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Newly Published: Voices of the 9/11 Pentagon Recovery Effort

New on our bookshelf:

Voices of the 9/11 Pentagon Recovery Effort: Essays from the U.S. Army’s Old Guard
Mark Joseph Mongilutz

9/11 is more commonly associated with New York and the World Trade Center than with the Pentagon, whose destruction received far less coverage. But those who helped extinguish the fires, tend to the wounded, and clean up the aftermath will never forget such a loss.

Thousands took part in the Pentagon recovery effort following 9/11, but few knew exactly what they were signing up for. A nearby Army unit, the 3rd United States Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard), sent its soldiers to contribute where they could, as best they could, and in any capacity they could. In this book, soldiers of The Old Guard have elected to share their experiences. Their accounts attest to the honor and camaraderie that were necessary for picking up the pieces, as well as the traumatic effects of being enveloped in the aftermath of tragedy.

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Newly Published: Popular Music in the Classroom

New on our bookshelf:

Popular Music in the Classroom: Essays for Instructors
Edited by David Whitt

   Popular music has long been a subject of academic inquiry, with college courses taught on Elvis Presley, Bob Dylan, and the Beatles, along with more contemporary artists like Beyoncé and Outkast. This collection of essays draws upon the knowledge and expertise of instructors from a variety of disciplines who have taught classes on popular music. Topics include: the analysis of music genres such as American folk, Latin American protest music, and Black music; exploring the musical catalog and socio-cultural relevance of specific artists; and discussing how popular music can be used to teach subjects such as history, identity, race, gender, and politics. Instructional strategies for educators are provided.

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Newly Published: The Dakota Conflict and Its Leaders, 1862–1865

New on our bookshelf:

The Dakota Conflict and Its Leaders, 1862–1865: Little Crow, Henry Sibley and Alfred Sully
Paul Williams

Custer, Sitting Bull and Little Bighorn are familiar names in the history of the American West. Yet the Great Sioux War of 1876 was a less notorious affair than earlier events in Minnesota during 1862 when, over a few bloody weeks, hundreds of white settlers were killed by Sioux led by Little Crow. The following three years saw military thrusts under generals Sibley and Sully onto the Western Plains where hundreds of Indians, as innocent as the white victims, were cut down by American soldiers. From this carnage Sitting Bull first emerged as a military leader. This history reexamines the facts behind Sitting Bull’s legend and that of the white captive, Fanny Kelly.

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Newly Published: The Baltimore Black Sox

New on our bookshelf:

The Baltimore Black Sox: A Negro Leagues History, 1913–1936
Bernard McKenna

Providing a comprehensive history of the Baltimore Black Sox from before the team’s founding in 1913 through its demise in 1936, this history examines the social and cultural forces that gave birth to the club and informed its development. The author describes aspects of Baltimore’s history in the first decades of the 20th century, details the team’s year-by-year performance, explores front-office and management dynamics and traces the shaping of the Negro Leagues. The history of the Black Sox’s home ballparks and of the people who worked for the team both on and off the field are included.

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Newly Published: A Backseat View from the Phantom

New on our bookshelf:

A Backseat View from the Phantom: A Memoir of a Marine Radar Intercept Officer in Vietnam

Fleet S. Lentz, Jr., Col USMCR (Ret)

As a 26-year old Marine radar intercept officer (RIO), Fleet Lentz flew 131 combat missions in the back seat of the supersonic F-4 B Phantom II during the wind-down of the Vietnam War. Overcoming military regulations, he and his fellow Marines at The Rose Garden (Royal Thai Air Base Nam Phong) kept sorely needed supplies moving in while moving combat troops out of Southeast Asia. His personal and accessible memoir describes how pilots and RIOs executed dangerous air-to-ground bombing missions in Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos—quite different from the air-to-air warfare for which they had trained—and kept themselves mission-capable (and human) while surviving harsh circumstances.

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Newly Published: The Sound of Hope

New on our bookshelf:

The Sound of Hope: Music as Solace, Resistance and Salvation During the Holocaust and World War II

Kellie D. Brown

   Since ancient times, music has demonstrated the incomparable ability to touch and resonate with the human spirit as a tool for communication, emotional expression, and as a medium of cultural identity. During World War II, Nazi leadership recognized the power of music and chose to harness it with malevolence, using its power to push their own agenda and systematically stripping it away from the Jewish people and other populations they sought to disempower. But music also emerged as a counterpoint to this hate, withstanding Nazi attempts to exploit or silence it. Artistic expression triumphed under oppressive regimes elsewhere as well, including the horrific siege of Leningrad and in Japanese internment camps in the Pacific. The oppressed stubbornly clung to music, wherever and however they could, to preserve their culture, to uplift the human spirit and to triumph over oppression, even amid incredible tragedy and suffering.

   This volume draws together the musical connections and individual stories from this tragic time through scholarly literature, diaries, letters, memoirs, compositions, and art pieces. Collectively, they bear witness to the power of music and offer a reminder to humanity of the imperative each faces to not only remember, but to prevent another such cataclysm.

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Newly Published: Myth-Building in Modern Media

New on our bookshelf:

Myth-Building in Modern Media: The Role of the Mytharc in Imagined Worlds

A.J. Black

Mythology for centuries has served as humanity’s window into understanding its distant past. In our modern world, storytelling creates its own myths and legends, in media ranging from the world of television and cinema to literature and comic books, that help us make sense of the world we live in today.

What is the “Mytharc”? How did it arise? How does it inform modern long-form storytelling? How does the classical hero’s journey intersect with modern myths and narratives? And where might the storytelling of tomorrow take readers and viewers as we imagine our future? From The X-Files to H.P. Lovecraft, from Lost to the Marvel cinematic universe and many worlds beyond, this study explores our modern storytelling mythology and where it may lead us.

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Newly Published: The Lonely Hearts Killers

New on our bookshelf:

The Lonely Hearts Killers: The Bloody Passions of Martha Beck and Raymond Fernandez

Tobin T. Buhk

The shocking series of crimes committed by lovers Martha Beck and Raymond Fernandez dominated the front pages in 1949. Caught for the double homicide of a widow and her young daughter in Michigan, the first couple of crime became the focus of an intense debate over the death penalty and extradition. Their story climaxed in a sensational trial in New York City and concluded two years later inside Sing Sing’s notorious “Death House.” Pulp fiction era reporters, who followed every step taken by the accused slayers, christened Beck and Fernandez the “Lonely Hearts Killers”—a nickname that stuck and has since been used to describe an entire category of criminal behavior.

Despite the sensationalization of the killer couple’s exploits, the story of the Michigan crime that ended their spree has until now remained largely untold. Drawing on rare archival material, this book presents, for the first time anywhere, a detailed account of this lost chapter in the saga of the “Lonely Hearts Killers.” Both biography and analysis, this book also attempts to deconstruct the myths and misconceptions and to provide answers to a few unanswered questions about the case.

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Newly Published: Hollywood Musicals You Missed

New on our bookshelf:

Hollywood Musicals You Missed: Seventy Noteworthy Films from the 1930s

Edwin M. Bradley

Pre-World War II Hollywood musicals weren’t only about Astaire and Rogers, Mickey and Judy, Busby Berkeley, Bing Crosby, or Shirley Temple. The early musical developed through tangents that reflected larger trends in film and American culture at large. Here is a survey of select titles with a variety of influences: outsized songwriter personalities, hubbub over “hillbilly” and cowboy stereotypes, the emergence of swing, and the brief parade of opera stars to celluloid. Featured movies range from the smash hit Alexander’s Ragtime Band (1938), to obscurities such as Are You There? (1930) and Swing, Sister, Swing (1938), to the high-grossing but now forgotten Mountain Music (1937), and It’s Great to Be Alive (1933), a zesty pre-Code musical/science-fiction/comedy mishmash. Also included are some of the not-so-memorable pictures made by some of the decade’s greatest musical stars.

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Newly Published: Encyclopedia of Mythological Objects

New on our bookshelf:

Encyclopedia of Mythological Objects

Theresa Bane

Curious about the chains that bound Fenriswulf in Norse mythology? Or the hut of Baba Yaga, the infamous witch of Russian folklore? Containing more than one thousand detailed entries on the magical and mythical items from the different folklore, legends, and religions the world over, this encyclopedia is the first of its kind. From Abadi, the named stone in Roman mythology to Zul-Hajam, one of the four swords said to belong to the prophet Mohammed, each item is described in as much detail as the original source material provided, including information on its origin, who was its wielder, and the extent of its magical abilities. The text also includes a comprehensive cross-reference system and an extensive bibliography to aid researchers.

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Newly Published: Pro Football in the 1960s

New on our bookshelf:

Pro Football in the 1960s: The NFL, the AFL and the Sport’s Coming of Age

Patrick Gallivan

The 1960s were a tumultuous period in U.S. history and the sporting world was not immune to the decade’s upturn of tradition. As war in Southeast Asia, civil unrest at home and political assassinations rocked the nation, professional football struggled to attract fans. While some players fought for civil rights and others fought overseas, the ideological divides behind the protests and riots in the streets spilled into the locker rooms, and athletes increasingly brought their political beliefs into the sports world.

This history describes how a decade of social upheaval affected life on the gridiron, and the personalities and events that shaped the game. The debut of the Super Bowl, soon to become a fixture of American culture, marked a professional sport on the rise. Increasingly lucrative television contracts and innovations in the filming and broadcasting of games expanded pro football’s audiences. An authoritarian old guard, best represented by the revered Vince Lombardi, began to give way as star players like Joe Namath commanded new levels of pay and power. And at last, all teams fielded African American players, belatedly beginning the correction of the sport’s greatest wrong.

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Newly Published: Tiger Papa Three

New on our bookshelf:

Tiger Papa Three: Memoir of a Combined Action Marine in Vietnam

Edward F. Palm

The U.S. Marine Corps’ Combined Action Program (CAP) in Vietnam was an enlightened gesture of strategic dissent. Recognizing that search-and-destroy operations were immoral and self-defeating and that the best hope for victory was “winning hearts and minds,” the Corps stationed squads of Marines, augmented by Navy corpsmen, in the countryside to train and patrol alongside village self-defense units called Popular Forces.

Corporal Edward F. Palm became a combined-action Marine in 1967. His memoir recounts his experiences fighting with the South Vietnamese, his readjustment to life after the war, and the circumstances that prompted him to join the Corps in the first place. A one-time aspiring photojournalist, Palm includes photographs he took while serving, along with an epilogue describing what he and his former sergeant found during their 2002 return to Vietnam.

