“What Every Singer Needs to Know About the Body” by Malde, Allen, Zeller

Authors: Melissa Malde, MaryJean Allen, Kurt-Alexander Zeller

I read this as a followup to What Every Musician Needs to Know About the Body, since I’m a singer, not a musician. I expected it to be similarly playful and filled with illustrations more than words. I also expected it to cover very similar material.

I […]

“Bloodchild and Other Stories” by Octavia Butler

Recommended to me by: Marissa Lingen

Octavia Butler wrote apocalyptic science fiction stories full of the rawness of humanity and survival. One story addresses how stranded humans could pay rent on a foreign planet. Another looks at a terrible disease that is genetically dominant. Another is a vignette from a future when an epidemic […]

“Pure” by Julianna Baggott

Recommended to me by: s.e. smith at this ain’t livin’

This is a layered, well-crafted dystopian science-fiction novel offering both entertainment and examination of modern issues. It has scientific advances and their consequences, predictable heterosexual teen romances, well-developed female characters, adventures, violence, nuances of interaction, and a detailed sense of place.

Where many books […]

“The Georgian Feast” by Darra Goldstein

Subtitle: The Vibrant Culture and Savory Food of the Republic of Georgia

In Georgian singing classes, we talked about the integral role of singing in Georgian feasts, or supras. However, this book only had a one-sentence aside about singing. The rest is a Georgian travelogue and recipe book. It seems that different travelers focus […]

“The Horse Boy” by Rupert Isaacson

Subtitle: A Father’s Quest to Heal His Son

Recommended to me by: Kristin Neff mentions her husband’s book about their journey to Mongolia in her book Self-Compassion.

Rupert Isaacson writes about how his intuition and determination (and privilege) bring him to Mongolia where horseback riding and shamans help his autistic son Rowan.

He […]

“99 Georgian Songs” by Edisher Garakanidze

Subtitle: A collection of traditional folk, church and urban songs from Georgia

Recommended to me by: Jen Morris

This is primarily a book of sheet music, so I have not read it cover to cover, but it contains a lot of background material on Georgian music, as well as useful nuggets of information with […]

“The Bear That Wasn’t” by Frank Tashlin

Recommended to me by: A client.

This children’s book was written in 1946 about a bear who emerges from peaceful hibernation to find that a factory has been built around his cave. The factory managers tell him to get to work. When he protests that he is a bear, one manager after another tells […]

“Wishing for Tomorrow” by Hilary McKay

Subtitle: A sequel to A Little Princess

Recommended to me by: Badgerbag

My copy of A Little Princess (yes, I still have it) is dated 1982, but I think I read it before then from the library. As a young girl grieving, surviving and in need of rescue, I connected deeply with the story […]

“Balkan Dance” edited by Anthony Shay

Subtitle: Essays on Characteristics, Performance, and Teaching

I jumped at the chance to learn more about my favorite hobby, and learned more than I bargained for. This book of essays directly addresses the myth that modern Balkan folk dances are innocent indigenous creations, exposing the complex conscious manipulations underlying them.

Communist regimes created […]

“Street Without a Name” by Kapka Kassabova

Subtitle: Childhood and Other Misadventures in Bulgaria

Recommended to me by: Ceil Wirth on the EEFC mailing list

Kapka Kassabova’s chilling, yet engaging, personal memoir of growing up in communist Bulgaria, and then returning to visit shortly after Bulgaria joined the European Union. The characters are finely drawn, and each chapter covers a different […]