A Sam Axe Reading List

by Eric Meisberger,
LBPH Reader Advisor

Here is another in our series of reading lists for great fictional characters.Actor Bruce Campbell poses as character Sam Axe

I am an unabashed fan of the underrated television show Burn Notice. One of the best characters on the show was Sam Axe, who was played by the fantastic Bruce Campbell. The character of Sam Axe is a former Navy Seal with spy contacts through many branches of local and federal government. Sam, an old friend of the main character Michael, starts the show off as an informant who is spying on Michael to the FBI. Through a series of events Sam ends up working with Michael and is along for the ride helping him get his career and good name back, taking on freelance jobs around Miami. Sam loves to drink, loves classic cars, and is incredibly loyal to his friends. I present to you, a Sam Axe Reading List:


Seal Team Six: Memoirs of an Elite Navy Seal Sniper
by Howard E Wasdin
DB 73316
/ CL 14683
Wasdin, a former Navy SEAL Team Six sniper, chronicles his training and war experiences, including special operations during Desert Storm. Details the mission that almost cost him his life–the 1993 Battle of Mogadishu in Somalia, the basis for the 2001 movie “Black Hawk Down”. Bestseller.  2011.

Ambitious Brew: The Story of American Beer
by Maureen Ogle
DB 63591

Traces the history of beer brewing and consumption from the mid-1800s, when an influx of German immigrants energized the industry. Profiles beer entrepreneurs Frederick Pabst, Budweiser’s Carl Conrad, and the Busch and Yuengling families. Examines the impact of Prohibition, World Wars I and II, and the rise of microbreweries. 2006.

Cover for Clancy's Against All Enemies

Against All Enemies
by Tom Clancy
DB 73301 / CL 14751
After his mission to take custody of a high-ranking Taliban prisoner goes horribly wrong, a former Navy SEAL is asked to return to America and investigate an alliance between the Taliban and a Mexican drug cartel. Some violence and some strong language. Bestseller. Commercial audiobook. 2011.


Engines of Change: A History of the American Dream in Fifteen Cars
by Paul Ingrassia
DB 76148

Pulitzer Prize winner and author of “Crash Course” (DB 71814) analyzes fifteen iconic cars and their impact on American society and history. Profiles Henry Ford, Ferdinand Porche, Heinz Nordoff, Soichiro Honda, and other industrialists. Also details the development of the Ford Model T, Volkswagen Beetle, and Honda Accord. 2012.

Breast Cancer Awareness Month

by Kerry Hanahan,
LBPH Reader Advisor

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

A Pink Ribbon symbolizes Breast Cancer Awareness Month, with the words "Helping Women Now"

During October in Pittsburgh, you may see support for the fight against breast cancer in many ways throughout the month. Besides pink ribbons, in the past we’ve seen mammogram trucks parked around town, such as in front of the William Pitt Union on Fifth Avenue in Oakland. Our Pittsburgh Penguins have participated in the NHL’s Hockey Fights Cancer program since 1998, and often have special white and pink rally towels or wear purple jerseys. The Gulf Tower, located Downtown, usually uses the colored lights atop the 44-story building as a weather beacon–however, the lights had been known to flash pink during October. Also Downtown, we’ve even seen the fountain at The Point dyed pink  to support breast cancer awareness.

For more resources about breast cancer, check out the National Breast Cancer Foundation, Inc. and this list of free/reduced cost mammogram resources from CYB.

We also have a reading list available for LBPH patrons:

A Breast Cancer Alphabet
by Madhulika Sikka
DB 79029
News executive and breast cancer survivor offers a navigation guide to the road from diagnosis to treatment and beyond in hopes of demystifying breast cancer for others. Unrated. Commercial audiobook.    2014.

Prevention: The Ultimate Guide to Breast Cancer
by Mary L Gemignani
DB 77703
Basic guide for those with breast cancer. Discusses coming to terms with the diagnosis and sharing the news, treatments and complementary therapies, financial concerns, the importance of good nutrition and exercise, coping with stress, and recovery. Includes personal stories. 2013.

The Mayo Clinic Breast Cancer Book
by Lynn C Hartmann
DB 75600
Mayo Clinic medical oncologists provide a comprehensive explanation of breast cancer from basics to treatment options, side effects, associated cancers, and supportive care. Includes a guide for family members on medical and emotional issues. 2012.