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Newly Published: Mission Yugoslavia

New on our bookshelf:

Mission Yugoslavia: The OSS and the Chetnik and Partisan Resistance Movements, 1943–1945

Blaž Torkar

Focusing on the wartime activities of the U.S. Office of Strategic Services (OSS) in Axis-controlled Yugoslavia during World War II, this book chronicles American policy, plans for sending aid and agents, and the establishment of the first training bases in North Africa and the Mediterranean. OSS missions and field operations with the Chetniks and Partisans are cataloged and analyzed for the first time, along with OSS views on Yugoslav border claims against Italy and Austria, the OSS position on Slovenia in postwar Yugoslavia, and the role of Yugoslavs cooperating within the OSS.

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Newly Published: The Hall Ball

New on our bookshelf:

The Hall Ball: One Fan’s Journey to Unite Cooperstown Immortals with a Single Baseball

Ralph Carhart

Rescued in 2010 from the small creek that runs next to Doubleday Field in Cooperstown, New York, a simple baseball launched an epic quest that spanned the United States and beyond. For eight years, “The Hall Ball” went on a journey to have its picture taken with every member of the Baseball Hall of Fame, both living and deceased. The goal? To enshrine the first crowd-sourced artifact ever donated to the Hall.

Part travelogue, part baseball history, part photo journal, this book tells the full story for the first time. The narratives that accompany the ball’s odyssey are as funny and moving as any in the history of the game.

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Newly Published: Heart Full of Soul

New on our bookshelf:

Heart Full of Soul: Keith Relf of the Yardbirds

David French

This is the first full-length biography of Keith Relf, frontman for the Yardbirds and one of the great tragic characters in rock history. Keith’s moody vocals and harmonica helped to define the Yardbirds’ sound on a string of innovative hit records in the 1960s that influenced garage rock, psychedelia, blues rock, hard rock and heavy metal. Numerous books have been written about the Yardbirds’ famous guitarists—Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck and Jimmy Page—yet Keith has remained a mysterious and elusive figure since his death by electrocution at age 33.
A deeply private person, prone to depression and poor health, Keith was ill-suited to the life of a rock star. In the years following the Yardbirds’ breakup, as the band’s guitarists became household names playing blues-based rock, Keith insisted on pursuing new musical paths, always searching for something new and trying to extend the Yardbirds’ spirit of curiosity and innovation. By the time of his death in 1976, Keith was nearly forgotten and struggling physically, emotionally and financially. More than forty years after his tragic death, this important artist’s story has finally been written and his contributions celebrated as more than just a footnote to the careers of his better-known bandmates.

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Newly Published: Daniel Lewis

New on our bookshelf:

Daniel Lewis: A Life in Choreography and the Art of Dance

Donna H. Krasnow and Daniel E. Lewis

Daniel Lewis’s legacy as a hugely influential choreographer and teacher of modern dance is celebrated in this biography. It showcases the many roles he played in the dance world by organizing his story around various aspects of his work, including his years at the Juilliard School, dancing and touring with the José Limón Company, staging Limón’s masterpieces around the world, directing his own company (Daniel Lewis Dance Repertory Company), writing and choreographing operas and musicals, and his years as dean of dance at New World School of the Arts. His life has spanned a particular period of growth of modern and contemporary dance, and his biography gives insight into how the artistic and journalistic perspectives on modern dance were influenced by what was occurring in the broader dance and arts communities. The book also offers rarely seen photographs and interviews with unique perspectives on many dance luminaries.

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Newly Published: The Umpire Was Blind!

New on our bookshelf

The Umpire Was Blind!: Controversial Calls by MLB’s Men in Blue

Jonathan Weeks

In the words of former American League umpire Nestor Chylak, umpires are expected to “be perfect on the first day of the season and then get better every day.” Forced to deal with sullen managers and explosive players, they often take the blame for the failures of both. But let’s face it—umpires are only human.

For well over a century, the fortunes of Major League teams—and the fabric of baseball history itself—have been dramatically affected by the flawed decisions of officials. While the use of video replay in recent decades has reduced the number of bitter disputes, many situations remain exempt from review and are subject to swirling controversy. In the heat of the moment mistakes are often made, sometimes with monumental consequences. This book details some of these more controversial calls and the men who made them.

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Newly Published: Doppelgangers, Alter Egos and Mirror Images in Western Art, 1840–2010

New on our bookshelf:

Doppelgangers, Alter Egos and Mirror Images in Western Art, 1840–2010: Critical Essays

Edited by Mary D. Edwards

The notion of a person—or even an object—having a “double” has been explored in the visual arts for ages, and in myriad ways: portraying the body and its soul, a woman gazing at her reflection in a pool, or a man overwhelmed by his own shadow. In this edited collection focusing on nineteenth- and twentieth-century western art, scholars analyze doppelgangers, alter egos, mirror images, double portraits and other pairings, human and otherwise, appearing in a large variety of artistic media. Artists whose works are discussed at length include Richard Dadd, Salvador Dalí, Egon Schiele, Frida Kahlo, the creators of Superman, and Nicola Costantino, among many others.

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Newly Published: Lucid Dreaming, Waking Life

New on our bookshelf:

Lucid Dreaming, Waking Life: Unlocking the Power of Your Sleep
Elliot Riley

Lucid dreaming, the skill of recognizing that you’re dreaming within a dream, has a vast potential to not only improve the content of your dreams but also to quell anxiety and improve confidence during your waking life. Leveraging both scientific research and two decades of personal experimentation, this book provides everything readers need to know in order to begin lucid dreaming for the first time and to improve the frequency, control, and clarity of existing lucid dream experiences. Personal anecdotes and dream journal entries from the author help clarify points of confusion and motivate readers. This book focuses heavily on the connections between lucid dreaming, mindfulness, and anxiety, and on the myriad benefits lucid dreaming can have while you are awake.

Whether you have never had a lucid dream before, or you want to improve the quality and frequency of your lucid dreams, the techniques provided here will make the process simple. With the skill of lucid dreaming, your dreams will become your own personal playground, laboratory, artist studio, or spiritual center. What you gain from such a journey is up to you.

 

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Newly Published: The Television Treasury

New on our bookshelf:

The Television Treasury: Onscreen Details from Sitcoms, Dramas and Other Scripted Series, 1947–2019
Vincent Terrace

The first and only of its kind, this book is a straightforward listing of more than 25,000 trivia facts from 2,498 TV series aired between 1947 and 2019. Organized by topic, trivia facts include everything from home addresses of characters, to names of pets and jobs that characters worked. Featured programs include popular shows like The Big Bang Theory and Friends and more obscure programs like A Date with Judy or My Friend Irma. Included is an alphabetical program index that lists trivia facts grouped by series.

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New in Softcover: Prizefighting

Now available in softcover:

Prizefighting: An American History
Arne K. Lang

This work brings a fresh perspective to the history of modern prizefighting, a sport which has evolved over several centuries to become one of mankind’s most lasting and valued sporting attractions. With his primary focus outside the ropes, the author shows how organizers, publicity agents, and political allies overcame both legal and moral roadblocks to make fisticuffing a lively commercial enterprise.

The book begins with the clandestine bare-knuckle fights in eighteenth-century London, and ends with the vibrant, large-scale productions of modern Las Vegas “fight nights.” Along the way, he explains many of the myths about antiquarian prizefighters, describes the origins of slave fight folklore, and examines the forces that transformed Las Vegas into the world’s leading venue for important fights.

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June Transportation Sale

It’s June, gas prices are cheap, the highways are free of traffic, and holiday destinations are uncrowded. Let’s hit the road (in spirit, if not in deed)! Our automotive history line, including histories of marques famous and obscure, auto racing, biographies, reference works like J. Kelly Flory’s massive American Cars volumes, and much more, is complimented by many excellent works on locomotive, aviation, and maritime history; bicycles; and military transportation. This month, we’re offering ALL transportation titles at 40% off the list price with coupon code TRANSPORTATION40! Use this coupon code on our website through Sunday, June 28. Safe travels from your friends at McFarland!

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New in Softcover: Encyclopedia of Capital Punishment in the United States, 2d ed.

Now available in softcover:

Encyclopedia of Capital Punishment in the United States, 2d ed.
Louis J. Palmer, Jr.

This updated encyclopedia provides ready information on all aspects of capital punishment in America. It details virtually every capital punishment decision rendered by the United States Supreme Court through 2006, including more than 40 cases decided since publication of the first edition. Entries are also provided for each Supreme Court Justice who has ever rendered a capital punishment opinion. Entries on jurisdictions cite present-day death penalty laws and judicial structure state by state, with synopses of common and unique features.

Also included are entries on significant U.S. capital prosecutions; legal principles and procedures in capital cases; organizations that support and oppose capital punishment; capital punishment’s impact on persons of African, Asian, Hispanic, and Native American descent, on women, and on foreign nationals; and the methods of execution. Essential facts are also provided on capital punishment in more than 200 other nations. A wealth of statistical data is found throughout.

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New in Softcover: The War of 1812

Now available in softcover:

The War of 1812: A Complete Chronology with Biographies of 63 General Officers
Bud Hannings

Although the American Revolution ended in 1783, tensions between the United States and Britain over disruptions to American trade, the impressment of American merchant sailors by British ships, and British support of Native American resistance to American expansion erupted in another military conflict nearly three decades later. Scarcely remembered in England today, the War of 1812 stood as a veritable “second war of independence” to the victorious Americans and ushered in an extended period of peaceful relations and trade between the United States and Britain. This major reference work offers a comprehensive day-by-day chronology of the War of 1812, including its slow build-up and aftermath, and provides detailed biographies of the generals who made their marks.

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Newly Published: Ian Rankin

New on our bookshelf:

Ian Rankin: A Companion to the Mystery Fiction
Erin E. MacDonald

Ian Rankin is considered by many to be Scotland’s greatest living crime fiction author. Most well known for his Inspector Rebus series—which has earned critical acclaim as well as scores of fans worldwide—Rankin is a prolific author whose other works include spy thrillers, nonfiction books and articles, short stories, novels, graphic novels, audio recordings, television/film, and plays.

This companion—the first to provide a complete look at all of his writings—includes alphabetized entries on Rankin’s works, characters, and themes; a biography; a chronology; maps of Rebus’ Edinburgh; and an annotated bibliography. A champion of both Edinburgh and Scotland, Rankin continues to combine engaging entertainment with socio-political commentary showing Edinburgh as a microcosm of Scotland, and Scotland as a microcosm of the world. His writing investigates questions of Scottish identity, British history, masculinity, and contemporary culture while providing mystery readers with complex, suspenseful plots, realistic character development, and a unique mix of American hard-boiled and procedural styles with Scottish dialects and sensibilities.

