The Innocent Have Nothing to Fear

by Stuart Stevens ’74

the-innocent-have-nothing-to-fear-bookshelfThe protagonist in Stevens’ novel is campaign manager J.D. Callahan whose candidate is Hilda Smith, the country’s first female presidential candidate who is disliked – even hated – by many. She’s running neck-and-neck with an anti-immigrant, right-wing populist. Smith represents the establishment in an anti-establishment year — and she’s in a dead heat with a non-politician running for elected office for the first time. Stevens is a veteran of numerous campaigns, including Mitt Romney’s. Said Stevens, “When I wrote this book, I thought I was pushing things out to the edge to give us a sense of what could happen and also for comic effect. I finished it over a year ago. I think I probably underplayed reality.” Published by Alfred A. Knopf, 2016.

The Tolling of Mercedes Bell

by Jennifer Dwight ’73

the-tolling-of-mercedes-bell-bookshelfSet in San Francisco and spanning the 1980s, this story of a relationship’s rise and later complications is interwoven with the culture of that time, including the emergence of yuppies and the AIDS epidemic. Widowed paralegal Mercedes Bell, adapting to the challenges of single motherhood, finds herself charmed by Jack Soutane, a dashing lawyer. Taken by his spell, she realizes not everything is as it seems and soon finds herself fighting to protect her daughter and herself from the truth beneath Soutane’s lies. This debut novel by real-life paralegal Dwight was an Indie Book Awards finalist. Published by She Writes Press, 2016.

The Codex of Justinian: A New
Annotated Translation

co-edited by Noel Lenski ’89

codex-of-justinian-bookshelfThe Codex of Justinian is the most extensive collection of imperial laws to survive from antiquity. It compiles legal pronouncements stretching from the second to the sixth centuries C.E. and in its day served as a sort of constitution for the late Roman Empire. The Codex had never yet been translated into English in a credible way until a Wyoming supreme court justice, Fred H. Blume, completed the task in the 1920s. His typescript was left unpublished in the law library of the University of Wyoming until Lenski and an international team edited and revised the text for publication in three volumes. Lenski teaches classics and history at Yale. Published by Cambridge University Press, 2016.

Green & Blue

CD by Iain Hyde ’06 and Joanna Hyde ’09

green-and-blue-album-cover-bookshelfBrother and sister duo Iain and Joanna Hyde comprise the group The Hydes, based in Denver. Together they weave creatively and decisively through an eclectic musical landscape of Americana, Irish, bluegrass, and beyond on this 43-minute, 10-track CD. Iain is on the guitar and mandolin, while Joanna, a gifted singer, also plays the fiddle. Additionally, they wrote four of the songs on the album. Says Irish Music Magazine: “Both are excellent musicians of the first water. There is wonderful variety in the tunes and songs. And, how can you not love an Irish album that ends with Sam Cooke’s ‘Nothing Can Change This Love?’ Complexity, directness, and a deep love for Irish traditional music and its history, The Hydes bring it all.” Produced by Hyde Music Productions HYDECD1, 2016.

Incarceration Nation

by Peter Enns ’98

incarceration-nation-bookshelfThe rise of mass incarceration in the U.S. is one of the most critical outcomes of the last half-century, and this book, subtitled “How the United States became the Most Punitive Democracy in the World,” offers a compelling explanation. Enns, a professor at Cornell University and executive director of the Roper Center for Public Opinion Research, combines in-depth analysis of Goldwater and Nixon’s presidential campaigns with 60 years of data analysis. Enns shows that from the 1960s through 1990s, politicians responded to an increasingly punitive public by pushing policy in a more punitive direction. Recent changes in public attitudes is promoting current bipartisan calls for criminal justice reform. Published by Cambridge University Press, 2016.

The Penelope Project

co-edited by Anne Basting ’87

the-penelope-project-bookshelfSubtitled “An Arts-Based Odyssey to Change Elder Care,” the book illustrates the impact of community-based arts on the transformation of a long-term care institution’s culture. At Milwaukee’s Luther Manor, staff, residents, and volunteers traded bingo cards for “The Odyssey.” They embarked on a two-year project to examine this ancient story from the perspective of the hero who never left home: Penelope, wife of Odysseus. The team staged a play that engaged everyone and transcended the limits not just of old age and disability but also youth, institutional regulations, and disciplinary boundaries. Basting is the recipient of a 2016 MacArthur Foundation grant (see page 42). Published by University of Iowa Press, 2016.

