A W F Girandole Books
We are a family affair, publishers of books by Herb and Mary Knapp and son-in-law Steven M. Alper. We also feature two of our books on this web site which were published by other publishers (One Potato, Two Potato: W.W. Norton and Red, White and Blue Paradise: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich). All of these books are available for purchase on Amazon.com, where you can read the reviews to see what readers have to say about them.

We expect to publish more titles soon, including two works of fiction, a biography, a family memoir, and several volumes of Herb’s unusual poetry.

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Just Released!
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Did You See This?
Poems to Provoke the Politically Correct

by Herbert Knapp

Political correctness has stifled independent thought, hobbled the economy, turned sexual relationship into a minefield of legal liabilities, and neutered stand-up comedy. In response, poetry has clutched its pearls and hidden in its academic parlor. Poets tell themselves poetry is about feelings and the ineffable—eternal things—not transitory political disputes. It was not always so. In a more robust age (when poetry mattered) children didn’t run to the teacher but shouted back, “I’m rubber, you’re glue whatever you say bounces off me and sticks to you!”

The poems in Did You See This? mock politicians, journalists, the sexual police, history professors, utopians, postmodernist artists, and, of course, the politically correct.

“Our Situation”
What can be expected of a nation
Whose boast is that it lacks discrimination?

Read samples from this book.

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Miracle on Fourth Street:
Saving an Old Merchant’s House
by Mary L. Knapp

This sequel to An Old Merchant’s House takes up the story of a family home built in 1832 after the last family member died in 1933, almost a hundred years later. It tells how the house became a museum and recounts the extraordinary efforts expended over the years to preserve it for posterity.

Read a sample chapter from this book.

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An Old Merchant’s House:
Life at Home in New York City, 1835-64
by Mary L. Knapp

This book offers an authentic view of the domestic life of privileged New Yorkers in the three decades before the Civil War. It is based on memoirs, diaries, letters, and a preserved antebellum home belonging to the same family for almost 100 years. The daily life and habits of that family and their neighbors are revealed in detail.

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One Potato,Two Potato:
The Folklore of American Children
by Mary and Herbert Knapp
W.W. Norton

Children's traditional customs, rhymes, games, jeers, songs, superstitions, stories,and pranks help kids deal with feelings and taboo subjects that they can’t understand or talk about and to cope with the stresses of their lives. That’s the serious theme. Readers also find the book an amusing blast from the past as they recall their own childhoods. Remember cooties?

Read a sample from this book.

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Next! Auditioning for the Musical Theatre
by Steven M. Alper

The perfect guide for any musical theater hopeful by a veteran New York City musical director, composer, and audition accompanist. Extensive do’s and don’ts, pitfalls to avoid, and rules you should never break. Chapters include music preparation: how to prepare the physical music; the piano player: what to expect from him; the song: what to sing, what not to sing; the audition: how to impress the people behind the table; and much more.

Read a sample from this book.

Purchase Next! Auditioning for the Musical Theatre from Amazon
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Red, White and Blue Paradise
The American Canal Zone in Panama
by Mary and Herbert Knapp
Harcourt Brace Jovanovich

Based on our 20 years experience teaching in the former Panama Canal Zone, this book is a combination personal memoir, historical record, and sociological study of an ambiguous American utopia that existed in Panama for three-quarters of the twentieth century. Now out of print, but a reasonably priced used copy can usually be obtained from Amazon.

Read a sample from this book.

Purchase Red, White and Blue Paradise from Amazon