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New in Softcover: The Steamboat Era

Now available in softcover:

The Steamboat Era: A History of Fulton’s Folly on American Rivers, 1807–1860
S.L. Kotar and J.E. Gessler

The steamboat evokes images of leisurely travel, genteel gambling, and lively commerce, but behind the romanticized view is an engineering marvel that led the way for the steam locomotive. From the steamboat’s development by Robert Fulton to the dawn of the Civil War, the new mode of transportation opened up America’s frontiers and created new trade routes and economic centers.

Firsthand accounts of steamboat accidents, races, business records and river improvements are collected here to reveal the culture and economy of the early to mid–1800s, as well as the daily routines of crew and passengers. A glossary of steamboat terms and a collection of contemporary accounts of accidents round out this history of the riverboat era.

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Newly Published: Confederate Veterans in Northern California

New on our bookshelf:

Confederate Veterans in Northern California: 101 Biographies
Jeff Erzin

Drawing on six years of research, this book covers the military service and postwar lives of notable Confederate veterans who moved into Northern California at the end the Civil War. Biographies of 101 former rebels are provided, from the oldest brother of the Clanton Gang to the son of a President to plantation owners, dirt farmers, criminals and everything in between.

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Newly Published: Women in Jamaican Music

New on our bookshelf:

Women in Jamaican Music
Heather Augustyn

As the ubiquitous Jamaican musician Bob Marley once famously sang, “half the story has never been told.” This rings particularly true for the little-known women in Jamaican music who comprise significantly less than half of the Caribbean nation’s musical landscape. This book covers the female contribution to Jamaican music and its subgenres through dozens of interviews with vocalists, instrumentalists, bandleaders, producers, deejays and supporters of the arts. Relegated to marginalized spaces, these pioneering women fought for their claim to the spotlight amid oppressive conditions to help create and shape Jamaica’s musical heritage.

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Newly Published: Archie’s Rivals in Teen Comics, 1940s–1970s

New on our bookshelf:

Archie’s Rivals in Teen Comics, 1940s–1970s: An Illustrated History
Michelle Nolan

This is the first book to comprehensively examine the multitude of non-Archie teen humor comic books, including girls and boys such as Patsy Walker, Hedy Wolfe, Buzz Baxter and Wendy Parker from Marvel; Judy Foster, Buzzy, Binky and Scribbly from DC; Candy from Quality Comics; and Hap Hazard from Ace Comics. It covers, often for the first time, the history of the characters, who drew them, why (or why not) they succeeded as rivals for the Archie Series, highlights of both unusual and typical stories and much more. The author provides major plotlines and a history of the development of each series. Much has been written about the Archie characters, but until now very little has been told about most of their many comic book competitors.

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Newly Published: The Last Voyage of the Whaling Bark Progress

New on our bookshelf:

The Last Voyage of the Whaling Bark Progress: New Bedford, Chicago and the Twilight of an Industry
Daniel Gifford

The whaling bark Progress was a New Bedford whaler transformed into a whaling museum for Chicago’s 1893 world’s fair. Traversing waterways across North America, the whaleship enthralled crowds from Montreal to Racine. Her ultimate fate, however, was to be a failed sideshow of marine curiosities and a metaphor for a dying industry out of step with Gilded Age America. This book uses the story of the Progress to detail the rise, fall, and eventual demise of the whaling industry in America. The legacy of this whaling bark can be found throughout New England and Chicago, and invites questions about what it means to transform a dying industry into a museum piece. The whaling bark Progress was a New Bedford ship transformed into a whaling museum for Chicago’s 1893 world’s fair. Traversing waterways across North America, the whaleship enthralled crowds from Montreal to Racine. Her ultimate fate, however, was to be a failed sideshow of marine curiosities and a metaphor for a dying industry out of step with Gilded Age America. This book uses the story of the Progress to detail the rise, fall, and eventual demise of the whaling industry in America. The legacy of this whaling bark can be found throughout New England and Chicago, and invites questions about what it means to transform a dying industry into a museum piece.

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Newly Published: Captured by Aliens?

New on our bookshelf:

Captured by Aliens?: A History and Analysis of American Abduction Claims
Nigel Watson

New Hampshire couple Betty and Barney Hill provided Americans with what is essentially the original alien abduction story. Since their story became public in the early 1960s, many thousands of Americans have likewise come forward with similar stories of traumatic experiences. Sometimes the abductee has little conscious recollection of these events, but through nightmares, dreams, flashbacks and hypnosis they eventually learn more. Sometimes the participants are bewildered. To get a better understanding of the opposing viewpoints of skeptic and believer, the Betty and Barney Hill case is used to examine the wider context of such encounters, their historical origins, media influences and the latest extraterrestrial, psychological, paranormal, conspiracy and sociological theories that surround them.

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New Editorship for Clues: A Journal of Detection

We’re pleased to announce that Caroline Reitz will be the next executive editor of Clues: A Journal of Detection. Reitz is an associate professor at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice–CUNY and a faculty member of the CUNY Graduate Center. She is also co-editor of the Dickens Studies Annual and brings rich personal publishing experience.

Reitz will succeed Janice Allan,  who assumed executive editorship in 2012. Allan’s high standards and commitment to diverse voices led to publication of high-quality articles from authors from all over the world, demonstrating that mystery/detective/crime fiction study truly is an international enterprise that offers much to the field of literary criticism. We deeply appreciate her contributions and excellent leadership over the past eight years.

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Newly Published: Sexualities in the Works of Joss Whedon

New on our bookshelf:

Sexualities in the Works of Joss Whedon
Lewis Call

Joss Whedon’s works, across all media including television, film, musicals, and comic books, are known for their commitment to gender and sexual equality. They have always encouraged their audiences to love whomever, and however, they wish. This book is a history of the sexualities represented in the works of Joss Whedon and it covers all of Whedon’s genres, including fantasy, horror, science fiction, westerns, superhero stories, and Shakespearean comedy.

Unique for its consideration of the entire arc of Whedon’s two-decade career, from the beginning of Buffy the Vampire Slayer’s first season in 1997 through the conclusion of its twelfth (comic book) season in 2018, this book examines in detail both better-known queer sexualities of the LGBTQ+ spectrum, and lesser-known non-normative sexualities. The book includes chapters on Whedon’s sexually dominant women and submissive men, sexual pluralism on Firefly, disabled sexualities in Whedon’s superhero narratives, zoophilia in Buffy, queer and heteronormative sexualities in Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog, the subversion of the sexual tropes of slasher films in The Cabin in Woods, and dominance and submission in Whedon’s Much Ado About Nothing.

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New in Softcover: Tal, Petrosian, Spassky and Korchnoi

Now available in softcover:

Tal, Petrosian, Spassky and Korchnoi: A Chess Multibiography with 207 Games
Andrew Soltis

This book describes the intense rivalry—and collaboration—of the four players who created the golden era when USSR chess players dominated the world. More than 200 annotated games are included, along with personal details—many for the first time in English.

Mikhail Tal, the roguish, doomed Latvian who changed the way chess players think about attack and sacrifice; Tigran Petrosian, the brilliant, henpecked Armenian whose wife drove him to become the world’s best player; Boris Spassky, the prodigy who survived near-starvation and later bouts of melancholia to succeed Petrosian—but is best remembered for losing to Bobby Fischer; and “Evil” Viktor Korchnoi, whose mixture of genius and jealousy helped him eventually surpass his three rivals (but fate denied him the title they achieved: world champion).

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New in Softcover: Auto Racing Comes of Age

Now available in softcover:

Auto Racing Comes of Age: A Transatlantic View of the Cars, Drivers and Speedways, 1900–1925
Robert Dick

The first quarter of the 20th century was a time of dramatic change in auto racing, marked by the move from the horseless carriage to the supercharged Grand Prix racer, from the gentleman driver to the well-publicized professional, and from the dusty road course to the autodrome. This history of the evolution of European and American auto racing from 1900 to 1925 examines transatlantic influences, early dirt track racing, and the birth of the twin-cam engine and the straight-eight. It also explores the origins of the Bennett and Vanderbilt races, the early career of “America’s Speed King” Barney Oldfield, the rise of the speedway specials from Marmon, Mercer, Stutz and Duesenberg, and developments from Peugeot, Delage, Ballot, Fiat, and Bugatti. This informative work provides welcome insight into a defining period in motorsports.

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Newly Published: Mental Health Disorders on Television

New on our bookshelf:

Mental Health Disorders on Television: Representation Versus Reality
Kimberley McMahon-Coleman and Roslyn Weaver

In past decades portrayals of mental illness on television were limited to psychotic criminals or comical sidekicks. As public awareness of mental illness has increased so too have its depictions on the small screen. A gradual transition from stereotypes towards more nuanced representations has seen a wide range of lead characters with mental health disorders, including schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, OCD, autism spectrum disorder, dissociative identity disorder, anxiety, depression and PTSD. But what are these portrayals saying about mental health and how closely do they align with real-life experiences?

Drawing on interviews with people living with mental illness, this book traces these shifts, placing on-screen depictions in context and demonstrating their real world impacts.

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Newly Published: The Cavalries in the Nashville Campaign

New on our bookshelf:

The Cavalries in the Nashville Campaign
Dennis W. Belcher

The Nashville Campaign, culminating with the last major battle of the Civil War, is one of the most compelling and controversial campaigns of the conflict. The campaign pitted the young and energetic James Harrison Wilson and his Union cavalry against the cunning and experienced Nathan Bedford Forrest with his Confederate cavalry. This book is an analysis of contributions made by the two opposing cavalry forces and provides new insights and details into the actions of the cavalry during the battle. This campaign highlighted important changes in cavalry tactics and never in the Civil War was there closer support by the cavalry for infantry actions than for the Union forces in the Battle of Nashville. The retreat by Cheatham’s corps and the Battle of the Barricade receive a more in-depth discussion than in previous works on this battle. The importance of this campaign cannot be overstated as a different outcome of this battle could have altered history. The Nashville Campaign reflected the stark realities of the war across the country in December 1864 and would mark an important part of the death knell for the Confederacy.

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All Sports Titles On Sale Now!

Remember live sports? So do we, but just barely. With nothing on TV and the ballparks empty, we’re using this time to read, study and reminisce with some good books. Luckily, for the last forty years, we’ve celebrated sports by publishing the best scholarship available, with more than 1,000 titles covering all aspects of sport.  Through Sunday, June 14, we’re offering 40% off the list price of ALL sports titles—use coupon code SPORTS40 at checkout! Thank you for continuing to support McFarland, and we look forward to sitting next to you at the ballpark again.

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Newly Published: Elder Fraud Wars

New on our bookshelf:

Elder Fraud Wars: Case Histories from an Enforcement Attorney
David Neil Kirkman

By recounting actual court cases, this book examines the multi-billion-dollar elder fraud industry, the special vulnerabilities of those it targets, and the ease and frequency with which it obtains hundreds of thousands of dollars per victim. It also reveals successful strategies for combating that industry and the important contributions to that effort by concerned bankers, doctors, reporters and others in the private sector.

