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Shelf Life


‘Nothing But a Smile’

By Steve Amick (Pantheon, $24.95)

In this story, set in 1940s Chicago, Wink Dutton, a former illustrator for Yank and Stars and Stripes, rents a room in the back of a camera shop run by Sal Chesterton, the wife of one of his war buddies still stationed in the Philippines. Business is slow until Wink talks Sal into producing pinup photos for girlie magazines. This well-crafted tale has interesting characters and a wonderfully sexy plot. Hubba, hubba.

‘The Deepest Cut’

By Dianne Emley (Ballantine Books, $24)

When Pasadena detective Nan Vining begins investigating the ugly gang murder of a low-level snitch, she is shocked to discover clues that link the murder to her own brutal assault that occurred two years earlier. Pulse-pounding prose and unexpected plot twists make this must-reading for those who love books that drip with suspense.

‘The Rules of the Game’

By Leonard Downie, Jr. (Knopf, $26.95)

Corruption, deception and intrigue in the nation’s capital are at the core of the latest novel by best-selling author Leonard Downie Jr.

Sarah Page, a reporter at the Washington Capital, is assigned to cover the dark underbelly of politics and money and as she begins her research, one of her sources is murdered and others disappear. She is determined to follow the story wherever it leads, even when she becomes the target of a car bomb. Chilling, gripping, and full of surprises, this novel is by the former executive editor of The Washington Post and current vice president of the company.


By Yu Hua (Pantheon, $29.95)

This novel, which serves up a satirical, compassionate and unforgettable portrait of life after Mao, sold more than 1 million copies in China. The plot centers on two stepbrothers, Baldi Li and Song Gang. A study in contrasts, Baldi is talkative, outgoing and sex-obsessed, while Song is quiet and bookish. As children, they pledge to be brothers forever but that vow is tested when both men fall in love with the same woman. This yin and yang tale is filled with wit, tragedy and a vibrant sense of what life is like in today’s China.


‘Black: The History of a Color’

By Michel Pastoureau (Princeton University Press, $35)

Black is the archetypal color of darkness and death, and has always been the favorite of priests, artists, fashion designers, penitents, and, yes, fascists. This magnificent color has also been used to help define such things as powerfully opposed ideas, good and bad, and wealth and poverty. This remarkable book, which features a striking design and a compelling text, is a virtual feast, especially for readers who are interested in the history of fashion, art, media and design.

‘The West of the Imagination’

By William H. Goetzmann and William N. Goetzmann (University of Oklahoma Press, $65)

Pulitzer Prize-winning historian William H. Goetzmann and his son, art historian and financial economist William N. Goetzmann, present the second edition of their landmark overview of western art, first published two decades ago as a companion to the PBS series by the same name. Through an expanded text of several fresh chapters and the inclusion of more than 150 new images, the authors present the true character of the American West as nothing less than a vibrant mirror reflecting our cultural diversity.

‘Hunter S. Thompson: An Insider’s View of Deranged, Depraved, Drugged-Out Brilliance’

By Jay Cowan (The Lyons Press, $24.95)

Cowan, the editor-in-chief of Aspen Sojourner magazine, was a former caretaker at Hunter Thompson’s Owl Farm in Colorado. As his employee, friend, and next door neighbor, he knew the coked-up, suicidal journalist intimately and had a front row seat to, perhaps, his wildest – and most prolific – period. Thompson, who once described himself as a lazy hillbilly, left an indelible mark on American journalism. This incredible biography is a literary mix of sex, drugs, politics and sports. It is funny, shocking, insightful, sad, and like Thompson, unpredictable to the very end.

‘Gimme Shelter: Ugly Houses, Cruddy Neighborhoods, Fast-Talking Brokers, and Toxic Mortgages – My Three Years Searching for the American Dream’

By Mary Elizabeth Williams (Simon & Schuster, $26)

The author, the cultural critic for Public Radio International’s morning news show, is convinced that owning a home is encoded into our cultural DNA. As a writer and a parent living in New York City, her dream of owning a house quickly morphs into a test of endurance. Her search took three years, covered the farthest reaches of the boroughs and tested the very limits of her patience. Spoiler alert: After hard work and incredible determination, she eventually finds a house that fits both her lifestyle and middle-class bank account.

