Amid the tumults of 2001, this region's authors and publishers have stayed by their keyboards and their cash-flow charts, producing new books for the general reader. Here, accordingly, is the annual try at a census of such works, by Marylanders or about Maryland. (S) means softbound; (O), oversize.
The Other Side of Color: African American Art in the Collection of Camille O. and William H. Cosby Jr., by David C. Driskell (Pomegranate, 213 pages, $65). Of the 47 artists represented, the first is Joshua Johnston.
Matisse in the Cone Collection: The Poetics of Vision, by Jack Flam (Baltimore Museum of Art, 118 pages, $19.95) (S). Flam's sixth book on Matisse. Excellent color reproductions.
Inventing the Renaissance Putto, by Charles Dempsey (University of North Carolina, 277 pages, $59.95). A putto is a naked child, usually a cherub or cupid.
Lives in Art: Sixteen Women Who Changed Theater in Baltimore, by Maravene Loeschke (107 pages, $14.95). Producers, playwrights, directors.
A Life Divided: George Peabody, Pivotal Figure in Anglo-American Finance, Philanthropy and Diplomacy, by Robert Van Riper (Xlibris, 255 pages, $31.99). How he made all that money in the first place.
What Lips My Lips Have Kissed: The Loves and Love Poems of Edna St. Vincent Millay, by Daniel Mark Epstein (Henry Holt, 300 pages, $26). The connections between a famous beauty's love poems and love life.
Noble Powell and the Episcopal Establishment in the 20th Century, by David Hein (University of Illinois Press, 182 pages, $29.95). A Maryland bishop (1941 to 1963) whom the civil rights movement left behind.
Radical Visions: Stringfellow Barr, Scott Buchanan and Their Efforts on Behalf of Education and Politics in the Twentieth Century, by Charles A. Nelson (Bergin & Garvey, 226 pages, $59). They founded the Great Books Program, in 1937 at St. John's College in Annapolis.
Fugitives: Evading and Escaping the Japanese, by Bob Stahl (University Press of Kentucky, 143 pages, $22.50). After the fall of the Philippines, three U.S. civilians safely reach Australia.
With the Fifth Army Air Force: Photos From the Pacific Theater, by James P. Gallagher (Johns Hopkins, 208 pages, $34.95). A World War II serviceman's tales and photos.
Ottmar Mergenthaler: The Man and His Machine, by Basil Kahan (Oak Knoll, 254 pages, $55). The man who, while in Baltimore, invented the Linotype.
Given to God: The Life of Katherine Ferguson, by Margaret D. Pagan (Peggy's Trunk, 152 pages, $14.95). A freed New York City slave pioneers in the Sunday School movement.
Saving the Bay: People Working for the Future of the Chesapeake, by Ann E. Dorbin; photos by Richard A. K. Dorbin (Johns Hopkins, 352 pages, $36). Profiles of 46 men and women whose efforts may yet arrest its decline.
The Chesapeake Bay, by Barbara Radcliffe Rogers and Stillman Rogers (Hunter, 495 pages, $18.95) (S). Not pocket-size, but it's accurate, thorough, sensible.
Dancing With the Tide, by Mick Blackistone (Tidewater, 266 pages, $24.95). The watermen - over against recreational fishing, conservation, politics, polluted runoff and simple, basic overpopulation.
The Chesapeake: An Environmental Biography, by John R. Wennersten (Maryland Historical Society Press, 255 pages, $30). Wennersten is good on the past, relentless toward the present (the bay is not "dying" but "impaired") and scary as to the future.
Terror on the Chesapeake: The War of 1812 on the Bay, by Christopher T. George (White Mane, 213 pages, $39.95). A familiar topic, but this could be the best single-volume treatment yet.
Discovering the Chesapeake: The History of an Ecosystem, Philip D. Curtin, Grace S. Brush, George S. Fisher, editors (Johns Hopkins, 400 pages, $23.50) (S).
A Day on the Bay: Postcard Views of the Chesapeake, by Bert Smith and Anthea Smith (Johns Hopkins, 96 pages, $29.95). Excursions, in long-ago postcards.
Local History and Culture
Breaking Away From Broken Windows: Baltimore Neighborhoods and the Nationwide Fight Against Crime, Grime, Fear and Decline, by Ralph B. Taylor (Westview, 386 pages, $35). We can do better by our city.
Growing Up in Baltimore: A Photographic History, by Eden Unger Bowditch (Arcadia, 128 pages, $19.99). Unfamiliar images; good on schools back when.
