Book Reviews

Book Reviews

Controlled Environment Agriculture – Production of Specialty Crops Providing Human Health Benefits through Hydroponics

“This is an edited collection of recent advances of research on specialty crop production through hydroponics under controlled environment agriculture. It includes eight chapters describing information mainly on enhanced production of bioactive compounds, antioxidants and secondary metabolites, light quality mediated metabolites production, and sensory evaluation of hydroponically grown vegetables under controlled environment. The contributor includes nutrigenomists, biotechnologists, physiologists, plant breeder, molecular biologists, botanists, ecologists, environmentalists, nutritionists, and also educationists from Malaysia, Iran, Taiwan, South Korea, India, Romania, China, and USA.

The first chapter reviews the background information on the health benefits of specialty crop production and the phenolic biochemistry in selected crops. It describes different biosynthetic pathways, focusing on where the potential controlling sites may exist mainly on (poly)phenol biosynthetic pathway. It also elaborate information on greenhouse agriculture, hydroponics and different in vitro systems under controlled environment agriculture. Finally it provides ideas towards the development of tailored specialty crops and high valued dietary ingredients.Chapter two address the current practices of plant secondary metabolite production mainly in medicinal plants species, plant nutrient regimen steered secondary metabolites biosynthesis, use of hydroponics as the ultimate tool for plant nutrient management to enhance the quality and quantity of their bio-compounds.Chapter three, briefly reviews the recent advancement on use of LEDs in indoor agriculture. It presents the LED supplemented research since 1990 on photosynthesis, plant growth, biomass production, plant tissue culture, and plant disease control. It also tabulated some common types of LEDs and their potential agricultural applications.Chapter four addresses the spectral quality mediated molecular regulation of secondary metabolites synthesis in medicinal plants grown in hydroponics under controlled environment agriculture.

It overviewed the hydroponic cultivation of several medicinal plants providing pharmaceutically valuable secondary metabolites. It also listed the pharmaceutically important compounds elicited by different spectral qualities. Chapter five extensively reviews the role of brassinosteroids (BRs) as promoter of growth, yield and development, modulator of antioxidative system and secondary metabolites of medicinal plants grown under normal, biotic and abiotic stress condition.Chapter six is an original research and first reported results on influence of priming with S-methylmethionine, known as vitamin U on non-enzymatic antioxidant production such as carotenoid pigment, water soluble phenoloid, ascorbate and glutathione content of lettuce leaves exposed to salt stress through high concentration of sodium chloride in hydroponic solution. The results reveal that priming with S-methylmethionine enhances production of protective antioxidants especially glutathione and phenolic compounds in lettuce leaves grown under high salinity of nutrient solution, increasing health promoting quality of lettuce leaves.Chapter seven is also original research addresses the hypothesis “Do nitrogen level and genotype with different leaf color affect spectral absorbance (330 nm – 8000 nm) and nutritional quality of hydroponic lettuce?” The results showed that absorbance of red-leaf lettuce were significantly higher than green-leaf lettuce at 330 nm – 700 nm. Nitrogen levels did not significantly affect phenol, flavonoid, soluble sugar and ascorbic acid content of both red- and green-leaf lettuce.

The red-leaf lettuce contained greater anthocyanin and NO3-N content in leaves than green-leaf lettuce under low N supply.The final chapter described the sensory evaluation methods for agricultural produce grown hydroponically compared to its soil grown counterparts. General guidelines for sensory evaluation procedures are described stepwise. Agricultural factors such as genetics, pre and post-harvest factors affecting the quality of food are carefully discussed. In this chapter, flow chart of sequencing recommendations for sensory evaluation methodology is also highlighted step wisely. Finally it also reviewed and listed the recent literatures on sensory evaluation of hydroponic produce of different corps.This book presents the current research results on the increasing efficiency and quality of agricultural produce through modification of growing environmental factors, management of hydroponic nutrient solution, and use modern light technology innovations. It covers the reviews and original research on enhancement of growth, yield and also consistent production of secondary metabolites and modulation of antioxidative system in horticultural plants especially in medicinal plants under controlled environment. This book is informative and will be valuable to researchers, teachers and students of biological sciences with interest on producing specialty crops having bioactive compounds providing human health benefits.” – Toshiki Asao, Professor, Faculty of Life and Environmental Science Shimane University, Shimane, Japan

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Cotton Fibres: Characteristics, Uses and Performance