Up and Coming

by Abbey Lukiewski,
LBPH Reader Advisor

I was recently searching online for some good book recommendations. I found these three books and was intrigued by the premise, and that all the main characters were blind. I realized that in the past I hadn’t read many books that had blind main characters. In fact the most recent one I could think of was The Fault in Our Stars. I decided to pick up these books because they seemed different from the traditional story and I’m hoping that they fit the bill because I’m looking forward to something different. She is Not Invisible and Blind are currently being recorded by NLS, and Blindsided is currently available.

She is Not InvisibleShe is Not Invisibly by Sedgwick
by Marcus Sedgwick
DB 79575
Sixteen-year-old Londoner Laureth Peak’s father goes missing while researching his next book. Even though she happens to be blind, she drags her younger brother Benjamin to New York to find their dad and follows the clues. For junior and senior high and older readers. 2013.

by Rachel DeWoskin
DB 79520
After a horrific accident leaves her blind, fifteen-year-old Emma, one of seven children, eagerly starts high school as a sophomore. She finds that nearly everything has changed–sometimes for the better. Commercial audiobook. For senior high and older readers. 2014.

Blindsided by Priscilla Cummings

by Priscilla Cummings
DB 71417
Fourteen-year-old Natalie attends a boarding school for the blind to learn braille, cane use, and self-protection skills. After she and her roommate are attacked by drunks, Natalie must decide whether to retreat to her parents’ home or actively claim an independent life. Some violence. For grades 6-9. 2010.

Best of BARD: September 2014

by Tony Mareino,
LBPH Reader Advisor

September was good month for the big dogs, as the Top Five downloads for the month are all the familiar names we know and love. Making a defiant return to the top of the charts is the one and only King Patterson, after what was a lengthy absence of two months from making a name on the charts. This time he’s joined by the upper echelon of best selling fiction – Clark, Child, Sandford and Jance – all worthy foes, but currently only lying at the feet of greatness. What will happen next month in the Top Five – will Patterson keep his head in the crown? We could wait with baited breath, but I might suggest we just keep on reading what we love and let those big dogs sort it out themselves. Here’s the Top Five:

DB 79192 / CL 15385
by James Patterson
Obsessed with finding the link between hundreds of unsolved kidnappings, rapes, and murders, Emmy Dockery has taken leave from her job as an FBI researcher. Not even Emmy’s field agent ex-boyfriend believes the cases are connected. Then Emmy finds a piece of evidence he can’t ignore. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. Bestseller. 2014.

I’ve Got You Under My Skin
DB 78644 / CL 15337
by Mary Higgins Clark
Five years ago someone killed Dr. Greg Moran while he pushed his three-year-old son on a park swing. Now his widow Laurie begins production of a reality television show on the twenty-year-old murder of a socialite, not realizing the two terrifying, unsolved cases will soon merge. Some violence. Bestseller. 2014.

Cover for Personal by ChildPersonal
DB 79349
by Lee Child
Retired military cop Jack Reacher is pulled back into service–this time for the State Department and the CIA–and teamed with rookie analyst Casey Nice. Someone took a shot at the president of France in the City of Light, and the bullet was American. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. 2014.

Field of Prey
DB 78933 / CL 15350
Lucas Davenport and other BCA agents work with local law enforcement after the discovery of several bodies in an abandoned Minnesota farmyard cistern–the work of a local serial killer who has been murdering one victim every summer for years. Violence, strong language, and some explicit descriptions of sex. Bestseller. 2014.

Second Watch
DB 78719
by JA Jance
In the hospital after knee-replacement surgery, Seattle private investigator J.P. Beaumont has vivid dreams about his early days on the force and serving in Vietnam. They lead him to revisit an old case–which in turn drives someone to murder. Strong language. 2013.


by LBPH Staff

The Talking Books at LBPH book club will be meeting on Thursday, October 23rd. The book selected is a haunting historical fiction novel.

Cover for the Ghost of Mary Celeste by MartinThe Ghost of Mary Celeste
DB 78202
by Valerie Martin
The Briggs and Cobb families are beset with deaths at sea. In 1859 Maria Briggs and her husband Joseph Gibbs are swept overboard. In 1872 the Mary Celeste, which was commanded by Benjamin Briggs, is found abandoned. In 1881 struggling writer Arthur Conan Doyle’s tale questions the families’ fates. 2014.

The Talking Books at LBPH book club meets every two months at Carnegie Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped. If you are interested in joining the book club please contact us today!

