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“Reading . . . a vacation for the mind.”
Dave Barry

“BETWEEN THE COVERS”
Covered Treasures Bookstore-Babes Recommended

Get Out There!

In the presence of nature, a wild delight runs through the man, in spite of real sorrows.” Ralph Waldo Emerson

Now is a wonderful time to get outside, especially as a safe way to spend time with family and friends.

60 Hikes within 60 Miles: Denver and Boulder: Including Fort Collins and Rocky Mountain National Park (Revised 3rd Edition)

By Mindy Sink (Menasha Ridge Press) $22.95

Blending popular trails and hidden gems, this full-color edition features trails that transport you to scenic overlooks, wildlife hot spots, and historical settings that renew your spirit and recharge your body. Each hike description features information on: distance, difficulty, scenery, traffic, hiking time, detailed directions, GPS-based trail maps, elevation profiles, tips on nearby activities, and more.

Colorado Day Trips by Theme

By Aimee Heckel (Adventure Publications), $16.95

Jam-packed with more than 170 of Colorado’s best destinations, this guidebook helps you take a simple day trip, or string together a longer vacation of activities that catch your interest. Destinations are organized by themes, such as Annual Festivals and Outdoor Adventures. Discover hot springs, mountain peaks, museums, national parks, and more.

Thrasher’s Fly Fishing Guide: An Essential Handbook for All Skill Levels

By Susan Thrasher (Menasha Ridge Press) $16.95

Expert angler Susan Thrasher provides your all-in-one resource on fly fishing with success. Covering beginner to advanced knowledge, various methods, tips and techniques, how to teach kids, and so much more, you will find this an essential guide.

Colorado Journey Guide: A Driving & Hiking Guide to Ruins, Rock Art, Fossils & Formations

By Jon Kramer and Julie Martinez (Adventure Publications) $16.95

This resource helps you discover some of Colorado’s best: majestic mountains, ancient ruins, secret canyons, hidden waterfalls, and exotic places. The author’s rating system for significance in archaeology, geology, and paleontology ensures that you find the places that are right for you and your interests. Illustrations by Vernon Morris depict pottery, prehistoric animals, and more.

Family Camping: Everything You Need to Know for a Night Outdoors with Loved Ones

By Charlie and Cheryl Ess (Falcon Press) $24.95

This just might be the ultimate camping handbook, whether you’re with family or friends, camping or in your backyard. Part inspiration, part practical knowledge, this book is a whole lot of fun, offering up food and drink recipes, family activities, nature hacks, expert know-how, and more.

Mountain Biking Colorado’s Front Range: A Guide to the Area’s Greatest Off-Road Bicycle Rides (2nd edition)

By Stephen Hlawaty (Falcon Press), $21.95

Featuring 45 off-road bicycle rides along Colorado’s Front Range, this guide includes rides from Fort Collins south to Boulder, Denver, Colorado Springs, and everywhere in between. Readers will find maps, route directions, vivid descriptions, and much more. A mountain biking atlas to the Front Range regions, this one-of-a-kind guidebook details each trail in relation to local history, geology, archeology, legend, and lore.

Night Sky: A Field Guide to the Constellations Revised and Expanded (with Card Flashlight)

By Jonathan Poppele (Adventure Publications) $16.95

Revised and expanded, this award-winning book takes a simple approach to finding 64 constellations by focusing on one constellation at a time, teaching how to locate any constellation in relation to the Big Dipper, the North Star, and the top of the sky. It also introduces mythology, facts, details about the planets, solar system, and more.

The Daring Book for Girls

By Andrea Buchanan and Miriam Peskowitz (William Morrow & Company) $16.99

For every girl here is a hands-on guide to adventure, imagination, and fun. Have fun, take risks, learn a variety of skills, activities, games, how to put up your hair with a pencil, whistle with two fingers, build a good campfire, make paper airplanes, clubhouses and forts, public speaking, famous women in history, and more.

Dangerous Book for Boys

By Gonn and Hal Iggulden (William Morrow & Company) $22.99

Now a Prime Original Series, this bestselling book for every boy from eight to 80 covers essential skills such as building tree houses, learning how to fish, tying knots, skimming stones, and stories of incredible courage. It’s a wonderful collection of all things that make being young or young at heart fun—building go-carts and electromagnets, identifying insects and spiders, and flying the world’s best paper airplanes.

Until next month, happy reading.

New Fall Releases

The publishing industry has been hit hard by Covid-19. As a result, there have been many delays to all suppliers of books, including online and independent bookstores. Many publication dates for new books have been delayed. There are now some great books coming out in the next few weeks.

All the Devils Are Here

By Louise Penny (Minotaur Books) $28.99

Inspector Gamache’s godfather, billionaire Stephen Horowitz, is critically injured in what Gamache knows is no accident. Solving this mystery will take Gamache from the top of the Eiffel Tower to the bowels of the Paris Archives, from luxury hotels to odd, coded works of art. To find the truth, Gamache will have to decide whether he can trust his friends, his colleagues, his instincts, his own past, his own family. For even the City of Light casts long shadows. And in the darkness devils hide.

Next to Last Stand: A Longmire Mystery

By Craig Johnson (Viking), $28

One of the most viewed paintings in American History, Custer’s Last Fight, was destroyed in a fire in 1946. Or was it? When Charley Lee Stillwater dies at the Wyoming Home for Soldiers & Sailors, Walt Longmire is called in to try and make sense of a piece of a painting and a Florsheim shoebox containing a million dollars, sending the good sheriff on the trail of a dangerous art heist.

Hanging Falls: A Timber Creek K-9 Mystery

By Margaret Mizushima (Crooked Lane Books) $26.99

Officer Mattie Cobb and her K-9 partner Robo stumble upon a body floating at the edge of a lake. An unexpected visit from members of Mattie’s long-lost family sheds new light on her childhood abduction. The tangled threads of the investigation and family dynamics begin to intertwine, but darkness threatens to claim a new victim before Mattie and Robo can track down the killers.

Mesa Verde Victim

By Scott Graham (Torrey House Press) $15.95

Hounded by false accusations of murder, archaeologist Chuck Bender and his family risk their lives to track down an unknown killer in a rugged canyon on the remote western edge of Mesa Verde National Park, where ancient stone villages and secret burial sites, abandoned centuries ago by the Ancestral Puebloan people, harbor artifacts so rare and precious they’re worth killing over.

Elway: A Relentless Life

By Jason Cole (Hachette Books) $28

This biography of John Elway, Hall of Fame Quarterback, two-time Super Bowl Champion, and current President of Football Operations and General Manager of the Denver Broncos is the most complete look at one of the most accomplished legends in the history of American sports.

The Midnight Library

By Matt Haig (Viking), $26

“Between life and death there is a library, and within that library, the shelves go on forever. Every book provides a chance to try another life you could have lived. To see how things would be if you had made other choices. . . Would you have done anything different, if you had the chance to undo your regrets?” Nora Seed must search within herself as she travels through the Midnight Library to decide what is truly fulfilling in life, and what makes it worth living in the first place.

A Time for Mercy

By John Grisham (Doubleday Books) $29.95

Jake Brigance, the hero of A Time to Kill, one of the most popular novels of our time, returns. Jake finds himself embroiled in a deeply divisive trial when the court appoints him attorney for Drew Gamble, a timid 16-year-old boy accused of murdering a local deputy. Jake’s fierce commitment to saving Drew from the gas chamber puts his career, his financial security, and the safety of his family on the line. In what may be the most personal and accomplished legal thriller of John Grisham’s storied career, there is a time to kill and a time for justice. Now comes A Time for Mercy.

When We Were Young & Brave

By Hazel Gaynor (William Morrow & Company) $27.99

Bestselling author Hazel Gaynor sets her unforgettable new novel in China during WWII, inspired by true events surrounding the Japanese Army’s internment of teachers and children from a British-run missionary school. As Gaynor says in the Afterward, “No matter the time or distance from an historical event, the universal themes of love, grief, friendship, regret and resilience are what connect us all across the decades.”

Until next month, happy reading.

