water, and it, of course, enhanced his athletic prowess. And I think we're all familiar with the story of Spiderman . . .
Lastly, Thomas Friedman and his collaborator Michael Mandelbaum are back with their latest That Used To Be Us: How America Fell Behind in the World and How We Can Come Back (9780374288907) 28.00. Mr. Friedman concentrates on four major challenges for America -- globalization, the nation's debt, the changes in information technology, and our energy consumption. I'll save you the price of the book. There is one answer and one answer only -- Aliens! We need to bring the big greys to the table and say, "We need your help. We have served as just your test subjects long enough. It's time for the payoff." I know this sounds like the plot to Arthur C. Clarke's Childhood's End, but that just shows you what kind of a visionary he was. We're all grown up and ready for the stars.
Odds & Sods
Gloria Whelan may be nearly 88 years young, but she's still crankin' out the children's books. Her new one is The Boy Who Wanted to Cook (9781585365340) 16.95. Set in France, the lad dreams of one day being a famous chef. Bon Appetit!
Also, from Sleeping Bear Press, we have received When Anju Loved Being an Elephant (9781585365333) 16.95 by Wendy Henrichs. The story is pretty good, but the illustrations by John Butler are what really caught my eye. They are incredibly life-like. Also, the model used for the trainer looks just like Michael Moore. Hmmm, an elephant being trained by Michael Moore . . .