“The authors of Cotton: Characteristics, Uses and Performance are to be commended on successfully summarizing all the available technical knowledge on cotton fibre to create the latest go to reference book. For CRDC, as an investor in more than 2,000 cotton research projects, it is both critical and enabling for the future of the sector that nearly three centuries of fibre knowledge has been captured.” – Bruce Finney, Executive Director, Cotton Research and Development Corporation, Narrabri

“The history of cotton is inextricably conjoined with technology. It became the preeminent industrial raw material for textiles because it was amenable to the mass production technologies of the industrial revolution. In addition to its superior performance in processing, it was the only natural fiber that could be supplied in quantities sufficient to serve the needs of mass production. While it is no longer possible to provide adequate supplies of cotton to serve all the fiber demands of the 21st century, the unique properties of cotton should enable its continued status as a major fiber. The chemical and physical characteristics of the fibers, along with the purity of the cotton cellulose, make cotton a prime prospect for further technological breakthroughs. This book provides needed insight about the properties and how these may be exploited to help secure cotton’s future.” – Dean Ethridge, Research Professor, Texas Tech University, Fiber and Biopolymer Research Institute, Lubbock, Texas

“Currently, synthetic fibers pose the biggest challenge to cotton use and thus to cotton production affecting the livelihood of many millions of small and large-scale cotton producers across continents. Undoubtedly, cotton has its intrinsic value due to its inherent fiber quality characteristics some of which are not even well understood until today. While some of the quality characteristics, though known well, are underutilized there is a need to identify new measurable characteristics of the most used natural fiber in the world. This book carries a wealth of information about cotton fibers’ chemical and physical characteristics. Now cotton is produced with much lower use of insecticides than it was produced over two decades ago. Efforts are underway to minimize the use of other major inputs like fertilizers and irrigation and it is certainly achievable. New technologies including biotechnological approaches have accelerated the process to fix specific targets and achieve them within the shortest time. But, information and sharing are critical to meet such goals. This book is certainly a step forward in the same direction. I very much appreciate the work of Dr. Stuart Gordon and Dr. Noureddine Abidi, whom I have known for many years, the addition of this compendium of knowledge for the current and future researchers in the field of fiber technology.” – Dr. M. Rafiq Chaudhry, Head Technical Information Section, International Cotton Advisory Committee

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Crop Rotations: Farming Practices, Monitoring and Environmental Benefits

“Crop rotation has been in use since antiquity. In the years since much has been learned as to how crop rotation affords beneficial effects to cropping systems. A diverse group of international scientists does an excellent job of reviewing what has been learned up to the current day. Cropping systems from around the world are examined in detail with a considered mixture of soil and plant sciences, entomology, ecology, economics, and social sciences. It is an excellent read for all interested in this important area.” – Professor Donald G. Bullock, University of Illinois, Former Editor of Agronomy Journal

“Crop Rotations: Farming Practices, Monitoring and Environmental Benefits is a timely update to our understanding of how rotation benefits current productivity goals while conserving essential environmental resources of soil, water, air and biodiversity for long term sustainability. The historical perspective and consideration of the agronomic functioning of rotations in large agricultural regions and major cropping systems illustrate the broad application of this practice. At a time when agricultural contributions to climate change are being re-evaluated, this book highlights the benefits of the ancient practice of crop rotation and provides a clear rationale for the continued and expanded use of rotation going forward.” – Dr. Lianne M. Dwyer, Chair of Executive Committee of Agriculture Institute of Canada, Former Science Director and Research Scientist of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

“Crop rotations provide an important degree of biodiversity in contemporary cropping systems. Their role as a systems approach to food production is key, and will be increasingly important as we seek to better understand the biological subtleties of crop plants and their production under field conditions. This book provides an important and timely overview of the situation.” – Dr. Donald L. Smith, James McGill Professor, Director and CEO, BioFuelNet Canada Director, McGill Network for Innovation in Biofuels and Bioproducts, McGill University

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Conceptual Fluency Theory and the Teaching of Foreign Languages

“Marcel Danesi’s Conceptual Fluency Theory and the Teaching of Foreign Languages is groundbreaking, highly informative, clear, and suggestive. It is a brilliant, remarkably detailed and thoroughly documented analysis of conceptual fluency theory and what it entails for second language teaching today. Throughout the style is engaging and the exposition accessible. In sum, the book provides an invaluable resource and spur for more thinking and writing about metaphor and the teaching and learning of foreign languages. This is exciting work of the first order.” – Michael Lettieri, Vice-Dean, Academic Experience, University of Toronto Mississauga, ON Canada

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English Language Education in a Global World