The cases reveal an increasingly sophisticated global industry that targets each victim with a series of repeat “hits.” This tactic—criminals call it “reloading”—sets the elder fraud industry apart from groups that defraud younger individuals. Twelve key age-related fraud vulnerabilities are illustrated in the cases. So, too, are the scammers’ skills in mapping their target’s unique combination of vulnerabilities and then tailoring their narratives to exploit each one. Most of the cases highlight actual victims, scam artists or fraud fighters. Their individual stories range from inspiring and sometimes comical to frustrating and deeply disturbing. Readers with aging parents, law enforcement officials, medical professionals, members of the financial industry and others who work with older adults will find it particularly useful.

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Newly Published: Teaching Girls on Fire

New on our bookshelf:

Teaching Girls on Fire: Essays on Dystopian Young Adult Literature in the Classroom
Edited by Sarah Hentges and Sean P. Connors

The rise of YA dystopian literature has seen an explosion of female protagonists who are stirring young people’s interest in social and political topics, awakening their civic imagination, and inspiring them to work for change. These “Girls on Fire” are intersectional and multidimensional characters. They are leaders in their communities and they challenge injustice and limited representations. The Girl on Fire fights for herself and for those who are oppressed, voiceless, or powerless. She is the hope for our shared future.

This collection of new essays brings together teachers and students from a variety of educational contexts to explore how to harness the cultural power of the Girl on Fire as we educate real-world students. Each essay provides both theoretical foundations as well as practical, hands-on teaching tools that can be used with diverse groups of students, in formal as well as informal educational settings. This volume challenges readers to realize the symbolic power the Girl on Fire has to raise consciousness and inform action and to keep that fire burning.

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Newly Published: Murder Movie Makers

New on our bookshelf:

Murder Movie Makers: Directors Dissect Their Killer Flicks
Matthew Edwards

Serial killers, mass murderers, spree killers, outlaws, and real-life homicidal maniacs have long held a grim fascination for both filmmakers and viewers. Since the 1970s, hundreds of films and television movies have been made covering killers from Charles Manson to Ted Bundy and the Zodiac Killer creating a uniquely morbid sub-genre within horror and thrillers.

This collection of interviews sheds light on 17 filmmakers and screenwriters who tackled this controversial subject while attempting to explore the warped world of infamous killers. The interviews include John McNaughton (Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer), Tom Hanson (The Zodiac Killer), David Wickes (Jack the Ripper), Chris Gerolmo (Citizen X), Chuck Parello (The Hillside Stranglers), David Jacobson (Dahmer) and Clive Saunders on his ill-fated experience directing Gacy. Offering candid insights into the creative process behind these movies, the interviews also show the pitfalls and moral controversy the filmmakers had to wrestle with to bring their visions to the screen.

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Newly Published: Morality and the Law in British Detective and Spy Fiction, 1880–1920

New on our bookshelf:

Morality and the Law in British Detective and Spy Fiction, 1880–1920
Kate Morrison

Who decides what is right or wrong, ethical or immoral, just or unjust? In the world of crime and spy fiction between 1880 and 1920, the boundaries of the law were blurred and justice called into question humanity’s moral code. As fictional detectives mutated into spies near the turn of the century, the waning influence of morality on decision-making signaled a shift in behavior from idealistic principles towards a pragmatic outlook taken in the national interest.

Taking a fresh approach to Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s popular protagonist, Sherlock Holmes, this book examines how Holmes and his rival maverick literary detectives and spies manipulated the law to deliver a fairer form of justice than that ordained by parliament. Multidisciplinary, this work views detective fiction through the lenses of law, moral philosophy, and history, and incorporates issues of gender, equality, and race. By studying popular publications of the time, it provides a glimpse into public attitudes towards crime and morality and how those shifting opinions helped reconstruct the hero in a new image.

 

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Newly Published: The Quadruple Aim in Nursing and Healthcare

New on our bookshelf:

The Quadruple Aim in Nursing and Healthcare: Improving Care, Lowering Costs, Serving Populations, Elevating Work Life
Sue Johnson

In times of ever-changing healthcare policy, many organizations have developed methods for reforming and optimizing healthcare systems. One prevailing healthcare approach is the Quadruple Aim, which incorporates four different goals: improving population health; improving experience of care; lowering healthcare costs; and improving provider work life (team vitality). Created by the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, the Quadruple Aim method is not nursing-specific, but its framework for optimizing health system performance is coherent with the nursing profession today. This book argues that the widespread adoption of the Quadruple Aim could help create a sustainable healthcare system. Using the work and legacy of nursing pioneer Florence Nightingale, this book provides an early example of successful, holistic healthcare that balances cost-effectiveness with quality of care for both patients and nurses.

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Newly Published: Resist and Persist

New on our bookshelf:

Resist and Persist: Essays on Social Revolution in 21st Century Narratives
Edited by Amanda Firestone and Leisa A. Clark

To many, the world appears to be in a state of dangerous change. News and fictional media alike report that these are dark times, and narratives of social resistance imbue many facets of Western culture. The new essays making up this collection examine different events and themes of the 2010s that readily acknowledge the struggling state of things. Crucially, these essays look to the resistance and political activism of communities that seek to make long-reaching and institutional changes in the world through a diverse group of media texts. They scrutinize how a society relates to injustices and how individuals enact a desire for change. The authors analyze a broad range of works such as texts as Awake: A Dream from Standing Rock, Black Panther, The Death of Stalin, Get Out, Jessica Jones, Hamilton, The Shape of Water, and Star Wars: The Last Jedi. By digging into these and other works, as well as historic events, the contributors explicate the soul-deep necessity of pushing back against injustice, whether personal or cultural.

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Newly Published: Crime Fiction and National Identities in the Global Age

New on our bookshelf:

Crime Fiction and National Identities in the Global Age: Critical Essays
Edited by Julie H. Kim

To read a crime novel today largely simulates the exercise of reading newspapers or watching the news. The speed and frequency with which today’s bestselling works of crime fiction are produced allow them to mirror and dissect nearly contemporaneous socio-political events and conflicts. This collection examines this phenomenon and offers original, critical, essays on how national identity appears in international crime fiction in the age of populism and globalization. These essays address topics such as the array of competing nationalisms in Europe; Indian secularism versus Hindu communalism; the populist rhetoric tinged with misogyny or homophobia in the United States; racial, religious or ethnic others who are sidelined in political appeals to dominant native voices; and the increasing economic chasm between a rich and poor.

More broadly, these essays inquire into themes such as how national identity and various conceptions of masculinity are woven together, how dominant native cultures interact with migrant and colonized cultures to explore insider/outsider paradigms and identity politics, and how generic and cultural boundaries are repeatedly crossed in postcolonial detective fiction.

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Newly Published: Eco-Vampires

New on our bookshelf:

Eco-Vampires: The Undead and the Environment
Simon Bacon

This work studies the ways vampiric narratives explore the eco-friendly credentials of the undead. Many of these texts and films show the vampire to be an essential part of a global ecosystem and an organism that can no longer tolerate the all-consuming forces of globalization and consumerism. Re-examining Bram Stoker’s Dracula and a range of other vampire narratives, primarily films, in a fresh light, this book reveals the nosferatu as both a plague on humankind and the eco-warriors that planet Earth desperately needs.

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Newly Published: Santa Claus Worldwide

New on our bookshelf:

Santa Claus Worldwide: A History of St. Nicholas and Other Holiday Gift-Bringers
Tom A. Jerman

This is a comprehensive history of the world’s midwinter gift-givers, showcasing the extreme diversity in their depictions as well as the many traits and functions these characters share. It tracks the evolution of these figures from the tribal priests who presided over winter solstice celebrations thousands of years before the birth of Christ, to Christian notables like St. Martin and St. Nicholas, to a variety of secular figures who emerged throughout Europe following the Protestant Reformation. Finally, it explains how the popularity of a poem about a “miniature sleigh” and “eight tiny reindeer” helped consolidate the diverse European gift-givers into an enduring tradition in which American children awake early on Christmas morning to see what Santa brought.

Although the names, appearance, attire and gift-giving practices of the world’s winter solstice gift-givers differ greatly, they are all recognizable as Santa, the personification of the Christmas and Midwinter festivals. Despite efforts to eliminate him by groups as diverse as the Puritans of seventeenth century New England, the Communist Party of the twentieth century Soviet Union and the government of Nazi Germany, Santa has survived and prospered, becoming one of the best known and most beloved figures in the world.

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Newly Published: Power and Marginalization in Popular Culture

New on our bookshelf:

Power and Marginalization in Popular Culture: The Oppressed in Six Television and Literature Media Franchises
Lisa A. King

In many pop culture texts, “monsters” can be read as metaphors for marginalized Others in U.S. culture. This book applies the philosophical lens of Michel Foucault’s normalizing and bio-powers to zombies, vampires, magicians, genetic mutants and others, asking whether these stories of apparent liberation really are so. Exploring a single theme in depth across a series of pop culture texts, this book encourages a radical new understanding of liberation narratives and of political activism as a mechanism of social change.

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Newly Published: The Hallmark Channel

New on our bookshelf:

The Hallmark Channel: Essays on Faith, Race and Feminism
Edited by Emily L. Newman and Emily Witsell

Originally known as a brand for greeting cards, Hallmark has seen a surge in popularity since the early 2010s for its made-for-TV movies and television channels: the Hallmark Channel and its spinoffs, Hallmark Movie Channel (now Hallmark Movies & Mysteries) and Hallmark Drama. Hallmark’s brand of comforting, often sentimental content includes standalone movies, period and contemporary television series, and mystery film series that center on strong, intuitive female leads. By creating reliable and consistent content, Hallmark offers people a calming retreat from the real world.

This collection of new essays strives to fill the void in academic attention surrounding Hallmark. From the plethora of Christmas movies that are released each year to the successful faith-based scripted programming and popular cozy mysteries that air every week, there is a wealth of material to be explored. Specifically, this book explores the network’s problematic relationship with race, the dominance of Christianity and heteronormativity, the significance placed on nostalgia, and the hiring and re-hiring of a group of women who thrived as child stars.

