Books to curl up with: a librarian's musings

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Sweet taste of success

After years of being on the outside looking into corporate America, a group of young Black businessmen and women had a crack at the big leagues. In The Real Pepsi Challenge, Capparell chronicles the work done by this group to create a special marketing campaign aimed at the Black consumer. The work they accomplished was groundbreaking both for their careers and for the new concept of niche marketing.

The book started a little slowly as Capparell catches the reader up on the background of the cola industry and the players in the drama. Her interviews with the remaining executives are really what pulled me in. Hearing from the participants first hand made the book for me.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Maisie Dobbs

I found myself putting off reading Maisie Dobbs, but not because the book wasn't good. I didn't want the book to end. Jacqueline Winspear has created a truly captivating character in Maisie. The book is in theory a mystery, but it wasn't why I wanted to read it. The characters just pull you in.

The book is set in England after the First World War. Maisie has set herself up as an investigator. Her first case is to see if a wife is having an affair. In learning the wife's real secret, Maisie's past and the case become intertwined. The book is just magically.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Ah, to be in Italy

As you may have noted, I have a passion for books about living and traveling abroad. I just finished one that I can't recommend highly enough. "Too much Tuscan sun" by Dario Castagno shows you the area around Sienna through the eyes of a tour guide and local. Castagano specializes in small tours of Sienna and the Tuscan country side. He talks about the area's history and his tourists. He recounts the tales of even terrible travelers with great kindness. Reading the book was like spending time with a new friend, who was excited about sharing his passion for history and Sienna's famous horse race, the Palio. (He has pictures of the race up at his web page

He has another coming in June "A day in Tuscany." I can't wait!

PS - I found a receipt from an Italian coffee shop tucked inside the book after I checked it out. I must admit that I wondered if whoever checked the book out before me had gone on a tour with Dario.