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Shelf Life


Tucson Citizen


‘The Associate’

By John Grisham (Doubleday, $27.95)

During a recent trip to Seattle, almost everyone I encountered was
reading Grisham’s latest book – and for good reason. The plot involves
Kyle McEnvoy, a young attorney. Three months after leaving Yale, Kyle
becomes an associate at the largest law firm in the world, where, in
addition to practicing law, he is expected to lie, steal and take part
in a scheme that could either send him to prison or get him killed.
With unforgettable characters, a taut plot and the crisp, seasoned
writing of a professional, this is one of Grisham’s best novels.


By Alan Brennert (St. Martin’s Press, $24.95)

In this dazzling rich, historical story, a young “picture bride”
travels to Hawaii in 1914 in search of a better life. Instead of
finding a loving husband and a chance of an education, she discovers
that she has married a poor, embittered laborer who drinks away his
wages and has a violent temper. Jin begins a new business venture,
sewing Aloha shirts, but when the Oriental Exclusion Act of 1924 is
passed, she returns to Korea to search of those she left behind. This
intriguing novel is a fascinating literary snapshot of Hawaii during
the early years of the last century. The story is compelling, poignant
and powerful.

‘The Plunder Room’

By John Jeter (Thomas Dunne Books, $24.95)

Shortly before his grandfather dies, Randol Duncan is given a small
skeleton key that unlocks a bedroom in his family’s antebellum home in
New Cumbria, S.C. He promises his granddad to safeguard the contents of
“The Plunder Room,” filled with trunks, boxes and footlockers that
contain the family’s legacy. When Randol, a divorced music critic and
paraplegic, begins his quest to salvage his war-hero grandfather’s
proud Southern heritage, he finds he is distracted by his pot-smoking
son, a dishonest father and brother, and a lurid scandal that threatens
to destroy them all.


‘Getting Naked Again: Dating, Romance, Sex, and Love When You’ve Been Divorced, Widowed, Dumped or Distracted’

By Judith Sills (Springboard, $24.99)

As this Philadelphia-based clinical psychologist points out, there
are few things more daunting than re-entering the dating world after
sharing a bed with the same spouse for 30 years. It can be done,
however, and she suggests that women of a certain age should strive to
meet new men, learn what to say on a date and even take a chance on
“getting naked again.” Returning to the game is easier if you master
the finer aspects of flirtation, sex, love and romance. Sills gives
pointers on how this can be done by extending social networks and
picking partners without appearing to be in desperate pursuit. With
luck and a little effort, love, the good doctor claims, could be just
around the corner.

‘Big Sycamore Stands Alone: The Western Apaches, Aravaipa, and the Struggle for Place’

By Ian W. Record (University of Oklahoma Press, $39.95)

Record, the senior lecturer for the American Indian Studies
Department at the University of Arizona, has written and lectured
extensively about the Western Apaches who have long considered Aravaipa
Canyon their sacred homeland. The relationship between the people and
this extraordinary place is the basis of his new book that documents
the enduring power of Aravaipa and how it shapes and sustains
contemporary Apache society. This landmark ethnohistory is accessible,
focused and well researched.

‘Tear down This Myth: How the Reagan Legacy Has Distorted Our Politics and Haunts Our Future’

By Will Bunch (Free Press, $25)

Bunch is a senior writer for the Philadelphia Daily News and he
claims the legacy of Ronald Reagan has come about because of a healthy
dose of mythology and a rewrite of history. He is convinced that
Republican politicians and conservative activists led by Grover
Norquist have set out to construct a contrived legacy and many of the
things we think we know about this former president are simply not
true. For example, Bunch sets out to debunk the belief that Reagan
single-handedly ended the Cold War and builds a convincing case that
our current financial crisis is the direct result of the deregulation
of our financial institutions instigated during the administration of
our 40th U.S. president.

‘Hello, Everybody! The Dawn of American Radio’

By Anthony Rudel (Harcourt, $26)

Rudel spent years as a radio broadcaster including a stint as the
youngest-ever on-air personality at WQXR, the radio station of The New
York Times. He is convinced the common thread that runs through
American culture is radio. To prove his case, he documents how Sarah
Palin’s folksy charm can be traced back to the strange story of
pioneering evangelist Aimee Semple McPherson, the explosion of the
Internet of the 1990s is much like the explosion of radio during the
1920s, and the “Major Bowes’ Original Amateur Hour” is nothing more
than the “American Idol” of the 1930s. This excellent history is rich
in insight, meticulously researched and brims with clarity and wit.