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Newly Published: Girls to the Rescue

New on our bookshelf:

Girls to the Rescue: Young Heroines in American Series Fiction of World War I
Emily Hamilton-Honey and Susan Ingalls Lewis

During World War I, as young men journeyed overseas to battle, American women maintained the home front by knitting, fundraising, and conserving supplies. These became daily chores for young girls, but many longed to be part of a larger, more glorious war effort—and some were. A new genre of young adult books entered the market, written specifically with the young girls of the war period in mind and demonstrating the wartime activities of women and girls all over the world. Through fiction, girls could catch spies, cross battlefields, man machine guns, and blow up bridges. These adventurous heroines were contemporary feminist role models, creating avenues of leadership for women and inspiring individualism and self-discovery. The work presented here analyzes the powerful messages in such literature, how it created awareness and grappled with the engagement of real girls in the United States and Allied war effort, and how it reflects their contemporaries’ awareness of girls’ importance.

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Newly Published: Waging the War Within

New on our bookshelf:

Waging the War Within: A Marine’s Memoir of Vietnam and PTSD
Tim Fortner with Elizabeth Ridley

United Sates Marine Sergeant Tim Fortner survived 14 months in Vietnam as a door gunner in a CH-46 helicopter, completing 27 strike flight missions. He was awarded the Air Medal for heroic achievement in aerial flight. Like many veterans, his real battle didn’t begin until he returned home, where he struggled to adjust to the “new normal” of American life in 1969, still haunted by his experiences during the nation’s most unpopular war. His memoir describes his military training, his unit’s harrowing missions inserting and extracting troops over landing zones under enemy fire, and his four-decade struggle with service-connected PTSD.

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Newly Published: Marketing the Frontier in the Northwest Territory

New on our bookshelf:

Marketing the Frontier in the Northwest Territory: Land Sales, Soils and the Settling of the Great Lakes Region in the 19th Century
Robert E. Mitchell

Combining narrative history with data-rich social and economic analysis, this new institutional economics study examines the failure of frontier farms in the antebellum Northwest Territory, where legislatively-created imperfect markets and poor surveying resulted in massive investment losses for both individual farmers and the national economy. The history of farming and spatial settlement patterns in the Great Lakes region is described, with specific focus on the State of Michigan viewed through a case study of Midland County. Inter and intra-state differences in soil endowments, public and private promoters of site-specific investment opportunities, time trends in settled populations and the experiences of individual investors are covered in detail.

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Newly Published: The British Aristocracy in Popular Culture

New on our bookshelf:

The British Aristocracy in Popular Culture: Essays on 200 Years of Representations
Edited by Stefania Michelucci, Ian Duncan and Luisa Villa

As traditional social hierarchies fall away, ever steeper levels of economic inequality and the entrenchment of new class distinctions lend a new glamor to the idea of aristocracy: witness the worldwide popularity of Downton Abbey, or the seemingly insatiable public fascination with the private lives of the British royal family. This collection of new essays investigates the enduring attraction to the icon of the aristocrat and the spectacle of aristocratic society. It traces the ambivalent reactions the aristocracy provokes and the needs (political, ideological, psychological, and otherwise) it caters to in modern times when the economic power of the landed classes have been eroded and their political role curtailed. In this interdisciplinary collection, aristocracy is considered from multiple viewpoints, including British and American literature, European history and politics, cultural studies, linguistics, visual arts, music, and media studies.

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New in Softcover: Clark Gable, in Pictures

Now available in softcover:

Clark Gable, in Pictures: Candid Images of the Actor’s Life
Chrystopher J. Spicer

From the very beginning of Clark Gable’s screen career, the life of the glamorous film star came under the scrutiny of the camera. While audiences are familiar with the public Gable as seen through the studio lens, the private Gable as seen in photos taken by members of the public, friends, and family is much less known.

This collection of candid photographs, many of them published here for the first time, has been compiled by biographer Chrystopher J. Spicer from his archives and from sources around the world. As with Spicer’s acclaimed centenary biography Clark Gable (McFarland, 2002), this volume provides rare insight into the life of the man behind the star.

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Newly Published: Major General Philip Kearny

New on our bookshelf:

Major General Philip Kearny: A Soldier and His Time in the American Civil War
Robert R. Laven

Union General Philip Kearny began his career as a lieutenant with the 1st U.S. Dragoons. He studied cavalry tactics in France and fought with the Chasseurs d’Afrique in Algeria, where his fearlessness earned him the nickname “Kearny le Magnifique.” Returning to America, he wrote a cavalry manual for the U.S. Army and later raised a troop of dragoons—using his own money to buy 120 matching dapple-gray mounts for his men—and led them during the Mexican War, where he lost an arm.
This biography chronicles the military life of one of the most talented field officers in the Army of the Potomac at the outbreak of the Civil War, who famously led a charge at the Battle of Williamsburg with his reins in his teeth, and sometimes disobeyed General George McClellan, once protesting an order to retreat as “prompted by cowardice or treason.” Kearny was on the verge of higher command when he was killed at the 1862 Battle of Chantilly.

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Newly Published: The Bionic Woman and Feminist Ethics

New on our bookshelf:

The Bionic Woman and Feminist Ethics: An Analysis of the 1970s Television Series
David Greven

The ABC TV series The Bionic Woman, created by Kenneth Johnson, was a 1970s pop culture phenomenon. Starring Lindsay Wagner as Jaime Sommers, the groundbreaking series follows Jaime’s evolution from a young woman vulnerable to an exploitative social order, to a fierce individualist defying a government that sees her as property. Beneath the action-packed surface of Jaime’s battles with Fembots, themes such as the chosen family, technophobia, class passing, the cyborg, artificial beings, and a growing racial consciousness receive a sophisticated treatment.

This book links the series to precedents such as classical mythology, first-wave feminist literature, and the Hollywood woman’s film, to place The Bionic Woman in a tradition of feminist ethics deeply concerned with female autonomy, community, and the rights of nonhuman animals. Seen through the lens of feminist philosophy and gender studies, Jaime’s constantly changing disguises, attempts to pass as human, and struggles to accept her new bionic abilities offer provocative engagement with issues of identity. Jaime Sommers is a feminist icon who continues to speak to women and queer audiences, and her struggles and triumphs resonate with a worldwide fanbase that still remains enthralled and represented by The Bionic Woman.

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Newly Published: As I Was Burying Comrade Stalin

New on our bookshelf:

As I Was Burying Comrade Stalin: My Life Becoming a Jewish Dissident
Arkady Polishchuk

Arkady Polishchuk came of age in Stalin’s Russia, in the turbulent times before, during and after World War II. His love for the Soviet dictator persisted for years until Polishchuk, a 19-year-old Jew, was not admitted to the university. In 1952, he learned about the preparations for mass deportation of Jews to Siberia.

He celebrated Stalin’s death in 1953—but state oppression dominated his life as before. As a young reporter for the Kostroma regional newspaper, he met with destitute plowmen, teenage milkmaids and former prisoners turned woodcutters, and wrote about them. When his satirical flair outraged a Communist Party secretary, the KGB initiated a political case against him and he fled to avoid persecution.

His memoir describes his painstaking journey toward mental and spiritual liberation.

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Newly Published: Gender and Werewolf Cinema

New on our bookshelf:

Gender and Werewolf Cinema
Jason Barr

It all begins with a howl, the unsettling sound which tells audiences that someone will soon become a werewolf. But the changes that occur during that transformation aren’t just physical; they are psychological as well. Unremarkable men become domineering leaders. Innocuous men become violent and overtly sexual. In films from The Wolf Man and An American Werewolf in London to Ginger Snaps, when the protagonists become werewolves, their perceptions of their gender and their masculinity or femininity change dramatically.

This volume explores how werewolves in cinema have provided an avenue for frank and often enlightening conversations about gender roles and masculinity. Werewolves are indeed a harbinger of change, but the genre of werewolf cinema itself has changed over time in how different styles of masculinity and different gender identities are portrayed.

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Newly Published: The Ages of the Black Panther

New on our bookshelf:

The Ages of the Black Panther: Essays on the King of Wakanda in Comic Books
Edited by Joseph J. Darowski

Black Panther was the first black superhero in mainstream comic books, and his most iconic adventures are analyzed here. This collection of new essays explores Black Panther’s place in the Marvel universe, focusing on the comic books. With topics ranging from the impact apartheid and the Black Panther Party had on the comic to theories of gender and animist imagery, these essays analyze individual storylines and situate them within the socio-cultural framework of the time periods in which they were created, drawing connections that deepen understanding of both popular culture and the movements of society. Supporting characters such as Everett K. Ross and T’Challa’s sister Shuri are also considered. From his creation in 1966 by Jack Kirby and Stan Lee up through the character’s recent adventures by Ta-Nehisi Coates and Brian Stelfreeze, more than fifty years of the Black Panther’s history are addressed.

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Newly Published: Film Directors and Emotion

New on our bookshelf:

Film Directors and Emotion: An Affective Turn in Contemporary American Cinema
Darragh Greene and Graham Price

Cinema is an affective medium. Films move us to feel wonder, joy, and love as well as fear, anger, and hatred. Today, we are living through a new age of sensibility when emotion is given priority over reason. Yet, there is a counter-cultural current in contemporary American cinema that offers a more nuanced treatment of emotion. Both aesthetically and eidetically, this new cinema of affect allows viewers to make up their own minds about what they feel and think.

This book focuses on key films by important auteur-directors—David Fincher, Bryan Singer, Christopher Nolan, Kathryn Bigelow, Richard Linklater, Barry Jenkins, Greta Gerwig, and Pete Docter—who are to the forefront of this new cinema. It explores how they anatomize affect and how it functions in the creation or degradation of character and society.

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Pop Culture Sale Starts Now!

From our founding in 1979, McFarland has championed serious scholarship about popular culture. Longtime customers remember the classics like Bill Warren’s Keep Watching the Skies!—how many of you own the original hardcover in yellow cloth binding? Today, popular culture studies is perhaps our best-known line, with more than 2,000 books about horror and science fiction film, old time radio, biographies from the Golden Age of Hollywood, current television series, theatre, dance…whatever your interest, you’re sure to find it here. To express our appreciation for readers old and new, we’re offering 40% off ALL titles about popular culture through May 17 with coupon code POP40. Thank you for continuing to support McFarland, and we hope you find a few good books for your pop shelf!

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Newly Published: Windows into The West Wing

New on our bookshelf:

Windows into The West Wing: Theoretical Approaches to an Ideal Presidency
Patrick Webster

The West Wing, first broadcast in 1999, is thought by many to have been one of the most significant dramas shown on network television. Despite its overly idealized depiction of American political life, and blatant contradictions in the way we consider America, its values, its aspirations, and its behavior in the world, The West Wing nonetheless succeeds in attaining popular national and international aesthetic appeal.

This book aspires to explain the appeal of the show by considering issues such as race, religion, sexuality, disability, and education—from both a practical and theoretical perspective—through the lenses of feminism, gender theory, Marxism, psychoanalytical theories, structuralism, poststructuralism, postcolonialism and more. It seeks to offer informative and revealing readings of one of the most significant television productions of recent times.

