University of Michigan Football: Recent Books

With Eastern Michigan University visiting on Saturday, the Wolverines should be able to start a winning streak. The attendance at EMU’s home game last week was 5628. Can you use the term “crowd” to describe 5628 people in Rynearson Stadium with its capacity of 30,200? This week they will be playing before a crowd of more than 100,000 fans. Assuming Michigan has a formidable halftime lead, you can spend the second half reading one of these books:

The Big House: Fielding H. Yost and the Building of Michigan Stadium by Robert M. Soderstrom

What It Means to Be a Wolverine: Michigan’s Greatest Players Talk About Michigan Football edited by Kevin Allen

The Obscene Diaries of a Michigan Fan by Ann Arborite and Ann Arbor Observer writer Craig Ross

New Fiction Titles on the New York Times Bestseller List (9/18/2005)

It appears that the American book-buying public can’t get enough of romance and adventure. Four new titles debut this week.

At #1 is Polar Shift by Clive Cussler with Paul Kemprecos: Kent Austin must match wits with the leader of an antiglobilization group in this apocalyptic thriller.

At #3 is Slow Burn by Julie Garwood: another romantic adventure by this popular author, set in Charleston and featuring a successful businesswoman.

At #10 is The Widow of the South by Robert Hicks: a sweeping Civil War novel with a courageous heroine who allows Confederate troops to use her plantation as a hospital and a cemetery.

Summerteeth

2002's Yankee Hotel Foxtrot may be their top seller, but my favorite Wilco album has always been Summerteeth. Although their roots in country music are still apparent, Summerteeth is definitely more of a traditional pop/rock album than their previous efforts; as the All Music Guide put it, "what once were fiddles on Wilco records are now violins." As with all of their albums, though, Summerteeth is packed with great songs.

Merchants of Cool

Who knows more about teens than their parents, teachers, or even themselves? Who has enough influence to tell teens what's cool, what's not, and what will be in a few months? The answer to these questions is the subject of this insightful documentary, directed by Barak Goodman, about the relationship between teens and the savvy marketers who target them.

These Merchants of Cool are the "creators and sellers of popular culture who have made teenagers the hottest consumer demographic in America." Learn more about them by watching this documentary and by visiting the film's informative website at PBS Frontline.

Dangerous Books Ahead! Do Not Read These Books!

Every year, the American Library Association puts together a celebration of the freedom to read, called Banned Books Week. This year, BBW will occur from September 24-October 1. In honor of the hundreds of wonderful, well-written, well-loved books that have been challenged or banned in America, look each Saturday (starting 9/17) in September in the “Books Blog” to find books that have been challenged or banned for some…“interesting”…reasons.
For example:
The American Heritage Dictionary was banned in Alaska (1976); Indiana (1976); Montana (1977); and California (1982) due to…objectionable language. Who volunteers to be the first to write a dictionary without any objectionable language?

Me and Neesie by Eloise Greenfield

Neesie is Janell's imaginary friend. Neesie makes Janell laugh and keeps her company. When Janell starts school Neesie says goodbye. A warm and touching story of family and the wonderful imagination of a child. First published in 1975, this newly illustrated thirtieth anniversary edition is a Reading Rainbow book.

What to Watch

What We Eat is a 13-episode series that aired on public television in 2002. It explains how and why certain foods have become staples of our national diet. Along with the historical perspective, the show includes video and analysis of how these items are produced by both large and small American companies today. Hosted by Burt Wolf, the 4-DVD set contains one disc devoted to Old World Influence, African Influence, Native American Influence, and Spanish Influence.

Kevin Boyle, 2004 National Book Award Winner's program on Cable TV

Kevin Boyle, the 2004 winner of the National Book Award for Nonfiction, can be seen on local Community Television Network Channel 17 next week, speaking on his book Arc of Justice: A Saga of Race, Rights, and Murder in the Jazz Age. A professor of history at Ohio State University, Boyle’s book is a probing, riveting account of the murder trial of Dr. Ossian Sweet, one of the significant chapters in the early Civil Rights movement and race relations in Detroit. Professor Boyle spoke at one of the library’s 'Sunday Edition' programs earlier this year. The program can be seen on September 20 (3:30 p.m.),September 22 (1:30 p.m.), September 23 (5:00 p.m.) and September 24 (1:30 p.m.) The National Books Award Foundation lauded 'Arc of Justice' as ‘a history that is at once an intense courtroom drama, a moving biography and an engrossing look at race in America in the early 20th Century.’ A DVD of the program is also available from the library.

Robert Wise 1914-2005

From cult horror (Curse of the Cat People, 1944) to science fiction (The Day the Earth Stood Still, 1951 and The Andromeda Strain, 1971) to the classic American musical (West Side Story, 1961), director Robert Wise, who died September 14 at the age of 91, had a diverse and successful career. A college drop-out, Wise landed work in a movie studio where he held a series of odd jobs until finally becoming an editor, contributing his skills to what many consider the best American film of all time, Casablanca. But Wise is perhaps best known for the movie film critic Pauline Kael famously called the "sugar-coated lie that people seemed to like to eat", 1965's The Sound of Music.

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