The Pasadena Peninsula: A Closer Look at the Land Between Two Rivers, by Isabel Shipley Cunningham (Pasadena Business Association, 409 pages, $30). Southeast of Baltimore, north of Annapolis, between Patapsco and Magothy, lies Pasadena, with its ancestors, its families, its strawberries.
A Place in Our Hearts: Roland Park Country School (RPCS, 289 pages, $30). Some powerhouse bylines: Josephine Jacobsen '26, Adrienne Rich '47, Joan Buckler Claybrook '55, Kathy Hudson '67, Jane Tinsley Swope '34, Betty Ann Schmick Howard, '57, editor.
Journeys to the Heart of Baltimore, by Michael Olesker (Johns Hopkins, 346 pages, $22.50). It must be wonderful to be a newspaper columnist - you get to meet such interesting inhabitants.
Storyteller, by Rafael Alvarez (Baltimore Sun, 269 pages, $13.95) (S). Local-setting short stories, as well as newspaper features.
Walkin' the Line: A Journey From Past to Present Along the Mason-Dixon, by William Ecenbarger (M. Evans, 224 pages, $21.95). At intervals, Ecenbarger has walked at least half the line's 365 marshy-craggy miles.
Sykesville, by Bill Hall (Arcadia, 128 pages, $19.99). The Carroll County river-and-railroad town (Images of America series).
Terrifying Tales of the Beaches and Bays, by Ed Okonowicz (Myst and Lace, 122 pages, $9.95) (S) A switch from Okonowicz's pattern as author-publisher of Delmarva ghost stories: these he made up.
Tales From Annapolis: A Ring-Knockers' Bedside Companion, compiled by Rich Zino '67 and Paul Laric '49 (Omega Resources, 286 pages, $19.95) (S). How sweet it is, former mids agree, to relive hardships survived together.
The Old Family Farm: Farm Life 100 Years Ago, by George Grier (Tree House Publishers, 168 pages, $14.95) (S). Memories (and photos) of an age when Maryland meant fields, beasts, crops.
Chincoteague and Assateague Islands, by Nan DeVincent-Hayes and Bo Bennett (Arcadia, 128 pages, $18.99). Where you have your choice - ocean or bay.
Lost Towns of Tidewater Maryland, by Donald G. Shomette (Tidewater, 370 pages, $36.95). All is silence now, where Pukewaxen, Aire and Islington used to be. So long, Sassefrax.
The Communist Party in Maryland, 1919-1957, by Vernon L. Pedersen (University of Illinois Press, 256 pages, $29.95). Not only has Pedersen read American Communist Party dossiers in the Moscow archives, but long ago he hung out at the New Era Bookshop.
Northwest Baltimore and Its Neighborhoods, 1870-1970, by Roderick N. Ryon (University of Baltimore, 215 pages, $19.95) (S). Northwest subdivides into 52 neighborhoods (Langston Hughes, Glen, Concerned Citizens of Forest Park to name three); Ryon seems able to visualize them all.
Old Ocean City: The Journal and Photographs of Robert Craighead Walker, 1904-1916, by C. John Sullivan (Johns Hopkins, 111 pages, $29.95). Diary and snapshots from an every-summer family.
Maryland's Western Shore, by Katie Moose (Conduit, 245 pages, $15.95). Come look around.
Return Passages: Great American Travel Writing, 1780-1910, by Larzer Ziff (Yale University Press, 304 pages, $29.95) Five travel writers (travel being a cut above tourism), analyzed. For people whose armchair faces away from the TV.
The Enchantment of Modern Life: Attachments, Crossings and Ethics, by Jane Bennett (Princeton, 224 pages, $17.95) (S). It still beats other eras, as a time to live in.
Honor Bright, by George F. Jones (Frederick C. Beil, 214 pages, $19.95). Jones, from the South, would like to fold honesty in with honor: no to lying, cheating, stealing; yes to confronting the violator (vigilantism?) and forcing confession. As to corporate and governmental honesty and honor, silence.
The Powers of Distance: Cosmopolitanism and the Cultivation of Detachment, by Amanda Anderson (Princeton, 206 pages, $18.95).
Food and Drink
The All-American Cookie Book, by Nancy Baggett (Houghton Mifflin, 395 pages, $35) (O). Sugar cookies, shortbreads, mochas, brownies, ginger, spice - yum!
Fabulous Lo-Carb Cuisine, by Ruth Glick (LightStreet Press, 137 pages, $12.95) (S). Eat, but stay thin.