Campus Ministry Memoirs

edited by Betsy Alden ’64

This collection of memoirs from 55 campus ministers celebrates the 50th anniversary of the National Campus Ministry Association. The writers were groundbreakers in higher education ministry during a transformative period in campus ministry (1964-2014). Their stories recount a time when denominational and ecumenical partnerships among America’s religious communities provided an array of significant ministries in higher education institutions. Alden recently retired (for the second time) from Duke University, where she founded the service-learning program and taught women’s leadership courses in public policy from 1997-2010. She received the Benezet Award in 1998. Sold by Amazon Digital Services LLC, 2016.

Understanding Oil and Gas Shows and Seals in the Search for Hydrocarbons

by John Dolson ’71

understand-oil-and-gas-bookshelfThis book explains in detail how to use oil and gas data collected from wells and rock samples to find hydrocarbons. It covers the basics of exploration methodologies, drilling and mud systems, cuttings and mud gas show evaluation, fundamental log analysis, and the pitfalls of log-calculated water saturations. The book is heavily illustrated with numerous examples and case histories from Dolson’s 37 years of exploration experience. With more than 300 figures and tables, it is one of the most comprehensive treatments of how to use subsurface data to look for new oil and gas fields. Published by Springer Verlag, 2016.

Comrades on the Colca

by Eugene Buchanan ’86

comrades-on-the-colca-bookshelfBuchanan, an adventurer with a passion for traveling, writing, and paddling, plunges his readers into a tale of adventure with a team of Polish explorers on a first descent on the Cruz del Condor section of Peru’s Colca Canyon, the deepest gorge in the world. Along the way they discover not only the camaraderie needed to survive but a rival team bent on beating them to the expedition prize. Buchanan, who has several first descents to his credit, wields his pen and paddle well as he intersperses the story with lore, legends, and flashbacks to previous paddling adventures. Published by Conundrum Press, 2016.

Justice, Care, and the Welfare State

by Daniel Engster ’88

Care Ethics and Political Theory

co-edited by Daniel Engster ’88

justice-care-and-the-welfare-state-bookshelfcare-ethics-bookshelf“Justice, Care, and the Welfare State” addresses questions such as what role, if any, states should play in supporting families. Engster, associate professor of political science at the University of Texas, San Antonio, writes that Western welfare states are in a period of significant transition. Applying political philosophy to public policy issues, Engster draws on a public ethics of care to develop his theory of welfare state justice, outlining policy proposals in the areas of the family, education, health care, old age pensions and long-term care, disability, and unemployment.

“Care Ethics and Political Theory” looks at the relationship between care and justice and proposes guidelines for the development of a care-based justice theory. Care ethics is further applied to issues such as security, privacy, law, and health care where little work has been done, and the contributing authors show how care ethics can guide and learn from other traditions. Engster has twice won research fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities. Both books
published b
y Oxford University Press, 2015.


by Marianne Lile ’85

the-stepmother-bookshelfIn this memoir, Lile tells of meeting a man, falling in love, getting married, and arriving home from the honeymoon with a new label: stepmom. It was a role she initially embraced, but she quickly discovered she was alone in a difficult situation, with no handbook and no mentor. Lile describes the complexities of the stepmom position, in a family and in the community, and shares her experience wearing a tag that is often misunderstood and weighed down by the numerous myths in society. Published by She Writes Press, 2016.

Lost Wax

by Jericho Parms ’06

lost-wax-bookshelfParms borrows the title for her collection of 18 essays from a casting method used by sculptors. The essays examine form and content and the language of innocence, experience, and loss. Written largely within the galleries of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, “Lost Wax” is an inquiry into the ways we curate memory and human experience. Parms exhibits and examines her greatest obsessions: how to describe the surface of marble; how to embrace the complexities of identity, stillness and movement; how to be young and alive. Published by The University of Georgia Press, 2016.

“In Praise of Contempt”

essay by Katherine Standefer ’78

the-best-american-essays-bookshelfStandefer’s essay is featured in the anthology “Best American Essays 2016.” The essay takes a “no-nonsense approach to sexual morality,” according to one of the judges, who goes on to say that “the sexual stories that ‘In Praise of Contempt’ contains are refreshingly anti-pious; clear, cool, and committed to an erotics that is blissfully contrarian and unruly.” Standefer’s essay originally appeared in The Iowa Review as the winner of the 2015 Award for Nonfiction. Published by Mariner Books, 2016.