The Battle of Britain : five months that changed history, May-October 1940 / James Holland

Call number: D756.5.B7 H66 2011

The Battle of Britain paints a stirring picture of an extraordinary summer when the fate of the world hung by a thread. Historian James Holland has now written the definitive account of those months based on extensive new research from around the world including thousands of new interviews with people on both sides of the battle. If Britain’s defenses collapsed, Hitler would have dominated all of Europe. With France facing defeat and British forces pressed back to the Channel, there were few who believed Britain could survive; but, thanks to a sophisticated defensive system and the combined efforts of the Royal Air Force, the Royal Navy and the defiance of a new Prime Minister, Britain refused to give in. From clashes between coastal convoys and Schnellboote in the Channel to astonishing last stands in Flanders, slaughter by U-boats in an icy Atlantic and dramatic aerial battles over England, The Battle of Britain tells this epic story in a fresh and compelling voice. (From Google Books)

Sweetness : the enigmatic life of Walter Payton

Call number: B PAY

At five feet ten inches tall, running back Walter Peyton was not the largest player in the NFL, but he developed a larger-than-life reputation for his strength, speed, and grit. Nicknamed “Sweetness” during his college football days, he became the NFL’s all-time leader in rushing and all-purpose yards, capturing the hearts of fans in his adopted Chicago.
Crafted from interviews with more than 700 sources, acclaimed sportswriter Jeff Pearlman has produced the first definitive biography of Payton. Sweetness at last brings fans a detailed, scrupulously researched, all-encompassing account of the legend’s rise to greatness. From Payton’s childhood in segregated Mississippi, where he ended a racial war by becoming the star of his integrated high school’s football team, to his college years and his twelve-year NFL career, Sweetness brims with stories of all-American heroism, and covers Payton’s life off the field as well. Set against the backdrop of the tragic illness that cut his life short at just forty- six years of age, this is a stirring tribute to a singular icon and the lasting legacy he made.(From Google Books)

LBJ : architect of American ambition / Randall B. Woods

Call number: B JOH


For almost forty years, the verdict on Lyndon Johnson’s presidency has been reduced to a handful of harsh words: tragedy, betrayal, lost opportunity. Initially, historians focused on the Vietnam War and how that conflict derailed liberalism, tarnished the nation’s reputation, wasted lives, and eventually even led to Watergate. More recently, Johnson has been excoriated in more personal terms: as a player of political hardball, as the product of machine-style corruption, as an opportunist, as a cruel husband and boss.

In LBJ, Randall B. Woods, a distinguished historian of twentieth-century America and a son of Texas, offers a wholesale reappraisal and sweeping, authoritative account of the LBJ who has been lost under this baleful gaze. Woods understands the political landscape of the American South and the differences between personal failings and political principles. Thanks to the release of thousands of hours of LBJ’s White House tapes, along with the declassification of tens of thousands of documents and interviews with key aides, Woods’s LBJ brings crucial new evidence to bear on many key aspects of the man and the politician. As private conversations reveal, Johnson intentionally exaggerated his stereotype in many interviews, for reasons of both tactics and contempt. It is time to set the record straight.
Woods’s Johnson is a flawed but deeply sympathetic character. He was born into a family with a liberal Texas tradition of public service and a strong belief in the public good. He worked tirelessly, but not just for the sake of ambition. His approach to reform at home, and to fighting fascism and communism abroad, was motivated by the same ideals and based on a liberal Christian tradition that is often forgotten today. Vietnam turned into a tragedy, but it was part and parcel of Johnson’s commitment to civil rights and antipoverty reforms. LBJ offers a fascinating new history of the political upheavals of the 1960s and a new way to understand the last great burst of liberalism in America.
Johnson was a magnetic character, and his life was filled with fascinating stories and scenes. Through insights gained from interviews with his longtime secretary, his Secret Service detail, and his closest aides and confidants, Woods brings Johnson before us in vivid and unforgettable color. (From Google Books)

Gabby : a story of courage and hope / Gabrielle Giffords and Mark Kelly

Call number: B GIF

As individuals, congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and her husband, astronaut Mark Kelly, showed Americans how optimism, an adventurous spirit, and a call to service can help change the world. As a couple, they became a national example of the healing power to be found in deeply shared love and courage. Their arrival in the world spotlight came under the worst of circumstances. On January 8, 2011, while meeting with her constituents in Tucson, Arizona, Gabby was the victim of an assassination attempt that left six people dead and thirteen wounded. Gabby was shot in the head; doctors called her survival “miraculous.”
As the nation grieved and sought to understand the attack, Gabby remained in private, focused on her against-all-odds recovery. Mark spent every possible moment by her side, as he also prepared for his final mission as commander of space shuttle Endeavour.