New Releases for the Gift-Giving Days Ahead

“A book is a gift you can open again and again.”…. Garrison Keillor

The Silver Arrow

By Lev Grossman (Little Brown) $16.99

Kate’s humdrum life is transformed when her eccentric Uncle Herbert, whom she’s never met, surprises her with a colossal locomotive train, the Silver Arrow, for her 11th birthday. Soon Kate and her brother are on a mysterious quest to distant lands along magical rail lines in the company of an assortment of exotic animals who can talk. They just might end up saving the world.

Before the Ever After

By Jacqueline Woodson (Nancy Paulsen Books) $17.99

For as long as ZJ can remember, his dad has been everyone’s hero. As a pro football star, he’s as beloved to the neighborhood kids he plays with as he is to his millions of fans. But lately his dad is having trouble remembering things and seems to be angry all the time due to the head injuries he sustained during his career. As ZJ contemplates his new reality, he has to figure out how to hold on tight to family traditions.

Everything Sad is Untrue

By Daniel Nayeri (Levine Querido), $17.99

At the front of a middle school classroom in Oklahoma, a boy named Khosrou, whom everyone calls Daniel, is trying to tell a story. Khosrou’s stories, stretching back years, and decades, and centuries, are beautiful, and terrifying, from the moment his family fled Iran, back to refugee camps of Italy, and even further back. Daniel has written an autobiographical novel, united by hope.

The Inheritance Games

By Jennifer Lynn Barnes (Little Brown) $17.99

Avery Grambs has a plan for a better future: survive high school, win a scholarship, and get out. But her fortunes change in an instant when billionaire Tobias Hawthorne dies and leaves Avery virtually his entire fortune. The catch? Avery has no idea why or even who Tobias Hawthorne is. Caught in a world of wealth and privilege, with danger around every turn, Avery will have to play the game herself just to survive.

What We’ll Build: Plans for Our Together Future

By Oliver Jeffers (Philomel Books), $19.99

A father and his young daughter gather their tools and begin building a future where love can be set aside until it is needed, enemies become friends, and exploration is key. A rare and enduring story about a parent’s boundless love, life’s endless opportunities, and all we need to build a together future.

Wreck This Picture Book

By Keri Smith (Dial Books) $17.99

Keri Smith has helped millions of people free their creativity and find their own voice with her interactive books, and now she brings that sensibility to children and the act of reading. Kids will discover that reading can engage all five senses and that what they themselves bring to a book is an important contribution.

The Highlights Book of Things to Do: Discover, Explore, Create, and Do Great Things

By Highlights (Highlights Press) $24.99

Kids will find creativity and inspiration with hundreds of ways to build, play, experiment, craft, cook, dream, think. This highly visual, hands-on activity book shows kids some of the best ways to do great things as well as become caring, confident problem solvers who just might change the world.

How to Astronaut: An Insider’s Guide to Leaving Planet Earth

By Terry Virts (Workman Publishing) $27.95

Former NASA astronaut Terry Virts offers an insider’s guide to “astronauting.” This behind-the-scenes look at the training, basic rules, lessons, and procedures of space travel, including how to deal with a dead body in space, what it’s like to film an IMAX movie in orbit, what to do when nature calls, and much more. He captures all the highs, lows, humor, and wonder of an experience few will ever know firsthand.

Dream Big: Know What You Want, Why You Want It, and What You’re Going to Do about It

By Bob Goff (Thomas Nelson) $26.99

New York Times bestselling author Bob Goff is on a mission to help people recapture the version of their lives they dreamed about before fear started calling the shots. In this revealing yet practical book, Goff takes you on a life-proven journey to rediscover your dreams and turn them into reality.

Until next month, happy reading.

Last Minute Ideas for the Hard to Buy for Person

“Books make great gifts because they have whole worlds inside of them. And it’s much cheaper to buy somebody a book than it is to buy them the whole world!”…. Neil Gaiman

Ex Libris: 100+ Books to Read and Reread

By Michiko Kakutani (Clarkson Potter Publishers) $25

Readers will discover a variety of books worth reading and rereading in this beautifully illustrated resource by Pulitzer Prize-winning literary critic Michiko Kakutani. As she says in the introduction: “In a world riven by political and social divisions, literature can connect people across time zones and zip codes, across cultures and religions, national boundaries and historical eras. It can give us an understanding of lives very different from our own, and a sense of the shared joys and losses of human experience.”

Colorado’s Highest: The History of Naming the 14,000-Foot Peaks

By Jeri L. Norgren and John Fielder (John Fielder Publishing) $45

This may be John Fielder’s finest history book. Through extensive research Jeri Norgren has written about how the names were chosen for the 58 highest mountains in Colorado. But, it’s not only words, it’s Fielder’s photographs, many never before published, Robert Wogrin’s oil paintings and sketches, and the historical sketches from the 1870s by the artists of the Hayden Survey.

Greenlights

By Matthew McConaughey (Crown Publishing Group), $30

Matthew McConaughey has written an unconventional memoir filled with raucous stories, outlaw wisdom, and lessons learned the hard way about living with greater satisfaction. It’s a love letter to life and a guide to catching more greenlights—and to realizing that the yellows and reds eventually turn green too.

Modern Comfort Food

By Ina Garten (Clarkson Potter Publishers) $35

Ina Garten shares 85 new recipes that will feed your deepest cravings. Home cooks can always count on Ina’s dependable, easy-to-follow instructions, with lots of side notes for cooking and entertaining. From cocktails to dessert, from special weekend breakfasts to quick weeknight dinners, you’ll find yourself making these delicious recipes over and over again.

The Wim Hof Method: Activate Your Full Human Potential

By Wim Hof (Sounds True), $25.99

Wim Hof shares the life-changing technique that anyone can use to supercharge their capacity for strength, health, and happiness. He provides in-depth instructions, the science supporting his techniques, his incredible personal story, and much more. Wim Hof has a message for each of us: “You can literally do the impossible. You can overcome disease, improve your mental health and physical performance, and even control your physiology so you can thrive in any stressful situation.”

If Then: How the Simulmatics Corporation Invented the Future

By Jill Lepore (Liveright Publishing) $28.95

The Simulmatics Corporation, founded in 1959, used computers to mine data, target voters, accelerate news, manipulate consumers, destabilize politics, and disorder knowledge—decades before Facebook, Google, Amazon, and Cambridge Analytica. Silicon Valley likes to imagine it has no past but the scientists of Simulmatics are their long-dead grandfathers. Jill Lepore, distinguished Harvard historian and New Yorker staff writer, unearthed and deeply researched this corporation and the history. Readers will find this book highly relevant to today.

This Just Speaks to Me: Words to Live By Every Day

By Hoda Kotb (G.P. Putnam’s Sons) $24

In this all-new collection of beloved quotes, Hoda Kotb offers inspiration, wisdom, and hope 365 days a year. Kotb writes about everything from motherhood and friendship to love and loss. This book also celebrates the countless acts of kindness that unfolded during these uniquely challenging times.

The Silence

By Don Delillo (Scribner) $22

A timely and compelling novel set in the year 2022, featuring five people, dinner, a Manhattan apartment, and a couple joining them from a dramatic flight from Paris. Then something happens and the digital connections that have transformed our lives are severed.

The 99% Invisible City: A Field Guide to the Hidden World of Everyday Design

By Roman Mars and Kurt Kohlstedt (Houghton Mifflin) $30

In this deeply researched treasure trove the authors zoom in on the various unique, often unnoticed yet essential elements that make our cities work. They explore the origins and other fascinating stories behind everything from power grids and fire escapes to drinking fountains and street signs, to raccoons and squirrels.

Until next month, happy reading.

Gobsmacked (Astounded) by Nature

 “I go to books and to nature as the bee goes to a flower, for a nectar that I can make into my own honey.”….John Burroughs

Here are some books that will help you get gobsmacked by nature.

World of Wonders: In Praise of Fireflies, Whale Sharks, and Other Astonishments

By Aimee Nezhukumatathil (Milkweed Editions) $25

Award-winning poet Aimee Nezhukumatathil brings readers a collection of essays about the natural world and the way its inhabitants can teach, support, and inspire us. For this is the way with wonder: it requires that we are curious enough to look past the distractions in order to fully appreciate the world’s gifts. Warm, lyrical, and gorgeously illustrated, this is a book of sustenance and joy.

Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge and the Teachings of Plants

By Robin Wall Kimmerer (Milkweed Editions) $18

Robin Wall Kimmerer is a botanist and a member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation. She brings these two lenses of knowledge together to show us how nature offers gifts and lessons. Also available is a new 40th anniversary, updated hardcover special edition; It is beautifully bound with a new cover, bookmark ribbon, deckled edge, and colored illustrations.

Native American Prayer Trees of Colorado

By John Wesley Anderson (Old Colorado City Historical Society) $37.95

Local author John Wesley Anderson takes his readers on a journey of discovery through his study of the Native American tradition of modifying trees for navigational, medicinal, burial, educational, and spiritual purposes. He worked in close association with members and elders of the Southern Ute Reservation, the study of previous researchers, and people familiar with these culturally modified trees, to create this work which moves forth the documentation and preservation of these landmarks.

Easy Hikes to the Hidden Past

By Rocky Shockley and T. Duran Jones (Rocky Shockley), $14.99

This unique book offers well-researched, often hidden, historic discoveries with easy trail walks, hikes, and bike rides. It covers Colorado Springs, Manitou Springs, Cripple Creek, Canon City, and Palmer Lake, and features photos, trail maps, and fun history trivia.

The Soul of an Octopus: A Surprising Exploration into the Wonder of Consciousness

By Sy Montgomery (Atria), $16.99

In pursuit of the wild, solitary, predatory octopus, naturalist Sy Montgomery has befriended octopuses with strikingly different personalities from New England aquarium tanks to the reefs of French Polynesia and the Gulf of Mexico. This award-winning bestseller explores the emotional and physical world of the complex, intelligent octopus and the remarkable connections it makes with humans and what they can teach us.

Our Wild Calling: How Connecting with Animals Can Transform Our Lives—and Save Theirs

By Richard Louv (Algonquin Books) $16.95

Louv interviews researchers, theologians, wildlife experts, indigenous healers, psychologists, and others to show how people are connecting with animals in ancient and new ways, and how this serves as an antidote to the growing epidemic of human loneliness; how dogs can teach children ethical behavior; how animal-assisted therapy may yet transform the mental health field; and what role the human-animal relationship plays in our spiritual health. He reports on wildlife relocation and how the growing populations of wild species in urban areas are blurring the lines between domestic and wild animals.

Migrations

By Charlotte McConaghy (Flatiron Books) $26.99

Franny Stone has always been the kind of woman who is able to love but unable to stay. Leaving behind everything but her research gear, she arrives in Greenland with a singular purpose: to follow the last Arctic terns in the world on what might be their final migration to Antarctica. But as Franny’s history begins to unspool, it becomes clear that she is chasing more than just the birds. It’s an ode to a disappearing world and a breathtaking page-turner about the possibility of hope against all odds.

Natural Wonders of Colorado

By Todd Caudle (Skyline Press) $12.95

As our own local photographer Todd Caudle says in his introduction, this collection “is the vision of one photographer who loves his home state with a passion, and cannot even conceive of a day when he will not actively seek out its beauty, whether with a camera or not. It is also a snapshot of what Colorado currently is, and in some places, what it used to be.”

Until next month, happy reading.

Timeless Treasures

 “If you would tell me the heart of a man, tell me not what he reads, but what he rereads.”….Francois Mauriac

For us these are timeless, meaningful books to read, re-read, and share with generations. We’d love to hear about some of yours!

Tommie’s favorites include:

To Kill a Mockingbird

By Harper Lee (Harper Perennial) $15.99

Harper Lee’s Pulitzer Prize-winning masterwork is one of the most cherished stories of all time. A gripping tale of the Deep South through the eyes of a young girl as her father, a crusading local lawyer, risks everything to defend a black man unjustly accused of a terrible crime.  Tommie loves the multiple stories and lessons of this book, summed up by the wisdom of Atticus, the father: “You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view. … Until you climb inside of his skin and walk around in it.”

The Poisonwood Bible

By Barbara Kingsolver (Harper Perennial) $18.99

Kingsolver’s national bestseller paints an intimate portrait of a crisis-ridden family amid the larger backdrop of an African nation in chaos. Tommie particularly appreciates Barbara Kingsolver’s use of language in this book; her use of tone, word choices, and literary devices, to bring the characters and the Congo to life.

The BFG

By Roald Dahl (Puffin Books) $7.99

The Big Friendly Giant is one of Roald Dahl’s most lovable characters. Whether galloping off with Sophie; speaking his delightful, jumbled, squib-fangled patois; or whizzpopping for the Queen, he leaves an indelible impression of bigheartedness. The blending of silliness with a moral message is what makes this one of Tommie’s favorite children’s books.

Paula’s favorites include:

East of Eden

By John Steinbeck (Penguin Books) $18

This masterpiece of Steinbeck’s later years is a work in which he created his most mesmerizing characters and explored his most enduring themes. Paula enjoys how Steinbeck brings together the human heart and the land—isolation, loneliness, and even failure. Characters are real and relatable as they embrace life with compassion, humility, and spirit.

Little House in the Big Woods

By Laura Ingalls Wilder (Harper Collins) $8.99

Anything by Laura Ingalls Wilder is wonderful, but her Little House on the Prairie Series has stood the test of time and tells the story of Laura’s real childhood as an American pioneer. Paula notes that these stories teach children about a simple, rustic life, friendship, beauty, quiet moments, and a strong work ethic.

Misty of Chincoteague

By Marguerite Henry (Aladdin Paperbacks) $7.99

This Newbery Honor Book is set on an island off the coasts of Virginia and Maryland where a band of wild ponies has lived for centuries. It focuses on a mare, Phantom, and her colt, Misty. Paula enjoys Marguerite Henry’s books because they have historical authenticity and are suspenseful stories about real horses; visiting Chincoteague is on her bucket list.

Pam’s favorites include:

The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe

By C.S. Lewis (HarperCollins) $8.99

This is the second book in the classic fantasy series The Chronicles of Narnia that has been drawing readers of all ages for over 60 years. Four adventurous siblings step through a wardrobe door and into the land of Narnia. Pam discovered the series as a child and has re-read it many times. Full of great adventure, mythical beasts, and talking animals, this series transports the reader to a land where magic meets reality, and good conquers evil.

The Phantom Tollbooth

By Norton Juster (Yearling Classic) $8.99

For Milo, everything’s a bore until a tollbooth mysteriously appears in his room. Somewhere along the way, Milo realizes life is exciting beyond his wildest dreams! Pam’s favorite things are the wordplay, puns, paradoxes, and problem-solving adventures. She says it’s just as much for adults as kids with its encouraging deeper messages. One of her favorite quotes is, “so many things are possible just as long as you don’t know they’re impossible.”

The Splendid and the Vile: A Saga of Churchill, Family, and Defiance During the Blitz

By Erik Larson (Crown Publishing) $32

Erik Larson brings history to life once again, this time in an intimate portrait of Churchill: his strengths and weaknesses, triumph over tragedy, and his leadership during London’s darkest year.  Pam is a fan of Erik Larson not only because of his thorough research, but for his talent of writing nonfiction that reads like novels.

Until next month, happy reading.

The Great Outdoors is Calling

 “Thousands of tired, nerve-shaken, over-civilized people are beginning to find out that going to the mountains is going home; that wildness is a necessity.” ….John Muir

 Lockdowns and closures during the past year led many of us outside. We have discovered it can be healing. Here are some guidebooks to help you explore the great outdoors of Colorado.

Woman in the Wild: The Everywoman’s Guide to Hiking, Camping, and Backcountry Travel

By Susan Joy Paul (Falcon Press) $24.95

Few experiences rival a grand outdoor adventure. This guide is the perfect companion for any woman looking to get into the backcountry lifestyle or level up her current active outdoor life. Adventurer and guidebook author Susan Joy Paul provides real instruction for women of all ages and skill levels, from beginners to intermediate hikers and experienced mountaineers. She shares everything a woman needs to know to be safe, independent, and self-reliant at camp and on the trail.

