Hallmark holidays are always a puzzle.
What’s the perfect Valentine’s Day gift? Flowers?
What should you give Mother for Mother’s Day? Everlasting love and affection?
And then there’s Dad. Don’t worry about him, though, because DK Publishing has his number.
Just in time for Father’s Day (June 15), the New York-based publisher is releasing a series of reference books that runs a large enough gamut of subjects to fulfill your needs.
For example, is your dad an angler? Then he might like “Angler’s Guide to Fish” (96 pages, $12.95 paperback), which boasts a rundown on just about every kind of fish you’ve ever heard of (and maybe a few that you haven’t).
Is he a golfer? Then “Ultimate Golf Techniques” (216 pages, $34.95) by Malcolm Campbell should be just the thing to help him (or mom) to break par.
Does he like good wine? Try “101 Essential Tips: Wine” (72 pages, $6.95 paperback). Does he ride a motorcycle? Then pick up a copy of Hugo Wilson’s “Motorcycle Owner’s Manual” (112 pages, $9.95 paperback).
And if all of this is just too much for him, or for you, then you might appreciate “Free Yourself From Harmful Stress” (144 pages, $19.95) by Trevor Powell.
You’ll have to excuse me now. I’m going to sit back with my copy of “101 Essential Tips: Using the Internet” (72 pages, $6.95 paperback).
Going to the dogs
One of the more interesting-sounding literary readings that Auntie’s has put on will occur on Thursday (see reader board below).
The subject: people relating to life in a way best understood by their pets. The novel is “Dog People,” the seventh book by Chicago author Cris Mazza.
Here is what Kirkus Reviews has to say:
“(Dog People) focuses on the sexual power struggles of two long-married couples in terms best understood by their pet dogs. … When Scott and Fanny make the break with their spouses, each member of the drama responds in doglike fashion - that is, according to his or her status in the pack. In the end, it’s all too clear who’s alpha and who’s not in this dog-eat-dog world - but as long as a person remembers where he stands, happiness is possible.”
Sounds funny enough to make you howl (heh-heh) with laughter.
Books for sale: cheap
Don’t forget the Spokane Public Library’s Used Book Sale, which will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at the downtown branch, 906 W. Main.
Hardbacks will go for 50 cents, paperbacks a quarter. Special sales will go as marked.
For further information, call 626-5312.
What’s your signing?
Horace Axtell and Margo Aragon will sign copies of their book, “A Little Bit of Wisdom: Conversations With a Nez Perce Elder,” from noon to 2 p.m. Friday at Chewelah’s Go West Bookstore, 101 W. Lincoln. For further information, call (509) 935-4467.
Axtell and Aragon will read from the book that night in Spokane at Auntie’s Bookstore (see below).
If you’re a fan of Civil War history, and especially if you’re a fan of Michael Shaara’s 1974 novel “The Killer Angels,” then you’re likely to appreciate “Gods and Generals,” which Ballantine Books has just released in paperback (498 pages, $12.95 paperback).
Written by Jeff Shaara, son of the late Michael Shaara (who died in 1988), “Gods and Generals” is a prequel to “The Killer Angels.” Capturing the scope, style and richness of character of his father’s Pulitzer-Prize-winning book, first-time novelist Shaara has pulled off a minor miracle.
It’s not often a second book in a series manages to be as good as the first.
The reader board
Cris Mazza, author of “Dog People,” will read from her novel at 7:30 p.m. Thursday at Auntie’s Bookstore, Main and Washington.
Horace Axtell and Margo Aragon will read from their book, “A Little Bit of Wisdom: Conversations With a Nez Perce Elder,” at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Auntie’s Bookstore.
Liz Johnson-Gephardt, author of “Vancouver Rendezvous,” will read from the novel at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at Auntie’s Bookstore.