Fresh Ink

March 9th, 2012
The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller ’00, ’01 AM (Ecco/HarperCollins). Long before Facebook made friending a verb, the ancient Greeks took friendship seriously. When Achilles discovered that his beloved Patroclus had been killed, he slew Hector and dragged his battered corpse through the dirt. In the Iliad, Homer gave us the head count, but not the back story. Now Miller, a classicist, spins a novel in which these two boys—one a prince and the other an exile—become friends and even lovers. It’s a page-turner.

That’s Disgusting: Unraveling the Mysteries of Repulsion by Rachel Herz (Norton). Judging the National Rotten Sneakers Contest, Herz, a Brown psychologist, became fascinated by disgust. It’s the only universal human emotion that requires learning, she argues in this fascinating study of what makes us gag. Having evolved as a protective device (eating rotten things can make you sick), disgust has been a powerful emotional weapon aimed against such social outliers as immigrants, gays, and accused criminals. Herz, who must have a strong stomach, is a vivid writer, so you might not want to read this while eating.


Treasure Island!!! by Sara Levine ’98 PhD (Europa/Tonga). How much harm can a boy’s adventure story do? A lot. Inspired by Robert Louis Stevenson’s classic, our self-centered protagonist pursues what she sees as the book’s core values: boldness! resolution! independence! horn-blowing! She steals $1,000 from the till at work, buys a parrot, dumps her best friend, alienates her boyfriend, and moves back in with her grown sister and parents to disastrous effect. Levine’s swashbuckling tale reminds us that what really takes guts is love.






Curse the Names by Robert Arellano ’91, ’94 MFA (Akashic Books).

Wild Thing by Josh Bazell ’92 (Reagan Arthur Books).

Pirate & Hoopoe by Diarmid Cammell, illustrated by Karima Cammell ’96 (Dromedary Press).

High Finance: A Wall Street Novel by Eli Lederman ’85 (Mighty Elm Partners).

Sad Monsters: Growling on the Outside, Crying on the Inside by Frank Lesser ’02, illustrated by Willie Real (Plume).

Watergate by Thomas Mallon ’73 (Pantheon).

Three Stories from Cairo by Gretchen McCullough ’84, translated by Mohamed Metwalli (AFAQ).

Suite Harmonic: A Civil War Novel of Rediscovery by Emily Meier  ’66 (Sky Spinner Press).

The Seducer by Claudia Moscovici ’95 AM, ’97 PhD (Hamilton Books).

Seeing Red by Claudia Ricci ’74 (The Troy Book Makers).

Jeff, One Lonely Guy by David Shields ’78, Jeff Ragsdale, and Michael Logan (Amazon Publishing).


The Heights: Anatomy of a Skyscraper by Kate Ascher ’80 (Penguin Press).

Classical Spies: American Archeologists with the OSS ien World War II Greece
by Susan Heuck Allen ’90 PhD (University of Michigan).

Central Park: An Anthology edited by Andrew Blauner ’86 (Bloomsbury).

Civic Engagements: The Citizenship Practices of Indian and Vietnamese Immigrants by Caroline B. Brettell ’72 AM, ’78 PhD and Deborah Reed-Danahay (Stanford University Press).

Listening and Longing: Music Lovers in the Age of Barnum by Daniel Cavicchi ’91 AM, ’96 PhD (Wesleyan University Press).

Memoir: An Introduction by G. Thomas Couser ’77 PhD (Oxford University Press).

Retirement Sparks: Reigniting the Passion for Life—Irreverent Observations on Retirement by Elaine M. Decker ’67 (CreateSpace).

How to Keep Score in Business: Accounting and Financial Analysis for the Non-Accountant (2nd edition) by Robert Follett ’50 (FT Press).

Hell Above Earth: The Incredible True Story of an American WWII Bomber Commander and the Copilot Ordered to Kill Him by Stephen Frater ’78 (St. Martin’s Press).

Making Healthy Places: Designing and Building for Health, Well-being, and Sustainability edited by Howard Frumkin ’77, Andrew Dannenberg, and Richard Jackson (Island Press).

Identify: Basic Principles of Identity Design in the Iconic Trademarks of Chermayeff & Geismar
by Tom Geismar ’53, Ivan Charmayeff, and Sagi Haviv (Print Publishing).

All This Is Your World: Soviet Tourism at Home and Abroad after Stalin by Anne E. Gorsuch ’82 (Oxford University Press).

For Better or for Work: A Survival Guide for Entrepreneurs and Their Families by Meg Cadoux Hirshberg ’78 (An Inc. Original).

Now That You’re Out: The Challenges and Joys of Living as a Gay Man
by Martin Kantor, MD ’54 (Praeger).

Fighting for Our Health: The Epic Battle to Make Health Care a Right in the United States
by Richard Kirsch ’74 (Rockefeller Institute Press).

The Doctor Dissected: A Cultural Autopsy of the Burke & Hare Murders
by Caroline McCracken-Flesher ’86 AM, ’89 PhD (Oxford University Press).

Violence, Nonviolence, and the Palestinian National Movement
by Wendy Pearlman ’96 (Cambridge).

A Model Discipline: Political Science and the Logic of Representations
by David M. Primo ’98, ’98 AM and Kevin A. Clarke (Oxford University Press).

Found It: A Field Guide For Mom Entrepreneurs
by Jill Salzman ’00 (Piggot Press).

Brutal Vision: The Neorealist Body in Postwar Italian Cinema by Karl Schoonover ’98 AM, ’04 PhD (University of Minnesota Press).

Endtimes? Crises and Turmoil at the New York Times, 1999–2009 by Daniel R. Schwarz ’65 AM, ’68 PhD (State University of New York Press).

Dynamic Economic Decision Making: Strategies for Financial Risk, Capital Markets, and Monetary Policy by John E. Silvia ’73 AM (Wiley).

Gervase Wheeler: A British Architect in America, 1847–1860 by Renee Tribert ’80 and James F. O’Gorman (Wesleyan University Press).


Language Factory of the Mind by David Beckman ’66 (Finishing Line Press).

Phyla of Joy: Poems by Karen An-hwei Lee ’95, ’97 MFA (Tupelo Press).

The Misbeliever—Hymn to Nature by Paul Diffenderfer, Andrew Herbert Davis, Roshan Samtani ’06 PhD, Marous Sytwala, and Jill L. Keehner (EDV-Verleger Düsseldorf).


The Centaur’s Daughter by Ellen Jensen Abbott ’88 (Marshall Cavendish).

You Can’t Have My Planet: But Take My Brother, Please
by James Mihaley ’84 (Feiwel & Friends).


Core Samples from the World by Forrest Gander, photographs by Lucas Foglia ’05, Raymond Meeks, and Graciela Iturbide (New Directions).

Watchword by Pura Lopez Colome, translated by Forrest Gander (Wesleyan University Press).


Guardians of Finance: Making Regulators Work for Us
by James R. Barth, Gerald Caprio Jr., and Ross Levine (MIT Press).

Playing Along: Digital Games, YouTube, and Virtual Performance
by Kiri Miller (Oxford University Press).

Free Market Fairness
by John Tomasi (Princeton University Press).


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Related Issue
March/April 2012