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A frequently updated round-up of recent books by alumni, faculty, staff, and other Spiders. To submit yours, email us at magazine@richmond.edu.
How Southern Is That?

How Southern Is That?

Trisha Grizzard Tetlow, W¿66

Tetlow offers an uncompromising look at the South in her book. “No matter where you live, how you vote, your likes and dislikes, this book gives you the ultimate tour of civilization of the South [and] what makes it tick,” she writes.

Holly Holden's Pearls of Palm beach

Holly Holden's Pearls of Palm beach

Holly Eason Holden, B'78

Holden’s book offers “a tour into eight lovely private residences which are understated, well-appointed houses in Palm Beach,” she writes. They include the houses of two ambassadors and a former Canadian prime minister.

I Is for Illuminati

I Is for Illuminati

Chris Vola, '07

Vola’s latest book, which is subtitled “An A-Z Guide to Our Paranoid Times,” is a fully illustrated primer on the world’s biggest conspiracy theories. Chapters include “F Is for Fluoride,” “L Is for Lizard People,” and “R Is for Roswell.”

Christmas Cookies on a Cruise Ship

Christmas Cookies on a Cruise Ship

Jennifer Marshall McIlquham, '94

Writing under the pen name Parker Fairchild, McIlquham spins the tale of a budding romance writer who finds love in the Caribbean with the help of a heaping dose of Christmas magic.

Red Gold

Red Gold

Jennifer Telesca, '96
A love letter to the majestic giant bluefin tuna and a searing account of how global governance devasted its population under the cover of conservation. The book “challenges many deeply held dogmas,” one reviewer writes.
Nantucket

Nantucket

Carrie Nieman Culpepper, '97
A lavishly photographed account of what Culpepper, a contributing editor for Architectural Digest, and her co-author call the “tight-knit community of achievers and dreamers” of Nantucket Island in Massachusetts. “When I die,” a 90-year-old says, channeling the book’s affection, “they’re throwing my ashes in Nantucket harbor.”
All My Silent Years

All My Silent Years

Rosemary Rawlins, C'08
This novel tells the story of an 11-year-old girl torn from her family by the Khmer Rouge during the Cambodian civil war. Kirkus Reviews calls the story “historically intelligent and emotionally devastating.”
Partner With Purpose

Partner With Purpose

Steve Schmida, '95
Schmida, founder and chief innovation offer of the consulting firm Resonance, offers this guide for business leaders with a desire “to combine profit with social and environmental responsibility.” One reviewer calls it “a handbook representing the state of the art for a way of doing business that is here to stay.”
Viral Modernism: The Influenza Pandemic and Interwar Literature

Viral Modernism: The Influenza Pandemic and Interwar Literature

Elizabeth Outka

The worldwide influenza pandemic of 1918–19 killed suddenly and shockingly. Estimates of fatalities range from 50 million to 100 million, but no one really knows for sure. World War I, by comparison, killed about 8.5 million soldiers.

And yet, in early 20th-century studies of English-language literature, the war looms large but the pandemic is little noticed. English professor Elizabeth Outka sets out to notice in Viral Modernism by rereading Willa Cather, Virginia Woolf, T.S. Eliot, and others with a watchful eye for signs and representations of the viral threat.

“The pandemic is a hidden force that has been there all along, exerting weight and influence,” she writes. “When we learn to see the effects of this force, a new interpretive landscape emerges.”

Collateral Values: The Natural Capital Created by Landscapes of War

Collateral Values: The Natural Capital Created by Landscapes of War

Todd Lookingbill & Peter Smallwood

War has long-lasting negative impacts on the environment, but sites of conflict sometimes offer unintended environmental opportunities when battlefields are preserved or borders demilitarized.

This potential is the focus of Collateral Values: The Natural Capital Created by Landscapes of War, edited by Todd Lookingbill and Peter Smallwood, professors of biology, geography, and the environment. The title of one of its essays captures the volume’s spirit: “Valuing the Wounds of War: Korea’s DMZ as Nature Preserve.”

Lookingbill and Smallwood offer similar hopeful notes in their introductory essay. The stories in the book, they write, “provide powerful arguments for the creation of post-war conservation areas.”

