Bookshelf: Fall 2010
Once you read it, you may never forget Burned: A Memoir (Atlas & Co.): Louise Nayer ’71’s story of her life after a flash fire engulfed her parents when she was four, and her realization that her mother’s strong will prevented the family from falling into self-pity. The author is also a poet and an English professor at City College of San Francisco.
Millen County Standoff (iUniverse) sweeps a Catholic priest and the mother of a murdered boy into a conflict involving a homegrown terrorist militia, a religious cult, and the U.S. government, with southwestern Wisconsin as the backdrop. Author Bill Spevacek ’56 had a career as a PR counselor in Milwaukee and now lives in Mineral Point, Wisconsin.
An Amish Paradox: Diversity and Change in the World’s Largest Amish Community (Johns Hopkins University Press) was seven years of fieldwork in the making for co-author Charles Hurst MS’65. It’s a study of the complexity, creativity, social change, and schism among the Holmes County, Ohio, Amish. Hurst is an emeritus professor of sociology at the College of Wooster [Ohio].
New York City novelist and short-story writer Peter Straub ’65 — who’s penned many works, including The Talisman and its sequel, Black House (both with Stephen King) — has launched his latest work. It’s A Dark Matter (Doubleday), about four Madison high school friends in 1966 who are seduced into, and forever scarred by, meddling with forces that they don’t understand.
Best Friends at the Bar: What Women Need to Know about a Career in the Law (Wolters Kluwer/Aspen Publishers) addresses both the work-life issues and the opportunities facing female lawyers and law students. Author Susan Smith Blakely ’69 of Great Falls, Virginia, is a law practitioner who’s viewed the profession from many angles.
About the cartoon-format work Market Day (Drawn & Quarterly), Booklist says, “The timeless dilemma of balancing artistic integrity and the dictates of the marketplace is addressed with compassion and sensitivity in this recounting of an eventful twenty-four hours in the life of a rug maker in eastern Europe in the early 1900s.” Author James Sturm ’87 co-founded and directs the Center for Cartoon Studies in White River Junction, Vermont.
Hard Lives, Mean Streets: Violence in the Lives of Homeless Women (University Press of New England), co-written by James Wright MS’70, PhD’73, fills a critical gap in existing research about the context and etiology of homeless women’s experiences with violence. Wright is the Provost Distinguished Research Professor of Sociology at the University of Central Florida in Orlando.
Confessions of a Slot Machine Queen: A Memoir (Eugenia Books) is a critical examination of the dangers inherent in the gambling industry, but it’s also the powerful personal story of how UW Professor of Afro-American Studies Sandra Adell MA’88, PhD’89 “descended into the depths of an addiction … and then climbed back out.”
June. South Africa. The 2010 World Cup. The U.S. watched as never before, and a new book by New York Daily News sports columnist Filip Bondy ’73 fills in everything you may not know about American soccer on the global field. Chasing the Game: America and the Quest for the World Cup (Da Capo Press) chronicles the U.S. team’s history and profiles its players, coach, on-field play, and off-field dynamics.
In Workplace Flexibility: Realigning 20th-Century Jobs for a 21st-Century Workforce (Cornell University Press), co-editor Kathleen Christensen PhD’91 contends that voluntarily adopting best flexibility practices is crucial to business success and employee satisfaction in the new decade. She’s the program director at the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, a philanthropic, grant-making institution in New York City.
Bean Sprouts Café and Cooking School in Middleton, Wisconsin, is a tot-friendly spot where kids can eat fun-but-good-for-them food, and parents can relax in a chic atmosphere. Now owners Shannon Payette Seip MA’97 of Madison and Kelly Kaminski Parthen MA’99 of Colorado Springs, Colorado, have added a book to the menu: Bean Appétit: Hip and Healthy Ways to Have Fun with Food (Andrews McMeel).
Farmer Jane: Women Changing the Way We Eat (Gibbs Smith) profiles thirty women farmers nationwide and delves into the impact they’re having on our food system. An “aha” moment at Madison’s Willy Street Co-op sparked author Temra Costa ’02’s advocacy on behalf of sustainable farming. She lives in El Cerrito, California.
The Atkins diet has been updated for the twenty-first century. Eric Westman MD’86 is the co-author of The New Atkins for a New You: The Ultimate Diet for Shedding Weight and Feeling Great (Fireside). An associate professor of medicine at the Duke University Health System and the director of the Duke Lifestyle Medicine Clinic, he lives in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.
Published in the Fall 2010 issue