Bookshelf: Summer 2009

Four Jews on Parnassus (A Conversation): Benjamin, Adorno, Scholem, Sch√∂nberg (Columbia University Press) is a dramatized interaction among these four men about fraternity, religious identity, legacy — and their wives. Its author is Carl Djerassi PhD’45 of San Francisco: a novelist, playwright, and Stanford University emeritus professor of chemistry who’s earned the National Medal of Science for the first synthesis of an oral contraceptive, as well as the National Medal of Technology.

Deaf Lives in Contrast: Two Women’s Stories (Gallaudet University Press) contains the collection of stories that Dorothy (Dvora) Becker Shurman ’46 tells about life with her deaf parents. She’s a professional storyteller, poet, and the founder of an English storytelling center in her home city of Tel Aviv, Israel.

Twelve Stones: Notes on a Miraculous Journey (Regal Books) is “the story of unbelievable miracles in a very believable woman’s life — an intensely personal, unorthodox journey to faith.” Author Barbara Carole (also known as Barbara Shatzkin Royce Extract ’63, MA’65) of Issaquah, Washington, has also ghostwritten books for Jacques Cousteau.

Start ’Em Right … Keep ’Em Playing: Skills, Drills, and Strategies for Coaching Young Ball Players (iUniverse) has arrived in time for summer. It’s written by Michael Schmidt ’64, a retired pharmacologist and research director who’s spent his leisure time coaching on the softball field. He splits his year between New Smyrna Beach, Florida, and Williamston, Vermont.

With Picks, Shovels, & Hope: The CCC and Its Legacy on the Colorado Plateau (Mountain Press Publishing Company) is co-authored by Elizabeth George Green ’67 of Bayfield, Colorado. With all of the recent focus on what can be learned from the Great Depression, this is a timely offering.

Millennial Makeover: MySpace, YouTube, and the Future of American Politics (Rutgers University Press) by co-author Michael Hais MA’67 of Silver Spring, Maryland, was named one of the New York Times’s ten favorites for 2008.


LeMay: The Life and Wars of General Curtis LeMay (Regnery Publishing) explores the “timely question of proportional response in war,” according to author Warren Kozak ’73. The work touches on World War II, the Cold War, and the 1968 election.


Shooters & Chasers (Five Star) is, says its author, Lenny Kleinfeld ’69, a “criminal comedy of manners,” and Kirkus Reviews praises the debut novel for its “appealing heroes and villains, quirky love story, wit, style, and suspense.” Kleinfeld lives in L.A. with his spouse, National Public Radio correspondent Ina Jaffe ’72.


The Ten Commandments of Baseball: An Affectionate Look at Joe McCarthy’s Principles for Success in Baseball (and Life) (Sporting Chance Press), by Milwaukee attorney J.D. (James) Thorne ’73, explores the legends surrounding major-league manager Joe McCarthy and offers a foreword by Commissioner Bud (Allan) Selig ’56. Thorne is working to reinstate baseball as a UW sport.

Meditations on Hope: Nurses’ Stories about Motivation and Inspiration and A Call to Nursing: Nurses’ Stories about Challenge and Commitment (both Kaplan Publishing) are recent anthologies co-edited by Paula Wettstein Sergi ’75 of Fond du Lac, Wisconsin. She’s also contributed to the new Reflections on Doctors: Nurses’ Stories about Physicians and Surgeons (Kaplan).

The Minnesota Almanac (Trails Books) is a “compendium of year-round wit, wisdom, and practical knowledge” created for those living in, gardening in, or even just visiting our neighbor to the west. Author Candice Gaukel Andrews ’77 of Sun Prairie, Wisconsin, specializes in nature and travel subjects.

10 Strategies for Reentering the Workforce: Career Advice for Anyone Who Needs a Good (or Better) Job Now (Praeger Publishers) couldn’t have come at a better time. Its author is Mary Dyson Ghilani ’81, MS’83, director of career services at Luzerne County Community College in Nanticoke, Pennsylvania.

The Bill of Rights and The Declaration of Independence (both Barron’s Educational Series) are the latest in the children’s series about American history and government that author Syl Sobel JD’83 originally began writing for his daughters. He lives in North Potomac, Maryland.

Think Outside the Can (Trafford Publishing) blends a passion for environmentalism with a claymation-type bird who teaches kids about recycling. Author Jill Weinberg Pfeiffer ’95 is an artist, activist, and the development director of Madison’s Lussier Community Education Center.

In The Teashop Girls (Simon & Schuster), a debut young-adult novel set in Madison, local author Laura Schaefer ’01 empowers three tweens to save the Steeping Leaf teashop before the new coffee chain store across the street devours it.

Published in the Summer 2009 issue


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