Iles, Greg. "The Bone Tree.” New York:William Morrow, 2015. 816 pp.
 
Picking up only days after the conclusion of "Natchez Burning,” "The Bone Tree,” the second book in the Natchez trilogy, finds Penn Cage’s world in chaos. His father, Dr. Tom Cage, is on the run from the law and facing charges of jumping bail and murder for the death of Viola Turner, his African-American nurse.
In the search for his father and the reasons for his running, Penn has started a war with the chief of the state police’s Criminal Investigations Bureau, Forrest Knox, the real leader of the Double Eagles, a violent Ku Klux Klan splinter group. The Double Eagles seemingly know much more about his father’s past than did Penn or his mother.
The only way Penn can save his father is either to make a devil’s bargain with Forrest Knox or to destroy him. Penn does not know whom to trust. To even the odds, Penn must rely on allies with objectives that are different from his own. FBI Special Agent, John Kaiser, who initially warned Penn about Knox, also believed that his father was the key to closing not only certain Civil Rights murders, but also the assassinations of President John F. Kennedy, Robert F. Kennedy, and Martin Luther King, Jr. Too, for Penn, what did his father, the kindly small-town doctor, know about the assassinations?
As such, while Penn desperately pursued his options, his pregnant fiancée, Caitlin Masters, a reporter and publisher, uncovered the real story behind a series of unsolved Civil Rights murders that seemingly hold the key to the Double Eagles’ ruination. The trail led to "the bone tree,” a secret killing field used by slave owners and by the Ku Klux Klan.
The book is swarming with FBI agents, villains, reporters, a red herring or two, and Penn and Caitlin, who make missteps like ordinary people. From their endeavors, Penn and Caitlin will barely escape with their lives from the den of a flamethrower-wielding sadist.In the end, all roads will lead to "the bone tree.” The reader can expect a well-constructed story, fine writing, a hard-to-bear tragedy, and an action-packed book full of twisting intrigue and deadly secrets. To this end, the book should be of interest to readers who are conspiracy-minded or like an action thriller. The book is available at the Marks-Quitman County Library.

Lauber, Patricia. "What You Never Knew About Tubs, Toilets & Showers.” Illustrated by
John Manders. New York:Simon & Schuster, 2001. 32 pp. &16.00 [hardcover).

 
The book, which is for young readers, is a lighthearted and fact-filled look at the different attitudes toward bathing, washing, and human waste disposal from the Stone Age to modern times. Cartoon illustrations, appropriate for both adults and for children, along with dialogue balloons provide information as well as humor.The main emphasis is on bathing practices, but readers can find the history of toilets in the margins, along with comical illustrations.
As such, the reader learns that early cultures, such as the Indus River Valley, which had pone of the world’s earliest cities, piped fresh water in and sewers carried the wastewater away. The Babylonians probably invented the bathtub, which was a big pottery bowl.The Greeks and Roman prized baths.However, after the fall of the Roman Empire, bathing fell out of favor in Europe for reasons both practical (cities were built without piped water) and spiritual (religious leaders considered it a sin of the flesh).
For example, St. Francis of Assisi thought of dirtiness as a sign of holiness.Queen Elizabeth I supposedly bragged, "I take a bath once of month, whether I need it or not.” In addition, the reader will love the discreet illustration of Louis XIV entertaining visitors while perched on a different kind of throne, his closestool (a chamber pot hidden beneath an upholstered seat). Not until the discovery of germs in the mid-1800s was the importance of cleanliness recognized. In fact, it was not until 1851 that the White House had a bathtub with running water.
The author writes in a conversational style that seems to share the reader’s wonder and amusement at the subject matter. The author’s text is very matter-of-fact and sometimes displays dry humor. Illustrations are a highlight of this book. Bright colors and subjects drawn as caricatures further add to the author’s levity.
Furthermore, it is easy to determine which illustration goes with which bit of text. The headings and letters that begin each paragraph are typed in a large, stylized font that set them apart from the rest of the text. More detail is added by "illuminating” the first letter of the first paragraph of each section by placing the letter over a relevant graphic.The main text is typed in a large serif font. To this end, the design of the book is well organized in displaying its subject matter, is easy to read, and includes a short bibliography that contains twelve citations. The book is available at the Marks-Quitman County Library.
 

Carter, Gregg Lee, ed. "Guns in American Society: An Encyclopedia of History, Politics, and the Law.” 2nd ed. 3 vols. Santa Barbara. CA: ABC-CLIO, 2012. 1096 pp.$294.00 [hardcover].
 
 
The over 500 plus entries in these books provide an unbiased examination of guns and gun-related issues in the United States. These entries range widely, including individuals, past and present who worked in and out of government. The entries also include diverse federal and state court cases as well as the ordinances promoted by gun control advocates or opponents, and provide a very good background on many issues.
For example, anyone desiring information on sawed-off shotguns, Saturday-night specials, Tommy guns or TEC-DC9 pistols will find helpful definitions and very brief and useful historical sketches. These occurrences make these books an excellent starting point for beginning researchers unfamiliar with gun terminology, especially historical gun terminology. In addition, these books provide a useful guide for sorting through the many relevant organizations and interest groups.
However, these books are less successful in placing guns in cultural and social historical context. For example, though a limited effort is made to discuss the influence of television on gun violence, finding much information about films in either the pre-TV or TV era is hard to find. To these books’ credit, there are separate discussions of guns and African Americans, but the same cannot be said of other significant racial or ethnic groups.
Nevertheless, these books provide fresh material on guns and gun-related issues. As such, despite the previously mentioned limitations, these books should serve as a standard reference on many aspects of guns, gun ownership, and gun control in the United States. To this end, these books are a welcome inclusion into any public library collection. The books are available at the Marks-Quitman County Library.
www.librarywebsites.com