Connecticut College Magazine · Summer 2013


Portrait of a Posse: How a handful of students from Chicago became campus leaders. Photo by A. Vincent Scarano

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Faculty and alumni books

An Individual History
By Michael Collier '76
2012, W.W. Norton & Company, $25.95
Available at

In this slender volume of poetry, Collier explores the relationship between personal and public history. Portraits of his parents and grandparents — differently perceived at different moments in his life — are mixed with reflections on honeybees in Lebanon, Homer's Greece, a Cold War childhood and his own experience as a father. The title poem introduces one of Collier's most haunting metaphors: his “crazy” maternal grandmother, who spent five decades in mental institutions “before, during, and after the time of atomic fallout, Auschwitz, the Nakba, DDT.”

Collier is director of the Breadloaf Writers Conference at Middlebury College, professor of English at the University of Maryland and former poet laureate of Maryland. In 2011, he wrote “Six Reveries on the Occasion of the Connecticut College Centennial.”

"My Mother of Invention" reprinted from “An Individual History: Poems by Michael Collier.” Copyright ©2012 by Michael Collier. Used with the permission of the publisher, W.W. Norton & Company, Inc.

A Wheel in a Wheel
Poems by Gretchen Schafer Skelley '49
2011, Antrim House, $10
In 1949, Gretchen Schafer Skelley was the first recipient of the College's Benjamin T. Marshall Prize for Poetry. After graduation, life went in another direction as she raised a family, volunteered in schools and the community, and taught hatha yoga at Hartford College for Women. Now, she has published her first book of poetry, with themes of passing time, the fragility of love and the redemptive power of nature.

Flock Book Poems
By Katie Umans '01
2012, Black Lawrence Books, $14
Farmers use “flock books” to register and track livestock, including parentage, ownership, births, transfers and deaths. Umans's poems survey the anxieties of this registry, the comfort of shelter versus conformity, the threat of removal and the desire to stray.

“for Mischief done”
By Jan Schenk Grosskopf '81
2013, Andres & Blanton, $12
In the early 1990s, while doing research in the Connecticut state archives, Grosskopf stumbled on the records of a 1786 New London court case that resulted in the execution of an 11-year-old “mulatto” girl for the murder of a 6-year-old neighbor. Grosskopf, who has a doctorate in history, decided to tell the story in novel form.

The Affordable Housing Reader
Edited by J. Rosie Tighe '98 and Elizabeth J. Mueller
2013, Routledge, $47.95
Tighe, an assistant professor of geography and planning at Appalachian State University, and Mueller, an assistant professor at the University of Texas at Austin, have compiled the latest research on housing planning and policy. Tighe's research and teaching focus on affordable housing, racial and class policies, and urban politics.

A Wedding in Haiti
By Julia Alvarez '71
2012, Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill, $22.95
More than a decade ago, Dominican author and poet Julia Alvarez and her husband befriended Piti, a young Haitian working in the Dominican Republic. The book is Alvarez's first-person account of their friendship, including two trips to Haiti, in 2009 for Piti's wedding and in 2010 to bring Piti's homesick wife to visit her family. Illustrated with Alvarez's personal snapshots, the book paints a vivid portrait of Haiti before and after the 2010 earthquake.

Alvarez is the author of 19 books, including the bestselling novels “How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents” and “In the Time of the Butterflies.” She attended Connecticut College from 1967 to 1969.

Public Apology
By David Bry '93
2013, Grand Central Publishing, $23.99
Bry is sorry for every mistake he's ever made, and he wants the world to know it. The book, described as “a sort of memoir told through incidents of regrettable behavior,” grew out of Bry's blog at

Makers, Shakers and Takers
By Roy Eaton M.A. '78
2012, Tate Publishing and Enterprises, LLC, $13.99
Eaton's essays touch a variety of topics including public policy, his boyhood friendship with Donald Trump, and the life of his late father, the College's campus safety director in the 1970s.

Book Art Studio Handbook
By Stacie Dolin and Amy Lapidow '83
2013, Quarry Books, $24.99
The craftsmanship of Lapidow and Dolin, both of whom studied bookbinding at Boston's North Bennett Street School, is on display in this well-illustrated handbook intended to teach “techniques and methods for binding books, creating albums, making boxes and enclosures, and more.” Lapidow, who is also a librarian, periodically presents bookmaking workshops on campus.

Tomorrow There Will Be Apricots
By Jessica Soffer '07
2013, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Co., $24
In this debut novel about family, love, grief and food, 14-year-old Lorca tries to win her mother's love by learning to cook her mother's favorite meal, a Middle Eastern dish called masgouf.

A History of Collegiate Rowing in America
By Daniella K. Garran '94
2012, Schiffer Publishing, Ltd., $39.99
Garran, a middle school history teacher and freelance writer, fell in love with rowing at Connecticut College, where she was coxswain for the men's team. Her passion shines in a coffee table book packed with photos, facts and rowing lore.

The Good Life
By Susan Kietzman '82
2013, Kensington Books, $15
In her women's fiction debut, former journalist Susan Kietzman tells the story of a wealthy, beautiful wife and mother, whose seemingly idyllic existence begins to
unravel when her aging parents move into the family guesthouse.

Wynter's Horizon
By Dianne Cavaliere May '92
2013, Evernight Publishing, ebook, $5.99, print, $16.99
Cavaliere's paranormal romance, published under the name Dee C. May, features a beautiful, troubled senior at an unnamed college in New London.

World Rat Day
By J. Patrick Lewis,
illustrated by Anna Raff '99
2013, Candlewick Press, $15.99
Raff illustrates humorous poems by the U.S. children's poet laureate about Chocolate-Covered Anything Day, World Turtle Day and other obscure holidays.

Ocean Counting
By Janet Lawler '74
2013, National Geographic Children's Books, $16.95
Vibrant photos of marine life illustrate this ocean-themed counting book; fact boxes throughout the text provide information on the sea creatures' habits and habitat.

The Ballerina Monsters Go to the Zoo
Written and illustrated by Kate Ledogar '94
2013, A Proper Mob, ebook, $2.99
Three little girls run wild at the zoo and end up behind bars until their mother, “fortified by a strong cup of tea,” rescues them.

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