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Taste of Love from the Heart, The, with Love, Nanie
By Barbara Carillo. Angel Baby Press. 240 pp. .

A native Tucsonan shares her family’s history and favorite southwestern recipes.
Telling New Mexico: a New History
By Frances Levine, Louise Stiver, Marta Weigle. Museum of New Mexico Press. 488 pp. Index. $45.00.
Top Pick
What a great way to get a history lesson! Sit down, open this book anywhere and enjoy. Perhaps this is because forty-three New mexico historians wrote in their area of expertise in such a way that one can hardly wait to turn the page. For sure, the Land of Enchantment has an exciting history from the Spanish entrada to Denis Chavez and the making of modern Mexico. Here we have the Santa Fe Railroad and American Indians promoting tourism, the dramatic story of Los Alamos and World War II, commentary on the artistic community from Mabel Dodge Lujan to Georgia O'Keeffe, Rosewell and its flying saucers, Buddy Holly and his music, hippies in Taos, and Mexican immigrants. Let us not forget the flag, Camino Real, acequias, and oh yes, Billy the Kid. This is for a general reader, the scholar and probably should be in every New Mexico classroom. []
To know New Mexico’s soul, read Telling New Mexico, a compilation of 51 essays about the state. Try Jason Silverman’s story about the Clovis recording studio that propelled rocker Buddy Holly’s meteoric rise, or Roland Dickey’s ode to wind and windscapes, or Gail Okawa’s search for her grandfather once confined to WWII Japanese internment camps in Lordsburg and Santa Fe, or Marta Weigle’s illuminating piece on “engineering” New Mexico as the land of enchantment for tourists. Each of the essays in this book is excellent and many are superb. The book has seven parts --- Light, Land, Water, Wind; Beyond History’s Records; The Northern Province; Linking Nations; Becoming the Southwest; The ‘New’ New Mexico; and My New Mexico --- but feel free to plunge in anywhere. Other states should do so well. []

Texas BBQ
By John Morthland, Wyatt McSpadden. University of Texas Press. 159 pp. $39.95.

Photographic journeys to barbecue purveyors of Texas are explored beautifully in both color and black and white.
Texas Rattlesnake Roundups
By Clark E. Adams, John K. Thomas. Texas A&M University Press. 113 pp. Index. $19.95.
Not only in Texas, but in Oklahoma, Kansas, New Mexico, Pennysylvania, Alabama, and Georgia,do the aficionados gather rattlesnakes for yearly roundups during January and July. Though the reptiles have been hunted for years to rid the country of perceived threats to people and livestock, ultimately these roundups became community events with snake shoots, sacking, stomping, racing, and decapitation contests. Curios were created from the skin and other snake parts. Snaked dens were gassed to aid in collection and many died during transportation. The book is filled with statistics. It also includes a fine anatomy and natural history of the reptile. A number of organizations oppose these roundups including the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelto to Animals and the Human Society of the United States. []
Long known for its arts and crafts, Santa Fe was designated a UNESCO “creative city” in 2005. As this book shows in several hundred superbly selected and presented photographs covering 140 years, Santa Fe is also a photo city. The cameras of luminaries such as Gilpin, Vroman, Adams, Porter, and Lown have caught the magic of the town’s sense of place, identity, and history. The combination of fine art, historical photography, and documentary work makes for more than just a magnificent volume – it gives a full and inviting sense of North America’s oldest capital. Personally, I’ve always felt Santa Fe is too glitzy, commercial, and snobby – a home for reclusive rich folks and aesthetes, but this photo celebration portrays a vibrant and diverse community. Now I will look forward to strolling around town this book in hand. It is wonderful. []

Through the Lens: Creating Santa Fe
By Mary Anne Redding, Krista Elrick. Museum of New Mexico Press. 268 pp. $50.00.
From earliest days (of photography, that is) through the booming railroad years to contemporary scenes (the magical, open-air opera, for example), this collection of images, beautifully reproduced, captures the essence of the oldest capitol city in the U.S., and the first U.S. city to be designated by UNESCO as a “Creative City”. Fine visual browse with excellent text(s). []
Long known for its arts and crafts, Santa Fe was designated a UNESCO “creative city” in 2005. As this book shows in several hundred superbly selected and presented photographs covering 140 years, Santa Fe is also a photo city. The cameras of luminaries such as Gilpin, Vroman, Adams, Porter, and Lown have caught the magic of the town’s sense of place, identity, and history. The combination of fine art, historical photography, and documentary work makes for more than just a magnificent volume – it gives a full and inviting sense of North America’s oldest capital. Personally, I’ve always felt Santa Fe is too glitzy, commercial, and snobby – a home for reclusive rich folks and aesthetes, but this photo celebration portrays a vibrant and diverse community. Now I will look forward to strolling around town this book in hand. It is wonderful. []