Easy Hikes to the Hidden Past: Pikes Peak Region Edition

By Rocky Shockley and T. Duren Jones (Rocky Shockley) $14.99

This unique guide combines well-researched trail explorations with an educational “treasure hunt” for relics of times gone by that should not be forgotten. The Pikes Peak Region Edition covers Colorado Springs, Manitou Springs, Cripple Creek, Canon City, Monument, and Palmer Lake.  There are a broad range of explorations offering something for everyone, with varied physical abilities. Some discoveries can be seen from the car window as you drive through history, some can be accessed by walking or on a bike, still others by trail hiking, all of which would be classified as easy to moderate difficulty level. Trail maps, trivia, historical photos, humor, and insights.

Best Hikes Colorado Springs: The Greatest Views, Wildlife, and Forest Strolls (Second Edition)

By Stewart M. Green (Falcon Press) $22.95

Discover the most epic hikes close to town. Within this information-packed guide, readers have everything they need for the adventure they seek, from an easy nature walk to a multi-day backpack. Complete with maps and full-color photos, hike descriptions provide everything you need to know before hitting the trail: location, length, hiking time, level of difficulty, canine compatibility.

Best Outdoor Adventures Colorado Front Range: A Guide to the Region’s Greatest Hiking, Climbing, Cycling, and Paddling

By Chris Meehan (Falcon Press) $24.95

This guide details the best hikes, paddles, climbs, and mountain biking routes within a few hour’s drive of the Denver metro area, perfect for the urban dweller and suburbanite who may be hard-pressed to find great outdoor activities close to home. This guide also includes rock climbing and zip-lining.

Hiking with Kids Colorado: 52 Great Hikes for Families

By Jamie Siebrase (Falcon Press) $24.95

This guide is specifically geared to provide parents with the information they need to know to hit the 52 best trails in the state with their kids. Detailed hike descriptions, color photos, maps, and information on restrooms, stroller compatibility, and trail users will help parents plan a smooth day hike. Tips on cool scavenger hunt ideas, animal identification, bird calls, and fun facts will keep young hikers engaged every step of the way.

Grandparents Colorado Style: Places to Go & Wisdom to Share

By Mike Link and Kate Crowley (Adventure Publications) $14.95

Take an active role in your grandchildren’s lives. Show them the best of Colorado and teach them valuable lessons you’ve learned throughout your years. Mike Link and Kate Crowley are active grandparents. They spotlight more than 65 Colorado attractions and activities for grandparents and grandchildren, ages two and up. It offers tips on making each stop a bonding experience and is filled with insights and advice to help you along the way.

Family Camping: Everything You Need to Know for a Night Outdoors with Loved Ones

By Charlie and Cheryl Ess (Falcon Press) $24.95

Part inspiration, part practical knowledge, this book is the camping handbook whether you’re with family or friends, camping or in your backyard. You’ll find food and drink recipes, family activities, nature hacks, and more for a memorable weekend.

 Until next month, happy reading.

 

Bring Colorado History to Life

“If you don’t know history, then you don’t know anything. You are a leaf that doesn’t know it is part of a tree.” ….Michael Crichton

 Step back in time to learn how Colorado came to be.

Places & People of the Pikes Peak Region: Exploring 14 Signature Sites

By Tanja Britton (Western Meadowlark Press) $24.95

Local author Tanja Britton illuminates the history of iconic sites in the Pike’s Peak Region. She introduces the sites, their connection to the area, individuals for whom they are named, and includes a variety of photos both historical and current. Britton travels a historical arc from the past to the present, all in a storytelling approach that is a delight to read. You will learn interesting history for 14 sites including: Ute Pass, Pikes Peak, Helen Hunt Falls, Penrose House, and Barr Trail. A perfect read for Colorado Springs’ Sesquicentennial.

The Granite Attraction: Stories of the Pikes Peak Highway and Summit

By Eric Swab (Rhyolite Press) $29.95

 This book begins in 1888, with the first efforts to get wheeled vehicles and their passengers to the summit of Pikes Peak. Fifteen years earlier, the U.S. Army established a weather station at the top of the mountain and manned it all year round with human observers. The summit has been the site of experiments in meteorology, aircraft engine design, and human physiology. It has been the source of stories of hardship, failure, and tall tales. Included are 13 maps and 123 images, most of them vintage photographs, many never published before.

Colorado and the Silver Crash: The Panic of 1893

By John F. Steinle (History Press) $21.99

A catastrophic depression engulfed Colorado in 1893. The government’s decision to adopt the gold standard and stop buying silver hit the mining industry like a cave-in. By 1898, the country had begun to recover, but silver mining was never the same. Using firsthand commentary and more than 100 historic photographs, John Steinle commemorates the story of Coloradans trapped in the unprecedented social, economic, and political conflict of America’s first great depression.

Through the Years at Monument, Colorado, 5th edition

By Lucille Lavelett (Palmer Lake Historical Society) $13.95

This guide to the history of the town of Monument includes more than 130 photographs and illustrations covering the first 100 years, a timeline, and an index. Lucille Lavelett lived in Monument all her life. Always interested in local history, she did extensive research and everyone around her encouraged her to put it in a book. The first publication was in 1975.

A Colorado History, 10th Edition

By Carl Ubbelohde, Maxine Benson, Duane A. Smith (West Winds Press) $29.99

Experience Colorado with this new, expanded edition of how the state has changed and how it has stayed the same. It begins with the prehistoric cliff dwellers of Mesa Verde and proceeds chronologically with accounts of Colorado’s role as a frontier territory and continues to the present day political, economic, cultural, and environmental issues.

Forgotten Colorado: The Eastern Plains

By Heath A. Gay (America Through Time) $23.99

Known as the agricultural center of Colorado, this region was once a thriving area for farmers, ranchers, and railroad workers. Today, history and relics from those early glory years can be found all over the region, if you know where to look. This guide brings to light and exposes historic schools where class is out forever; the largest track of dinosaur footprints in North America; the site of one of the worst air show disasters in U.S. history; an entire railroad ghost town; and much more.

Rocky Mountain Train Robberies: True Stories of Notorious Bandits and Infamous Escapades

By W.C. Jameson (Twodot) $16.95

One of the most colorful parts of American history is the time of train robberies and the daring outlaws who undertook them in the period from just after the Civil War to 1924. To the cast of train robber-related characters can be added the relentless investigations and pursuit by individuals associated with the Pinkerton Detectives, Texas Rangers, Wells Fargo detectives, railroad company detectives, as well as local and area law enforcement authorities. In addition, there are numerous tales of bravery that took place during train robberies involving heroic express car messengers, conductors, engineers, brakemen, and passengers.

Until next month, happy reading.

 

Here Come the New Releases!

“Show me a family of readers, and I will show you the people who move the world.” ….Napoleon Bonaparte

Have you been waiting for the newest book by a favorite author? Here are some new releases that make great gifts for others or yourself:

Cloud Cuckoo Land

By Anthony Doerr (Scribner Book Company) $30

Set in Constantinople in the fifteenth century, in a small town in present-day Idaho, and on an interstellar ship decades from now, Pulitzer Prize-winning Anthony Doerr’s third novel is an imaginative, soaring story about children on the cusp of adulthood in worlds in peril, who find resilience, hope, and a book. Doerr has created a tapestry of times and places that reflects our inter-connectedness.

Bewilderment

By Richard Powers (W.W. Norton & Company) $27.95

Astrobiologist Theo Byrne searches for life throughout the cosmos while single-handedly raising his unusual nine-year-old, Robin, following the death of his wife. Robin is a warm, kind boy who spends hours painting elaborate pictures of endangered animals. He’s also about to be expelled from third grade. As his son grows more troubled, Theo learns of an experimental treatment that involves training Robin on the recorded patterns of his mother’s brain. Powers has created a moving novel of a father and son’s ferocious love.

Pony

By R.J. Palacio (Alfred A. Knopf) $17.99

New York Times bestselling author of Wonder is back with an enthralling adventure that will show readers how to choose courage. Twelve-year-old Silas embarks on a quest to rescue his father, with only a ghost as his companion and a mysterious pony as his guide. He will face his fears to unlock the secrets of his past and explore the unfathomable mysteries of the world around him. Palacio spins a harrowing yet distinctly coming-of-age story about the power of love and the ties that bind us across distance and time.

