Gamut of nonfiction topics at libraries

Posted: Friday, January 26, 2007

The new nonfiction at the Juneau Public Libraries this week runs a gamut of topics, from science to dog-training. Here are a few of our new titles.

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"The Wisdom of Yoga," by Stephen Cope. Cope, a psychotherapist and Kripalu yoga teacher, takes readers beyond the physical poses of yoga and into the mental discipline the poses are intended to engender. Through anecdotes about himself and friends, he illustrates the principles found in the Yoga-Sutra, which provides a path from the turmoil of everyday life to gradual enlightenment. A translation of the Yoga-Sutra is included, along with an essay on ties between yoga and Buddhism.

"The Trouble with Physics," by Lee Smolin. Many areas of science have exploded with information in recent years; physics, however, has been stagnant since the 1970's, says Smolin. He proposes that part of the problem is the science community's preference for string theory, which tries to explain the workings of the universe in one fell swoop. But focus on this single theory diverts money and attention from other, more provable theories. Smolin traces the history of the string theory, exposes its flaws, and introduces readers to the scientists who are trying to reinvigorate physics.

"Paris Discovered," by Mary McAuliffe. Planning a visit to Paris or curious about its great reputation? This collection of essays, originally written for the monthly "Paris Notes," will give you the inside scoop on history, architecture, royal mysteries, and more. Join McAuliffe as she and her husband visit the oldest house in Paris, discover where to buy the best ice cream, and stumble upon the joys of the perfect pen. Beautifully written and accompanied by precise directions when appropriate, this will whet your appetite for the City of Light.

"What to Drink with What You Eat," by Andrew Dornenburg and Karen Page. At last, a book for those of us who don't want to wade through an entire book to figure out what to do with that gift bottle or what to bring to dinner when put in charge of the drinks. In addition to giving two ways to look things up (one is to look by drink available, the other by food served), and being full of helpful hints on choosing glassware, this handsome book contains lots of general information about regional wine specialties and anecdotes by sommeliers. This is not limited to wine, however, or even to alcoholic beverages, but also includes coffees, teas, waters, and juices. Mouth-watering reading!

"What We Believe but Cannot Prove," edited by John Brockman. Brockman, creator of the Web site Edge, which is devoted to what Brockman calls "the third culture", proposes an annual question to site contributors, designed to provoke thought and conversation. The question for 2005 became the title for this book, and leading thinkers from around the world, from Jared Diamond to Tor Norretranders, weigh in here on everything from questions of faith to computer programming. The submissions vary in length from succinct paragraphs to sleek essays, perfect for dipping into and then stepping back for reflection.

"Financial Success for Young Adults and Recent Graduates," by Janet C. Arrowood. This would make a great gift for a teenager - even if he or she sighs heavily now, you'll be heartily thanked in a few years - but is also perfect for 20-somethings. A great primer on handling money, controlling credit (rather than being at its mercy), and making financial decisions for the short and long term, this will take readers from high school through college and into jobs, careers, and families.

The second of our foreign film/potluck nights is a French film showing at 7:30 p.m. tonight at the downtown library. Eating starts at 7 p.m.

Several of Juneau's foreign exchange students will be at the Downtown library tomorrow (Saturday, January 27th) at noon to answer questions about their home countries and their exchange experiences in Alaska. Come meet some new friends! Questions? Visit our Web site or call Amelia at 586-5303.

As always, placing a hold on our material is easy: call the Juneau Public Library at 586-5249, or, if you have internet access, your library card, and a PIN, you may place your own holds by going to our Web site,, and looking at our catalog or at the In the Stacks column on our site. The columns are linked to the catalog: simply click on the title you want, and you will be ready to place a hold.

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