Cross Court Reflections

Cross Court Reflections

Bobby Bayliss, R'66
In this inspirational memoir of coaching and leadership that is applicable to all walks of life, Bayliss takes readers behind the scenes of the final season of his long tenure as Notre Dame’s head men’s tennis coach.
Rediscovering Christanna: Native Worlds and Governor Spotswood's Fort

Rediscovering Christanna: Native Worlds and Governor Spotswood's Fort

John Kincheloe, R'73
“The most significant and scholarly approach to the history of Fort Christanna to date,” says a colleague about this history, which uses primary sources and archaeological findings to emphasize the perspective of Native American men and women.
Winter's Warmth

Winter's Warmth

Corinne Luck, B'90
This children’s book about kindness in the coldest season was inspired by a December 2018 photo of three snowmen in Ashland, Virginia, where Luck lives. Collages, mixed media, handmade printed paper, and a positive message make it extremely accessible for its intended audience.
Pour One Out: Cocktail Odes to T.V.'s Most Dearly Departed

Pour One Out: Cocktail Odes to T.V.'s Most Dearly Departed

Christopher Vola, '07
Vola, a New York bartender and fiction writer, took on the challenge of penning cocktail recipes for iconic dead television characters. As one reviewer put it, “Pour One Out fills a niche I didn’t even realize was empty.”
Well-Grounded: The Neurobiology of Rational Decisions

Well-Grounded: The Neurobiology of Rational Decisions

Kelly Lambert

The brain’s ability to navigate life’s uncertainties worsens when it is compromised. Some culprits are widely recognized: mental illness and drug addiction, for example. In her new book, professor of behavioral neuroscience Kelly Lambert adds other suspects you might not guess: creature comforts and modern prosperity.

In Well-Grounded: The Neurobiology of Rational Decisions, Lambert explores modern factors that can lead to what she calls “brain bubbles,” distorted realities that result from decreased interacton with the physical and social world.

“As tempting as living a fairy tale-like affluent existence may be, ... the brain feeds on more grounded life experiences just as the stomach needs real food, and lungs need real air,” she writes.

Rap on Trial: Race, Lyrics, and Guilt in America

Rap on Trial: Race, Lyrics, and Guilt in America

Erik Nielson

Rap music’s popularity is growing with an unlikely audience: prosecutors. And the reasons are alarming. That, at least, is the conclusion of Erik Nielson, associate professor of liberal arts, in Rap on Trial: Race, Lyrics, and Guilt in America.

The book, written with University of Georgia law professor Andrea L. Dennis, documents how prosecutors present the sometimes violent, crime-laden lyrics of rappers as confessions, threats, and other forms of evidence of crimes, and why judges and juries go along with it.

“No other fictional art form — music or otherwise — is targeted this way in court,” Nielson said. “It speaks to racial bias that we see throughout the criminal justice system.”

Mistress

Mistress

Chet'la Sebree, '10
In her debut collection, Sebree, assistant professor at Bucknell University and director of its Stadler Center for Poetry and Literary Arts, captures the attention of readers from her first poem — narrated in the voice of Sally Hemings, an enslaved woman who birthed several of Thomas Jefferson’s children — and doesn’t
let up.
Little Big Sister on the Move

Little Big Sister on the Move

Amy Bashian McCoy, W'93
A reviewer describes McCoy’s novel — written from the perspective of Katie, a 9-year-old with an older, autistic brother — as “a rare treasure for children who have a sibling with special needs — to know they are not alone.”
Third Act: Women Rise and Roar

Third Act: Women Rise and Roar

Donna Boone, W'70
In the midst of the #MeToo movement, Boone provides important context through what one reader calls “a great primer on the history of patriarchy and misognyny in the United States.”
Yesternight

Yesternight

Sarah Muse, '13, illustrator
Author Linda Hobgood, director of UR’s Speech Center, enlisted Muse, one of her former speech consultants, as the illustrator of this children’s book that was inspired by Hobgood’s granddaughter. “It was a joy and an honor to help her see her passion come to fruition,” said Muse, now a graphic designer in the Washington, D.C., area.
Wisdom and Encouragement for Christ's Warriors: A Thirty-One Day Devotional for Men

Wisdom and Encouragement for Christ's Warriors: A Thirty-One Day Devotional for Men

Milton Richards, R'63
Written by a Coast Guard veteran who went on to spread his faith to the incarcerated; the book’s foreword — written by the CEO of a fellow prison ministry — urges readers to “meditate on the messages.”
Sacks of Murder

Sacks of Murder

Sandra Tanner, C'99
In a murder mystery set in a Virginia town, the author weaves in a subplot she believes will “resonate with people who have experienced family betrayal.”
The Diamond: Miracle on the Boulevard

The Diamond: Miracle on the Boulevard

Bobby Ukrop, R'69
Co-authored with a former long-time Richmond sportswriter and an ex-Spider athletics communications staffer, this book tells the behind-the-scenes story of how the Diamond — the city’s baseball stadium — came to be.
The Child Who Listens

