Thursday, August 31, 2017

Lorraine’s Picks: September 2017

Lorraine Ferry, our university press merchandising manager, has picked out her favorite new and recent university press titles to consider for your store’s assortment. This month’s choices include books perfect for fans of Anne Bancroft, Midcentury American hi-fi culture, and Chicago food history, and for those interested in New York’s 70-year relationship with the United Nations, how fishing aided the growth of civilization, and how life in a small Wisconsin town is reflected in their favorite dishes.

Anne Bancroft: A Life by Douglass K. Daniel
Available Now
University Press of Kentucky   
Hardcover – ISBN 9780813169682
List Price:  $34.95

“Mrs. Robinson, you’re trying to seduce me. Aren’t you?” These famous lines from The Graduate (1967) would forever link Anne Bancroft (1931–2005) to the groundbreaking film and confirm her status as a movie icon. Along with her portrayal of Annie Sullivan in the stage and film drama The Miracle Worker, this role was a highlight of a career that spanned a half-century and brought Bancroft an Oscar, two Tonys, and two Emmy awards.  In the first biography to cover the entire scope of Bancroft’s life and career, Douglass K. Daniel brings together interviews with dozens of her friends and colleagues, never-before-published family photos, and material from film and theater archives to present a portrait of an artist who raised the standards of acting for all those who followed.

Designed for Hi -Fi Living: The Vinyl LP in Midcentury America by Janet Borgerson, Jonathan Schroeder, and Daniel Miller
Available Now
The MIT Press
Hardcover – ISBN 9780262036238
List Price:  $34.95

The sleek hi-fi console in a well-appointed midcentury American living room might have had a stack of albums by musicians like Frank Sinatra, Elvis Presley, or Patti Page. It was just as likely to have had a selection of LPs from slightly different genres, with such titles as Cocktail Time, Music for a Chinese Dinner at Home, The Perfect Background Music for Your Home Movies, Honeymoon in Hawaii, Strings for a Space Age, or Cairo! The Music of Modern Egypt. The brilliantly hued, full-color cover art might show an ideal listener, an ideal living room, an ideal tourist in an exotic landscape—or even an ideal space traveler. In Designed for Hi-Fi Living, Janet Borgerson and Jonathan Schroeder listen to and look at these vinyl LPs, scouring the cover art and the liner notes, and find that these albums offered a guide for aspirational Americans who yearned to be modern in postwar consumer culture.

Once Upon an Algorithm: How Stories Explain Computing by Martin Erwig
Available Now
The MIT Press
Hardcover – ISBN 9780262036634
List Price:  $27.95

In Once Upon an Algorithm, Martin Erwig explains computation as something that takes place beyond electronic computers, and computer science as the study of systematic problem solving. Erwig points out that many daily activities involve problem solving. Getting up in the morning, for example: You get up, take a shower, get dressed, eat breakfast. This simple daily routine solves a recurring problem through a series of well-defined steps. In computer science, such a routine is called an algorithm. 

Erwig illustrates a series of concepts in computing with examples from daily life and familiar stories. Hansel and Gretel, for example, execute an algorithm to get home from the forest. The movie Groundhog Day illustrates the problem of unsolvability; Sherlock Holmes manipulates data structures when solving a crime; the magic in Harry Potter’s world is understood through types and abstraction; and Indiana Jones demonstrates the complexity of searching. Along the way, Erwig also discusses representations and different ways to organize data; “intractable” problems; language, syntax, and ambiguity; control structures, loops, and the halting problem; different forms of recursion; and rules for finding errors in algorithms.

The Chicago Food Encyclopedia by Carol Mighton Haddix, Bruce Kraig, Colleen Taylor Sen, and Russell Lewis
Available September 15
University of Illinois Press
Hardcover – ISBN 9780252087240
List Price:  $34.95

The Chicago Food Encyclopedia is a far-ranging portrait of an American culinary paradise. Hundreds of entries deliver all of the visionary restauranteurs, Michelin superstars, beloved haunts, and food companies of today and yesterday. More than one hundred sumptuous images include thirty full-color photographs that transport readers to dining rooms and food stands across the city. Throughout, a roster of writers, scholars, and industry experts pays tribute to an expansive--and still expanding--food history that not only helped build Chicago but fed a growing nation. Pizza. Alinea. Wrigley Spearmint. Soul food. Rick Bayless. Hot Dogs. Koreatown. Everest. All served up A-Z, and all part of the ultimate reference on Chicago and its food.

