Books explore moon rocks, crime, music

In June, I got notification that a local foundation, The Golden Dreams Foundation, was going to give the library $5,000. We decided to purchase new books and audio books with the money, and today I’d like to tell you about a few of the nonfiction books we were able to purchase with the grant.

Reading like a novel, “John Wayne Gacy: Defending a Monster” by Sam Amirante and Danny Broderick, is a true crime story of a serial killer and his lawyer, Sam Amirante. Amirante was a new lawyer and Gacy’s was his first criminal trial.

“The Interrogator: an Education” is author Glenn L. Carle’s own story of being a CIA officer and charged with questioning a detainee thought to be a top al-Qaida official. Carle struggled with the interrogation techniques and whether the prisoner was who the CIA thought he was. It’s an up close look at the war on terror and the CIA.

Thad Roberts, in love and wishing to give his girlfriend the moon, got an idea to steal some of the most precious objects in the world — moon rocks. Being a college student involved in a prestigious NASA program, he actually pulled it off. “Sex on the Moon” by Ben Mezrich is the highly-readable story of the heist.

“The Dyslexic Advantage: Unlocking the Hidden Potential of the Dyslexic Brain” is a new look at the condition. Brock and Fernette Eide, both M.D.s, discuss what it is like to be dyslexic and how dyslexics think differently than nondyslexics, and why they are often some of the most successful members of our society.

Author Jeff O’Connell was tall and fit and wrote for Men’s Health. He was surprisingly diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes. “Sugar Nation: the Hidden Truth behind America’s Deadliest Habit and the Simple Way to Beat It” chronicles his personal odyssey toward health. Along the way, he addresses societal changes needed to stop the quickly swelling epidemic of diabetes.

“Groove Interrupted: Loss, Renewal, and the Music of New Orleans” by Keith Spera chronicles the musicians of New Orleans after Katrina. The very personal stories of greats like Aaron Neville, Fats Domino, Alex Chilton, Mystikal and Pete Fountain make this book seem like a collection of short stories with a common theme.

Garage salers and thrift store shoppers will love “Found, Free & Flea: Creating Collections from Vintage Treasures.” Author Tereasa Surratt and her husband bought an old summer camp in Wisconsin. While renovating they found more than 150 old objects. Tereasa set out to turn the original finds into vintage collections by shopping at garage sales and flea markets. This beautifully photographed book shows how to create and display these interesting collections.

Combining learning theory, psychology, attention science and neuroscience, Cathy Davidson explores our changed learning environments and workplaces and looks into the future about how they have and will continue to change in the digital age. “Now You See It” is a great book for scientists and futurists and those of us who wish we were.

In 1874, a little boy, Charley Ross, was kidnapped from his front yard in Philadelphia. The kidnappers asked for a $20,000 ransom the next day. “We Is Got Him: The Kidnapping that Changed America” by Carrie Hagen chronicles the desperate search, the city politics and the national response as people followed the story in the press.

Thanks to the Golden Dreams Foundation, these and many more new books are available to check out at the library.

Joanie Howland is director of the Cortez Public Library, 202 N. Park St. She can be reached at 565-8117.

Comments » Read and share your thoughts on this story