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The Most Recommended Skeptics Books - From Skeptic Mag Here are the results of our recent e-Skeptic

hotline request for the most recommended skeptics books. It is broken down into (1) The Top Ten, (2) Multiple nominations, (3) Jr. Skeptic recommendations, (4) single nominations, (5) commentary on some of the titles provided by readers. Please note: This is not an attempt to list the "most important" books, or the books that had the greatest impact. We were after those books that people recommend to others to read, or that professors assign to their students to read. These lists are meant to supplement the Baloney Detection Kit, that includes course syllabi for professors and recommended reading lists. About 300 people responded to the request. We would like to have a few more children's and young adult's book recommendations, so if you can think of any not listed here please e-mail them to skepticmag@aol.com, subject heading "JR. SKEPTIC BOOKS" **ALSO WAY BELOW THIS LIST FIND: List #2: Books about Humanist Ideas Suitable for Primary Students --------------------------------------------THE TOP TEN (with number of votes): 1. The Demon Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark by Carl Sagan 42 2. Why People Believe Weird Things by Michael Shermer 29 3. Flim Flam!: Psychics, ESP, Unicorns and Other Delusions by James Randi 21 4. Fads and Fallacies in the Name of Science by Martin Gardner 10 5. How to Think About Weird Things by Theodore Schick and Lewis Vaughn 10 6. The Faith Healers by James Randi 8 7. How We Believe by Michael Shermer 8 8. The New Age: Notes of a Fringe Watcher by Martin Gardner 6 9. The Mismeasure of Man by Stephen Jay Gould 4 10. Voodoo Science: The Road From Foolishness to Fraud by Robert L. Park 4 --------------------------------------------Receiving multiple nominations (alphabetical by title within identical vote categories): Asimov's Guide To The Bible by Isaac Asimov 3 Atheism: The Case Against God by George H. Smith 3 Dumbth: The Lost Art of Thinking by Steve Allen 3 Frauds, Myths, and Mysteries: Science and Pseudoscience in Archaeology by Kenneth L. Feder 3 How to Lie with Statistics by Darrell Huff 3 Inevitable Illusions by Massimo Piatelli-Palmarini: How Mistakes of Reason Rule Our Minds 3 Innumeracy: Mathematical Illiteracy & its Consequences by John Allen Paulos 3 Science on Trial by Douglas Futuyma 3 The Tower of Babel by Robert Pennock 3 Unweaving the Rainbow by Richard Dawkins 3 Why I am Not a Christian by Bertrand Russell 3 The Ascent of Man by Jacob Bronowski 2 Believing in Magic: The Psychology of Superstition by Stuart A. Vyse 2 Cosmos by Carl Sagan 2 Encyclopedia of Claims, Frauds, and Hoaxes of the Occult and Supernatural by James Randi 2

Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds by Charles Mackay 2 Gospel Fictions by Randel Helms 2 The Health Robbers by Stephen Barrett 2 How to Think Straight About Psychology by Keith Stanovich 2 Influence: The Psychology Of Persuasion by Robert Cialdini 2 In Search Of The Light: The Adventures of a Parapsychologist by Susan Blackmore 2 Letters to the Earth by Mark Twain 2 Losing Faith In Faith by Dan Barker 2 A Mathematician Reads the Newspaper by John Allen Paulos 2 The Night is Large: Collected Essays 1938-1995 by Martin Gardner 2 On the Wild Side by Martin Gardner 2 The Pleasure of Finding Things Out: The Best Short Works of Richard Feynman 2 Science: Good, Bad, and Bogus by Martin Gardner 2 Uncommon Sense: The Heretical Nature of Science by Alan Cromer 2 ------------------------------------------------------------------------The Most Recommended Jr. Skeptic Books: How We Know What Isn't So by Thomas Gilovich 5 Just Pretend by Dan Barker 2 Maybe Yes, Maybe No by Dan Barker 2 Maybe Right, Maybe Wrong by Dan Barker 2 Alexander Fox and the Amazing Mind Reader The Encyclopedia Brown Books by Donald J. Sobel How Do You Know Its True? by Hy Ruklis The Magic Detectives by Joe Nickell UFOs by Philip Klass The Wizard of Oz by Frank L. Baum Wonder Workers by Joe Nickell ------------------------------------------------------------------------Receiving One Recommendation (alphabetical by title): Abusing Science by Philip Kitcher The Age of Reason by Thomas Paine, 1795 Aha! Gotcha: Paradoxes to puzzle and delight by Martin Gardner Aha! Insight by Martin Gardner Anomalistic Psychology: A Study of Magical Thinking by Leonard Zusne and Warren Jones Anti-Intellectualism in American Life by Richard Hofstader Asking the Right Questions: A Guide to Critical Thinking by M. Neil Browne The Astonishing Hypothesis by Francis Crick The Beak of the Finch by Jonathan Weiner Begone Godmen by Dr. L. Abraham Kovoor The Bermuda Triangle Mystery: Solved by Larry Kusche Bible Prophecy: Failure or Fulfillment? by Tim Callahan Bible, Religion and Morality Vol. 1 & 2, by Steve Allen Billions and Billions by Carl Sagan The Blind Watchmaker by Richard Dawkins Can You Win? The Real Odds for Casino Gambling, Sports Betting, and Lotteries by Mike Orkin The Case Against Creationism by Phillip Kitcher Chicken Soup for the Damned Soul by Ed Babinski Clear Thinking: A Practical Introduction by H. Ruchlis and S. Oddo Cold Fusion: The Scientific Fiasco of the Century by John Huizenga Contact by Carl Sagan The Copernican Revolution by Thomas Kuhn