Fishing: How the Sea Fed Civilization by Brian Fagan
Available September 26
Yale University Press
Hardcover – ISBN 9780300215342
List Price:  $30.00

In this history of fishing—not as sport but as sustenance—archaeologist and best-selling author Brian Fagan argues that fishing was an indispensable and often overlooked element in the growth of civilization. It sustainably provided enough food to allow cities, nations, and empires to grow, but it did so with a different emphasis. Where agriculture encouraged stability, fishing demanded movement. It frequently required a search for new and better fishing grounds; its technologies, centered on boats, facilitated movement and discovery; and fish themselves, when dried and salted, were the ideal food—lightweight, nutritious, and long-lasting—for traders, travelers, and conquering armies. This history of the long interaction of humans and seafood tours archaeological sites worldwide to show readers how fishing fed human settlement, rising social complexity, the development of cities, and ultimately the modern world.

Life in a Northern Town: Cooking, Eating, and Other Adventures Along Lake Superior by Mary Dougherty
Available Now
Wisconsin Historical Society Press
Hardcover – ISBN 9780870208287
List Price:  $29.95

In 2007, Mary Dougherty and her family moved from St. Paul to the tiny Bayfield Peninsula, surrounded by the waters of Lake Superior and Chequamegon Bay in far northwestern Wisconsin. There they set out to live their lives against a backdrop of waterfalls, beaches, farm stands, and a quintessential small town of 487 people. Through recipes, stories, and photos, this book explores what it means to nourish a family and a community. As Mary Dougherty incorporates what is grown and raised in northern Wisconsin into her family's favorite dishes, she continues a cultural tradition begun by immigrants hundreds of years ago. The result is a one-of-a-kind collection of globally and regionally inspired recipes featuring local cheeses, meats, and produce from the farmers in and around Bayfield -- pho made with beef bones from a farm in Mellen, Indian meatballs with curry powder made in Washburn, chowder with corn and potatoes from a farm stand in Ashland. As she knits herself into the Bayfield community, Dougherty comes to more fully grasp the intricate relationship between food and community.

A Worldly Affair: New York, the United Nations, and the Story Behind Their Unlikely Bond by Pamela Hanlon
Available Now
Fordham University Press
Hardcover – ISBN 9780823277957
List Price:  $29.95

For more than seven decades, New York City and the United Nations have shared the island of Manhattan, living and working together in a bond that has been likened to a long marriage—tempestuous and supportive, quarrelsome and committed. A Worldly Affair tells the story of this hot and cold romance, from the 1940s when Mayor Fiorello La Guardia was doggedly determined to bring the new world body to New York, to the UN’s flat rejection of the city’s offer and then its abrupt change of heart in the face of a Rockefeller gift, and on to some tense, troubling decades that followed.  Yet, as the UN moves into its eighth decade in New York—with its headquarters complex freshly renovated and the city proudly proclaiming that the organization adds nearly $4 billion to the New York economy each year—it seems clear the decades-old marriage will last. Whatever the inevitable spats and clashes along the way, the worldly affair is here to stay.

North American Birds: A Coloring Book by Dana Gardner
Available November 1
University of Iowa Press
Paperback – ISBN 9781609385200
List Price:  $13.00

There are many field guides to birds of the United States. Refer to one if you want to know which colors go exactly where on these thirty-three precisely drawn illustrations. Or create your own fantastic ornithological kingdom by using the brightest shades and patterns you can imagine. It’s almost impossible to improve upon the natural colors of the abstract-art-themed wood duck or the well-named painted bunting, but there’s no reason not to give the American robin a makeover. The birds are arranged in order of their evolutionary history so that you can see the relationships among species and families. Some of them, like the northern cardinal, are familiar backyard friends; some, like the mountain quail and American bittern, are wary denizens of brushlands and marshes; and some, like the great horned owl, are seldom seen in daylight. One, unfortunately, is extinct—the bright and raucous Carolina parakeet, which once ranged widely in huge noisy flocks. All are waiting for you to bring them to life with your own vibrant colors. 


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