A lean, direct introductory text for readers interested in judo culture and practice.

Judo

SEVEN STEPS TO BLACK BELT

Tello (Social Safeguards, 2015, etc.) describes the basic concepts and techniques of judo in this introductory work of nonfiction.

Like many martial arts, judo is a practice steeped in tradition and built upon notions of physical and mental control. Popularized by Jigoro Kano and his Japan-based Kodokan Institute in the late 19th century, it was created as an alternative to the older practice of jujitsu: “Japanese society demanded a new approach to martial arts, no longer focused on the efficient killing of enemies, but rather on the defeat of opponents for sport, self-defense, moral discipline, and personal improvement,” Tello writes. The sport is now popular around the world and has been an event in every Summer Olympics since 1972. With this book, the author offers curious readers a look into the culture of the sport, including its etiquette, its uniform, basic techniques and training strategies, and the seven steps of judo referenced in the title. As new judokas reach milestones in their training, they advance through kyu ranks, which are marked by the receipt of various colored belts. (The belt system, developed by Kano, has since spread to a number of other martial arts, as well.) Tello explains the intricacies of each rank and ends with an extensive glossary of judo terms. The author writes in clear, concise prose, taking care to explain the nuances of various terms and moves as well as the philosophy that informs them. At just a little more than 100 pages, the book isn’t meant to be a comprehensive exploration of judo, but it succeeds in giving potential judokas all the information they need to decide if they’re interested in pursuing the sport. Tello is an admitted advocate for the popularization of judo, and, as a result, there’s a bit of a promotional quality to the book. That said, his concern for the safety of practitioners is apparent, as is his insistence that people take up the sport only for noble reasons (namely, self-improvement). This book best functions as a primer for the sport by embodying those qualities that judokas value: precision and erudition in the promotion of self-discipline and hard work.

A lean, direct introductory text for readers interested in judo culture and practice.

Pub Date: Aug. 1, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-63387-001-7

Page Count: 126

Publisher: Amakella Publishing

Review Posted Online: May 3, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 2016

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WHAT A WONDERFUL WORLD

A LIFETIME OF RECORDINGS

Noted jazz and pop record producer Thiele offers a chatty autobiography. Aided by record-business colleague Golden, Thiele traces his career from his start as a ``pubescent, novice jazz record producer'' in the 1940s through the '50s, when he headed Coral, Dot, and Roulette Records, and the '60s, when he worked for ABC and ran the famous Impulse! jazz label. At Coral, Thiele championed the work of ``hillbilly'' singer Buddy Holly, although the only sessions he produced with Holly were marred by saccharine strings. The producer specialized in more mainstream popsters like the irrepressibly perky Teresa Brewer (who later became his fourth wife) and the bubble-machine muzak-meister Lawrence Welk. At Dot, Thiele was instrumental in recording Jack Kerouac's famous beat- generation ramblings to jazz accompaniment (recordings that Dot's president found ``pornographic''), while also overseeing a steady stream of pop hits. He then moved to the Mafia-controlled Roulette label, where he observed the ``silk-suited, pinky-ringed'' entourage who frequented the label's offices. Incredibly, however, Thiele remembers the famously hard-nosed Morris Levy, who ran the label and was eventually convicted of extortion, as ``one of the kindest, most warm-hearted, and classiest music men I have ever known.'' At ABC/Impulse!, Thiele oversaw the classic recordings of John Coltrane, although he is the first to admit that Coltrane essentially produced his own sessions. Like many producers of the day, Thiele participated in the ownership of publishing rights to some of the songs he recorded; he makes no apology for this practice, which he calls ``entirely appropriate and without any ethical conflicts.'' A pleasant, if not exactly riveting, memoir that will be of most interest to those with a thirst for cocktail-hour stories of the record biz. (25 halftones, not seen)

Pub Date: May 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-19-508629-4

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Oxford Univ.

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1995

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MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. AND THE MARCH ON WASHINGTON

This early reader is an excellent introduction to the March on Washington in 1963 and the important role in the march played by Martin Luther King Jr. Ruffin gives the book a good, dramatic start: “August 28, 1963. It is a hot summer day in Washington, D.C. More than 250,00 people are pouring into the city.” They have come to protest the treatment of African-Americans here in the US. With stirring original artwork mixed with photographs of the events (and the segregationist policies in the South, such as separate drinking fountains and entrances to public buildings), Ruffin writes of how an end to slavery didn’t mark true equality and that these rights had to be fought for—through marches and sit-ins and words, particularly those of Dr. King, and particularly on that fateful day in Washington. Within a year the Civil Rights Act of 1964 had been passed: “It does not change everything. But it is a beginning.” Lots of visual cues will help new readers through the fairly simple text, but it is the power of the story that will keep them turning the pages. (Easy reader. 6-8)

Pub Date: Jan. 1, 2001

ISBN: 0-448-42421-5

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Grosset & Dunlap

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2000

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