The Child Who Listens

Kristi Wilkinson, W'89
Described as a “thoroughly engaging read” by one reviewer, the author chronicles the process of adopting her child after a transformative journey to a Romanian orphanage.
You Can't Drive Your Car to Your Own Funeral

You Can't Drive Your Car to Your Own Funeral

Anne Marie Hancock, W'68
A former television personality, Hancock tells the story of her mother’s cancer diagnosis and its aftermath. Her transparency prompted a Detroit Free Press reviewer to write, “You will be emotionally moved.”
Local Speed

Local Speed

Susan Pepper Robbins, W'64
Robbins, who teaches writing at Hampden-Sydney College in Virginia, has won awards such as the Deep South Prize for her fiction. “Susan weaves tragedy, urgency, and true-to-life characters with ease,” one reviewer writes about her latest novel, featuring a 12-year-old narrator and protagonist.
Reach For More: A Journey from Loss to Love and Fulfillment

Reach For More: A Journey from Loss to Love and Fulfillment

David Szumowski, R'67
After being blinded under fire in Vietnam, Szumowski went on to great success in the legal profession. His memoir has been billed as “a remarkable story of one man’s resilience, perseverance, faith, and courage.”
The Free Exercise of Religion in America: Its Original Constitutional Meaning

The Free Exercise of Religion in America: Its Original Constitutional Meaning

Ellis West, R'58
West, a UR professor emeritus, closely examines the First Amendment’s religion clause. “The long chapters are superbly researched and handle the state provisions on religious liberty much better than anything I know,” writes a reviewer.
Mental Health and Criminal Justice

Mental Health and Criminal Justice

L. Thomas Winfree, R'68
Winfree and his co-authors delve into the blurred relationship between the systems for criminal justice and mental health care. In examining issues such as how youth fare in each system, the scholars provide “an analytical framework that looks at how the quality of that collaboration is reflected in the issues, processes, and outcomes.”
The Tortoise Tales

The Tortoise Tales

Sally Scott Guynn, W'68
Guynn’s unique background infuses this children’s book with takeaways accessible for readers of all ages. As a reviewer writes, “Guynn has spun wonderful natural history and life lessons into amazing children’s stories with wisdom for all of us, young and old.”
Communicating Hip-Hop: How Hip-Hop Culture Shapes Popular Culture

Communicating Hip-Hop: How Hip-Hop Culture Shapes Popular Culture

Nick Sciullo, '03

Sciullo, whose work is informed by both research and experience, makes the case that hip-hop music’s culture has permeated American society. “I’m a former hip-hop DJ,” he writes. “This experience and interest have shaped much of the scholarship I’ve done.”

My Journey Through Eldercare: The Search for Peace and Meaning

My Journey Through Eldercare: The Search for Peace and Meaning

Bonnie Atwood, L'96
In a personal story the author calls “part philosophy book, part memoir,” Atwood discusses caring for her elderly mother, who lived to be 102. “[Few] of us will be able to find the poignant words to capture the moments of tender interchange between us and the elder loved one as does Bonnie,” writes a reviewer.
It Happened Like This: A Life in Alaska

It Happened Like This: A Life in Alaska

Adrienne Hall Lindholm, W'95
This coming-of-age memoir takes readers on an intimate journey into adulthood and the depth and comfort of wilderness. “You won’t find a better marriage proposal, or bear encounter, or life lesson from a mother moose than the ones hiding in these pages,” one reviewer writes.
Grandpa's Tent

Grandpa's Tent

The Rev. Mary Davila, '98, and The Rev. Sarah Kinney, '99
This book deals with topics that most people would really rather not talk about,” Davila told an interviewer. “People feel afraid to bring up the subject of death, and they don’t feel equipped to answer children’s questions. If this book brings comfort … then our work has been fruitful.”
The Field Guide to Ocean Voyaging

The Field Guide to Ocean Voyaging

Ed Sobey, R'69
This color guide is a “primer for anyone who will be voyaging on the ocean,” writes Sobey, who earned his doctorate in oceanography. “It doesn’t tell you everything about the ocean, only those things you are most likely to see. I have traveled hundreds of thousands of miles on ships, boats, and kayaks.”
Governance of Arctic Shipping

Governance of Arctic Shipping

Kristine Dalaker Kraabel, ed., W'92 and L'97
In this guide for specialists, Kraabel and other experts identify and examine issues that are becoming more pressing as Arctic ice recedes and shipping there increases. “The backstory to the book may be of greater interest,” she writes. It arose from a presentation she made at Richmond’s School of Law in 2016.
The Thin Light of Freedom

The Thin Light of Freedom

Edward L. Ayers

Historian and former university president Edward Ayers received the Gilder Lerhman Lincoln Prize and the Avery O.Craven Award for The Thin Light of Freedom: The Civil War and Emancipation in the Heart of America. In it, Ayers traces the second half of the Civil War through the eyes of ordinary citizens in Augusta County, Virginia, and Franklin County, Pennsylvania. It is the companion volume of In the Presence of Mine Enemies: War in the Heart of America, 1859-1863.

