A guide to books we're reading and talking about this year.
Last Updated: Jul 2, 2015
Check out what EvCC employees are reading and recommending! Stay tuned each week during summer quarter for reader profiles, picks, and pans. If you aren't here already, send your summer suggestion or what-I'm-reading-now pick to Jeanne Leader at email@example.com and she'll add it right away. Watch our bookstack grow!
Light from a Small Brown Bird
Publication Date: 2015-03-15
Jeff Pearce says he will be reading "our own Rich Ives' keen and lustrous new poetry collection" this summer. Rich Ives has received grants and awards from the National Endowment for the Arts, Artist Trust, Seattle Arts Commission and the Coordinating Council of Literary Magazines for his work in poetry, fiction, editing, publishing, translation and photography.
Publication Date: 1987-05-12
Gene Lawrence just finished this modern classic and highly recommends it as a "a terrific read for the scifi enthusiast or even the uninitiated." The description from Amazon: "Without warning, giant silver ships from deep space appear in the skies above every major city on Earth. Manned by the Overlords, in fifty years, they eliminate ignorance, disease, and poverty. Then this golden age ends--and then the age of Mankind begins...."
No Place to Hide
It's no surprise that political science instructor Steve Horn started this book in early June. From Amazon: "In May 2013, Glenn Greenwald set out for Hong Kong to meet an anonymous source who claimed to have astonishing evidence of pervasive government spying .... That source turned out to be the twenty-nine-year-old NSA contractor Edward Snowden, and his revelations about the agency's widespread, systemic overreach proved to be some of the most explosive and consequential news in recent history, triggering a fierce debate over national security and information privacy."
The Girl on the Train
Publication Date: 2015-01-13
Katherine Schiffner called this "an interesting take on a murder mystery." The New York Daily News summed it up as "a harrowing new suspense novel…a complex and thoroughly chilling psychological thriller… The Girl on the Train is one of those books where you can’t wait — yet almost can’t bear — to turn the page. It’s a stunning novel of dread.”
Publication Date: 2011-09-27
Samantha Reed says that she takes her summer reading "VERY serioiusly" and this was among the many non-class textbooks on her list. From Amazon: "The Ramayana is an epic poem by the Hindu sage Valmiki, written in ancient Sanskrit sometime after 300 BC. It is an allegorical story that contains important Hindu teachings, and it has had great influence on Indian life and culture over the centuries."
Publication Date: 2010-06-15
Peggy Kurtz called this her "top pick" for summer. According to the New Yorker: "Through the story of one man’s experience after Hurricane Katrina, Eggers draws an indelible picture of Bush-era crisis management. Abdulrahman Zeitoun, a successful Syrian-born painting contractor, decides to stay in New Orleans and protect his property while his family flees. After the levees break, he uses a small canoe to rescue people, before being arrested by an armed squad and swept powerlessly into a vortex of bureaucratic brutality."
The Parsifal Mosaic
Margie Wyatt is revisiting some of her favorite authors, including Robert Ludlum. From Amazon: "A powerful, fast-paced thriller from the bestselling author of the Bourne series. Michael Havelock watched as his partner and lover, Jenna Karas, double agent, was gunned down by his own agency. There's nothing left for him but to get out, quit the game. Until, in one frantic moment on a crowded railway platform in Rome, Havelock sees Jenna. She's alive - and suddenly Havelock is a marked man, on the run from both US and Russian assassins."
Jeanne Leader calls this "important and difficult reading" and thinks perhaps it should be an all-campus read next fall. From Amazon: "The Department of Justice investigated 350 sexual assaults reported to the Missoula police between January 2008 and May 2012 ... Krakauer chronicles the searing experiences of several women in Missoula — the nights when they were raped; their fear and self-doubt in the aftermath; the way they were treated by the police, prosecutors, defense attorneys; the public vilification and private anguish; their bravery in pushing forward and what it cost them."
All the Light We Cannot See
Publication Date: 2014-05-06
Laura Wild read this during spring break, "luxuriating" in the chance to have time to read an entire book in 4 days. Author Anthony Doerr won the Pulitzer Prize for this "beautiful, stunningly ambitious instant New York Times bestseller about a blind French girl and a German boy whose paths collide in occupied France as both try to survive the devastation of World War II."
Where'd You Go, Bernadette
Lori Wisdom-Whitley found this novel to be so funny (and a perfect beach book) that she's re-reading it on vacation. From Wikipedia: "The Branch family lives in Seattle, and Bernadette (a notorious former architect) grants her daughter's wish, a family trip to Antarctica, and gets enveloped in the plans. She does this as a coping mechanism because for years she has lived in a city she hates with a life she never wanted, and is just barely holding onto her sanity. After everything goes wrong, Bernadette suddenly disappears, leaving Bee to search through old documents and emails to try and find her mother."
In a Heartbeat
Kimi Crombie shared that she read this book because "my precocious little 2-year-old, Ellie Jo, has decided that she is obsessed with certain movies and shows. One of those movies is "The Blind Side" about Michael Oehr. We watch it all the time. I was curious about the full story behind the movie ... [and this book by the family who adopted him] was amazing! It truly shed light on some of Michael's personality traits that were not clearly communicated by the movie (as Hollywood will tend to do)."
Publication Date: 2012-09-04
Lisa Hudson recommends author John Flanagan and she is currently reading the Brotherband Chronicles which she describes as having "a feel similar to the world of How to Train Your Dragon, without the dragons." This series is a spin-off from Flanagan's other highly popular series, Ranger's Apprentice, but it focuses on new Skandian characters.
In the Unlikely Event
Publication Date: 2015-06-02
Katie Jensen reminds us that popular author Judy Blume writes for more than a young adult audience. From the Minneapolis Star Tribune: "Blume deftly exposes the inner life of a teenager girl during the 1950s—and not the sanitized version so often portrayed. In the Unlikely Event integrates Blume’s acclaimed observation of the teenage experience with intimate knowledge of an unusual series of events, making it a page-turner with cross-generational appeal."
Chasing the Scream
Publication Date: 2015-01-20
Dan Murphy says to "Read this book with even a halfway open mind, and your perspective on drug addiction — and the addicts we occasionally encounter — will change forever. Hari presents a unique thesis on addiction: That it’s not a matter of character (or lack thereof); that it’s not merely a physical compulsion (although that’s a factor initially); and that the “solution” proffered by even well-meaning counselors and physicians — withdrawal, followed by abstinence — generally makes the situation worse."