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Newly Published: Madeleine Carroll

New on our bookshelf:

Madeleine Carroll: Actress and Humanitarian, from The 39 Steps to the Red Cross
John Pascoe

At the height of her celebrity, Madeleine Carroll (1906–1987) was the world’s highest-paid actress. She worked alongside such greats as Laurence Olivier and Charles Laughton, British directors Victor Saville and Alfred Hitchcock, and Hollywood directors John Ford and Otto Preminger. She also did radio and television shows—all of which she abandoned to become a Red Cross worker.

Piecing together long-lost facts, the author describes Carroll’s almost indescribable life, narrating her personal highs and lows, as well as her fervent commitment to helping others—particularly child victims of war.

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Newly Published: New York Loves Them, Cooperstown Snubs Them

New on our bookshelf:

New York Loves Them, Cooperstown Snubs Them: Great Mets and Yankees Who Belong in the Hall of Fame
Tom Van Riper

Despite the big market, bright lights and World Series rings, many Hall of Fame level players from the Mets and Yankees have been passed over by voters, often by good margins. The biggest reason: they didn’t accumulate those traditional lifetime stats in hits, home runs or wins that typically punch Hall of Fame tickets. New York fan favorites Keith Hernandez, Ron Guidry, David Cone and others had the misfortune of playing before today’s accepted measurement tools like on-base percentage, slugging percentage and ERA-plus (adjusting a pitcher’s earned run average to the league norm in a given year) became commonplace. Some players were overshadowed by bigger personalities who were better able to take advantage of the New York spotlight.

This book makes an in-depth case for the induction of seven Mets and Yankees, and evaluates many more who have been passed over for a spot in the Hall of Fame. Giving these players a fresh look, it uses advanced stats that weren’t around when these men were playing and places traditional stats in the context of their era.

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New in Softcover: Encyclopedia of Vampire Mythology

Now available in softcover:

Encyclopedia of Vampire Mythology
Theresa Bane

From the earliest days of oral history to the present, the vampire myth persists among mankind’s deeply-rooted fears. This encyclopedia, with entries ranging from “Abchanchu” to “Zmeus,” includes nearly 600 different species of historical and mythological vampires, fully described and detailed.

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Newly Published: Homeschooling and Libraries

New on our bookshelf:

Homeschooling and Libraries: New Solutions and Opportunities
Edited by Vera Gubnitskaia and Carol Smallwood

As families are looking for better ways to educate their children, more and more of them are becoming interested and engaged in alternative ways of schooling that are different, separate, or opposite of the traditional classroom. Homeschooling has become ever more creative and varied as families create custom-tailored curricula, assignments, goals, and strategies that are best for each unique child. This presents a multitude of challenges and opportunities for information institutions, including public, academic, school, and special libraries. The need for librarians to help homeschool families become information and media literate is more important than ever.

This collection of essays provides a range of approaches and strategies suggested by skilled professionals as well as veteran homeschool parents on how to best serve the diverse needs and learning experiences of homeschooled youth. It includes information on needs assessments for special needs students, gifted students, and African American students; advice on how to provide support for the families of homeschoolers; case studies; and information on new technologies that could benefit libraries and the homeschooler populations that they serve.

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Newly Published: The Streaming of Hill House

New on our bookshelf:

The Streaming of Hill House: Essays on the Haunting Netflix Adaption
Edited by Kevin J. Wetmore, Jr.

Netflix’s The Haunting of Hill House has received both critical acclaim and heaps of contempt for its reimagining of Shirley Jackson’s seminal horror novel. Some found Mike Flanagan’s series inventive, respectful and terrifying. Others believed it denigrated and diminished its source material, with some even calling it a “betrayal” of Jackson. Though the novel has produced a great deal of scholarship, this is the first critical collection to look at the television series. Featuring all new essays from noted scholars and award-winning horror authors, this collection goes beyond comparing the novel and the Netflix adaptation to look at the series through the lenses of gender, architecture, education, hauntology, addiction, and trauma studies including analysis of the show in the context of 9/11 and #Me Too. Specific essays compare the series with other texts, from Flanagan’s other films and other adaptations of Jackson’s novel, to the television series Supernatural, Toni Morrison’s Beloved and the 2018 film Hereditary. Together, this collection probes a terrifying television series about how scary reality can truly be, usually because of what it says about our lives in America today.

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Newly Published: The Songs of Genesis

New on our bookshelf:

The Songs of Genesis: A Complete Guide to the Studio Recordings
Steve Aldous

Quintessentially British, Genesis spearheaded progressive rock in the 1970s, evolving into a chart-topping success through the end of the millennium. Influencing rock groups such as Radiohead, Phish, Rush, Marillion and Elbow, the experimental format of Genesis’ songs inspired new avenues for music to explore. From the 23-minute masterpiece “Supper’s Ready,” via the sublime beauty of “Ripples” and the bold experimentation of “Mama”, to hits such as “Invisible Touch” and “I Can’t Dance,” their material was inventive and unique. This book is the chronological history of the band’s music, with critical analysis and key details of each of the 204 songs Genesis recorded and released.

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Newly Published: Senior Care and Services

New on our bookshelf:

Senior Care and Services: Essays and Case Studies on Practices, Innovations and Challenges
Edited by Joaquin Jay Gonzalez III, Roger L. Kemp and Willie Lee Britt

There are more senior citizens in the U.S. today than ever before. Public services for seniors are rapidly changing and expanding as this diverse population ages. This collection of essays describes key developments in services being provided in cities across the nation. Topics include seniors and the U.S. government; health and wellness; longevity; caregiving; housing and accommodations; Social Security and finance; immigrant, minority and LGBT issues, and life-long learning and technology.

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Newly Published: Henry Clay Frick and the Golden Age of Coal and Coke, 1870–1920

New on our bookshelf:

Henry Clay Frick and the Golden Age of Coal and Coke, 1870–1920
Cassandra Vivian

Once the beehive coke oven was perfected in Fayette County, Pennsylvania, the coal and coke industry began to flourish and supply other fledgling industries with the fuel they needed to succeed. The thrust of this growth came from Henry Clay Frick, who opened his first coal mines in the Morgan Valley of Fayette County in 1871. There, he helped lead the industry, making it the major developmental force in industrial America. This book traces the birth and growth of the early coal and coke industry from 1870 to 1920, primarily in Fayette and Westmoreland Counties. Beyond Frick’s importance to the industry, other major topics covered in this history include the lives and struggles of the miners and immigrants who worked in the industry, the growth of unions and the many strikes in the region, and the attempts to clean the surrounding waterways from the horrific pollution that resulted from industrial development. Perhaps the most significant fact is that this book uses primary sources contemporary with the golden age of the coal and coke industry. That effort offers an alternative view and helps repair the common portrayal of Frick as corrupt by showing his work as that of an industrial genius.

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Body, Mind and Spirit Sale

This year has been an extraordinary time for looking inward, learning about wellness and focusing more and more on spirituality. Here at McFarland, we’ve published many resources that help individuals achieve their wellness goals—including our Health Topics series, a growing cannabis studies selection and a brand-new imprint, Toplight Booksdevoted to all things personal development. In the spirit of this season of growth, we’re offering 40% off all books on body, mind and spirit through May 4th—just use coupon code BMS40 at checkout. Browse our catalog on Body, Mind & Spirit here!

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Newly Published: The First Oscar Hammerstein and New York’s Golden Age of Theater and Music

New on our bookshelf:

The First Oscar Hammerstein and New York’s Golden Age of Theater and Music
Adolph S. Tomars

Oscar Hammerstein I came to New York in the 1860s, a Prussian runaway with $1.50 in his pocket, and found work at a cigar factory. A decade later he was publishing the nation’s leading tobacco trade journal and held dozens of patents for cigar-rolling machinery. He made a fortune and turned his efforts to theater.

He built eight of them, including four around Longacre Square—later Times Square—which became a thriving theater district. A daring impresario, he was involved at all levels, from booking to composition to stagecraft. Throughout the Gay Nineties and early 20th century, he billed the world’s top actors, prima donnas and vaudeville acts.

Then, as now, show business was speculation and high adventure, with rivalries fought in the headlines. Always a storm center, Hammerstein played a skillful chess game with both partners and performers while staging first-class shows for capacity crowds. This biography—from an unfinished manuscript by the son of one of his stage managers—recounts the heyday of his bold productions, his often turbulent relationships with associates, and the birth of Broadway.

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Newly Published: The Many Lives of It

New on our bookshelf:

The Many Lives of It: Essays on the Stephen King Horror Franchise
Edited by Ron Riekki

After its publication in 1986, Stephen King’s novel It sparked sequels, remakes, parodies and solidified an entire genre: clown horror. Decades later, director Andy Muschietti revitalized King’s popular novel, smashing all box office expectations with the release of his 2017 film It. At the time of its release, the movie set the record for the world’s highest-grossing horror film. Examining the legacy of the controversial cult novel, the 2017 box office sensation and other incarnations of the demonic clown Pennywise, this collection of never-before-published essays covers the franchise from a variety of perspectives. Topics include examinations of the carnivalesque in both the novel and films, depictions of sexuality and theology in the book, and manifestations of patriarchy and the franchise, among other diverse subjects.After its publication in 1986, Stephen King’s novel It sparked sequels, remakes, parodies and solidified an entire genre: clown horror. Decades later, director Andy Muschietti revitalized King’s popular novel, smashing all box office expectations with the release of his 2017 film It. At the time of its release, the movie set the record for the world’s highest-grossing horror film. Examining the legacy of the controversial cult novel, the 2017 box office sensation and other incarnations of the demonic clown Pennywise, this collection of never-before-published essays covers the franchise from a variety of perspectives. Topics include examinations of the carnivalesque in both the novel and films, depictions of sexuality and theology in the book, and manifestations of patriarchy and the franchise, among other diverse subjects.

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Newly Published: The Bundy Murders

New on our bookshelf:

The Bundy Murders: A Comprehensive History, 2d ed.
Kevin M. Sullivan

In this revised, updated and expanded edition, the author explores the life of Theodore Bundy, one of the more infamous—and flamboyant—American serial killers on record. Bundy’s story is a complex mix of psychopathology, criminal investigation, and the U.S. legal system. This in-depth examination of Bundy’s life and his killing spree that totaled dozens of victims is drawn from legal transcripts, correspondence and interviews with detectives and prosecutors. Using these sources, new information about several murders is unveiled. The biography follows Bundy from his broken family background to his execution in the electric chair.