Now, as Gabby’s health continues to improve, the couple is sharing their remarkable untold story. Intimate, inspiring, and unforgettably moving, Gabby: A Story of Courage and Hope provides an unflinching look at the overwhelming challenges of brain injury, the painstaking process of learning to communicate again, and the responsibilities that fall to a loving spouse who wants the best possible treatment for his wife. Told in Mark’s voice and from Gabby’s heart, the book also chronicles the lives that brought these two extraordinary people together—their humor, their ambitions, their sense of duty, their long-distance marriage, and their desire for family.
Gabby and Mark made a pledge to tell their account as honestly as possible, and they have done so in riveting detail. Both Gabby and Mark have lived large public lives, but this book takes readers behind many closed doors—from the flight deck of the space shuttle to the cloakrooms of Congress to the hospital wards where Gabby struggled to reclaim herself with the help of formidable medical teams and devoted family and friends.
Questions are answered with unvarnished candor. How do Gabby and Mark feel about the angry political discourse that was swirling in America at the time of the shooting, and that remains prevalent today? How do they see government living up to the highest possible ideals? And how do they understand and mourn the loss of the people who did not survive that day? Gabby: A Story of Courage and Hope is a reminder of the power of true grit, the patience needed to overcome unimaginable obstacles, and the transcendence of love. In the story of Gabrielle Giffords and Mark Kelly, we all can see the best in ourselves. As Mark and Gabby’s friends have said: “The two of them are America as we dream it can be.

Spotlight on the Staff – Jon Puckett, Lead Cataloging/Circulation Clerk

Name: Jon Puckett
Position Title: Lead Cataloging/Circulation Clerk
Worked at the Library: 6 years
Contact Info: or 480-4246

Q. What do you do at the library?
I am the lead cataloging/circulation clerk. I oversee the circulation desk  and make sure things are running properly. I also handle course reserves and oversee cataloging for all library materials, such as books, magazines, puppets, posters and more. I am mainly in charge of the “behind the scene” stuff, but without my work nobody would be able to check out a book or even find it in the catalog. I prepare iPods and laptops for check out and load them with content. If you ever need to reserve the library’s conference room, I would be your person to contact. I’m relied on to troubleshoot most problems in the library, from administrative to technical to mechanical.

Q. Where does your expertise come from?
I have six years experience at Ivy Tech Community College Library and a couple of years at the Ball State Science/Health Library where I worked prior to Ivy Tech. I am currently taking classes towards a computer science degree called Information Systems. I have been interested in computers for many years. I read many tech websites, monitor news in the field, and build computers from scratch.

Q. What is unique about you that could be of service to the Ivy Tech community?
I help students in the library with all kinds of technical issues, i.e. software and computer problems.

Q. What’s your favorite thing to do outside the library? 

I play rugby for the Fort Wayne Men’s Rugby Club. I build computers, and tinker with electronics, computers and gadgets. I love to read science fiction. My dog Sir and I enjoy exploring the outdoors. Sir is a Thai Ridgeback  that I adopted from a rescue group.

My dog Sir

Q. Recommend a book to us that you enjoyed.

Click to look inside

One of my favorite books of all time is Dune, by Frank Herbert. It’s a science fiction novel and the first book written in the series, which spawned many sequels and even prequels. It covers a broad spectrum of issues from religious fanaticism, to wars, to politics, to climate change and even inter-stellar travel

Jon wants to share the following videos with you today:

Living My Life Faster project is a sequence of 8 years of daily  self-photos by Baltimore artist Jonathan Keller. “I thought of the project focusing on the differences that one can see in the self from day to day. Same person, different personas. As the project grew and grew, it became more about the process of the whole. I began to look at the long-term changes that occur parallel to the short term changes. These changes will become more and more apparent as the project ages 20-30+ years. Now I’m looking towards the end. It’s a morbid proposition, but something that must be faced”-Jonathan Keller. For more information visit:

How are world may look in 2020?