The Corruption of Reality by John F. Schumaker Critiques of God (edited) by Peter Angeles. Cults in America by Willa Appel Darwin's Ghost by Steven Jones Denying History by Michael Shermer The Diseasing of America by Stanton Peele The Divided Self by R.D. Laing The Dragons of Eden by Carl Sagan Dreams of a Final Theory by Steven Weinberg Economics in One Lesson by Henry Hazlitt Encounters of the Paranormal edited by Kendrick Frazier The Encyclopedia of Bible Errancy by C. Dennis McKinsey Encyclopedia of Evolution by Richard Milner The End of Science by John Horgan ESP: A Scientific Evaluation by C.E.M. Hansel Ever Since Darwin by Stephen Jay Gould Evolution and The Myth of Creationism by Tim M. Berra The Extinct Cognitive Christian by D. Boening The Final Superstition by Joseph Daleiden Finding Darwin=92s God by Kenneth Miller Forgery In Christianity by Joseph Wheless, 1930 The Fundamental Wisdom of the Middle Way: A Translation and Commentary on Nagarjuna's Mulamadhyamakakarika by Jay L Garfield. Galileo's Revenge by Peter William Huber The Gift of Fear: Survival Signals That Protect Us from Violence by Gavin de Becker Godel, Escher, Bach by Douglas Hofstadtler The Golden Bough by James Frazer Grammatical Man by Jeremy Campbell Great and Desperate Cures: The Rise and Decline of Psychosurgery and Other Radical Treatments for Mental Illness by Elliot S. Valenstein House of Cards by Robyn Dawes How to Play With Your Food by Penn and Teller How to Watch TV News by Neil Postman How to Win Every Argument (also pub. as The Art of Deception) by N. Capaldi Hystories by Elaine Showalter Is It God's Word? by Joseph Wheless, 1926 The Jesus Mysteries by Freke Leaps of Faith by Nicholas Humphrey Logic and Contemporary Rhetoric: The Use of Reason in Everyday Life by Howard Kahane The Logic of Failure: Recognizing and Avoiding Error in Complex Situations by Dietrich Dorner Looking For a Miracle by Joe Nickell Madam Blavatsky's Baboon by Peter Washington Madness on the Couch by Edward Dolnick The Magic Animal by Philip Wylie Magic or Medicine?: An Investigation of Healing and Healers by R. Buckman and K. Sabbagh A Magician Among the Spiritualists by Harry Houdini Making Us Crazy--DSM: The Psychiatric Bible and the Creation of Mental Disorders by Herb Kutchins and Stuart A. Kirk Man and His Gods by Homer W. Smith The Meaning of it All: Thoughts of a Citizen-Scientist by Richard Feynman The Mind of the Bible Believer by Edmund D. Cohen Mind, Machines, and Evolution by James P. Horgan The Monk and the Philosopher: A Father and Son Discuss the Meaning of Life by Jean Francois Revel, Matthieu Ricard, John Canti (Translator) Mysterious Realms by Joe Nickell with John F. Fischer The Natural History of Nonsense by Bergen B. Evans