“The impact of English as a global language in many spheres of international life has been both rapid and dramatic. This very timely volume on the globalisation of English language education has much to offer readers. Not only does it draw together important theoretical perspectives from which to position the overall theme of the volume, but it also provides rich accounts of international pedagogical processes and practices. It sets out important agendas relating to innovation and change into the future, while at the same time including realistic debates on the challenges involved. The scale and depth of this volume will make an important contribution for several years to come.” – Anne Burns, Professor of TESOL, The University of New South Wales, Australia, Professor Emerita, Aston University, UK

“This is very much a book for 21st century English language education. Focussed on the impact of globalisation on language use and language practices, the contributors raise a number of central and challenging questions in both theory and practice, critically probing key issues for teaching and learning and the place of English and Englishes in learning across a range of different educational settings. Highly recommended.” – Ronald Carter, Emeritus Professor, The University of Nottingham, UK

“English is widely regarded as a global language with myriad uses and roles that are constantly changing. This thematically coherent edited book collection provides fresh perspectives on conceptual issues and informed discussions on pedagogic practices. This book is an invaluable resource for practising teachers, teacher educators, students of Applied Linguistics and researchers alike.” – Constant Leung, Professor of Educational Linguistics, King’s College London, UK

“This book is both informative and stimulating. The contributions provide practitioners and theorists with an impressive panorama of what is happening globally in their professional world. In selected but representative parts of that world, they focus on details and processes, often in areas not often dealt with in accessible publications. The book will appeal equally to the newcomer who seeks orientation and to the experienced reader who wants to reflect on where we are and where we are going in English language education.” – William Littlewood, Honorary Professor, Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong SAR, China

“The chapters in this impressive edited book collection offer unique and fascinating perspectives on theoretical debates, issues and challenges involved in language teaching and language teacher education today. With contributions by established as well as emerging scholars, this book provides an invaluable account of how language teaching policies and practices world-wide are responding to issues raised by the globalisation of English. It will be an essential reference for curriculum specialists, researchers, teacher educators, and teachers interested in new directions in research and practice in English language education.” – Jack Richards, Honorary Professor, The University of Sydney, Australia; The University of Auckland, New Zealand

“Here is a collection that gives glimpses into what is current in the teaching and learning of English around the world. Perhaps the word ‘glimpses’ doesn’t do the book justice.” READ MORE…Marilyn Lewis, The University of Auckland, New Zealand. Published in TESOLANZ Newsletter; April 2017 Issue

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Novel Approaches in Risk, Crisis and Disaster Management

“Novel Approaches in Risk, Crisis and Disaster Management provides to the reader a holistic approach to Crisis and Disaster Management. Man-made and Natural disasters are discussed and analyzed in great detail. In addition to the high level theoretical added value, the book includes a number of real life case studies that complement the theoretical part.” – George Boustras, PhD, Professor in Risk Assessment, Dean of Ioannis Gregoriou School of Business Administration, Director of CERIDES, Editor-in-Chief of Safety Science (Elsevier)

“The first major disasters reported in history to be accompanied by a humanitarian crisis as well, were the Plagues of Egypt. Since then, words like ‘man-made’ and ‘natural disasters’, ‘risks’, ‘humanitarian crisis’ and more, are terms fully interwoven with human history, either in peacetime or during warfare. This present book deals in a very balanced way, both in terms of its subject and its development of issues, through thirteen chapters penned by expert scientists, with all the topics relevant to the aforementioned terms. It is addressed equally to researchers, policy makers, and practitioners.” – Professor Dimitrios Emmanouloudis, Department of Forestry and Natural Environment, Vice Rector of Eastern Macedonia & Thrace Institute of Technology (EMaTTech) and Director of Interistitutional Interdepartmental MSc

“This clearly written, self-contained text presents a novel approach to the management of natural and engineered disasters. Students will find the book easy to follow, and researchers will rejoice in its innovative content. The book strikes an ideal balance between technological and human factors in mitigating disasters, and guides the reader into synthesizing a multiplicity of sources in order to react efficiently to unexpected events. The combination of risk and crisis theories with applications to firefighting, air pollution, and environmental crises makes this a unique book that will be a gem in every scientific library.” – Professor Nick Katopodes, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Michigan

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Tsunamis: Detection, Risk Assessment and Crisis Management

“This book covers a wide variety of aspects related to the tsunami hazard, vulnerability, and risk mitigation. The collection of papers in the text is very well organized and all the contributions are very well written and easy to understand even by people who are not experts in the field of tsunamology. The book, therefore, is a must-read for catastrophe modelers, risk managers, urban planners, civil engineers, and seismologists alike.” – Dr. Peter Sousounis, Vice-President, AIR-Worldwide, Boston, MA

