Art: A World History
Elke Linda Buchholz, Gerhard Bühler, Karoline Hill,Susanne Kaeppele, and Irina Stotland Abrams
This amazing little compendium (pocket-sized, though a hefty 512 pages) succinctly details its subject from 40,000 BCE to the present. Its 900 pages cover artists, artworks, and trends, explaining in clear language the differences between movements and periods such as High Renaissance, Baroque, Surrealism, and others. A fascinating book to browse for a quick refresher through timelines and introductions to each period, Art is easily packed to take along on your travels, and palm-sized to accompany you through the Rijksmuseum, the Prado, the d’Orsay—or in your La-Z-Boy.
Awakenings: Asian Wisdom for Every Day
Danielle and Oliver Föllmi Abrams
This beautifully illustrated book is the fifth volume in the Offerings for Humanity (Sagesses de l’Humanité) series undertaken in 2003 with the aim of “promoting the spiritual heritage of mankind.” For each day of the year, it has a photograph and a quote to nourish the mind and the spirit, a thought and image upon which to meditate, to, as the authors suggest, “calm our agitation and find our peace.” Sources are drawn from Cambodia, China, Japan, Korea, Laos, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam. For more about this splendid project, visit www.sagesses.com..
The Memoirs of a Beautiful Boy
Robert Leleux St. Martin’s Press
There are mothers, Southern mothers, and Southern mothers of gay boys; add “East Texan” to the latter category, and you have the fixin’s of an outsized, outrageous memoir. This one, by Mother’s beautiful son, best friend, and confidante, tears, as they say, a new one in the annals of outrageous memoir, right from the beginning, with Daddy’s Dear John explanation of his departure (in this Cliff Notes version of the author’s lush 74-word sentence), “because Mother was crazy, and because she’d driven me crazy in a way that perfectly suited her own insanity.” Trust me. Read this one..
Uncle Bobby’s Wedding
Sarah S. Brannen G.P. Putnam’s Sons
This charming children’s book, written and illustrated by Sarah H. Brannen, is less an apologia for gay marriage than a tale about a little girl (guinea pig) confronting the possible loss of her beloved Uncle Bobby. In a sort of furry Member of the Wedding, niece Chloe is upset to learn, at a celebratory family picnic, that her favorite uncle is about to get married. Neither she nor her family is distressed that Bobby is marrying his boyfriend, Jamie; Chloe simply fears that she will be left out of their affections. Once she realizes that she now has two doting uncles, all is well. As it should be.