Our Kind by Marvin Harris The Passover Plot by Hugh Schonfield Physiological Bases of God Beliefs by Dr. Michael Persinger Religion Without Revelation by Julian Huxley The Mask of Nostradamus by James Randi In the Name of Eugenics: Genetics and the Uses of Human Heredity by Daniel J. Kevles Nostradamus: The End of the Millennium by V.J. Hewitt and Peter Lorie Not Necessarily the New Age by Martin Gardner The Origin of Species by Charles Darwin Paradigms Lost by John L. Casti Pseudoscience and the Paranormal by Terence Hines A Random Walk Down Wall Street by Burton G. Mackiel Readings in the Philosophical Problems in Parapsychology, ed. by Antony Flew The Real Roswell Crashed-Saucer Coverrup by Philip Klass Reason and Culture by Ernest Gellner The Relativity of Wrong by Isaac Asimov Robert G Ingersoll--44 Lectures Complete. Satanic Panic by Victor Frank The Satiricon: Creationism Bashed by Robert S. Dietz Saving the Bible from Fundamentalism by John Shelby Spong Science and Pseudoscience by Terence Hines Science Matters by Robert M. Hazen and James Trefil Science, Reason, and Anthropology: A Guide to Critical Thinking by James Lett Secrets of the Supernatural by Joe Nickell and John F. Fischer Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors by Carl Sagan and Ann Druyan Skeptics and True Believers by Chet Raymo The Skeptics Annotated Bible Skeptics Dictionary by Bob Carroll--available only on the internet. The Social Construction of Reality by Peter L. Berger and Thomas Luckmann Stealing Jesus: How Fundamentalism Betrays Christianity by Bruce Bawer The Structure of Scientific Revolutions by Thomas Kuhn Summer of the Gods by Edward J. Larson Surely You're Joking by Richard Feynman Tales of the Rational: Skeptical Essays About Nature and Science by Massimo Pigliucci Teaching Thinking by E. De Bono Think to Win: The Power of Logic in Everyday Life by S. Cannavo Thinking Critically About New Age Ideas by William Gray Trancendental Temptation by Paul Kurtz The True Believer by Eric Hoffer The Truth about Uri Geller by James Randi Twenty Questions by G. Lee Bowie The Undiscovered Mind by John Horgan The Untamed Tongue, also by Thomas Szasz An Urchin in the Storm by S.J. Gould The Web of Belief by W.V. Quine and J. S. Ullian What Do You Care What Other People Think? by Richard Feynman What If Everything You Always Knew About AIDS Was Wrong? by Christine Maggiore What is This Thing Called Science? by A. F. Chalmers Who Wrote the Bible? by Richard Elliot Friedman Who Wrote the Gospels? by Randel Helms Why Christianity must Change or Die by John Shelby Spong ------------------------------------------------------------------------COMMENTARY ON BOOKS (alphabetical by title) Aha! Gotcha: Paradoxes to Puzzle and Delight by Martin Gardner

