Bookshelf

We Do Our Part: Toward a Fairer and More Equal America by Charles Peters ’49. Peters, a Washington, D.C., journalist for 60-plus years and the founder of Washington Monthly, suggests that if Americans want to revive the can-do spirit of the New Deal era, we need to demand it of ourselves and of our elected officials (Random House, $27).

The Girl from Guantanamo by Donald Roth ’56. In this work of historical fiction set in 1958 Cuba, 18-year-old Pilar Ruiz goes from early life on a sugar farm to becoming a revolutionary heroine. Roth’s interest in the time period stems from his time as a Navy officer present at the turning point of the Cuban revolution (SelectBooks, $22.95).

Hospitable Planet: Faith, Action, and Climate Change by Stephen Jurovics ’58. In an effort to inspire readers who are motivated by faith as well as science, this book addresses the physical evidence of climate change while demonstrating through biblical teachings the religious imperative for preserving the natural world (Morehouse Publishing, $18.95).

The Piketty Problem or The Robots Are Coming, The Robots Are Coming by Garth Hallberg ’64. In this satire about economics and present-day American politics, a McDonald’s franchise owner replaces human workers in his 26 restaurants with “McRobots” (The Reason For Everything, $13.50).

The Trial of Patrolman Thomas Shea by Thomas Hauser ’67. In 1973, 10-year-old Clifford Glover was shot and killed; NYPD officer Thomas Shea was charged with his murder. Originally released in 1980, the book includes a new afterword from the author demonstrating that institutionalized racism remains (Seven Stories Press, $17.95).

Freud’s Trip to Orvieto: The Great Doctor’s Unresolved Confrontation with Antisemitism, Death, and Homoeroticism; His Passion for Paintings; and the Writer in His Footsteps by Nicolas Fox Weber ’69. The author considers an incident in which Sigmund Freud, a year after visiting an Italian cathedral, could not recall the name of the artist who created the paintings of male nudes he’d seen there. Freud’s analysis of his own inability to remember — the “Signorelli parapraxis” — is now a principle in the study of repressed memory (Bellevue Literary Press, $26.99).

The Dicer’s Cup by Bill Christophersen ’71. Christophersen’s second book of poetry is a mix of free and formal verse, describing subjects such as traveling through Scotland, battling a stormy surf and coping with a grandmother’s suicide (Kelsay Books, $17).

Eye Chart (Object Lessons) by William Germano ’72. Eye Chart is a series of short, artfully designed books about the hidden lives of ordinary things; Germano kicks off his exploration of the eye chart with a deceptively simple question: “What can you see?” (Bloomsbury Academic, $14.95).

Tales from Webster’s: The Verminous Resuscitator and The Monsignor in the Zoot Suit by John Shea ’74. The author’s “tales” are a clever literary form he invented: Take a dictionary, choose a word, then faithfully follow each sequential word to construct a narrative. Each story uses at least five key words, and no more than 50 words of connective text (Livingston Press, $14.95).

Dirty War: Rhodesia and Chemical Biological Warfare 1975–1980 by Glenn Cross ’85. The author, who works for the U.S. government on issues of weapons of mass destruction, provides a comprehensive look at Rhodesia’s top-secret use of chemical and biological weapons during its long counterinsurgency against native African nationalists (Helion and Co., $39.95).

Signs and Wonders: 100 Haggada Masterpieces by Adam Cohen ’86. This is the first work to survey the history of the illustrated Passover haggada — an important text in the Jewish tradition — from the Middle Ages to contemporary times (The Toby Press, $39.95).

The Book of Separation by Tova Mirvis ’95. This memoir describes the first year that follows Mirvis’ decision to leave her marriage and her tight-knit Orthodox Jewish community to forge a new life for herself and her children (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, $26).

The King Is Always Above the People: Stories by Daniel Alarcón ’99. Alarcón is a professor at the Journalism School; his new book is a collection of stories about immigration, broken dreams, Los Angeles gang members, Latin-American families and high-stakes journeys (Riverhead Books, $27).

This Love Story Will Self-Destruct by Leslie Cohen ’06. Eve, an arty dreamer, and Ben, an orderly engineer, navigate the winding journey of their 20s from first jobs, first dates and first breakups to first reunions, first betrayals and first love (Gallery Books, $16).

— Jill C. Shomer

Columbia College Authors!

Please send us your latest book, to be included in an upcoming issue. We welcome new or recently published books by College alumni, faculty and students as well as books about the College and its people. Please send early-stage copies, with a press release, as promptly as possible to:

Bookshelf Editor
Columbia College Today
Columbia Alumni Center
622 W. 113th St., MC 4530, 4th Fl.
New York, NY 10025

Please be patient — we receive a great many submissions and your book may not appear for several issues. We also advise that alumni send an update about the book (and themselves) to their Class Notes correspondent so as to gain additional publication coverage.