Time of the Rangers: Texas Rangers: From 1900 to the Present
By Mike Cox. Forge. 496 pp. Index. $27.95.
This second volume continues the long history of the oldest law enforcement agency in a North American state. By this time, the rangers have dismounted in favor of the auto and helicopter to locate trouble and hand out justice. Their pursuits are legendary and this book should satisfy any reader looking for well-documented adventure. Here the rangers handled border troubles with Mexico, got tough with killers and bootleggers, settled oil field riots and more recently, investigated the marriages of the under-age females in the YFZ Ranch, home of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. This is real life stuff -- better than fiction. []

To Walk in Beauty: a Navajo Family's Journey Home
By N. Scott Momaday, Stacia Spragg-Braude. Museum of New Mexico Press. 200 pp. $45.00.
Top Pick
Heartfelt, a word not used much these days, would be a good choice for a single-word review of this large-format, handsome production. The illustrations, all black-and-white and mostly shot in soft-focus, provide us outsiders with a realistic view of what it is like to be a Navajo family living on the reservation today. Each of nearly 100 photos is “captioned” with a quote from some member of the Begay family. []
This profoundly moving book is about a Navajo family, the Begays. Their story is told in compelling, personal photographs by Stacia Spragg-Braude and in the family’s own words, excerpted from recorded interviews. It is the story of identity, who we are, and what is our place in the world. Steeped in history, Churro sheep, and modern afflictions, the family struggles to survive by relying on “the old ways” to heal both the body and the spirit. In the words of Alta Begay, “My dad’s analogy was that we need to be like the sheep – be hardy and resilient” (page 122), and they were. The forceful images take us inside the family as if it were our own, for in many ways it is.
If you have driven the highways of our Native nations and perhaps wondered “Who are these people?” and “What’s it like to live here?”, then read this book. In an afternoon you’ll gain the insight of a lifetime.
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Together, Alone: A Memoir of Marriage and Place
By Susan Wittig Albert. University of Texas Press. 183 pp. $24.95.
In her forties, Albert gave up a solid career in teaching and university administration to take a gamble on marriage (her fourth), rural living, and fiction writing. Twenty years and dozens of successful books later, she revisits her journal entries from the 1980s and 1990s and muses over the importance of place (internal and external) in mooring a life and a marriage. In simple, elegant prose, she describes how she and her husband built a life of togetherness and solitude on a hardscrabble ranch in the hill country north of Austin and explains the spiritual lessons she learned on a monastery in remote South Texas. []

Touring the West: With the Fred Harvey Co. & the Santa Fe Railway
By Kathleen Nickens, Paul R. Nickens. Schiffer Publishing. 110 pp. Index. $24.99.
It was a perfect marriage, that of the Harvey Company and the Santa Fe Railroad. Between 1880 and 1960 he pair promoted tourism in the west with a vigorous promotional campaign. Postcards were particularly effective since the images were calculated to encourage travel and included the Harvey House hotels and grandiose scenes along with the exotic -- photos of Navajo and pueblo peoples at daily tasks. The book contains hundred of color replicas of many of these postcards. The layout is badly designed and detracts from total enjoyment of the historic cards. []

Trail of Gold and Silver, The: Mining in Colorado, 1859-2009
By Duane A. Smith. University Press of Colorado. 320 pp. Index. $22.95.
Smith writes well, pushing the tale of 150 years of mining in Colorado along at a good clip. Although many of us consider Colorado to be somewhat outside “the Southwest”, it is hard to deny Ouray, Telluride and Silverton, all of which get their share of attention here. []

Travails of Two Woodpeckers, The: Ivory-Bills & Imperials
By David E. Brown, Kevin B. Clark, Noel F. R. Snyder. University of New Mexico Press. 170 pp. Index. $27.95.
Although half of his book is about the Southeast, former home to the now probably extinct ivory-bill woodpecker, much of it deals with the imperial, once widely found in Mexico’s Sierra Madre. The authors chronicle the loss of these birds and make some penetrating points about endangered-species management, which is important to the Southwest. The book is good ornithology and a very thoughtful analysis. []