"Fun paradoxes to make you think." Aha! Insight by Martin Gardner "A book to hone thinking skills and enjoy it at the same time." Anti-Intellectualism in American Life by Richard Hofstader "Not technically a critical thinking book, but it does challenge much of the prevailing intellectual laziness that prevents us from thinking critically. And it's just as relevant now as it was when it first written decades ago. The Ascent of Man by Jacob Bronowski "Because it provides an overall prespective on the importance of reason in the historical development of mankind." The Beak of the Finch by Jonathan Weiner "This book illustrates how scientists are methodically uncovering the very concrete nature of natural selection and genetic foundations of behavior. Beautifully written." The Bermuda Triangle Mystery: Solved by Larry Kusche "Beautiful job of showing how legands develop by ignoring data or never checking it as well as selective reporting." Clear thinking: A practical introduction by H. Ruchlis and S. Oddo "A good text suitable for bright high school students or college freshmen." Contact by Carl Sagan "Because, for me anyway it introduced me to skepticism by way of great story with compelling ideas." Cults in America by Willa Appel "Because it is a concise report of the techniques, activities and social significance of cults. It also describes the indoctrination and recovery psychological process very well, thereby helping people recognise and resist these techniques when they are inflicted on them." Darwin's Ghost by Steven Jones "Very readable reworking of Darwin's Origin in light of current research. Great book!" The Demon Haunted World by Carl Sagan "As you know, an absolute must." "This book had a profound effect on my life." "Because, after reading Contact I was left hungry for more. An Excellent introduction to real world critical thinking." The Diseasing of America by Stanton Peele "Peele debunks assumptions about addiction and the potential harm done by treatments based on these assumptions. Treatments based on pseudosciencecan be dangerous." The End of Science and The Undiscovered Mind by John Horgan "These two books will challenge a skeptic's ability to take critical thinking skills right into the scientific enterprise ... and they presage the debates that will engage a skeptical community that, in future, goes beyond the task of debunking the latest fad of the credulous. Can scientists take a dose of their own medicine?" Fads and Fallacies in the Name of Science by Martin Gardner "This has got to be the best all-time. All of it is still relevant, the same fads and fallacies are still around in new (or even the same old) guises.

This is what got me started back in the late late 1950s." "Should be required reading for high school students, an older book that is easy to read, often funny, and will still open the eyes of many teenagers. Definitely a 'reactive' book, but still a cornerstone of modern skepticism." Flim Flam!: Psychics, ESP, Unicorns and Other Delusions by James Randi "A masterful demonstration of the wizard at work showing up the tricksters who would scam us." "Has a popular tone and exposes a good many of the more popular scams." "A down to earth on the front lines kind of book." The God Particle by Leon Lederman "What Hawking does for cosmology, Lederman does for particle physics (while having you in stiches!)" The Golden Bough by James Frazer "The book I have routinely given as a gift. It is absolutely essential for understanding the origins of religion." Great and Desperate Cures: The Rise and Decline of Psychosurgery and Other Radical Treatments for Mental Illness by Elliot S. Valenstein "Another classic case study of science mis-used, with an immediacy that senior-level high school students could appreciate. The perils of poorly-done medical science, with social and political consequences resounding for decades." How to Play With Your Food by Penn and Teller. "A lot of fun and gives some insight into how humans percieve things." How to Think About Weird Things by Theodore Schick and Lewis Vaughn "But of course: a new 'classic,' and very readable." "The best introduction to skepticism and critical thinking available." How to Think Straight About Psychology by Keith Stanovich "This one's ideal, since it's relevant beyond psychology, is geared toward students, and has the distinction of having converted me to skeptical thinking (as an undergrad fifteen years ago)." How to Win Every Argument by N. Capaldi "A good introductory text in learning to reason and argue better. Still available under its original title The Art of Deception from Prometheus Books." How We Believe by Michael Shermer "Another good study from Shermer on the nature of belief, with emphasis on religious belief." Inevitable Illusions by M. Piattelli-Palmarini "A convincing look at some of the ways our brains have evolved to our disadvantage in making important decisions. This is the book that introduced me to the counter-intuitive nature of Bayes' Law." "This is a great resource for exploring the most common and pervasive cognitive errors that cause even very smart people to believe weird things." "Because it shows us how failures in reason are inherent to the mechanism of our mind, and how being educated and/or intelligent is no defense against these errors in reason." In the Name of Eugenics: Genetics and the Uses of Human Heredity by Daniel J. Kevles "Terrific book, terribly pertinent in the year 2001 and the age of the Human Genome Project, about the social and personal consequences of badly done

