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Lake & Island Notes                       March 2015

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Bayfield, Wisconsin

Featured Title



Khirbet Khizeh   

by S. Yizhar (Yizhar Smilansky)


One of the nagging questions underlying the Palestinian Question is: What exactly happened in 1948 when the Zionists took control of the land that was to become Israel? Was it ethnic cleansing – as Smilansky (a Jew and longtime member of the Knesset) himself puts it, “the original sin of the State of Israel” – or was it something else? This elegant small novel tells the story of a young Israeli soldier under orders to clear out and destroy the Palestinian village of Khirbet Khizeh. Written in 1949, this book combines its stature as an historical document with haunting and lyrical prose to provide an alternative view of the nature and sources of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Featured Title



Trigger Warning  

by Neil Gaiman


In this new anthology, Neil Gaiman pierces the veil of reality to reveal the enigmatic, shadowy world that lies beneath. Trigger Warning includes previously published pieces of short fiction--stories, verse, and a very special Doctor Who story that was written for the fiftieth anniversary of the beloved series in 2013. Also included is, "Black Dog," a new tale that revisits the world of American Gods, exclusive to this collection. Full of wonder and terror, surprises and amusements, Trigger Warning is a treasury of delights that engage the mind, stir the heart, and shake the soul from one of the most unique and popular literary artists of our day.

Featured Title
 


If You Plant a Seed

by Kadir Nelson

Kadir Nelson, acclaimed author of Baby Bear and winner of the Caldecott Honor and the Coretta Scott King Author and Illustrator Awards, presents a resonant, gently humorous story about the power of even the smallest acts and the rewards of compassion and generosity. With spare text and breathtaking oil paintings, If You Plant a Seed demonstrates not only the process of planting and growing for young children but also how a seed of kindness can bear sweet fruit.

Featured Title
 


In Mary's Garden

by Tina and Carson Kugler

Milwaukee Natives Tina and Carson Kugler present an inviting picture book biography of Wisconsin artist Mary Nohl. We meet the artist as a young girl, just discovering her talent, and watch as her front yard sculpture garden comes to life. While the rest of her classmates were making pastries in cooking classes, Mary Nohl was making art-anything she fancied out of anything she could find. Inspiration struck Mary even when she wasn’t looking for it. Mary used common objects to make uncommon art. And one day, her garden was a gallery.
Greetings!
Ya’know?  If it ain’t one thing, it’s another!  A couple of years ago there was a proposed fly-in resort airport (certified for jets) to be located precisely in the headwaters of Pike’s Creek, a Class I trout stream near Bayfield. It took litigation all the way to the Court of Appeals to forestall that one. Then came the relaxed mining rules and a proposal to locate a 24-mile open-pit iron mine precisely in the headwaters of the Bad River, just upstream from the most important wild rice beds in the region. A month or so ago that project was abandoned after its proponents were forced by public outcry to deal with the wetlands issue. Now we’ve got a pig factory, fleeing CAFO devastation in Northern Iowa, seeking to locate precisely in the headwaters of Fish Creek, just upstream from Ashland’s domestic water intake in Chequamegon Bay. Presently the future of that project, and the cluster of such operations which would likely follow it, is in the hands of the Bayfield County Board and the DNR.
 
As a small business in Bayfield County we are acutely sensitive to the economic environment of our area. We welcome business, investment, and the promise of jobs. But, we do not welcome them at the expense of our existing economy and our existing working families. Like it or not, this region’s future is likely to continue to be based on tourism and outdoor activities (hunting, fishing, boating, hiking, and winter sports) - so too, the business infrastructure that supports them. The destruction of the incredible natural environment and habitat that defines the Chequamegon Region would destroy that economy and those jobs. And, it’s all about the water!
 
Each of the projects noted above is an immediate threat to the waters of local streams, rivers, and the pristine quality of Lake Superior wherein lies 10% of all fresh surface water on the entire earth. In combination, these projects and others like them present a dire and urgent threat to the viability of our local economy. Our business, and others like ours, is dependent above all upon the clean, fresh water that is the lifeblood of the place where we live and work.
 
