A selection of new titles by Washington authors, or of local interest.

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“Mystery of the Nile: The Epic Story of the First Descent of the World’s Deadliest River”

by Richard Bangs and Pasquale Scaturro (Putnam, $25.95). On April 28, 2004, geophysicist-adventurer Pasquale Scaturro and his partner, Gordon Brown, became the first men to kayak and raft the full, 3,253-mile length of the Blue Nile and Nile, from the river’s source in the highlands of Ethiopia to its Mediterranean Sea outlet in 114 days. Co-author Richard Bangs is from Redmond.


“King of Fish: The Thousand-Year Run of Salmon”

by David R. Montgomery (Westview, $16). Paperback reprint of a University of Washington geomorphology professor’s study of the fish that is an icon of the Pacific Northwest. Times reviewer Tim McNulty called this “an insightful, scrupulously researched, sometimes painful account of the ways in which human progress have proved lethal to salmon.” He added that Montgomery offers suggestions for how to save Pacific Northwest salmon.



“Medusa”

by Michael Dibdin (Vintage Crime, $12.95). In stores Tuesday: the paperback edition of the latest Aurelio Zen mystery by the Seattle-based British writer. This one finds the Italian policeman investigating the murder of a man found in an old military tunnel in northern Italy. Scene of the Crime columnist Adam Woog called this one of Dibdin’s “meatier efforts. … Enough espresso is drunk to keep anyone operatic with caffeine.”

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“Oxherding Tale”

by Charles Johnson (Scribner, $13). Reissue of Johnson’s 1982 novel blending slave narrative, comic adventure and Buddhist myth. Johnson is a University of Washington professor and National Book Award winner (“Middle Passage”). This reissue includes his introduction to the 1995 edition of the book.



“The Gluten-free Gourmet Cooks Comfort Foods: Creating Old Favorites with New Flours”

by Bette Hagman (Owl, $17). Paperback reprint of Seattle writer-lecturer’s recipe book for comfort-food lovers who suffer from gluten intolerance.

Michael Upchurch, Seattle Times book critic