American Vintage: The Rise of American Wines, by Paul Lukacs (Houghton Mifflin, 304 pages, $28). The Old World's viticulture centers are right to sense a big threat.
Camelot at Dawn: Jacqueline and John Kennedy in Georgetown, May 1954, by Anne Garside and Orlando Suero (Johns Hopkins, 128 pages, $24.95). Words about, photos of, the newlyweds.
Flying Hookers for the Macon, by Thom Hook (Airsho, 192 pages, $24.95). The dirigible Macon could release and then catch scouting planes. The Macon crashed before Pearl Harbor.
Unknown Shore, by Robert Ruby (Henry Holt, 300 pages, $25). The earliest English effort to colonize the New World: Martin Frobisher, excavating Baffin Island for ore, in 1576 and after.
Sputnik, the Shock of the Century, by Paul Dickson (Walker, 310 pages, $28). The abrupt start of the Space Age, in 1957: a 184-pound super-beachball began orbiting Earth. The Russians had beaten us to it.
East Asia at the Center: 4,000 Years of Engagement With the World, by Warren I. Cohen (Columbia, 516 pages, $35). Everything below Siberia and above the Himalayas, including the march of Islam.
The Sky Men: A Parachute Rifle Company's Story of the Battle of the Bulge and the Jump Across the Rhine, by Kirk B. Ross (Schiffer, 462 pages, $35). By VE-Day, 51 of its original 170 members were dead.
At Dawn We Slept: The Untold Story of Pearl Harbor, by Gordon W. Prange (Penguin, 889 pages, $20.95) (S). The original, big book about Dec. 7, 1941.
Abraham Lincoln and the Road to Emancipation, 1861-1865, by William J. Klingaman (Viking, 344 pages, $25.95). The Civil War started over secession, but before the South's surrender the issue had come to be slavery.
Blood on the Moon: The Assassination of Abraham Lincoln by Edward Steers Jr. (University Press of Kentucky, 360 pages, $29.95). A closely detailed review of that worst moment in U.S. history. Mary E. Surratt and Samuel A. Mudd, M.D., are shown to have been participating conspirators.
The Lincoln Enigma (Oxford, 324 pages, $30). This book's nine authors include leader Gabor Boritt, director of the Civil War Institute at Gettysburg College.
April, 1865: The Month That Saved America, by Jay Winik (HarperCollins, 461 pages, $32.50). Davis wanted to fight on, with hill guerrillas; Lee said, enough already.
Body of Secrets: Anatomy of the Ultra-Secret National Security Agency, by James Bamford (Doubleday, 721 pages, $29.95). A book done just in time. Since 9-11, NSA's doors are closed to the
Raising Kane, by Gregory Kane (Baltimore Sun, 288 pages, $12.95). Columns by a writer
indifferent to the kitchen
Greenbelt, Maryland: A Living Legacy of the New Deal, by Cathy D. Knepper (Johns Hopkins, 293 pages, $39.95). The New Deal's experiment now has 21,000 varied people, with visitors center, chain hotel, metro stop, original settlers and crime watch.
Diversity Consciousness, by Richard D. Bucher (Prentice-Hall, 233 pages, $19) (S). A slow, methodical read but leavened with ethnic jokes, lamentable stereotypes and plain good sense.
Building Pathology: Deterioration, Diagnostics and Intervention, by Sam Harris (Wiley, 672 pages, $99). How to preserve buildings, historic and otherwise.
The Conservative Movement in Judaism: Dilemmas and Opportunities, by Daniel J. Elazar and Rela Mintz Geffen (Society for Religion in the American Jewish Community, 238 pages, $19.95) (S). Slippage along the flanks (Reform, Orthodox) makes for gains at the center.
Kabbalah and the Art of Being, by Shimon Shokek (Routledge, 176 pages, $20.05) (S) Meaning amid spiritualism, particularly as to daily life.
The Best Guide to Eastern Philosophy and Religion, by Diane Morgan (Renaissance, 352 pages, $16.95) (S). Islam is only the start of American ignorance. Morgan's book stands out for its good-natured, even good-humored, impartiality.
Here Is My Hope, by Randi Henderson and Richard Marek (Doubleday, 248 pages, $23.95) Johns Hopkins Hospital's trademark statue of a not-very-Jewish Jesus. People pray there, set flowers, rub a marble toe.
(Next Sunday: fiction, poetry, sports, nature)
James H. Bready writes a monthly column on regional books. Previously he worked as a reporter, editorial writer and book editor for The Evening Sun.Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times