‘Throw Out Fifty Things: Clear the Clutter, Find Your Life’

By Gail Blanke (Springboard, $19.99)

Blanke, a motivator, best-selling author, columnist and life coach, believes that if you want to grow, you gotta let go. With that in mind, she takes us through each room of the houses, from attic to the garage, and explains that by doing such simple things as emptying the junk drawer in the kitchen (you know the one) we can truly liberate ourselves. Clutter, both physical and emotional, holds us back, weighs us down and makes us feel badly. Blanke’s book is a call to action so that we can get rid of the “life plaque” we’ve allowed to build up in our lives.

‘The Paleontology of New Mexico’

By Barry S. Kues (University of New Mexico Press, $45)

In this updated and expanded version of his 1982 book, “Fossils of New Mexico,” Kues, a professor of paleontology at the University of New Mexico, covers the state’s entire fossil record. More than 6,500 different species of fossil organisms have been documented in New Mexico, a region long considered to be a depository of diverse paleontological finds of national and international importance. This engaging book is generously illustrated, which makes the identification of specimens a much easier task.

‘Cheever: A Life’

By Blake Bailey (Knopf, $35)

John Cheever was born in Quincy, Mass., and by the time he was 22, he was writing for The New Yorker. After World War II, he taught composition and wrote scripts for television. Throughout his professional life, he spent much of his career impersonating a perfect country gentleman. A new biography suggests that he was much more complex and interesting. Bailey, a Virginia-based writer, edited a two-volume set of Cheever’s work earlier this year. He presents Cheever as a soul in conflict, a proud Yankee who flaunted his lineage while deploring the provincialism of his hometown of Quincy, dropped out of high school yet published his first short story when he was 18, and a dire alcoholic who recovered to write his greatest novel, “Falconer.”

‘Chemical Cowboys: The DEA’s Secret Mission to Hunt Down a Notorious Ecstasy Kingpin’

By Lisa Sweetingham (Ballantine Books, $26)

Sweetingham, who has written extensively for such publications as The New York Times and Parade, documents the thrilling, never-before-told story of the groundbreaking undercover investigation that led to the toppling of a billion-dollar Ecstasy trafficking network in 1995. Robert Gage, a New York DEA Agent, infiltrated club land to uncover a thriving drug scene fueled by two cultures: pill-popping club kids and Israeli dealers. This taut, behind-the-scenes look at the international drug trade is gripping, sobering and shocking.


‘The Big Squeeze: Tough Times for the American Worker’

By Steven Greenhouse (Anchor Books, $14.95)

This crisply written book asks a simple question: Why, in the world’s most affluent nation, are so many corporations squeezing their employees dry? With pragmatic recommendations on what government, business and labor should do to alleviate the economic crunch, Greenhouse explores the economic, political and social trends that are transforming the American workplace.

‘True Stories of Crime in Modern Mexico’

Edited by Robert Buffington and Pablo Piccato (University of New Mexico Press, $27.95)

This collection of essays focuses on some of the more interesting cases of crime and deviance that have occurred in Mexico since the late 19th century. Contributors include such heavy-hitters as Christopher R. Boyer, Victor M, Macias-Gonzales and Renato Gonzales Mello. The documentary record of each case is explored to show the impact that each had on Mexican culture. The collection is edited by Buffington, an associate professor at the University of Colorado in Boulder, and Piccato, author of “City of Suspects: Crimes in Mexico City, 1900-1931.”

‘The Mom’s Guide to Growing Your Family Green: Saving the Earth Begins at Home’

By Terra Wellington (St. Martin’s Griffin, $16.95)

This practical guide is jam-packed with hundreds of “green” suggestions that can help us save our environment. For example, Wellington suggests that we contact the manager of our neighborhood grocery store to make certain that it carries locally grown produce, we buy coffee that is USDA organic and fair trade certified, and we keep our family diets free of food tainted with pesticides, hormones, antibiotics or genetic engineering. The author is spokeswoman for more than 50 companies including Proctor & Gamble, Clorox, and Hormel Foods.

‘Comfortably Numb: How Psychiatry Is Medicating a Nation’

By Charles Barber (Vintage, $15.95)

It is a shocking fact that American doctors dispense approximately 230 million antidepressant prescriptions each year, more than any other class of medication. Barber explores this disturbing phenomenon in his compulsively readable, urgently relevant and meticulously researched account of our pill-popping society.

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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