Darkness Falls on the Land of Light

Darkness Falls on the Land of Light

Douglas L. Winiarski

Columbia University awarded the 2018 Bancroft Prize in American History and Diplomacy to religious studies professor Douglas L. Winiarski for Darkness Falls on the Land of Light. His book examines the changing ways that ordinary people in 18th-century New England experienced religion as membership in the Puritan church declined.

Each semester, Winiarski opens his archive of photographs of manuscripts, sermon notes, diaries, and other materials to students.

“I love looking at 18th-century manuscripts, and I realize our students do, too,” he said. “I want them to experience the thrill of discovering something new and having something new to say.”

The Tulip Shirt Murders

The Tulip Shirt Murders

Heather Weidner, GC'00
In the second book in the Delanie Fitzgerald mystery series, resident sleaze Chaz Smith has popped back into Delanie’s life as she tries to uncover who is bootlegging CDs from a local music producer — and finds more than she expected as she tries to solve the case before someone else is murdered.
Design Your Future

Design Your Future

Dominick Quartuccio, '01
Inspired by his own experience after leaving a 15-year career in financial services, Quartuccio breaks the process of ending drift and starting to live fully into three steps. Those with “an enviable lifestyle, on paper,” he writes, should re-examine their goals to see whether they have consciously designed their future.
Art and Authority

Art and Authority

Karen Gover, '97

Gover calls her book “a philosophical essay on artistic freedom.” In it, she questions why some artists receive legal recognition and the protection of their works while others do not, considering these questions through copyright law and moral rights laws, with a specific focus on authors and their authority over their literary works.

Lucas Plays

Lucas Plays

Christina Shawn, '02
Inspired by son Lucas’s efforts to learn violin and her own experience as a reading specialist, Shawn taps into the power of music to tell a story filled with imagination and emotion. As Lucas begins to play, his world transforms to the tune of his violin with superheroes, monsters, and more.
The Nest

The Nest

Thomas N. Carter, R'79
In this e-book, Tim Crawford is a writer who hears a deathbed confession from an aging, veteran sniper that he’s known since childhood in the old neighborhood. It leaves him with a chilling secret about President Kennedy’s assassination on Nov. 22, 1963.
Love Ain't No Reality Show

Love Ain't No Reality Show

Connie Kuykendall, L'99
In this sequel to the romance novel Love Ain’t No Soap Opera, Selah Morgan’s wedding plans shatter after a disastrous wedding-dress reality show exposes her insecurities and stretches thin both her relationship and her new celebrity status in the Hollywood spotlight.
Tell Me More

Tell Me More

Kelly Corrigan, W'89

Inspired by a debate at Corrigan’s dinner table, the stories in Tell Me More are an argument for the power of the right words at the right moment to change everything.

In “I Was Wrong,” the New York Times bestselling author comes clean about her disastrous role in an epic argument. In “No,” she admires her mother’s ability to set boundaries and her liberating willingness to be unpopular.

Blood Brothers

Blood Brothers

James P. O'Mealia, R'80

Blood Brothers, the sequel to O’Mealia’s Fiasco, combines financial intrigue with personal crisis to create a tense thriller about a friendship that runs bone deep. Roger Maydock and Thomas Morris have a fraught friendship dating back to their prep school days. Now, Roger needs his friend’s help to rescue his insurance company. Thomas tries to save the day, but a blockbuster secret brings unexpected complications.

Flights of Fancy

Flights of Fancy

Randy Fitzgerald, R'63 and G'64

Flights of Fancy is a collection of Fitzgerald’s columns and anecdotes, many first printed in the Richmond Times-Dispatch and other area publications. He writes humorously about his family, particularly his unpredictable and irrespressible wife.

Virginia Wine

Virginia Wine

Andrew A. Painter, L'07

Painter’s comprehensive history of the Virginia wine industry chronicles the dynamic personalities, diverse places, and engrossing personal and political struggles that have helped establish the Old Dominion as one of the nation’s pre-eminent wine regions.

