Books on the Point

This morning on WCAI we talked books about the American West. Clearly we could do an entire year of books about the American West! So many books, so little time, as they say. Author Peter Abrahams joined us and Kathryn Eident sat in for Mindy Todd. If you missed the show, you can listen online anytime!

Kathryn’s Pick

The Little House on the Prairie series by Laura Ingalls Wilder


Peter’s Picks

Chet and Bernie mystery series by Spencer Quinn (aka Peter Abrahams!)

The Journals of Lewis and Clark edited by Bernard DeVoto

Bury My Heart At Wounded Knee by Dee Brown

The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain

The Money and the Power: the making of Las Vegas and its hold on America by Sally Denton and Roger Morris

My First Summer in the Sierra by John Muir

Desert Solitaire by Edward Abbey

The Indifferent Stars Above by Daniel James Brown

Print the Legend: the life and times of John Ford by Scott Eyman


Jill’s Picks

The Frontier in American History by Frederick Jackson Turner

The Library Book by Susan Orlean

When Women Were Birds: fifty-four variations on voice by Terry Tempest Williams

River of Shadows: Eadweard Muybridge and the technological wild west by Rebecca Solnit

My Faraway One: selected letters of Georgia O’Keeffe and Alfred Stieglitz

Sorrow of the Earth: Buffalo Bill, Sitting Bull and the Tragedy of Show Business by Éric Vuillard

The Song of the Lark by Willa Cather

When Esther Morris Headed West, Women, Wyoming, and the Right to Vote by Connie Nordhielm Wooldrige, illustrated by Jacqueline Rogers

Where I Was From by Joan Didion

“John Wayne: a love song” in Slouching Towards Bethlehem by Joan Didion

No time for, but you should really read! The Meadow by James Glavin, West by Carys Davies, and Cowboys Are My Weakness: stories by Pam Houston.

Listener Picks

News of the World by Paulette Jiles (Recommended by Steve Junker before we went on the air!)

Old Jules by Mari Sandoz

O Pioneers! by Willa Cather

This House of Sky by Ivan Doig

Last Bus to Wisdom by Ivan Doig

Cat wars: the devastating consequences of a cuddly killer

In 1894, a lighthouse keeper named David Lyall arrived on Stephens Island off New Zealand with a cat named Tibbles. In just over a year, the Stephens Island Wren, a rare bird endemic to the island, was rendered extinct. Mounting scientific evidence confirms what many conservationists have suspected for some time–that in the United States alone, free-ranging cats are killing birds and other animals by the billions. Equally alarming are the little-known but potentially devastating public health consequences of rabies and parasitic Toxoplasma passing from cats to humans at rising rates. Cat Wars tells the story of the threats free-ranging cats pose to biodiversity and public health throughout the world, and sheds new light on the controversies surrounding the management of the explosion of these cat populations.

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Dog songs: thirty-five dog songs and one essay

Beloved by her readers, special to the poet’s own heart, Mary Oliver’s dog poems offer a special window into her world. Dog songs collects some of the most cherished poems together with new works, offering a portrait of Oliver’s relationship to the companions that have accompanied her daily walks, warmed her home, and inspired her work. To be illustrated with images of the dogs themselves, the subjects will come to colorful life here. These are poems of love and laughter, heartbreak and grief. In these pages we visit with old friends, including Oliver’s well-loved Percy, and meet still others.

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Pets on the couch: neurotic dogs, compulsive cats, anxious birds, and the new science of animal psychiatry

The Oliver Sacks of animal brains, Dr. Nicholas Dodman is an internationally renowned veterinarian and research scientist who wrote one of the first popular books to recognize the complex emotional lives of dogs and to reveal innovative ways to help them, including with Puppy Prozac. Now, Dr. Dodman once again breaks new ground with the practice of One Medicine, the profound recognition that humans and other animals share the same neurochemistry, and that our minds and emotions work in similar ways.

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