Fields Medal

by Kerry Hanahan,
LBPH Reader Advisor

For the first time since its inception in 1936, the Fields Medal–the most prestigious mathematics award in the world–was awarded to a woman.  Maryam Mirzakhani, who is a professor at Stanford University, holds a PhD from Harvard University and is an Iranian native.  She received her Fields Medal for her studies in the geometry of moduli space this past August in South Korea.Fields Medal winner Maryam Mirzakhani

Here are some books about women in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) we have available:


On a Farther Shore: The Life and Legacy of Rachel Carson
by William Souder
DB 75895
Pulitzer Prize finalist details the life and work of conservationist and author Rachel Carson (1907-1964). Examines Carson’s early years and career as a marine biologist. Assesses the impact of her writings–especially 1962’s “Silent Spring” (DB/RC 20184)–on the environmental movement and legislative efforts to regulate pesticides. Commercial audiobook. 2012.

Hope for Animals and Their World: How Endangered Species are Being Rescued from the Brink
by Jane Goodall
DB 70680
Scientist Goodall shares her observations of formerly endangered species. She discusses conservationalists’ success in rescuing animals such as the American crocodile and the whooping crane from extinction and describes ongoing efforts to preserve forms of wildlife and their natural habitats. Includes resources. Foreword by Cincinnati Zoo director Thane Maynard. 2009.

Soundings: The Story of the Remarkable Woman Who Mapped the Ocean Floor
by Hadi Felt
DB 75236
Biography of oceanic cartographer Marie Tharp (1920-2006), whose work with Bruce Heezen proved the existence of the Mid-Oceanic Ridges. Explores the intricacies of being a woman in a male-dominated field, her professional and personal relationships with Heezen, and the impact of her work on the field of geology. 2012.

A Ron Swanson Reading List

by Eric Meisberger,
LBPH Reader Advisor

This is the first of what we hope will be a series of blog posts featuring the reading lists of fictional characters. Of course this is all conjecture and meant in the spirit of fun, and all selections are the product of the mind of the writer of the post.Ron Swanson poses

I thought as good a place to start as any would be with Ron Swanson, the Director of the Pawnee City Department of Parks and Recreation in the fictional city of Pawnee, Indiana on the popular NBC series Parks and Recreation. Ron is an outspoken libertarian who, nevertheless, holds a government job. He is often amazingly stoic and distant from his staff, but tends to care for them greatly when no one is looking. He has a passion for woodworking, and eating meat.

He mentioned in Season 4, during the episode “Born and Raised” that he usually only reads his “own manifestos and sea stories.” Since we don’t have access to those manifestos, we’re going to opt for a few sea stories, including Ron’s favorite book “Moby Dick” by Herman Melville. (It’s his favorite because, in his words, “No froo-froo symbolism, just a good simple tale about a man who hates an animal.”)

Cover for Melville's Moby Dick

Moby Dick
by Herman Melville
DB 34184 / CL 183

Sailor Ishmael narrates this allegory of human potential and limitations. Seeking adventure, Ishmael signs on as a harpooner with Captain Ahab’s whaling ship. Once at sea, the crew discovers that, despite dire warnings from other ships and a prophet, Captain Ahab is obsessed with killing Moby Dick, the white whale responsible for his missing leg. Violence. 1851.

Mr. Midshipman Hornblower
by CS Forester
DB 26915 / CL 5528

The early career of Horatio Hornblower of the British Royal Navy is traced in a series of adventurous episodes. They illustrate the quick thinking, brilliant intuition, and decisiveness characteristic of our hero, and leave him with the rank of lieutenant. Followed by “Lieutenant Hornblower” (RC 14756). 1948.

The Mediterranean Caper
by Clive Cussler
DB 38369

It is a quiet Sunday afternoon at Brady Field on the island of Thasos in the Aegean Sea. Then suddenly an old World War I biplane appears out of nowhere and attacks the installation. Off the coast, the “First Attempt”, part of the National Underwater Marine Agency, is hit with a series of “accidents”. Major Dirk Pitt, sent to investigate, keeps remembering a plane shot down sixty years ago. Some strong language and some descriptions of sex. 1973.

The Sea Wolf
by Jack London
DB 22855

After being shipwrecked, Humphrey Van Weyden is forced to become a sailor aboard a seal-hunting vessel in exchange for his rescue. 1904.