Einstein: The Fantastic Journey of a Mouse through Space and Time

By Torben Kuhlman (Northsouth Books) $22

When an inventive mouse misses the biggest cheese festival the world has ever seen, he’s determined to turn back the clock. With the help of a mouse clockmaker, a lot of inventiveness, and the notes of a certain famous Swiss physicist, he succeeds in traveling back in time. But when he misses his goal by 80 years, the only one who can help is an employee of the Swiss Patent Office, who turned our concept of space and time upside down. Kuhlman, in his beautifully illustrated mouse adventure, explores the question: Suppose Albert Einstein’s famous theories first came into being through an encounter with a little mouse.

Little People, Big Dreams Treasury: 50 Stories from Brilliant Dreamers

By Maria Isabel Sanchez Vegara (Frances Lincoln Ltd.) $39.99

Dive deeper into the world of Little People, Big Dreams with this keepsake treasury featuring 50 dreamers from the critically acclaimed, best-selling series. Learn more about each of your favorite dreamers with new in-depth stories, facts, and figures. Each story is rewritten to be appropriate for an older audience. Divided by profession, the treasury includes profiles of the world’s greatest artists, activists, writers, musicians, TV and film stars, scientists, and sports legends. A timeline, glossary, index, and further reading provide even more to explore. (Available Nov. 9)

Fuzz: When Nature Breaks the Law

By Mary Roach (W.W. Norton & Company) $26.95

What’s to be done about a jaywalking moose? A bear caught breaking and entering? Mary Roach tags along with animal-attack forensics investigators, human-elephant conflict specialists, bear managers and danger tree faller blasters all over the world. Combining little-known forensic science and conservation genetics, Roach reveals as much about humanity as about nature’s lawbreakers. Fascinating, witty, and humane, Fuzz offers hope for compassionate coexistence in our ever-expanding human habitat.

Gastro Obscura: A Food Adventurer’s Guide

By Cecily Wong and Dylan Thuras (Workman Publishing) $42.50

Created by the ever-curious minds behind Atlas Obscura, this guide transforms our sense of what people around the world eat and drink. Covering all seven continents, it serves up a loaded plate of incredible ingredients, food adventures, unexpected dishes, delicacies, and edible wonders. It reveals food’s central place in our lives, history, science, art, and traditions from historical to recent discoveries. (Available Oct. 12)

Until next month, happy reading.

Books to Keep You and Your Family Sane & Productive

“Instructions for living a life. Pay attention. Be astonished. Tell about it. Mary Oliver, poet

 These are difficult days, but there is help out there!  Books can take you on adventures without leaving home. No matter what your age or circumstances, you can travel the world, learn a new hobby, learn how to plant a garden, and travel back in time through historical fiction and non-fiction. Challenge your mind with Sudoku, crossword puzzles, and activity books; explore new hikes, and so much more is at your fingertips.

For adults and kids of all ages, consider games and activities that spark conversation. For example, there is a series of games called After Dinner Amusements that feature a variety of conversation starters and different topic areas. Mad Libs have been great fun for many generations and all ages.

Start a series of books to read aloud as a family. Or pick some classics to read aloud.

Teens and adults might consider starting a mystery series. There are so many great ones available. You might want to consider the Aunt Dimity series by Nancy Atherton, the Timber Creek K-9 mystery series by Margaret Mizushima, the Chief Inspector Gamache series by Louise Penny, and the Longmire mystery series by Craig Johnson.  Pick a book series that has been made into a television series; Read the books and compare them. Which do you like better?

Kitchen Science Lab for Kids: Edible Edition: 52 Mouth-Watering Recipes and the Everyday Science That Makes Them Taste Amazing

By Liz Lee Heinecke (Quarry Books), $24.99            

Make science fun for all ages with fifty-two edible, delicious ways to explore food science in your own kitchen. You might want to combine it with Heinecke’s book Kitchen Science Lab for Kids: 52 Family-Friendly Experiments from Around the House.

Art Lab for Kids: 52 Creative Adventures in Drawing, Painting, Printmaking, Paper, and Mixed Media for Budding Artists of All Ages (Lab for Kids #1)

By Susan Schwake (Quarry Books), $22.99              

Kids and adults will enjoy these lessons for art projects of varying styles including drawing, printmaking, and mixed media.

Tell Me Why? (Tell Me Series)

By Isabelle Fougere (B.E.S. Publishing), $14.99                   

The Tell Me Series offers fun-filled books packed with more than 180+ answers to all kinds of questions kids ask. Plus there are lots of games and stickers. Other books in the series are: Tell Me How?, ..Science and Inventions, ..What is That?,  ..How Many?, ..Earth and Sky.

The Boy’s Book of Adventure: The Little Guidebook for Smart and Resourceful Boys

By Michele Lecreux with Celia Gallais and Clemence Roux de Luze (B.E.S. Publishing) $14.99

This guidebook (great for girls, as well!) offers more than 40 ideas for outdoor activities and fun-to-do crafts projects that will get you acquainted with facts about nature, how to identify different insects and birds, recognize different kinds of rocks, read a map, protect yourself against the weather when camping out, and much more.

How to Build Treehouses, Huts & Forts

By David Stiles (Lyons Press) $17.95

Filled with fun projects and step-by-step instructions for kids and their parents to build outdoors,  it also has a section on “cool stuff for kids to make” such as treasure chests, cannons, catapults, and several fun projects to build in the snow.

Learn Chess the Right Way Book 1: Must Know Check-Mates

By Susan Polgar (Russell Enterprises) $19.95

Learn Chess the Right Way is a five-volume series aimed at the novice, beginner, and intermediate level player, using the unique methods of the award-winning coach and former world champion Susan Polgar. Each volume contains over 500 puzzles.

Yes, these are challenging times we are in; however, we can look at this as a time of opportunity to bond closer with our families. To paraphrase Mary Oliver, “What is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?”

Until next month, happy reading.

Reading the West Award Winners

Reading the West Book Awards honor the best fiction, nonfiction, and illustrated books for adults and children set in one of 12 western and mid-western states, created by an author or artist living or working in the region. This is the 30th Annual Reading the West Book Awards.

Sabrina & Corina

By Kali Fajardo-Anstine (One World) $17

Fiction Winner. Against the backdrop of Denver, Latinas of Indigenous descent living in the America West take center stage in this debut story collection on friendship, mothers and daughters, and an exploration of the experiences of abandonment, heritage, and an eternal sense of home.

Lakota America: A New History of Indigenous Power

By Pekka Hamalainen (Yale University Press), $35

Narrative Nonfiction Winner. The first comprehensive history of the Lakota Indians and their profound role in shaping America’s history, tracing their rich and often surprising history from the early 16th to the early 21st century.

National Geographic Atlas of the National Parks

By Jon Waterman (National Geographic Society) $65

Visual Nonfiction Winner. The first book of its kind, this stunning atlas showcases America’s spectacular park system from coast to coast, richly illustrated with an inspiring and informative collection of maps, graphics, and photographs.

The Field Guide to the North American Teenager

By Ben Philippe (Balzer & Bray/Harperteen) $10.99

Young Adult Fiction Winner. Norris Kaplan, a Black French Canadian, moves to Austin, Texas and finds himself cataloging everyone he meets. Yet against all odds, those labels soon become actual people to Norris. He eventually realizes it might be time to stop hiding behind his snarky opinions and start living his life along with the people who have found their way into his heart.

Dear Sweet Pea

By Julie Murphy (Balzer & Bray/Harperteen) $16.99

Young Reader Middle-Grade Winner. Patricia “Sweet Pea” DiMarco wasn’t sure what to expect when her parents announced they were getting a divorce and living in nearly identical houses on the same street. Her neighbor Flora, famed advice columnist, leaves for a trip and asks Sweet Pea to forward the letters for the column. Sweet Pea recognizes the handwriting on one of the envelopes. What she decides to do with that letter sets off a chain of events that will forever change the lives of Sweet Pea, her family, and many of the readers of Flora’s column.

The Little Snowplow Wishes for Snow

By Lora Koehler, illustrated by Jake Parker (Candlewick Press), $16.99

Best Picture Book Winner. The little snowplow loves his job on the Mighty Mountain Road Crew, but the work he loves best is plowing snow. Will the little snowplow’s birthday dreams come true?

