Well the McMain Spinning Mambo Into Salsa book arrived yesterday. Despite its length it didn't take me long to work my way through it - mainly because it's such a good read. It's definitely a very well researched and comprehensive history of mambo and salsa dance, providing histories of NY mambo, 70s salsa, LA mambo to salsa (with references to Terence's old hangout Virginia's), casino from its inception to the present day, and the rise of the 'salsa scene' i.e. salsa from the 90s to today. There are lots of interviews with professional and amateur dancers from all the eras and places in question, plus musicians and promoters, and extensive reference to books, magazines,newspapers and films from then to now. It includes great analyses of how old school mambo and salsa differed to each other and differ to today's scene, and she makes a point of outlining both the positives and negatives of salsa as it exists in the 21st century. My main criticism would be that at times she sees today's scene through rose-tinted spectacles to a certain extent, even though she definitely makes plain the principle disadvantages to the scene as it exists now. (Also there are a few typos here and there - as a goodwill gesture I would be happy to proofread it for free if she wants to revise the text any time - shame the OUP couldn't have done it for her. Anyone who knows her is welcome to pass on the offer.) N.B: the only time she struggled to find a lot of first hand recollections from a particular era was when she was researching LA in the mambo era - I'm sure I know someone who was dancing in LA back then and would be happy to share some memories. Nonetheless it is a superb book and I recommend it to anyone (particularly those whose interest in salsa goes beyond turn patterns).