Trial and Triumph, the Life and Accomplishments of Louise Foucar Marshall: Her First 67 Years
By Patricia Peters Stephenson. self-published. 134 pp. $18.00.
No doubt about it. Louise Foucar Marshall was a very interesting woman, at least up to 1932, when this biography ends with her acquittal following the trial in which she was accused of murdering her husband. By that time, Louise was recognized as the first female professor at the Unive4ersity of Arizona and a wealthy businesswoman who became known as Tucson's top real estate developers. She ultimately set up the Marshall Foundation, which continues to support various charities and University of Arizona scholarships. The self-published typescript is hard to read, filling over one hundred 8 x 10" pages, and includes badly reproduced photographs and no index. There is no doubt that an editor was badle needed here. []

Trickster in the Front Yard: Still Semi-Native
By Jim Belshaw. University of New Mexico Press. 210 pp. $19.95.
For many years, readers have turned to Jim Belsaw's column in the Albuquerque Journal. He has selected a potpourri of delightful vignettes drawn from real life for Trickster. These are sometimes tongue-in-cheek, sometimes reflective, sometimes he plays with human hypocracies. Who would believe that he and Tony Hillerman were long-time buddies who never talked of writing, instead, enjoyed their Tuesday poker club. He makes fun of Corrales where a local committee wanted road side signage reminding travelers that "Coyotes live in Corrales." []

Trinity
By Charles Bowden, Michael P. Berman. University of Texas Press. 260 pp. Bill and Alice Wright Photography Series. $55.00.
In parallel stories reminiscent of Eduardo Galeano’s masterful Memory of Fire, Charles Bowden explores the sweep of Southwest history and peers into the future. Bowden tries to make sense of modern America by visiting Geronimo, Billy the Kid, Pancho Villa, Robert Oppenheimer, and Lola Casanova. He powerfully narrates a dark side, one where detonation of the atomic bomb at Trinity Site is not out of character for the Southwest. The clash of cultures, extermination, fear, crime, savagery, and wars on the land itself are not new here, but the lesson has yet to be learned: “The land must be earned, not taken” (page 225). The result is a rewarding but wringing look at ourselves, for Bowden seats us uncomfortably close to the fire. Haunting, stark black-and-white photos by Guggenheim fellow Michael Berman ably serve the mood of the book. Trinity completes a memorable trilogy with Inferno (2007) and Exodus (2008). []
Never a writer with an optimistic view of human nature and behavior Bowden’s text surveys our, that is we human beings’, history in terms of such colorful figures as Pancho Villa and Billy the Kid, discovering in the process a connection to Robert Oppenheimer and the Trinity Project. Teamed with photographer Berman, as he was in the first book of this trilogy (Exodus/Exodo came in the middle), the text reminds us constantly that there is surely a human obligation to protect and preserve the land/earth, while the black and white photos suggest, without optical bludgeoning, that vast, mostly un-populated, vistas are not necessarily cheery sites.
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True West: An Illustrated Guide to the Heyday of the Western
By Michael Barson. TCU Press. 175 pp. $29.95.
If you ever watched a Western movie, read a cowboy comic book, or listened to Gene Autry, this book take you back to those wonderful days. Splashy full-color book jackets, movie posters, and album covers will evoke more fond memories than a high school reunion. The text is not analytical, but it is certain to provide a nostalgic evening of fun reading. []
The "True West" is one of the imagination and brings back childhood memories of those "ride 'em" cowboy movies that feature Indians, runaway wagon trains, criminals, beautiful women, and romance. Here are Hopalong Cassidy, Tom Mix, Gene Autry, John Wayne, Amanda Blake and James Arness. Included is an annotated list of every western movie, a list of authors and their books, songs, and even comic books. Hundreds of colorful ads are reproduced here. A delightful trip back to the West as Hollywood saw it. []

Tucson's Most Haunted: a Collection of Ghostly Tales From the Old Pueblo
By Katie Mullaly, J. Patrick Ohlde, Mikal Mullaly. Schiffer Publishing. 160 pp. $14.99.

Thirty tales of local mysteries and ghosts in Tucson. Who knew?
Tucson's River of Words: Award Winning Youth Poetry & Art, 2009
By Many authors . Pima County Natural Resources, Parks and Recreation. 32 pp. .

This volume collects winning poetry and art from the 2009 Tucson's River of Words Youth Poetry and Art Contest, sponsored by Pima County Natural Resources, Parks and Recreation.
Two Sams, The: Men of the West
By F.M. Worden. CCB Publishing. 270 pp. $16.95.
Worden tries to pack far too many scenes into a single (make that double) narrative. He includes frontier events ranging from the Mississippi River down into Texas and finally out to Arizona when it was still a Territory, and the individuals here, mostly Sam Duncan and his son, are involved in what seems like every kind of adventure that ever occurred on the frontier.
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