The Prairie Homestead Cookbook

By Jill Winger (Flatiron Books) $35

Eating the West Winner. Winger’s debut cookbook features over 100 recipes made with fresh ingredients to bring the flavors and spirit of homestead cooking to any kitchen table. Beyond the recipes, Jill shares the tools and tips she has learned from life on the homestead.  The runner-up in this category is Centennial Celebrations Cookbook by Junior League of Denver.

 Deep Creek: Finding Hope in the High Country

By Pam Houston (W.W. Norton & Company) $15.95

 

Reading the West Advocacy Award and also the Winner of the 2020 Colorado Book Award for Creative Nonfiction.  In essays from living on her 120-acre homestead outside Creede, Colorado, Pam Houston delivers meditations on what it means to care for a piece of land and the creatures on it.

Lonesome Dove

By Larry McMurtry (Simon & Schuster) $19.99

Spirit of the West Literary Achievement Award Winner.  Of his Pulitzer Prize winning novel Lonesome Dove, and this award, McMurtry says, “I am deeply grateful for this award from the Mountains & Plains Independent Booksellers Association. My writings represent a long involvement with the landscape, politics and culture of the West. I decided to write my novel Lonesome Dove in an attempt on my part to understand my father, William Jefferson McMurtry ~ a villager, a cattleman, and a thinker, who was captivated his entire life with the West, in particular the Plains West. He was the consummate working cowboy and was intrigued with the American steppe. I garnered my keen interest in the philosophy of the western plains from him.”

Until next month, happy reading.

Step Back in Time with History Books

“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” George Santayana

We are living in historic times, and this is a great time to look back at history and learn from it. Here are some compelling, well researched nonfiction and historical fiction books to start.

Without Warning: The Saga of Gettysburg

By Terry C. Pierce (Heart Ally Books) $29.95

Written by local resident Terry Pierce, Without Warning is the gripping saga of the Battle of Gettysburg, the Union patriots who fought it, and the man who led them. It scrutinizes the role character plays in leadership and the challenge of the unexpected.  Built firmly upon the annals of history, this historical novel brings to vivid life seven unforgettable days in the lives and trials of General George Meade and his men as they brave the winds of war to save the United States of America.

Reich Child: A Lebensborn Life

By David Bugno (Entrust Source Publishers), $17.99

This memoir by David Bugno, a Lebensborn child, tells the fascinating and eye-opening story of a woman and her son trapped in Hitler’s monstrous ambitions. Lebensborn babies were slated to become leading citizens of the Third Reich. David’s mother’s heroic efforts saved them and they immigrated to America. He did not discover the truth until late adulthood. David shares his journey from disorienting confusion to understanding, from crushing pain to hope. There has not been much written about this and readers will gain insight into the lesser known inner workings of Hitler’s regime.

Something Worth Doing

By Jane Kirkpatrick (Revell) $15.99

In 1853, Abigail Scott was a school teacher in Oregon Territory when she married Ben Duniway. Marriage meant giving up on teaching, but Abigail always believed she was meant to be more. When Abigail becomes the primary breadwinner for her growing family, what she sees as a working woman appalls her and prompts her to devote her life to fighting for the rights of women, including the right to vote. This is based on a true story.

Bad Old Days of Colorado: Untold Stories of the Wild West

By Randi Samuelson-Brown (Two Dot Books) $19.95

Many people born and bred here relish just how “bad” things used to be: the terrain, the inhabitants… the quality of whiskey. It almost goes without saying that Colorado had all the characteristic Wild West elements in abundance. It is no secret that Colorado was settled by the adventurous willing to brave harsh conditions and to prevail. Whether on the right or the wrong side of the law, all settlers and pioneers made unique contributions to the state’s complex culture.

Stagecoach Women: Brave and Daring Women of the West

By Cheryl Mullenbach (Two Dot Books), $18.95

Prepare for the surprising stories about women and stagecoaches that jolt away preconceived notions and is filled with twists and turns. Though women’s contributions to stagecoach history were often overlooked, women were shrewd owners, plucky drivers, and even ruthless robbers, all in addition to fulfilling their traditional roles as housekeepers, cooks, laundresses, and mothers to multiple children. This book offers an expansive overview of stagecoach history enriched by the personal stories of women who contributed to the evolution and success of a captivating facet of American history.

The Order of the Day

By Eric Vuillard (Other Press) $14.99

February 20, 1933: a meeting of 24 German captains of industry and senior Nazi officials is being held in secret. They are there to extract funds for the accession to power of the National Socialist Party and its Chancellor. This opening scene sets a tone of consent that will lead to the worst possible repercussions. Named a “Best Book of the Year” by NPR, Boston Globe, and Literary Hub, and winner of the Prix Goncourt, this behind-the-scenes account tells of the manipulation, hubris, and greed that together led to Nazi Germany’s annexation of Austria.

My Dear Hamilton

By Stephanie Dray and Laura Kamoie (William Morrow & Company) $16.99

In this edge-of-your-seat immersion into historical events, Dray and Kamoie used thousands of letters and original sources. They tell Eliza Hamilton’s story as it’s never been told before, not just as the wronged wife at the center of America’s first political sex scandal, but also as a founding mother who shaped an American legacy in her own right.

Until next month, happy reading.

Make a Resolution to Read Some Classics

“’Classic’—a book which people praise and don’t read.”…. Mark Twain

Don’t let that be you! These not-to-be-missed classics are great whether you are reading them for the first time or re-reading them.

West with the Night

By Beryl Markham (North Point Press) $16

This underappreciated classic deserves the same acclaim as the work of her contemporaries Ernest Hemingway, Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, and Isak Dinesen. In fact, Ernest Hemingway said, “Markham can write rings around all of us who consider ourselves as writers … It is really a bloody wonderful book.” Beryl and her father moved to Kenya when she was a girl. She would spend most of her life in East Africa as an adventurer, a racehorse trainer, and an aviatrix. She became the first person to fly nonstop from Europe to America, the first woman to fly solo east to west across the Atlantic. Hers was indisputably a life full of adventure and beauty.

Watership Down

By Richard Adams (Simon & Schuster) $19.99

One of the most beloved novels of all time, this award winning timeless classic is set in England. A tale of adventure, courage, and survival, it follows a band of rabbits as they journey forth through the trials posed by predators and adversaries, to a mysterious promised land and a more perfect society.

A Tree Grows in Brooklyn

By Betty Smith (Harper Perennial), $16.99

From the moment she entered the world, Francie Nolan needed to be made of stern stuff:  growing up in the Williamsburg slums of Brooklyn demanded fortitude, precocity, and strength of spirit. Betty Smith created a rich classic that cuts right to the heart of life.

The Count of Monte Cristo

By Alexandre Dumas (Oxford University Press) $13.95

A timeless tale of endurance, courage, and revenge, this is one of the best-loved novels of all time. Thrown in prison for a crime he did not commit, Edmond Dantes learns of a great treasure hidden on the Isle of Monte Cristo and becomes determined not only to escape but to unearth the treasure and use it to plot revenge. Duma was inspired by a real-life case of wrongful imprisonment when writing his epic tale.

Travels with Charley in Search of America

By John Steinbeck (Penguin Classics), $15

In 1960, John Steinbeck, with his dog, Charley, embarked on a journey across America. He felt that he might have lost touch with the country, with its speech, the smell of its grass and trees, its color and quality of light, the pulse of its people. The result is a self-portrait of a man who never wrote an explicit autobiography.

O Pioneers!

By Willa Cather (Penguin Classics) $10

Cather’s masterpiece faithfully conveys the sharp physical realities and mythic sweep of the transformation of the American frontier and the people who settled it. A story of people who do not claim a land so much as they submit to it and, in the process, become greater than they were.

The Once and Future King

By T.H. White (Ace Books) $9.99

This legendary story has enchanted readers for generations. Once upon a time, a young boy was tutored by a magician named Merlyn in preparation for a future in which he would ally himself with the greatest knights, love a legendary queen, and unite a country dedicated to chivalrous values. A future that would see him crowned and known for all time as Arthur, King of the Britons.

Atlas Shrugged

By Ayn Rand (Signet) $9.99

Larger-than-life heroes and villains; towering questions of good and evil; this is Ayn Rand’s magnum opus. It is a mystery story, not about the murder of a man’s body, but about the murder and rebirth of man’s spirit. This is the book that has made Rand not only one of the most popular novelists of modern times, but also one of its most influential and controversial thinkers.