‘The Black Girl Next Door: A Memoir’

By Jennifer Baszile (Touchstone, $25)

This is the inspiring true story of one of America’s most dramatic
social experiments: racial integration. Baszile, the first black female
professor to join Yale University’s history department, moved with her
parents and older sister in 1976 to southern California and the
affluent suburb of Palos Verdes Estates. A shocking attack on the
family home and a Ku Klux Klan symbol shattered her innocence and
foreshadowed the intimate forms of discrimination that would define her
childhood. This gripping narrative is more than just a memoir about
race; It is a historical document that provides insight into one of
this country’s most turbulent periods.

‘Firefly’s World of Facts’

By Russell Ash (Firefly Books, $29.95)

This excellent and diverse book has been updated for 2009 and is
packed with astonishing lists and unexpected facts. For example, if you
have ever wondered what it takes to become a space tourist, how many
coins were minted last year, or the name of the cheapest car, Ash sorts
it out for you. Ash, who has contributed to more than 100 references,
has arranged his information by subject, with chapters that include
Natural World and Life Sciences, Science and Technology, World
Cultures, Language, Literature, Art, Music, and others equally
revealing. Abundantly illustrated, this coffee-table book is
informative, splashy and fun.


‘Career Renegade: How to Make a Great Living Doing What You Love’

By Jonathan Fields (Broadway, $14)

During these difficult economic times, American workers need all of
the help they can get. Fields, once a high-powered Manhattan lawyer,
spent most of his work life toiling endless hours, getting sick
literally from the demands of his intense career. After a
stress-induced medical emergency, he wondered what would happen if he
turned his work ethic and innovation loose on a quest to transform his
interests and passions into enough money to live well. This is how he
did it.

‘My Father’s Heart: A Son’s Reckoning with the Legacy of Heart Disease’

By Steve McKee (Da Capo, $14.95)

For McKee, a former editor of The Wall Street Journal’s global copy
desk, the most troubling thing about his father’s death from heart
disease is that he had done nothing to prevent it. Six years before his
final attack, he had suffered his first, and despite the warning signs,
continued his unhealthful habits of eating poorly, smoking and not
exercising. In this remarkable account, a son explores who his father
really was and in the process finds himself. This is personal reporting
that is both crisp and honest.

‘Anne Frank Remembered: The Story of the Woman Who Helped to Hide the Frank Family’

By Miep Gies and Alison Leslie Gold (Simon & Schuster, $14)

This is the updated edition of the European best-seller by Gies, the
woman who helped shelter the Frank family from the Nazis and preserved
Anne’s diary after the Gestapo seized the Franks. As the last remaining
living witness to the Anne Frank tragedy, Gies provides a valuable
account written with honesty, clarity and courage.

‘What Every American Should Know About the Middle East’

By Melissa Rossi (Plume, $16)

Rossi, a former National Geographic Traveler columnist and a special
correspondent for Newsweek, points out that because the Middle East is
at the fiery epicenter of world affairs, it is to our benefit to know
as much as possible about the region and its people. In this helpful
primer, the author refutes the images of the entire Middle East as a
land of tanks, suicide bombers and radical Muslims, and instead
concentrates on the progress being made. This highly readable book is
one of the best primers about one of the most misunderstood regions of
the world.

‘Starvation Lake’

By Bryan Gruley (Touchstone, $14)

When pieces of a snowmobile wash up near the crumbing, small town of
Starvation Lake, it soon becomes evident that it is the same machine
that went down with a legendary hockey coach years earlier. What is
strange is that Coach Blackburn died five miles away and on a different
lake. Gus Carpenter, editor of the local paper, probes the town’s
secrets in an effort to get at the truth.

Our Digital Archive

This blog page archives the entire digital archive of the Tucson Citizen from 1993 to 2009. It was gleaned from a database that was not intended to be displayed as a public web archive. Therefore, some of the text in some stories displays a little oddly. Also, this database did not contain any links to photos, so though the archive contains numerous captions for photos, there are no links to any of those photos.

There are more than 230,000 articles in this archive.

In TucsonCitizen.com Morgue, Part 1, we have preserved the Tucson Citizen newspaper's web archive from 2006 to 2009. To view those stories (all of which are duplicated here) go to Morgue Part 1

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