"Fifth Gospel: The Odyssey of a Time Traveler in First-Century Palestine"
By William Roskey (iUniverse, $16.95)
The time is 1958, and, through the miracle of science, Capt. Lightfoot O'Brien, a decorated U.S. Air Force pilot who is half-Chiricahua, makes a trip to Palestine in the time of Jesus. His mission, given him by President Eisenhower, is to find out how the United States is doing and what is its future. The answers will surprise you in this thoughtful novel.
"Runaway Dancer: Getaway Tales"
By Jeri McAndrews (self-published, $19.99)
McAndrews, who studied at the School of American Ballet directed by Georges Balanchine in New York, has settled in Bisbee after a lifetime of dancing, exploring and traveling - primarily in the Western United States and Mexico. This engaging memoir is a collection of her adventures.
"The Chronicles of Idiot"
By Erin Berry (self-published, e-book, $2.99; paper, $7.50)
"IDIOT" stands for "Interdepartmental Distraction and Innovation of Obsequiousness Team," and its purpose is to promote silly projects or fluffy news stories that take the focus away from the important things of life. "Our business is distraction, and we are damn good at it."
"Surviving Duplicate Bridge"
By Kathleen Vishner (Master Point Press, $11.95)
A sunny introduction to the mysteries of duplicate bridge for the modestly skillful bridge player.
"A Shortage of Bodies"
By Gary D. McKay (Amethyst Moon, $14.99)
Retired psychologist McKay turns his writing talents to fiction in this mystery set in a small (35,000 population) desert town close to Tucson. Starting with a suspected murder but no body, the plot builds to several bodies that present an unfolding story of romance and obsession. Sleuths include the local sheriff and his helpers: a deputy; a retired, widowed Scotland Yard detective; and a retired, divorced family counselor. Lots of local landmarks add to the fun.
"Carve Out Your Niche"
By Terry Sprouse (Planeta Books, $15)
This may very well be the only book you will ever need for publishing (or not publishing) your own book and marketing it.
"The Empathy Factor"
By Marie R. Miyashiro (PuddleDancer Press, $19.95)
Running a successful business is not exclusively a matter of dollars and cents, according to Miyashiro of Elucity Network Inc., a consulting firm based in Tucson. Emotions, expressed and unexpressed, are powerful forces. Not an easy read, this book focuses on ways to improve employee and customer relations by dealing with the emotional components.
"The Blue Maroon Murder"
By Gloria McMillan (Anaphora Literary Press, $15)
McMillan, with a Ph.D. in English and teaching stints at the University of Arizona and Pima Community College, knows her way around academia. This insider's look at the ins and outs of promotion, funding, friendships, feuds and research at Midway University starts with checking the validity of a possible love letter from famous Chicago social worker Jane Addams to crusading author Theodore Dreiser. Also in the lively mix is the death - or murder - of a well-known professor.
"The Nature of Religion"
By T. M. Hoy (Pan Publishing, $18.95)
In a cover letter, Hoy writes, "I have a very different take on religion than most of the traditional literature on the subject. I focus on the horror and madness associated with belief systems and explore why there is so much bloodshed attached to them." For readers interested in some of Hoy's sources, he includes a bibliography. The book also has an index.
"Earth Wisdom: A California Chumash Woman"
By Yolanda Broyles-Gonzalez and Pilulaw Khus (University of Arizona Press, $24.95)
A somewhat neglected group of Native Americans whose original land was in central California, the Chumash are gathering their beliefs and history with the help of Khus, a social worker and member of the tribe. The lack of an index hurts this account.
"A Sinister Affair"
By Tony Nicholas (iUniverse, $14.95)
A sleazier group of folks you may never find than the ones who make up the cast in Nicholas' account of a lot - a whole lot - of lethally minded wheelers and dealers in Nevada and Arizona.
"Monsoon Poker: Tells of a psychic poker player"
By S. L. Greene (Self-published, $9.99 print; ebook, $2.99)
Franklin "Ace" Garvey acknowledges that he has "a gambling mistress." She doesn't do too well by him until he is struck by lightning in a casino parking lot and winds up able to go into a brief trance and come out with a clear view not only of his opponents' poker hands but the deepest, darkest secrets of their minds, which could get him into trouble.
Get ready for the 4th annual Tucson Festival of Books
• When: 9 a.m.-5:30 p.m. March 10-11.
• Where: University of Arizona campus. Attendance and parking are free.
• What: About 450 authors, book discussions, workshops, literary activities for the family. Many Southern Arizona authors will be chatting with fans and signing books, appearing in the Author Pavilion tents or signing and reading at exhibitor booths.
• Information: Go to tucsonfestivalofbooks.org
If you are an author and live in Southern Arizona and would like your book to be included in this column, please send a copy to J.C. Martin, P.O. Box 65388, Tucson, 85728-5388. State the price and give the name of someone who can be reached in case additional information is needed. After the titles appear in this column, they go to the Pima Community College West Campus library. Most of the books are available locally at Mostly Books or Antigone's. You can read past Southern Arizona Authors at website, www.southernarizonaauthors.org