most unusual cars

Old school car racing

132 of the Most Unusual Cars That Ever Ran at Indianapolis
Engel
1970

This is one of those niche books that might be wildly popular in some areas and the book equivalent of a doorstop in other areas. Here in Michigan, this book could have an audience. In my library, it is not unusual to run across retired auto people that have niche interests in cars. Just the other day, I had a long conversation with one of these guys about the development of carburetors over time. He even came back the next day a showed me clippings he had been saving over the years. Before I knew it I was searching google patents for some carburetors from the 1930s.  (BTW, I love the more esoteric discussions with patrons.)

superwoman cover

Be a SUPERWOMAN!

Superwoman
Conran
1979

This is a lighthearted housekeeping manual that has advice about saving money, fixing things around the house, and other household tips. There really isn’t any discussion on division of labor. It’s more about doing the same chores more efficiently. Evidently, all that extra time saved will allow you to pick up YET MORE WORK as an entrepreneur. My feeling is the author is the very definition of the superwoman.

Mary

Casserole Cook Book cover

Pass me that casserole!

Casserole Cook Book
Better Homes and Gardens
1972

You all know I can’t resist a good casserole cookbook. We have another nice cookbook with pictures that do nothing to entice the reader to eat said casseroles. If you are a casserole/hot dish fan then you know that certain ingredients appear all the time:

A can of cream-of-something soup
Some kind of meat or tuna fish
Potato chips (for crunch!)
A can of vegetables (maybe frozen if you want an “upgrade”)
Cheese
Noodles or rice

Actually, if you take the above and mix them together you probably have 90% of casserole recipes covered. This book doesn’t use the cream of something soup as often, but they have some wonderful substitutes such as mayonnaise, evaporated milk, and sour cream.

Parenting for the 90s cover

Parenting in the 1990s

Parenting for the 1990s
Osborne
1989

This book is all about combining those past theories of parenting into a new model. It seems as if there is always a “breakthrough” in how we parent. This is more an academic discussion. There is a grid outlining various parenting philosophies that I doubt non academics would find helpful. (I would be lying if I hadn’t thought about putting my kids in a Skinner box, just so everyone would be quiet.)

Parenting is just difficult no matter what. I read parenting books all through the 1990s when my kids were little. I am not sure that I had any particular moments of clarity or insight reading any of these books. The best advice is to keep trying and to keep reading, hoping one of these ideas or books will speak to your family.

Mary

Gold in Michigan cover

Find yourself some gold in Michigan

Gold in Michigan
MARC Geologic Research Services
1987

This is more pamphlet than book. It is more of a general summary of gold discoveries in Michigan. This is basically a county guide to gold discoveries. It is geared to the lay person and it would be a natural choice for any public library in Michigan.

It is a weeder because its physical binding is gone, the typeset is terrible to read and the images are fuzzy. There are also no direct citations other than an author’s note that the information was from state and national records. However, depending on the item’s condition and collection parameters, it might be a keeper. I doubt this would be important to geology research, but it could be helpful for historical or genealogical leads.

pyschic frontiers of medicine cover

Psychic Healing from the 1970s

The Psychic Frontiers of Medicine
Schul
1977

For those of you that like your health advice with a side of spooky, this is your book. Check out some of the claims on the back of the book. My particular favorite is sex energy to achieve “elevated states of consciousness.” I plan to get me some sex energy. Maybe I won’t feel so tired at work.

I am a big fan of weird stuff and would probably buy something like this. I am a big fan of this type of “literature”, such as UFOs, ghosts, haunted houses, crop circles, etc. (I will also confess to a few marathon sessions of Ancient Aliens, much to the shame of my scientist daughter and mathematician son.) If it is weird, I want to read it. I also think these books are fun for a library to have. This one is hanging on by a thread, so it is a weeder on condition anyway. Besides, I want the latest in my fake medical information.

Take a look at our “unexplained” category for more stuff like this. Naturally, I have probably read a good percentage.

Mary

Angel a Day Crafting

Angel a Day

Crafting an Angel a Day
Scott, ed.
2000

If you are a fan of rather weird looking or cartoon-like angels, this book might be for you. There is a wide variety of angel themed crafts. I am not a fan of these types of decorations, but I know a lot of people like this stuff. What I did like about this book were the instructions. The skills required were not ridiculous like some of the books we have featured. Good craft books are really about instruction. This one is better than most. Depending on condition, this might work fine for your collection.

1 or two angels for the Christmas tree, perfectly fine at my house. Any more than that, especially given how these angels look, and I am going to have a problem. If I had to craft an angel a day, I would probably have to be medicated.

Washington Redskins

A Flag on the Play

Washington Redskins
NFL Up Close
Smolka
2017

Since this is a bit more serious than just a discussion on a book, I am filing it under the Practical Librarian tab. This post is a bit longer than usual and illustrates one of the bigger philosophical aspects of collection development. I am only raising questions, and as usual, I am not telling anyone to weed or not weed a particular title. This is only my opinion and reflects some of the discussions I have had with my colleagues.

I was filing some books and this one jumped out at me. It is your basic football book outlining some key players and brief (very brief), sanitized, history of the franchise. Most public library collections probably have a similar set, with extra books on the hometown favorite. My library has a book on all the NFL franchises, but as we are in Metro Detroit, our sports choices will naturally favor Detroit area sports teams.