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Heaven on My Mind

“The first, and only, serious study of religious development across the entire lifespan. This book sets a new benchmark for the science of spirituality.” – Dr. Martin E.P. Seligman, Zellerbach Family Professor of Psychology, Director, Positive Psychology Center, University of Pennsylvania

“What a fabulous use of the world renowned Harvard Study of Adult Development, an investigation begun in 1939. For many years and until recently, this project was directed by one of the premier psychiatric and humanistic researchers of his generation, Dr. George Eman Vaillant, MD, of Harvard Medical School. Over the last two decades, Dr. Vaillant has been a leader in the positive psychology movement, and now draws on the Harvard Study of Adult Development to examine the extent to which belief in an afterlife influences well-being and survival over the course of a lifetime. This is the one and only prospective longitudinal study ever conducted on this topic. Every six years, for the better part of four decades, Dr. Vaillant has asked subjects about the degree and depth of their belief in life after death. Heaven on My Mind is a brilliant, deep, and revealing study that reveals scientifically for the first time that there is more value in keeping heaven on one’s mind than most researchers people realize, and indeed this may be why it remains important in many lives. A truly creative and even magnificent book, everyone interested in “Prospection” as a state of mind should read this, as should anyone interested in spirituality and well-being.” – Stephen G. Post, PhD., Director, Center for Medical Humanities, Compassionate Care and Bioethics, Stony Brook University School of Medicine, President, Institute for Research on Unlimited Love

“This heartfelt book weaves together moving stories with data from a groundbreaking longitudinal study that tracked Harvard graduates over the course of their entire lives. Intimate interviews combined with mental and physical health records over decades of time illuminate how our lives are profoundly influenced by the nature of our relationships in the present and our sense of hope for the future. Dr. George Vailllant is a wise and eloquent guide to living well at any age.” – David Bryce Yaden, Research Fellow, Department of Psychology, University of Pennsylvania

“Drawing on the Harvard Study of Adult Development (“The Grant Study”), lead researcher George E. Vaillant, M.D., examines the extent to which a belief in the afterlife influences well-being and survival over the course of a lifetime. Using spiritual and religious biographies of the men in The Grant Study, Heaven on My Mind shows us the significance that faith and hope for heaven have on our everyday life and well-being. The book ultimately reveals that there’s more value in keeping heaven on your mind than you might realize.” – Sandra Bilbray is a contributing editor for Live Happy, and the CEO and owner of

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Essays on the Philosophical Nexus between Religion and Politics. Volume 1

“True to form, my fellow Yale alumnus Dr. Emanuel L. Paparella has once again come out with a brilliant book of essays. This one deals with the thorny but perennial theme of the interface between Religion and Politics, two human phenomena which have had a love-hate relationship from time immemorial within the history of civilizations. Indeed, the nexus religion-politics has constituted a passionate scholarly concern of his for several decades. It appears not only in his Ph.D. dissertation on the Concept of Providence within the philosophy of history of Giambattista Vico, presented in the late 80s at Yale University, but in just about all of his extraordinary books within the field of cultural anthropology. Dr. Paparella has been reflecting long and hard on this thorny subject. This book will delight readers interested in the history and development of civilizations. It is replete with original insights and is nothing short than the distillation of years of reflections on the subject. Those reflections will prove essential to any contemporary attempt at rescuing our troubled Western civilization which Dr. Paparella describes as a civilization in search of its soul.” – Dr. Michael Vena, Professor Emeritus, Southern Connecticut State University

“Emanuel L. Paparella has for many years researched the hot theme of the nexus between religion and politics, or religion and democracy. He has done so on a purely theoretical level but also on an historical level, thus exploring a vast field of knowledge. He possesses a consummate ability to relate to each other different cultural traditions from which he is able to derive original points of reflection. The theme of the nexus religion and politics, given our current philosophical confusion on fundamental values, is, in my opinion, central for the construction of a society which remains free and just, as professor Paparella certainly augurs.” – Professor Ernesto Paolozzi, University of Suor Orsola Benincasa, Naples, Italy

“Dr. Paparella’s choice of subjects is wide and varied, reflecting on problems both old and new, and makes for engaging, thought provoking reading. Though it has been said there is nothing new under the sun, reading Dr. Paparella’s work gives one a new understanding and appreciation for the great philosophers through the ages, and an invigorating direction for the future.” – Professor Michael Newman, Broward College, Davie, FL