To Kill a Mockingbird

By Harper Lee (Harper Perennial) $15.99

No classics list would be complete without Harper Lee’s Pulitzer Prize-winning masterwork of honor and injustice in the deep South. A gripping, heart-wrenching tale seen through the eyes of a young girl as her father, a crusading local lawyer, risks everything to defend a black man unjustly accused of a terrible crime.

Until next month, happy reading.

Planning and Preparing Your Garden

 “If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.”….Marcus Tullius Cicero

 With spring arriving, it’s time to go from dreaming to doing. It is possible to have beautiful and productive flower and vegetable gardens in Colorado, you just need the right guidance. These books are helpful resources.

Rocky Mountain Month-By-Month Gardening: What to Do Each Month to Have a Beautiful Garden All Year

By John Cretti (Cool Springs Press) $26.99

Take the guesswork out of gardening. Included are detailed instructions on everything from watering and fertilizing to pruning and problem solving. Complete with specific advice on growing annuals, perennials, bulbs, grasses, roses, ground covers, trees, shrubs, and vines, you will reap the benefits of the gardening successes of John Cretti, who has more than 32 years of gardening experience. Discover the when and how of growing, caring for, and maintaining your Rocky Mountain garden.

The Wildlife-Friendly Vegetable Gardner: How to Grow Food in Harmony with Nature

By Tammi Hartung (Storey Publishing) $16.95

Tammi Hartung and her husband have more than 40 years of experience on their organic farm in Colorado, plus she is a frequent teacher and lecturer. This specific guide helps you create harmony between the vegetable garden and the wildlife who consider it part of their habitat. It explains how to start with a healthy garden, how to create beneficial relationships through thoughtful planting, how to attract beneficial insects and pollinators, and how to purposefully create habitats for wildlife with strategies to help garden and wildlife peacefully coexist.

Homegrown Herbs: A Complete Guide to Growing, Using, and Enjoying More Than 100 Herbs

By Tammi Hartung (Storey Publishing) $19.95

Enjoy a thriving, fragrant herb garden and use your harvest to bring beauty, flavor, and health to your everyday life. Tammi Hartung provides in-depth profiles of 101 popular herbs, including information on seed selection, planting, maintenance, harvesting, and drying. Hartung also shows you how to use your herbs in a variety of foods, home remedies, body care products, and crafts.

The Backyard Homestead: Produce all the food you need on just a quarter acre

Edited by Carleen Madigan (Storey Publishing), $18.95

Put your backyard to work. Enjoy fresher, organic, better-tasting food. Grow vegetables and fruits; keep bees, raise chickens, goats, or even a cow. And when the harvest is in, cook, preserve, cure, brew, or pickle the fruits of your labor. This comprehensive guide to homesteading provides a wealth of information with easy-to-follow instructions.

Mountain States Medicinal Plants: Identify, Harvest, and Use 100 Wild Herbs for Health and Wellness

By Briana Wiles (Timber Press) $27.95

Whether you are just starting out or are looking to deepen your herbal knowledge, this book is your companion for finding, identifying, harvesting, and safely using 120 of the region’s most powerful medicinal wild plants. Plant profiles include color photographs, identification tips, medicinal uses, herbal preparations, and harvesting suggestions. Lists of what to forage for each season are useful year-round.

Mini Meadows: Grow a Little Patch of Colorful Flowers Anywhere Around Your Yard

By Mike Lizotte (Storey Publishing) $16.95

With as little as 50 square feet and for less than $20, gardeners can plant a colorful meadow that demands little in the way of space, mowing, or maintenance, uses less water, and provides a habitat for pollinators. From choosing the right variety of seeds, preparing the soil, sowing, and watering, gardeners of all levels will be able to reap the rewards of thriving meadows through the seasons, year after year.

Firescaping: Protecting Your Home with a Fire-Resistant Landscape

By Douglass Kent (Wilderness Press) $21.95

This unique form of landscaping design keeps your property healthy, clean, and clear. Land management expert Douglas Kent, who has been on the front lines of wildfires, shares decades of experience working in many of the nation’s most flammable areas. With this edition he uses all his years of fire experience to create a comprehensive resource that homeowners and at-risk communities nationwide can use to create more fire-resistant landscapes and structures. Kent also has more than 30 years of gardening experience and has worked on hundreds of landscape projects.

Until next month, happy reading.

Cookbooks for Health and Bringing People Together

 “Food brings people together on many different levels. It’s nourishment of the soul and body; it’s truly love.”….Giada De Laurentiis

The last year has taught us the value of health, home cooked meals, and being with family and friends. To help you, here are some inspiring cookbook choices.

Eat Better, Feel Better: My Recipes for Wellness and Healing, Inside and Out

By Giada De Laurentiis (Rodale Books) $32.50

In Giada’s most personal book yet, she gives you an inside look at her path to wellness, the culmination of a 10-year journey. She shows you her own process of reconfiguring her diet to control inflammation as well as wellness tactics like intermittent fasting, meditation, and other self-care routines to optimize one’s well-being. More than a cookbook, Giada offers 100 new recipes to boost gut health and immunity, and nourish your mind, body, and spirit.

Milk Street: Cookish: Throw It Together

By Christopher Kimball (Voracious) $35

The James Beard Award-winning team at Milk Street has harnessed the most powerful cooking principles from around the world to create 200 of the simplest, delicious recipes so you can throw together fast, flavorful meals in no time. These recipes, most with six or fewer ingredients, make it easy to be a great cook.

The Mountain Baker: 100 High-Altitude Recipes for Every Occasion

By Mimi Council and Kimmy Fasani (Countryman Press) $28

Living in Colorado, we all know the struggle with baking at higher than 5,000 feet. Longtime mountain dwellers Mimi Council and Kimmy Fasani share their recipes for successful cakes, cookies, muffins, breads, and beyond. These recipes include conversions for sea-level kitchens, so home bakers can enjoy these treats wherever they cook.

Half-Baked Harvest Super Simple

By Tieghan Gerard (Clarkson Potter) $29.99

Colorado blogger Tieghan is beloved for her freshly sourced, comfort-food-forward recipes. In this new book, she takes what fans loved most and distills it into quicker, more manageable dishes, including options for one-pot meals, night-before meal prep, and even some slow cooker recipes. Especially for home cooks who are pressed for time or just starting out, this is a go-to resource for hassle-free meals that never sacrifice taste.

5 Ingredient Semi-Homemade Meals

By Bobby and Dessi Parrish (Mango) $29.95

Bobby and Dessi Parrish share the ins and outs of their five ingredient meals and assure us that their quick and easy recipes are doable for anyone. But it doesn’t stop there; they know that a key aspect of these simple healthy recipes is the prep work, so they provide hacks for smarter and easier grocery shopping, including how to pick the “best in class” products.

High Altitude Baking (Second Edition)

Edited By Patricia Kendall (Bower House) $17

With over 200 recipes and proven tips developed by the high altitude baking experts at Colorado State University Cooperative Extension, this book is a must for cooks living between 3,500 and 10,000 feet. The book includes: mile high cakes, cake recipe adjustment guide, quick mixes for cookies, cakes, quick breads, coffee cakes, muffins, scones, cornbreads, biscuits, pancakes, and more. It also includes tips for high altitude canning, jelly-making, and freezing.

Pie in the Sky: Successful Baking at High Altitudes

By Susan Purdy (William Morrow) $32.50

This is the classic guide to high-altitude baking. Purdy leaves behind old conversion tables, disproves many oft-repeated calculations and adjustments, and presents reliable recipes in their entirety for each altitude. In addition, she explains the hows and whys, gives tips and hints for problems specific to every altitude, and generally demystifies the subject of atmospheric obstacles that cause favorite recipes to flop. Every recipe was tested at sea level, 3,000 feet, 5,000 feet, 7,000 feet, and 10,000 feet, and can be used at these elevations or points in between.