science. Everyone should read this at some point in their education, I think. Madness on the Couch by Edward Dolnick "The best recent expose of the follies of Freudian theory and the humbug surrounding psychoanalysis." Magic or Medicine?: An Investigation of Healing and Healers by R. Buckman and K. Sabbagh "A lesser known book on the common elements of orthodox medicine and alternative medicine and why complementary/alternative medicine continues to find adherents despite a lack of rigorous scientific underpinning." Making Us Crazy DSM: The Psychiatric Bible and the Creation of Mental Disorders by Herb Kutchins and Stuart A. Kirk. "Kirk and Kutchins demonstrate the lack of validity and reliability in this book. They describe how politics, not science determines who is mentally sick and who is not." The Mask of Nostradamus by James Randi "Anything by James Randi because his books are just fun to read!" A Mathematician Reads the Newspaper by John Allen Paulos "A useful book which encourages us to think more carefully about the 'facts' and stories we read." The Meaning of it All: Thoughts of a Citizen-Scientist by Richard Feynman "Nobody expressed himself more clearly than Feynman. In these lectures (the third in particular) he points out the need for the scientific worldview." Mind, Machines, and Evolution by James P. Horgan "It contains a number of (fictional) short stories, (non-fictional) essays, and a couple autobiographical pieces. His arguments for evolution and nuclear energy are as cogent (and accessible to a lay person) as I've ever read, and his short story about the General Operations Director (GOD) looking at the Work Order Review Document (WORD) is a hilarious satire." The Monk and the Philosopher : A Father and Son Discuss the Meaning of Life by Jean Francois Revel, Matthieu Ricard, John Canti (Translator) "Where a French skeptic philosopher takes on his own son who gave up a promising career as a microbiologist to become Buddhist monk!" The New Age: Notes of a Fringe Watcher by Martin Gardner "Entertaining and devastating look at some of the more popular weird beliefs and crazes, up to the late 1980s." The Night is Large: Collected Essays 1938-1995 by Martin Gardner "Gardner's great thoughts on just about everything." The Passover Plot by Hugh Schonfield "An excellent book to awaken students understanding as to how historic times & events set the stage for the formation of rebel leaders masquerading as religious messengers of God." Physiological Bases of God Beliefs by Dr. Michael Persinger "Tremendous book!" Science on Trial by Douglas Futuyma "This is a short, readable, and masterful treatment of creationism." "Best response to creationists -- this should have its own category."

Science, Reason, and Anthropology: A Guide to Critical Thinking by James Lett "Although I have not read the entire book, I have enjoyed excerpts and found them very useful indeed. Lett invents the acronym FiLCHeRS to help in remembering the '6 Rules of Critical Thinking' (Falsifiability, Logic, Comprehensiveness, Honesty, Replicability, and Sufficiency) -- this would work well I think in a course)." Tales of the Rational: Skeptical Essays About Nature and Science by Massimo Pigliucci "A stimulating coverage of many skeptical topics. Everyone should read it." Teaching Thinking by E. De Bono "Takes the view that thinking is a teachable skill, and presents ways to do it." Thinking Critically About New Age Ideas by William Gray "The best book I've found for use in my Freshman Phil. 100 class (Knowledge and Reality). I like it because it's short, concise, interesting and thorough." The Tower of Babel by Robert Pennock "A longer more detailed dismantling of creationism than the preceding, particularly good for its treatment of Intelligent Design nonsense. The True Believer by Eric Hoffer "It confronts the idea that ALL mass movements and social movements are born out of unhealthy constructs, they appeal to emotion over logic, and swell their ranks with the weakest not the strongest members of society. These movements then go about remaking society, and its laws, to serve their newly-found epiphanies, most often to the long-range detriment of their own followers and society at large. Recommended because it gives a skeptical view to the oft-quoted idea of safety-in-numbers which always triggers in me the laughable slogan 'Ten million Elvis fans can't be wrong!" Uncommon Sense: The Heretical Nature of Science by Alan Cromer "This book is terrific, and not often seen on lists. I give it a 5 star rating: it provided a background and framework that allowed me to merge many similar works into a coherent whole. Very high recommend, top of the list." The Web of Belief by W.V. Quine and J. S. Ullian "It doesn't get clearer than this. Example: 'Believing is a disposition to respond in certain ways when the appropriate issue arises." The Untamed Tongue by Thomas Szasz "This is an easy and entertaining read that covers a wide range of subjects. Our Right to Drugs, also by Szasz challenges ideas about drugs and drug laws in the same rigorous and rational way that he challenges the very concept of mental illness in The Myth of Mental Illness." What If Everything You Always Knew About AIDS Was Wrong? by Christine Maggiore "This book attempts to deconstruct the numerous pseudo-science AIDS theories we have all been lulled into accepting courtesy of the most extensive and expensive propaganda campaign in U.S. history. With numerous scientific journal references, Ms. Maggiore attempts to lead the reader to be skeptical of all things AIDS. Her personal experiences, and those of many others who question AIDS theories and refuse to swallow the popularly-sold toxic AIDS meds, are a less-technical and more personal side of the discussion to balance out the avalanche of unsupportable 'science' that threatens to bury us all."