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Newly Published: Appalachian Fiddler Albert Hash

New on our bookshelf:

Appalachian Fiddler Albert Hash: The Last Leaf on the Tree
Malcolm L. Smith with Edwin Lacy

World-class luthier and renowned guitarist Wayne Henderson calls Albert Hash “a real folk hero.” A virtuoso fiddler from the Blue Ridge, Hash built more than 300 fiddles in his lifetime, recorded numerous times with a variety of bands and inspired countless instrument makers and musicians in the mountains of rural Southwest Virginia near the North Carolina border. His biography is the story of a resourceful, humble man who dedicated his life to his art, community and Appalachian musical heritage.

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New in Softcover: The Art of Florence Thomas

Now available in softcover:

The Art of Florence Thomas
Florence Thomas with the Editors at McFarland

Florence Thomas, a native of the Grassy Creek community of Ashe County, North Carolina, painted most of her life. She began her career in 1930 at the Moore Institute of Art, Science and Industry in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and well into her nineties continued to paint the landscapes, still lifes, rural scenes, and farm animals that brought her renown.

This book combines a biography of Thomas with reproductions of 124 of her paintings. Many are accompanied by remarks from the author on her intentions and technique. Information on the artist’s training and artistic development, her sense of composition and especially color, and life on her 400-acre farm on the North Carolina–Virginia state line is also included.

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Newly Published: The Black Athlete in West Virginia

New on our bookshelf:

The Black Athlete in West Virginia: High School and College Sports from 1900 Through the End of Segregation
Bob Barnett, Dana Brooks and Ronald Althouse

This chronicle of sports at West Virginia’s 40 black high schools and three black colleges illuminates many issues in race relations and the struggle for social justice within the state and nation. Despite having inadequate resources, the black schools’ sports teams thrived during segregation and helped tie the state’s scattered black communities together. West Virginia hosted the nation’s first state-wide black high school basketball tournament, which flourished for 33 years, and both Bluefield State and West Virginia State won athletic championships in the prestigious Colored Intercollegiate Athletic Association (now Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association). Black schools were gradually closed after the 1954 Brown v. Board of Education decision, and the desegregation of schools in West Virginia was an important step toward equality. For black athletes and their communities, the path to inclusion came with many costs.

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Newly Published: Overland Explorations of the Trans-Mississippi West

New on our bookshelf:

Overland Explorations of the Trans-Mississippi West: Expeditions and Writers of the American Frontier
Hunt Janin and Ursula Carlson

In 1528, the Spanish explorer Álvar Nuñez Cabeza de Vaca and his three companions were shipwrecked and, looking for help, began an eight-year trek through the deserts of the American West. Over three centuries later, the four “Great Surveys” in the United States were consolidated into the U.S. Geological Survey.

The frontiers were the lands near or beyond the recognized international, national, regional, or tribal borders. Over the centuries, they hosted a complicated series of international explorations of lands inhabited by American Indians, Spanish, French-Canadians, British, and Americans. These explorations were undertaken for wide-ranging reasons including geographical, scientific, artistic-literary, and for the growth of the railroad. This history covers over 350 years of exploration of the West.

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Newly Published: The American Eagle Squadrons of the Royal Air Force

New on our bookshelf:

The American Eagle Squadrons of the Royal Air Force: Operational Records and Combat Reports, 1940–1942
Edited by Timothy S. Good

While the United States sought to remain neutral in the early years of World War II, some Americans did not. This book is the first to provide the operational records and combat reports of the three American “Eagle” Royal Air Force squadrons—units comprised of volunteer American pilots who served with the British prior to the U.S. entering the war.

The records tell the story of the more than 200 pilots who, against federal law, flew with the British in their fight against Nazi Germany. While some Americans served individually in other RAF units, these three squadrons—the 71st, 121st and 133rd—were the only ones organized exclusively for Americans. They were the first of dozens of American fighter squadrons that would soar over Europe.

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Newly Published: Crime and Spy Jazz on Screen

New on our bookshelf:

Crime and Spy Jazz on Screen, 1950–1970: A History and Discography
Crime and Spy Jazz on Screen Since 1971: A History and Discography
Derrick Bang

Henry Mancini’s Peter Gunn theme. Lalo Schifrin’s Mission: Impossible theme. John Barry’s arrangement of the James Bond theme. These iconic melodies have remained a part of the pop culture landscape since their debuts in the late 1950s and early ’60s: a “golden decade” that highlighted an era when movie studios and TV production companies employed full orchestral ensembles to provide a jazz backdrop for the suspenseful adventures of secret agents, private detectives, cops, spies and heist-minded criminals. Hundreds of additional films and television shows made during this period were propelled by similarly swinging title themes and underscores, many of which have (undeservedly) faded into obscurity. This meticulously researched book traces the embryonic use of jazz in mainstream entertainment from the early 1950s—when conservative viewers still considered this genre “the devil’s music”—to its explosive heyday throughout the 1960s. Fans frustrated by the lack of attention paid to jazz soundtrack composers—including Jerry Goldsmith, Edwin Astley, Roy Budd, Quincy Jones, Dave Grusin, Jerry Fielding and many, many others—will find solace in these pages (along with all the information needed to enhance one’s music library). The exploration of action jazz continues in this book’s companion volume, Crime and Action Jazz on Screen Since 1971.

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Newly Published: Medieval Women on Film

New on our bookshelf:

Medieval Women on Film: Essays on Gender, Cinema and History
Edited by Kevin J. Harty

In this first ever book-length treatment, 11 scholars with a variety of backgrounds in medieval studies, film studies, and medievalism discuss how historical and fictional medieval women have been portrayed on film and their connections to the feminist movements of the 20th and 21st centuries. From detailed studies of the portrayal of female desire and sexuality, to explorations of how and when these women gain agency, these essays look at the different ways these women reinforce, defy, and complicate traditional gender roles.

Individual essays discuss the complex and sometimes conflicting cinematic treatments of Guinevere, Morgan Le Fay, Isolde, Maid Marian, Lady Godiva, Heloise, Eleanor of Aquitaine, and Joan of Arc. Additional essays discuss the women in Fritz Lang’s The Nibelungen, Liv Ullmann’s Kristin Lavransdatter, and Bertrand Tavernier’s La Passion Béatrice.

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Newly Published: Technology, Management and the Evangelical Church

New on our bookshelf:

Technology, Management and the Evangelical Church
John Weaver

This book explores the technological innovations and management practices of evangelical Christian religions. Beginning from the late 19th century, the author examines the evangelical church’s increasing appropriation of business practices from the secular world as solutions to organizational problems. He notes especially the importance of the church growth movement and the formation of church networks.

Particular attention is paid to the history of evangelical uses of computer technology, including connections the Christian Right has made within Silicon Valley. Most significantly, this book offers one of the first academic explorations of the use of cybernetics, systems theory and complexity theory by evangelical leaders and management theorists.

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Newly Published: Alzheimer’s Disease and Infectious Causes

New on our bookshelf:

Alzheimer’s Disease and Infectious Causes: The Theory and Evidence
Elaine A. Moore

With the recent discovery that amyloid beta protein, the cause of plaques in Alzheimer’s disease, is an antimicrobial peptide produced in response to infection, many researchers are focusing on the role infection plays in the development of Alzheimer’s disease. Brain studies have also identified a number of different viruses, bacteria, fungi, and protozoa in the postmortem brain specimens of Alzheimer’s patients.

Infection (particularly chronic, latent and persistent infections) causes an immune response that leads to inflammation and brain cell degeneration, which are characteristic features of Alzheimer’s disease. Sources of infection in Alzheimer’s disease vary from childhood infections to gut microbes that find their way into the brain as a result of aging, leaky gut syndrome, and increased permeability of the blood brain barrier. Studies and ongoing clinical trials show that treatment of viral and bacterial infections, as well as restoring a healthy balance to the gut microbiome, can reduce disease risk and improve symptoms in patients with Alzheimer’s disease. This book serves as an introduction to the human microbiome and the role that infection plays in the development of Alzheimer’s disease.

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Newly Published: Exploring Star Trek: Voyager

New on our bookshelf:

Exploring Star Trek: Voyager: Critical Essays
Edited by Robert L. Lively

In 1995, Star Trek: Voyager brought a new dynamic to Star Trek’s familiar, starship oriented, show. Lost 70,000 light-years in space, Voyager and its crew faced an uncertain and changeable future, echoing anxieties felt in the United States at the time. These fifteen essays explore the context, characters, and themes of Star Trek: Voyager, as they relate to the culture and zeitgeist of the 1990s. Essays on gender show how the series both challenges and reinforces typical SF stereotypes through the characters of Captain Janeway, Kes and Seven of Nine, while essays on identity examine the show’s intersections with disability studies, race and multiracial identities, family dynamics, and emerging AI and humanity. Using the epic journey of Homer’s Odyssey as a starting point for the series, and ending with an examination of the impacts of inception at the birth of the internet age, this book shows the many ways in which Voyager negotiated different perspectives for what the future of the galaxy and the USA could be.

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Newly Published: Excavating Indiana Jones

New on our bookshelf:

Excavating Indiana Jones: Essays on the Films and Franchise
Edited by Randy Laist

With his signature bullwhip and fedora, the rousing sounds of his orchestral anthem, and his eventful explorations into the arcana of world religions, Indiana Jones—archeologist, adventurer, and ophidiophobe—has become one of the most recognizable heroes of the big screen. Since his debut in the 1981 film Raiders of the Lost Ark, Indiana Jones has gone on to anchor several sequels, and a fifth film is currently in development. At the same time, the character has spilled out into multiple multimedia manifestations and has become a familiar icon within the collective cultural imagination.

Despite the longevity and popularity of the Indiana Jones franchise, however, it has rarely been the focus of sustained criticism. In Excavating Indiana Jones, a collection of international scholars analyzes Indiana Jones tales from a variety of perspectives, examining the films’ representation of history, cultural politics, and identity, and also tracing the adaptation of the franchise into comic books, video games, and theme park attractions.

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Newly Published: Adolph Sutro

New on our bookshelf:

Adolph Sutro: King of the Comstock Lode and Mayor of San Francisco
William R. Huber

Adolph Sutro was forever seeking challenges. Emigrating from Prussia to the U.S. at age 20, the California gold rush lured him west. At the Comstock Lode in Nevada, he conceived an idea for a tunnel to drain the hot water that made the mines perilous and inefficient. But he would have to overcome both physical obstacles and powerful opposition by the Bank of California to realize his vision.

Back in San Francisco, Sutro bought one twelfth of the city, including the famous Cliff House perched over the Pacific Ocean. When it burned to cinders on Christmas Day, 1894, he built a massive, eight-story Victorian replacement. He used his expertise in tunneling and water solutions to create the world’s largest enclosed swimming structure, the Sutro Baths—six glass-covered heated saltwater pools with capacity of 1,000 swimmers.

challenges followed but Sutro was not invincible. After a two-year term as mayor of San Francisco, he succumbed to debilitating strokes which left him senile. His death in 1898 started disputes among his heirs—six children by his wife and two by his mistress—that lasted more than a decade.