Heroes of Richmond

Heroes of Richmond

Edited by Scott T. Allison

Essays on leadership by 16 students in Allison’s first-year seminar last fall examine the complex history of Richmond over 400 years through its heroes, including Maggie Walker, John Marshall, Oliver Hill, Arthur Ashe, Westhampton’s May Keller, Mary Sue Terry, W’69, and others.

Ginseng Tango

Ginseng Tango

Cheryl Pallant
Pallant’s memoir of living in South Korea is the middle book of her three-book contract. The final one, called Writing and the Body in Motion and due out this spring, arises from her experience teaching students in the theater and dance department.
Only the Dead Know Brooklyn

Only the Dead Know Brooklyn

Chris Vola, '07

Ryan Driggs has lived in Brooklyn for 128 years, 96 of them as one of the last members of a tribe of blood-eating immortals who have called the borough home since before colonial times. His life is uneventful until he meets Jennifer, a human from Manhattan with whom he falls in love. When she is kidnapped by a tribe of Manhattan vampires, Ryan discovers that, for a reason unknown to him, he is a target, too.

The Do-Over: A Memoir of Work and Love

The Do-Over: A Memoir of Work and Love

Amanda Mackenzie, '99

By age 30, MacKenzie was married with a promising career in ministry. Three years later, she left both behind.

The Do-Over: A Memoir of Work and Love chronicles her unexpected journey through divorce, out of the ministry, over the Italian Alps, and onto a small farm in central Massachusetts.

“My journey has been one of listening to my heart and finding the courage to follow where it leads,” she said in a Boston Globe article.

How to Find a Flock

How to Find a Flock

Chris Vola, '07
This collection of short stories examines human nature by exploring the crippling conflicts of unique characters. Written with bitingly honest prose, Vola conveys a sense of realism that is intended for anyone who has endured a problem in life.
Pirates, Merchants, Settlers, and Slaves

Pirates, Merchants, Settlers, and Slaves

Kevin P. McDonald, '94
This book explores the vast trade network created by the relationship between colonial merchants and Euro-American pirates. McDonald sheds light on the important role pirates played in meeting the needs of consumers in North America during the 17th and early 18th centuries, enlivening the rich history of the Indo-Atlantic market.
Jimmy's Carwash Adventure

Jimmy's Carwash Adventure

Victor Narro, L'91
A Los Angeles attorney and activist, Narro has spent decades leading campaigns on behalf of workers and immigrants. In this bilingual picture book, he brings lessons in solidarity and social justice to young readers.
The Zombie Business Cure: How to Refocus Your Company's Identity for More Authentic Communication

The Zombie Business Cure: How to Refocus Your Company's Identity for More Authentic Communication

Julie Lellis, '99
Zombie businesses frustrate customers, call negative attention to their leaders, or make irrational communications decisions. “An organization is more human,” Lellis said, “when it understands its own core values and lives by them.” Through case studies and interviews with executives from Google, Lululemon, Starbucks, and more, Lellis and co-author Melissa Eggleston offer the antidote to lifeless communications.
Secret Lives And Private Eyes

Secret Lives And Private Eyes

Heather Weidner, G'00

In this fast-paced mystery, Weidner’s protagonist is a private detective drawn into the hunt for a rockstar long thought dead and for the killer of the mayor with secrets. Great for those who like a strong female sleuth with a knack for getting herself into and out of difficult situations.

Grace Happens: Adventures In Everyday Living

Grace Happens: Adventures In Everyday Living

Tom Allen, R'80

Allen explores the concept of everyday grace in this compilation of his columns published in the faith and values section of the Richmond Times-Dispatch. “Mostly, they’re about keeping my ears and eyes open for glimpses of grace as I live the days I’ve been given,” writes Allen. He hopes you’ll catch some of those glimpses and a few grins, too.

Around The Table

Around The Table

R. Scott Hurd, B'89

Hurd employs the unique and imaginative stories of 14 biblical characters who were close to Jesus — including Thomas, Barnabas, and Mary Magdalene — to explore the mysteries of the Eucharist.

Voluntary Peasants: A Psychedelic Journey To The Ultimate Hippie Commune

Voluntary Peasants: A Psychedelic Journey To The Ultimate Hippie Commune

Melvyn Stiriss, R'64

Self-described “hippie emeritus” Stiriss, who reported for the wire service UPI and covered antiwar protests along with the Grateful Dead’s first concert in New York City, followed that ’60s energy over the edge to live the story rather than just report on it. This book chronicles his co-creation of one of the country’s largest communes, where he lived for 12 years.