Who Wrote the Bible? by Richard Elliot Friedman "The most accessible book of historical scholarship on this subject that I have ever read, also very entertaining and focused on the implications of history for modern religious dogma." Why People Believe Weird Things by Michael Shermer "Because, like Sagan, Shermer seems to write in a way that most people can understand and relate to." "Excellent introduction to some of the major irrational beliefs held by many today, and how to think more clearly about them." "Extremely readable, enjoyable and still communicates the point very well." ============================================================================ List #2: Books about Humanist Ideas Suitable for Primary Students Even though these books may not use the word "humanism" they do explain some of what Humanists believe. --TOPIC: God? ___________ What About Gods by Chris Brockman Prometheus Books, 59 John Glenn Drive Amherst, New York, 14228-2197. 1978. A booklet with black and white pictures explaining about myths, science and reas on, religions, religious promotion. It ends by urging the reader to think. -----"The Tree of Life: The Wonders of Evolution". By Ellen Jackson Published by Prometheus Books, Buffalo, NY, in 1993. Ellen Jackson was a kindergarten teacher and has written this book which little children will enjoy having read to them. There are some long words like 'evoluti on', 'torrents', 'splashed', 'flickering', 'millions', 'appeared', 'dividing', ' reproduce', 'occured', 'microscopic', 'marvellous', 'amphibians', 'creatures', ' represented', 'conditions', 'continents', 'primates', and 'weapons' so a little help will probably be needed by younger children. Early humans covered with hair appear in one picture on the second last page, th at reflects the time spans of evolution, and it gives an indication that the boo k is about the origin of life rather than the origin of humans. Every double page is a tonal picture with a little text - all shades of grey. The book is scientifically accurate and quite simply explained but these are har d concepts and are unlikely to be grasped by young children without help. Childr en of about 8 or 9 should be able to understand most of it. reviewed by Ann Young February 2009 Note to parents: evolution is the way to explain the wonder of our human and the world's existence. Note this phrase by David Edwards writing in the Internation al Humanist News February 2009 published by the IHEU, "... a central concept wit

hin Darwin's synthesis is the emergence of complex behaviour from simple systems " [our emphasis]. -----Maybe Right, Maybe Wrong : a guide for young thinkers. by Dan Barker Prometheus Books, 59 John Glenn Drive, Amherst, New York, 14228-2197. 1992 A comic book about fighting, death, and "bad" rules. It says "life is valuable, respect the rights of others, be fair, be honest. A black and white picture book explaining the difference between rules and princ iples, about conflicting principles, commandments, and morality. -----Just Pretend: a freethought book for children. by Dan Barker Freedom From Religion Foundation, P.O.Box 750, Madison, Wisconsin, 53701. 1988 Some people believe in Santa Claus and some people believe in god. This books sh ows the mistakes these people are making in the way they think. Atheists say tha t whether you are good or bad depends on what you do not on what you think. Athe ists say that god is just pretend and if you could prove that there was a god th en there would be no atheists. Remember you are the boss of your own mind and yo u can work out what is true. With black and white pictures. -----Maybe Yes, Maybe No: a guide for young skeptics. by Dan Barker Prometheus Books, 59 John Glenn Drive, Amherst, New York, 4228-2197. 1990 A black and white comic book telling how a young Skeptic investigates a haunted house. Then the books explains how to be a good scientist. Note: you can order Prometheus books from us. Abbey's Bookshops carry a few titl es and are willing to order specific titles for you. --TOPIC: Reasoning _________________ The Philosophers' Club by Christopher Phillips and illustrated by Kim Doner. Tricycle Press, Toronto, Canada, 2001. Hard cover, big coloured pictures. Order from EvolveFISH.com Questions Questions Questions Is the glass half empty or half full? Would you know if you weren't here? Is silence a special kind of noise? How do you know you know? Philosophy is the study of "Why?" - or the study of reasons. Asking questions he lps you to become reasonable. Humanism is having reasons but religions are about having faith or belief. Human