The New Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone

By Deborah Madison (Ten Speed Press) $40

Originally published in 1997, Madison’s award-winning book was both ahead of its time and an instant classic. This revised and expanded edition has more than 1,600 recipes for home cooks, with more than 200 new recipes, and comprehensive, updated information on vegetarian and vegan ingredients. This treasure is not just for vegetarians and vegans; it’s for everyone interested in learning how to cook vegetables creatively, healthfully, and passionately.

Until next month, happy reading.

Kids’ Guides to Colorado

 “Restore balance. Most children have technology, school, and extracurricular activities covered. It’s time to add a pinch of adventure, a sprinkle of sunshine, and a big handful of outdoor play.” ….Penny Whitehouse

Here are some inspiring hands-on books specifically geared for kids exploring the great outdoors and learning about Colorado.  

How to Go Anywhere (And Not Get Lost): A Guide to Navigation for Young Adventurers

By Hans Aschim (Workman) $14.95

With illustrated activities as well as handy tips throughout, you’ll learn the fascinating history and seriously useful skills to become a navigator. Find north and south by reading the trees. Make a simple compass. Use the stars to tell time. Build a basic sextant. Get your bearings using the sun; Go treasure hunting with GPS.

101 Outdoor Adventures to Have Before You Grow Up

By Stacy and Jack Tornio (Falcon Press) $19.95

Conquer a rock wall, go zip lining, create a geocache at your favorite nature hangout, camp without a tent. This guide offers up season-by-season activities, games, and challenges to get kids outdoors and loving it.

The Girl’s Book of Adventure

By Michele Lecreux, Celia Gallais, Clemence Roux de Luze (B.E.S. Publishing) $14.99

Packed with facts about nature, ideas for outdoor activities, and fun-to-do craft projects, this guide will keep girls interested and busy all year round. You’ll find instructions for outdoor games, ideas for hiking trips and nature watching, first-aid instruction, and more—a total of 60 themes of special interest to girls. This book’s sturdy construction makes it ideal for taking along on outdoor activities and adventures.

The Boy’s Book of Adventure

By Michele Lecreux, Celia Gallais, Esao Millet (B.E.S. Publishing) $14.99

Here’s the counterpart guide for boys. The book’s wide array of topics includes: camping and hiking advice, ways to protect against the weather, first-aid for injuries, using a compass, tips for studying the night sky, identifying birds, and much more.

Colorado (A True Book: My United States)

By Jennifer Zeiger (Scholastic) $7.95

Readers will get to know Colorado State’s history, geography, wildlife, and much more. This series includes an age appropriate (grades 3-5) introduction to curriculum-relevant subjects and a robust resource section that encourages independent study.

Wild About Rocky Mountain Birds: A Youth’s Guide to the Rocky Mountain States

By Adele Porter (Adventure Publications) $17.95

Family-friendly activities introduce kids to the fun of bird watching. In the backyard, at a park, or on a road trip, this guide provides: fun, engaging pages kids will love; easy-to-use format arranged by habitat and size; large, vivid photographs for simple bird identification; fun facts for kids.

 Wild Girl: How to Have Incredible Outdoor Adventures

By Helen Skelton (Candlewick Press) $19.99

Be inspired to get outside and dream big. Helen Skelton shares the stories of her daring feats of endurance and grit in some of the world’s most extreme wildernesses—overcoming challenges, embracing fears, and finding the positives in the toughest situations. Alongside each account are ideas for outdoor adventures readers can have closer to home, as well as gear lists, tips for physical and mental preparation.

Whose Track is That?

By Stan Tekiela (Adventure Publications) $14.95

Spotting animals in the wild is tricky, but they leave plenty of clues behind—especially tracks. This interactive picture book features the full-color photography of Stan Tekiela, a professional naturalist and award-winning author. Children will become familiar with a variety of North American critters, and might start seeing animal tracks on every outing.

Rock Collecting for Kids: An Introduction to Geology

By Dan R. Lynch (Adventure Publications) $12.95

 

Young readers will learn geology basics as well as have a guide which features full-color photographs and identification tips on 75 types of collectible rocks and minerals. A “how to” section details what to look for, where to look, and what to bring, as well as safety considerations.

Fossils for Kids: An Introduction to Paleontology

By Dan R. Lynch (Adventure Publications) $12.95

Whether children see their first fossil at a museum or find their own, this easy-to-understand guide includes details on what to look for and where to look; how fossils are formed; rules about what you can and can’t collect; and an identification guide.

 Until next month, happy reading.

Fall into Great Mysteries

“Foolish people are never harmless. Stupidity accounts for as many crimes as anger and greed.” ….Louise Penny

Fall is a perfect time to dive into some great mysteries. Here’s a sampling.

Striking Range: A Timber Creek K-9 Mystery

By Margaret Mizushima (Crooked Lane Books) $27.99

A deadly secret is buried in the Colorado high country. He was suspect number one—the man who tried to kill Deputy Mattie Cobb and may have killed her father 30 years earlier. But before   Mattie and cold case detective Jim Hauck get to interview him, he’s found dead in his cell. As Mattie and Robo pursue this case, they are called to help investigate the death of a young woman and a missing infant. The killer has a cold-blooded plan that threatens them all. Although this is the seventh book in Mizushima’s K-9 dog series, it works as a standalone. (Available September 7.)

Canyonlands Carnage: A National Parks Mystery

By Scott Graham (Torrey House Press) $16.95

When suspicious deaths befall a whitewater rafting expedition through Cataract Canyon in Canyonlands National Park, archaeologist Chuck Bender and his family recognize evil intent lies behind the tragedies. They must risk their lives and act before the murderer makes an already deadly journey even deadlier. This is Colorado author Scott Graham’s seventh book in the National Park Mystery series, and can serve as a standalone. (September 14)

Falling

By T.J. Newman (Avid Reader Press) $28

Former flight attendant T.J. Newman’s debut runaway bestseller is nonstop suspense. You just boarded a plane for a long flight with 143 other passengers. What you don’t know is that 30 minutes before the flight your pilot’s family was kidnapped. For his family to live, everyone on your plane must die. The only way the family will survive is if the pilot follows his orders and crashes the plane. Enjoy the flight.

The Madness of Crowds: Chief Inspector Gamache Novel #17

By Louise Penny (Minotaur Books) $28.99

Chief Inspector Gamache returns to Three Pines in Penny’s latest spellbinding novel. Gamache is asked to provide security for a visiting professor who will be lecturing at the nearby university. Gamache looks into Professor Abigail Robinson’s background and discovers an agenda so repulsive he begs the university to cancel the lecture. They refuse. Before long truth and fact, reality and delusion, are so confused it’s nearly impossible to tell them apart. When a murder is committed it falls to Gamache and his team to investigate the crime as well as this extraordinary delusion.

Daughter of the Morning Star: A Longmire Mystery

By Craig Johnson (Viking) $28

Tribal Police Chief Long’s niece, Jaya, begins receiving death threats. Jaya’s older sister disappeared a year previously, a victim of the scourge of missing Native Women in Indian Country. Chief Long calls on Sheriff Walt Longmire, along with Henry Standing Bear, in hopes that having Longmire involved might draw some public attention to the girl’s plight. But, she also inadvertently places the good sheriff in a one-on-one with the deadliest adversary he has ever faced, in both this world and the next. (September 21.)

The Guide

By Peter Heller (Knopf Publishing Group) $27

Best-selling Colorado author Peter Heller returns with a heart-racing thriller about a young man who is hired by an elite fishing lodge in Colorado, where he uncovers a plot of shocking menace amid the natural beauty of sun-drenched streams and forests. When Jack is assigned to guide a well-known singer, events transpire that lead Jack to realize that this idyllic fishing lodge may be merely a cover for a sinister operation.

Widowmaker

By Quinn Kayser-Cochran (Western Edge Books) $20

This is Colorado author Quinn Kayser-Cochran’s first in a planned series following army veteran Shepard Sunday through America’s pre-Depression west. Shepard takes work as a detective for the Eastern Nevada Mine Owners’ Association. When a series of extraordinary gold and silver discoveries pull Nevada out of a 25-year depression, the mining camps are flooded with rootless, violent men determined to grab their share. The Nevada Mine Owners’ Association’s corrupt president pits the organization against the local miners’ union, and workers begin to disappear. It’s thoroughly researched, rich with historical and fictional characters, and suspenseful from start to finish.

Until next month, happy reading.