To know more, it would be worth a look at a couple of books: Peter Annin’s Great Lakes Water Wars would be a great start. We are delighted to report that Peter will join our own Northland College this year as co-director of its new Mary Griggs Burke Center for Freshwater Innovation. You might also look at Dave Dempsey’s On the Brink; Jerry Dennis’s The Living Great Lakes; and Wayne Grady’s The Great Lakes.

Remember, if you’ve lost yours,
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What we're reading...


The Big Seven
by Jim Harrison


Well, Sunderson’s back! Query whether he has a first name other than “Detective”? This is something of a sequel to Harrison’s The Great Leader and, again, Sunderson is awash in a backwater of sex, mayhem, alcohol, and fishing in the UP.  His marriage is over and the detective is obsessed with the Seven Deadly Sins. He wants to add an eighth – violence. The story has plenty of it as Sunderson tries to unravel the series of killings in the Ames clan. More interesting than the suspense are his (or, perhaps more accurately, Harrison’s) ruminations on the nature of life, maleness, sin, and of course, fishing. Vintage Harrison? Not really, but a good read.
Where You Go Is Not Who You'll Be
by Frank Bruni

Our eldest grandson has turned 17 and his eyes are turning toward his college years. What school does he want? Which school will want him? These questions seem to have become the basis of an existential crisis for modern American families. Frank Bruni, a columnist for the New York Times, has served up something of an antidote. He debunks, with statistical support, the notion that one’s success is directly related to the pedigree of the school attended. What really counts is the student’s attitude, effort, and achievement in and out of the classroom at whatever institution is attended. Bruni also indicts the elite colleges for their efforts to cynically inflate their desirability and accessibility by “ginning up desire in order to frustrate it.” We’d like to see our grandson choose a place with an interesting mix of serious students taught by engaged and gifted teaching professors. This book is a breath of fresh air.
What I Talk About When
I Talk About Running

by Haruki Murakami

So-called “March Madness” is perhaps, the year’s most intense and concentrated period of sports enthusiasm in the United States. It’s the Big Dance and the Brackets.  Everyone seems to do it. Even Obama does it on national TV. So, what’s the antithesis of the race to the Final Four in sports literature? Well, maybe Haruki Murakami is the answer. Unlike the collective mania of the NCAA tournament, running is the most solitary of sports activities. Murakami took up writing rather late in life and he didn't take up running until well into his middle age. Now he has run marathons, super-marathons and triathlons. He’s also written more than a dozen novels and volumes of short stories. This book is a meditation on running and also a nod to writing and growing old. The translation by Philip Gabriel preserves the spare, lean language and opaque tone of the Japanese. It makes you want to…well, think about… going for a long run.

Final Thoughts...


Spring has sprung! At least in ways that we recognize "up north." The ferry is running again. The fishing tugs have freed themselves from their frozen cells. The tables and chairs are set up outside of Big Water Cafe, and of course in our world there is a fresh crop of new titles coming soon that we are looking forward to sharing with you. Three of our favorite authors all have titles coming in May. We thought we'd give you a heads up now!

Coming May 19th
- New York Times bestselling humorist Michael Perry makes his fiction debut with this hilarious and big-hearted tale, a comic yet sincere exploration of faith and the foibles of modern life that blends the barbed charm of Garrison Keillor, the humor of Christopher Moore, and the audacious insight of Chuck Klosterman.

Coming May 5th - Nickolas Butler's debut novel, Shotgun Lovesongs, has become an international bestseller, and now, Beneath the Bonfire - a book of 10 short stories, he demonstrates his talent for portraying "a place and its people with such love that you'll find yourself falling for them, too" (Josh Weil, author of The Great Glass Sea).


Coming May 19th - The 14th book in the Cork O'Connor series that starts right here in the Bayfield area will be out in paperback! Cork O'Connor battles vicious villains, both mythical and modern, to rescue a young girl in this riveting mystery. This maybe our only book from Krueger this year, so we should savor it!

 

Save 20% Off One Book!


Book must be in stock, some restrictions apply. Print this coupon and present it in store for your discount. This coupon may not be combined with any other promotions or discounts. Limited to one use and one coupon per customer.

Offer expires April 20th, 2015
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