Anne Lee's new book "Successful Research Supervision: Advising students doing research" (Routledge, April 2012), provides an up to date, scholarly but readable look at supervising university research in the 21st century. While clearly focused on supervision of doctoral degrees by research in the UK, the book is also useful for other programmes and places.
At times Lee's analysis can get a little too academic, such as in discussion of the feminist post-colonial critique of teaching as a process of self-transformation (page 21). Lee's stated aim is to help the "good enough" supervisor. But learning is not an easy process and I find myself on an personal odyssey, to become a better higher education teacher. At times this has come close to the original Odyssey, with visits to ancient and modern places of learning around the Aegean, from Turkey to Greece.
Lee tries to tackle all the big issues of teaching and supervision in the first chapter "A Framework for Analysing Approaches to Teaching and Supervision". This starting with the biggest question: the nexus between teaching and research. The origins of research degrees are traced back to Wilhelm von Humboldt in 1810 (I recommend a visit to Humboldt University of Berlin), through Oxford 1917 (also interesting for a visit but avoid the food in college).