What Mark Kurlansky did for cod in his book of that title he also does with Salt: A World History. This is an encyclopedia of the world's only edible rock, covering a variety of aspects of a substance so essential to our existence. This common substance has a myriad of uses apart from our daily sprinkling on our food. In fact, the salt industry claims it has at least 14,000 uses including pharmaceuticals, fertilizer production, soap making and even textile dyeing.
The book begins with a fascinating account of salt's use in religious, magical, and folk rituals. In Ancient Egypt, salt had a role in both food preservation and the mummification process of less important people. Kurlansky details the actions of alchemists and chemists extracting elements from salt and recalls how Humphrey Davy extracted sodium using electrolysis. We also learn of methods used through time to obtain salt in both brine and solid form.
Salt has been the cause of wars and disasters and has even been used to create works of art. Miner near Krakow in Poland created entire underground churches with statues and carvings that remain tourist attractions to this day.
In "How to Talk With Your Doctor," author Ronald L. Hoffman instructs us how to approach doctors, develop conversations and direct those conversations to important issues, using a blend of knowledge from both conventional and alternative treatments.
Hoffman is in the camp of alternative and natural medicine and points out proven alternative/natural treatments that can supplement or complement conventional medicine. He offers sidebars throughout the book for both the patient and doctor to refer to, offering tips on how to improve communication and furnishing reliable internet sites and sources of medical information.
Also included are ways to practice preventative medicine with alternative therapies to chronic problems with references to studies and treatment methods to discuss with your doctor. This book would be a good read before you make an appointment for that next office visit.
--Review by Rodney Combs, Reference Librarian
The library has an extensive selection of books on gardening and horticulture, whether you are interested in growing vegetables or creating impressive flower beds. Plagued by pests? Want to create some quick compost? Have an interest in herbs? We have a book for that!
Check out some of our popular gardening books! The library also carries several popular gardening magazines, like Organic Gardening and Horticulture, which are available for checkout.
With the 100th anniversary of the Titanic disaster on April 15th, 2012, there has been renewed interest in the ship and its untimely end. Inspiring countless movies and books, the Titanic sinking is the worst maritime disaster in history, with 1,514 passengers and crew members losing their lives.
If you are interested in reading more about the disaster, we’ve compiled a list of just a few of the fiction and non-fiction titles available at the library. Some of the books, such as Titanic: An Illustrated History, reveal details about every aspect of the ship, while others, like Voyagers of the Titanic, focus on stories of the passengers themselves. Many fictional accounts have also been written about the disaster, such as The Dressmaker, a recently-released historical novel about a seamstress who survives the voyage only to be caught up in rumors and scandal when back on land. Click here for the full list of Titanic selections.