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Newly Published: The Westford Knight and Henry Sinclair

New on our bookshelf:

The Westford Knight and Henry Sinclair: Evidence of a 14th Century Scottish Voyage to North America, 2d ed.
David Goudsward

The Westford Knight is a mysterious, controversial stone carving in Massachusetts. Some believe it is an effigy of a 14th century knight, evidence of an early European visit to the New World by Henry Sinclair, the Earl of Orkney and Lord of Roslin. In 1954, an archaeologist encountered the carving, long known to locals and ascribed a variety of origin stories, and proposed it to be a remnant of the Sinclair expedition. The story of the Westford Knight is a mix of history, archaeology, sociology, and Knights Templar lore. This work unravels the threads of the Knight’s history, separating fact from fantasy.

This revised edition includes a new foreword and four new chapters which add context to the myth-building that has surrounded the Westford Knight and artifacts like it.

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Newly Published: Brothers in the Mekong Delta

New on our bookshelf:

Brothers in the Mekong Delta: A Memoir of PBR Section 513 in the Vietnam War
Godfrey Garner

Following the Tet Offensive, a shift in U.S. naval strategy in 1967–1968 saw young men fresh out of high school policing the canals and tributaries of South Vietnam aboard PBRs (patrol boat, riverine)—unarmored yet heavily armed and highly maneuverable vessels designed to operate in shallow, weedy waterways. This memoir recounts the experiences of the author and his shipmates as they cruised the Viet Cong-occupied backwaters of the Mekong Delta, and their emotional metamorphosis as wartime events shaped the men they would be for the remainder of their lives.

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True Crime Sale

April means we’re halfway to our next Halloween, and we think it’s a great time to celebrate all things macabre. This month, we’re offering readers 40% off our most riveting—and often downright frightening—books on real-life monsters and mayhem with our true crime sale. Through April 19th, use coupon code TRUECRIME40 on all of our reads about serial killers, unsolved crimes, famous robberies and more. Browse our true crime catalog here!

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Newly Published: The Pittsburgh Penguins

New on our bookshelf:

The Pittsburgh Penguins: The First 25 Years
Greg Enright

The Pittsburgh Penguins have captured the Stanley Cup five times since 1991—more than any NHL team during the same period. Joining the NHL in 1967 as an expansion team, they waddled their way through years of heavy losses both on and off the ice—bad trades, horrible draft picks, a revolving door of owners, general managers and coaches, and even a bankruptcy. Somehow, they hung on long enough to draft superstar Mario Lemieux in 1984 and eventually claim their first championship, attracting a large fanbase along the way.

Packed with colorful recollections from former players, reporters and team officials, this book tells the complete story of the Penguins’ first 25 years, chronicling their often hilarious, sometimes tragic transformation from bumbling upstarts to one of hockey’s most accomplished franchises.

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Newly Published: The Spirit Transcendent

New on our bookshelf:

The Spirit Transcendent: Exploring the Extraordinary in Human Experience
Mark F. Yama

What are we to make of direct spiritual experience? Of accounts of going to heaven or meeting angels? Traditional science would call these hallucinations or delusions. Clinical psychologist Dr. Mark Yama argues the opposite. Through interviews with his patients, he shows that underneath the visions and experiences there is a unifying spiritual reality apart from the material world.

One of the stories recounted in this book is the experience of a woman who could see the future. In a spiritual transport, she was taken to heaven where truths were revealed to her that she later discovered were already written in Gnostic scripture. Another woman lived a life marked by a spiritual sensitivity that defied materialist explanation. After she passed away of cancer, she came to inhabit the consciousness of another of Dr. Yama’s patients in the form of a benign possession. These stories, and many others, argue for a deeper reality that places spirituality on an equal footing with the material world.

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Newly Published: Christopher Lee and Peter Cushing and Horror Cinema

New on our bookshelf:

Christopher Lee and Peter Cushing and Horror Cinema: A Revised and Expanded Filmography of Their Terrifying Collaborations, 2d ed.
Mark A. Miller and David J. Hogan

From their first pairing in Hamlet (1948) to House of the Long Shadows (1983), British film stars Christopher Lee and Peter Cushing forged perhaps the most successful collaboration in horror film history. In its revised and expanded second edition, this volume examines their 22 movie team-ups, with critical commentary, complete cast and credits, production information, details on cinematography and make-up, exhibition history and box-office figures. A wealth of background about Hammer, Amicus and other production companies is provided, along with more than 100 illustrations.

Lee and Cushing describe particulars of their partnership in original interviews. Exclusive interviews with Robert Bloch, Hazel Court and nearly fifty other actors, directors and others who worked on the Lee-Cushing films are included.

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Newly Published: Boss of Murder, Inc.

New on our bookshelf:

Boss of Murder, Inc.: The Criminal Life of Albert Anastasia
Michael Newton

Umberto Anastasio, better known as Albert Anastasia, was an Italian-American mobster and hitman who became one of the deadliest criminals in American history and one of the founders of the modern American Mafia in New York City. For all-out savagery and ruthlessness, few other leaders of the Mafia worldwide have rivaled Anastasia, known to peers as “The Mad Hatter” and to journalists as “The Lord High Executioner.” After escaping a death sentence in 1921 and multiple other arrests for murder, he later served as director of the national crime syndicate’s contract murder department (“Murder, Inc.”) from 1931 until informers brought it down ten years later. By 1951 he led one of New York City’s Five Families, a post he held until his public barbershop assassination in October 1957.

This first-ever book-length biography of Anastasia traces the mobster’s life and the ripple effects his career had on the American crime world. The story also tracks his brothers and their families, while debunking certain widespread myths about their parentage, various deportations, trials, convictions, and eventual retirement from the mob, dead or alive.

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Newly Published: Nick McLean Behind the Camera

New on our bookshelf:

Nick McLean Behind the Camera: The Life and Works of a Hollywood Cinematographer
Wayne Byrne and Nick McLean

Nick McLean was one of the most acclaimed camera operators in American cinema of the 1970s, during which time he shot many classics of the New Hollywood movement including McCabe & Mrs. Miller, Heaven Can Wait, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, The Deer Hunter, Marathon Man, and Being There. As a cinematographer throughout the 1980s, McLean would film blockbusters such as Cannonball Run II, City Heat, The Goonies, and Short Circuit before being lured into television to photograph some of the biggest shows in town, including Evening Shade, Cybill, and the pop culture phenomenon Friends, for which he was thrice Emmy-nominated.

This candid biography takes readers on an entertaining journey through five decades of Hollywood filmmaking, detailing McLean’s personal and professional relationships with some of the biggest film stars and directors in Hollywood (such as Robert Altman, Warren Beatty, Sylvester Stallone, Burt Reynolds, John Travolta, Paul Newman, George Lucas, Steven Spielberg, Alfred Hitchcock, and Mel Brooks) while delivering a behind-the-scenes look at some revered classics and beloved blockbusters of American film and television.

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Newly Published: John Derek

New on our bookshelf:

John Derek: Actor, Director, Photographer
Michelangelo Capua

Actor and director John Derek was born in Hollywood, where his striking good looks helped get him a contract with David O’ Selznick. Derek’s career took off after Humphrey Bogart made him his costar in the cultish noir Knock at Any Doors. Derek appeared in such Academy Award-nominated films as All the King’s MenRun for CoverThe Ten Commandments and Exodus, and worked with directors like Nicholas Ray, Cecil B. DeMille, Otto Preminger and others.

He was a competent, dedicated performer even in his last, trivial roles. In the 1960s, his career in decline, he began directing his own films. Although critics panned the string of movies he made starring his three wives—Ursula Andress, Linda Evans and Bo Derek—some were box-office hits, like Tarzan, the Ape Man. This biography covers his extraordinary life and career, with extensive analysis of his films.

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Newly Published: The 6th Michigan Volunteer Infantry in the Civil War

New on our bookshelf:

The 6th Michigan Volunteer Infantry in the Civil War: A History and Roster
Eric R. Faust

The 6th Michigan Volunteer Infantry first deployed to Baltimore, where the soldiers’ exemplary demeanor charmed a mainly secessionist population. Their subsequent service along the Mississippi River was a perfect storm of epidemic disease, logistical failures, guerrilla warfare, profiteering, martinet West Pointers and scheming field officers, along with the doldrums of camp life punctuated by bloody battles. The Michiganders responded with alcoholism, insubordination and depredations.

Yet they saved the Union right at Baton Rouge and executed suicidal charges at Port Hudson. This first modern history of the controversial regiment concludes with a statistical analysis, a roster and a brief summary of its service following conversion to heavy artillery.

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Newly Published: Film History Through Trade Journal Art, 1916–1920

New on our bookshelf:

Film History Through Trade Journal Art, 1916–1920
Jeff Codori

The period in film history between the regimentation of the Edison Trust and the vertical integration of the Studio System—roughly 1916 through 1920—was a time of structural and artistic experimentation for the American film industry. As the nature of the industry was evolving, society around it was changing as well; arts, politics and society were in a state of flux between old and new. Before the major studios dominated the industry, droves of smaller companies competed for the attention of the independent exhibitor, their gateway to the movie-goer. Their arena was in the pages of the trade press, and their weapons were their advertisements, often bold and eye-catching.

The reporting of the trade journals, as they witnessed the evolution of the industry from its infancy towards the future, is the basis of this history. Pulled from the pages of the journals themselves as archived by the Media History Digital Library, the observations of the trade press writers are accompanied by cleaned and restored advertisements used in the battle among the young film companies. They offer a unique and vital look at this formative period of film history.

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Newly Published: The Baltimore Stallions

New on our bookshelf:

The Baltimore Stallions: The Brief, Brilliant History of the CFL Champion Franchise
Ron Snyder

Baltimore is home to some of the greatest football players ever to step onto the gridiron. From the Colts’ Johnny Unitas to the Ravens’ Ray Lewis, Charm City has been blessed with multiple championship teams and plenty of Hall of Fame players.

Between the Colts and Ravens, a brief but significant chapter of Baltimore football history was written—the Stallions. Formed in 1994, they posted the most successful single season in the history of the Canadian Football League, when in 1995 they became the only U.S. team to win the Grey Cup. By 1996 the Stallions were gone, undermined by the arrival of the Ravens and the overall failure of the CFL’s U.S. expansion efforts. Drawing on original interviews with players, coaches, journalists and fans, this book recalls how the Stallions both captured the imagination and broke the hearts of Baltimore football fans in just 24 months.