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Keeping you up-to-date on what's happening at your library. We invite you to join in the conversation!
MARCH 6, 2011
Tigers, Tigers, Everywhere

Several blogs this past week commented on the recent abundance of books with TIGER in the title. Not wanting to be outdone here's my two cents on the subject.

Most of the books have nothing to with tigers but use the term as descriptive; to be tough, fierce and aggressive. Wikipedia says "The word "tiger" is taken from the Greek word "tigris", which is possibly derived from a Persian source meaning "arrow", a reference to the animal's speed and also the origin for the name of the Tigris river."

Some of the authors got it right by publishing their books in 2010 - The Chinese Year of the Tiger while others missed the boat by just a few months. 

The most controversial of the new "tiger books" is without a doubt 

Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother by Amy Chua which some describe as an absolutely hilarious, honest take on one mom's tough love parenting and others feel borders on the edge of child abuse. Whether you agree with Chua's style or not, Tiger Mother is one hot book. It's been chatted up so much that I actually thought I had purchased it for Saxton B. but it slipped through the cracks. Rectified, so if you're inclined to read this it will be on our shelves soon. 

You can understand why I might have thought we owned Tiger Mother when you consider that I did order the recently published 

Tiger, Tiger by Margaux Fragoso

another memoir about parenting. This one is about the horrible child abuse Ms. Fragoso endured starting at age seven when she met a fifty-one year old man named Peter at a swimming pool. Fragoso's account of the sexual abuse over a fifteen period is heart wrenching. 

Then there's 

The Tiger's Wife, debut fiction by Tea Obreht

Obreht made the recent New Yorkers current 20 under 40 and you'll find her short story in the collection of that name 20 under 40 : stories from The New Yorker / edited by Deborah Treisman. This new title is described as an exploration of the power of myth, story and memory. Natalia Stefanovi, a doctor, is on her way to inoculate a group of orphans in an unnamed village, when she gets news that her beloved grandfather has died. Natalia remembers a story, a bit of a tall tale, that her grandfather entertained her with as a child, about a tiger that escaped from a nearby zoo in 1941 and menaced his village. This story as it blends with the present day villagers own lore, provides a memorizing read. 

Last year's The Tiger: A True Story of Vengeance and Survival by John Vaillant was fascinating. I finally read it while on vacation and commented on it on the reader reviews on our catalog. 

Rock Paper Tiger by Lisa Brackmann was another fiction debut in 2010. A thriller set in the modern China, it is a wild ride in the world of online gaming, international espionage and the world of art. 

If you search the word tiger in our online catalog you'll get 122 hits, add the "s" and you'll have 53 more. Many of these are excellent children's picture books; some are about that other tiger, not a tiger at all, Tiger Woods. 

One more I'd like to mention is the dvd documentary, Living With Tigers, Discovery Channel's exploration of Ron and Julie, two tigers born in captivity. John Varty, brings the two tigers to Africa to introduce them into the wild, something that is unprecedented, controversial, but captivating to view. Be warned, it does contain graphic scenes. 

Stop by Saxton B. and literally, hold that tiger!

Add a comment  (2 comments) posted by CarolK



CarolK said, on Mar. 9 at 10:15AM
Tigers, Tigers, they're everywhere. Here's yet some more... Tiger Hills by Sarita Mandanna This one is about a special girl (the first born in over 60 years) into the Nachimanda family. She forms a bound with a shy young man. Their future together is tested when they attend "a tiger wedding", an ancient custom that honors the hunter who slays the mighty animal. Jack Higgins has a new title in the Paul Chevasse series due this month called Year of the Tiger. I know I saw another Tiger title this morning but can't find it again. If I do, you'll be the first to know.


Mercedes said, on Apr. 12 at 11:11AM
Here's one more for you I found while looking up Birdology (since the title captured me): Spell of the Tiger: The Man-Eaters of Sundarbans by Sy Montgomery. I had no idea Montgomery was going to be such a treasure trove of animal books. I can't wait to start reading!

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