“Democracy is not a political concept but it is a way of life. It is a fundamental axiom of a healthy society. The conversation between life and democracy is a constant process and includes the nexus between democracy and religion. Professor Paparella’s essays on the nexus between Democracy and Religion, masterfully unveil the truths in this nexus, without avoiding ideological, theoretical or political conflicts. They search in depth, under the surface of contemporary practices and events, for true relationships and communications between religion, democracy and a healthy society.” – Thanos Kalamidas, Chief Editor Ovi magazine & Ovi Project

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The Psychological Context of Labour Pain

“Two Czech psychologists joined their forces to create an international team and their joint effort resulted in a publication small in size (94 numbered pages), yet offering a unique content. On the book’s back cover, Professor Giustino Varrassi mentions (inter alia) two significant aspects of the book. One is the scientific approach and the other is the constant reference to the exceptionally human side of the topic. The reader must agree. It is not just about pain, however intimate the experience of pain may, undoubtedly, be; the book focuses on pain connected with the delivery of new life, i.e. pain related to birth (as the book’s title suggests).

The structure of the work is well selected and helps to improve clarity and understandability. The preface already contains a brief summary of everything the reader may expect to find in the book. The reader may then choose specific chapters based on their personal or immediate interest. Each chapter is introduced by an abstract, which again helps the readers to find their way through the text. In several chapters, the female authors (yes, all team members are women) cover the social and cultural context of perception of labour pain, and continue with the psychological aspects of labour pain and related coping strategies and fear connected with these aspects and with childbirth in general. A separate chapter is devoted to cesarean delivery on maternal request. Certain parts of the book tend to be more general, providing an opportunity to think in a wider context. This is the case of e.g. pain components. Briefly, yet clearly, the emotional, behavioral and cognitive components are covered, including possible tools and methods of their recording and measurement. Pain has always been a complex phenomenon that is determined by our experience, expectations and personal and social environment.

The authors present the conclusions of a number of international studies on the differences in experiencing pain, comparing cultural and ethnic differences, as well as education, age, expectations, etc., of women in labour. All the empirical research which is based on very specific data shows something of fundamental importance: rather than suppressing pain connected with new life, or down playing pain as something uncomfortable, unwanted, yet unfortunately inevitable, we need to allocate certain purpose or meaning to the experience of pain and the related manifestations and cognitive processes (ideas, fantasies, etc.). A meaning that is part of human life helps to endure pain or discomfort and prevents the experience of suffering. As a man who does not undergo the test of labour pain, I can afford a rather detached, philosophical view and a wish that the arrival of a human being to this world be connected with pain that is meaningful and intertwined with hope and dignity.

The publication in question is successful both for its content and for being published in English which makes it widely available. I recommend this publication for reading and further reflection to professionals of various specializations and to all those who do not consider childbirth and everything related to childbirth a mere routine medical procedure.” – Prof. Ph Dr. Jiří Šípek, CSc., Ph.D., Department of Psychology, Faculty of Arts, Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic

“A slim book on the psychological context of labour pain (The Psychological Context of Labour Pain), edited by Jaroslava Raudenská and Alena Javůrková, and published by Nova Science Publishers, Inc. in New York in 2016, is a concise, yet information-rich overview of significant topics covering both science and medical practice or clinical psychology practice in the given area.

The book covers a wide range of topics, from pain prophylaxis to a deeply human, spiritual experience of childbirth; from self-help options to exclusively expert medical interventions; from a single expert to a multidisciplinary team; from the mother and child to the family context or wider social context; from anxiety and fear, psychologically conditioned, to the phenomenon of pure physiological pain and methods of coping with such pain.

A separate chapter is devoted to cesarean delivery (sectio caesarea): the related statistical data, the circumstances of personal or professional choice of cesarean delivery and the broader philosophical context and human and professionalaspects of the surgery.

The book attempts to open the imaginary door to interdisciplinary collaboration. Although a multidisciplinary approach in obstetrics as proved efficient, it is still not widely used. Thus, the book may benefitall those involved in antenatal preparation, childbirth and postnatal care. The book contains useful information for physicians (especially gynaecologists, neonatologists, anaesthesiologists and psychiatrists), physiotherapists, clinical psychologists and psychotherapists, nurses and social workers and may also bring inspiration to students of the above branches.

The editors are well aware that the size of each chapter did not allow for an exhaustive scientific paper on such key phenomena of human life as birth and pain; nevertheless (or, perhaps, therefore) the book may be used as a “springboard” for further study of the topics (the book itself providing an extensive list of sources) and as a practical guide to integration of various disciplines for the benefit of life. Life from its very beginning, life in its deepest human nature – through mother and child and their co-experience.” – Pavel Humpolíček, Institute of Psychology, Faculty of Arts, Brno Masaryk University, Czech Republic

For more information about this book, please click here.