New at the library.

When Pulitzer Prize winner Annie Proulx, the author of "Brokeback Mountain," fell in love with a chunk of land in Wyoming, she decided it was time to design and build the house of her dreams. Several years and many thousands of dollars later (most of them over-budget), she had a beautiful home with a number of impractical elements. She also had a great story. In "Bird Cloud“(921.000), she shares how the house was conceived and designed and how a crew of unusual characters turned her plans into reality.

Emma Graham, the 12-year-old sleuth of La Porte, Md., and star of a delightful series by Martha Grimes, is back -- still waitressing at her mother's elegantly shabby resort hotel and cub reporting for the town's newspaper. This time Emma sets her sights on solving the 20-year-old mystery surrounding the supposed kidnapping and disappearance of Baby Fay Slade. The return of the child's father Morris, plus the arrival of drifter Ralph Diggs, has Emma snooping around and asking questions of an eccentric array of family, friends, and neighbors.  Emma returns in "Fadeaway Girl" (M).

Having grown up in the age of feminism and girl power, journalist Peggy Orenstein was perplexed when her own daughter, Daisy, threw over Thomas the Tank Engine to join the current crop of girlie-girl princesses. Orenstein began to question what effect this emphasis on appearance rather than intelligence and character will mean for these girls as they grow and mature. She traveled to Disneyland, American Girl Palace, and the international Toy Fair, talked to psychologists, and infiltrated social networking sites. In "Cinderella Ate My Daughter" (305.230), she shares her thought-provoking findings in her entertaining "dispatches from the front lines of the new girlie-girl culture."

After years of putting his career ahead of his family, Tom Nicholson loses his lucrative job at BBC World Service in the backwash of the financial crises. Suddenly his lackluster marriage to Annie, a hospital administrator who now becomes the chief breadwinner, is thrown into disarray. Their son, Jake, also out of work, returns home to live with them bringing his baby daughter, and Tom's mother, Hermione, comes to stay as well since she can no longer afford assisted living. Can the foundering Nicholson marriage survive? Elizabeth Buchan supplies the comic answer in "Separate Beds."

In her debut novel, "Heidegger's Glasses," Thaisa Frank imagines an unusual group of intellectuals brought together by the Nazis and housed in an underground bunker. Their purpose is to answer the letters sent to the probably now-dead victims of the Holocaust, in part as an exercise in record-keeping but also to keep up the pretense that all is well. And it seems to be working -- until one day near the end of the war a letter is received written by the genius philosopher Martin Heidegger to his optometrist and friend Asher Englehardt, who was lost years ago in the horror of Auschwitz.

Nearly 20 million Americans have a condition called peripheral neuropathy, yet, except for carpal tunnel syndrome, which is one type of PN, few of us have ever heard of it. This debilitating condition frequently causes tingling, pain, and discomfort in feet, legs, and hands and affects balance and the ability to walk. Physicians Alexander McLellan and Marc Spitz dissect the problem and its many causes, and offer helpful treatments in "The Numb Foot Book: How to Treat and Prevent Peripheral Neuropathy" (616.856).

The Oak Ridger in Tennessee.