ism is not spoken about in this book. The questions and the colourful big pictures in the book will help you start rea soning or philosophising. (This book models Socratic dialogue for children. Download the free readers' gui de www.tenspeed.com Christopher Phillips has an M.A. in Philosophy for Children. He also initiates Socratic Cafes. www.philosopher.org ) --TOPIC: Celebrations secular style ___________________________________ The Winter Solstice by Ellen Jackson and illustrated by Jan Davey Ellis. Millbrook Press, US, 1994. Available through FISH www.EvolveFISH.com or Order from EvolveFISH.com Paperback with pictures in many colours. Near the end of this beautiful book it shows why daylight gets longer in summer and shorter in winter as the Earth tilts. 22nd December in Australia is the day with the longest daylight. In the northern part of the Earth it is the shortest day. It is called the solstice. 22nd June is the opposite solstice. Humanists often have a party at solstice. Christians call the December solstice Christmas. People have been having parties at solstice for a very long time. In this book you can find out about Stonehenge in England, about how ancient Romans hid coins in puddings, about Yuletide and about Indian parties in North America n and Peru. The pictures and patterns in the book are a joy. Humanism is not spoken about but the book does tell you why Humanist think solst ice is a good time to have a party. If you can read big words like "ceremonies" and "mistletoe" and you know what "r itual" means, you will like this book. --The Winter by Karen I Prometheus Paperback, Solstice Shragg and illustrated by Heidi Schwabacher. Books, 59 John Glenn Drive, Amherst, New York, 14228-2197 2001 big print, black and white pictures. do not believe in a god who created the world and made rules abo Jenny's neighbours celebrate Christmas (for Christians), Hanukah Kwansaa ( for African Americans). Jenny would like to have a par Library teacher helps her find a book about the many ways differ celebrated at the winter solstice. Jenny decides to decorate a l in a pot.

Jenny's parents ut how to live. (for Jews), or ty too. Jenny's ent people have ittle pine tree

The pine tree comes from Norfolk Island. I wonder whether Karen Shragg who wrote this book, knows where Norfolk Island is? There is no snow in December in Norfo lk Island or almost anywhere else in Australia. That is our summer when we have our longest day or summer solstice. This book is about December in America.

Because Karen Shragg is American she spells "neighbour" and some other words, th e American way. Jenny's parents are probably Humanists although the book does not actually say s o, and they explain clearly what they do and do not believe in. While the book s eems to be a story about how Jenny decides to decorate a solstice tree, much of the book is spoken by Jenny's mother explaining her beliefs. --TOPIC: About Death ___________________ The Tenth Good Thing About Barney by Judith Viorst Collins, St James Place, London. 1971 When Barney, the cat, dies his child gives him a funeral and has to think of ten good things about Barney. He wonders whether Barney is in heaven or whether he is just helping to grow flowers. With black and white pictures. --Hey, Little Ant by Phillip and Hannah Hoose and illustrated by Debbie Tilley. Tricycle Press, California, 1998. Hard cover, stunning coloured pictures. Should the ant get squished? Think about it. There is a song called "Hey, Little Ant". The music is at the end of the book. Humanists have to work out the right things to do for themselves. This book does not say what Humanists think or should think. The pictures in this book help us to think about the problem of killing living b eings. Very easy to read. --TOPIC: Books about Sex ________________________ Bellybuttons Are Navels by Mark Schoen Prometheus Books, 700 East Amherst Street, Buffalo, New York, 14215, 716-837-247 5 This is a colourful picture book for very little children to teach them the righ t words for different parts of the human body. --Girls Are Girls and Boys Are Boys: So What's the Difference? by Sol Gordon Prometheus Books,700 East Amherst Street, Buffalo, New York, 14215, 716-837-2475 1991

Girls wear pink and boys wear blue. Right? This book explains how girls become mothers and boys become fathers. It explains sex and sex roles with black and white pictures. --A Better Safe Than Sorry Book: a family guide for sexual assault prevention. by Sol and Judith Gordon Prometheus Books, 700 E. Amherst Street, Buffalo, New York, 14215,716-837-2475. 1992 No-one should touch your private parts except yourself and you shouldn't touch a nyone else's. If this happens TELL because it's not your fault. TELL! This book explains how you could be tricked. It is for children 3 to 9. Black and white pi ctures. ---------------------------------------------------------