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Spring 2004
Lewis Carroll & His Illustrators: Collaborations & Correspondence, 1865–1898
Morton N. Cohen, A49, and
Edward Wakeling, editors
Cornell university press

Many of Lewis Carroll’s works are, in the minds of their readers, intricately connected to their illustrations. Morton N. Cohen, professor emeritus of English at the City University of New York, has co-edited a collection of letters between Carroll and his various illustrators that opens a new window into this deeply private man’s world, uncovering new insights into the famed author of Alice in Wonderland.

“Charles Lutwidge Dodgson (sometimes Lewis Carroll) reveals himself in three important ways in this book: the manner in which he deals with his artist collaborators; his own aesthetic principles as he shares them with his artists; and in revelations about the basic character of the man.

“Actually, he tells us here some things about himself and his attitudes in a more forthright, succinct way than we find elsewhere. We see him protesting about his own inability to draw as well as he would like to; we see the painstaking efforts he makes to ensure that his readers will get the highest quality product.

“We know that he could sometimes be sharp and prickly in his relationship with tradesmen, even with his Oxford colleagues. But we also see him here being extremely kind and considerate. For example, on December 23, 1892, he writes to one of his artists: ‘I wish you a very happy Christmas: but my wishes will come a little late, as, to spare the overworked letter-carriers, I shall leave this, to be posted after Christmas.’
“Many more insights into the man’s true character emerge here and they all go to show us how complex, fascinating, and sometimes perplexing a man he was.”

Mirror, Mirror
Gregory Maguire, G90
Regan Books

The best-selling author of Wicked revisits the world of fairy tales, this time retelling the tale of Snow White. Set in Renaissance Italy, the book recounts the story of Bianca de Nevada, who is seven when her father is ordered by the duplicitous Cesare Borgia to go on a quest to reclaim the relic of the original Tree of Knowledge, a branch bearing three apples. Bianca is left in the care of her father’s farm staff and Cesare’s sister, Lucrecia. But Lucrecia becomes jealous of her lecherous brother’s interest in the growing child and plots a dire fate for Bianca in the forest below the farm. There Bianca finds herself in the home of seven dwarfs—the creators of the magic mirror of the title—who await the return of their brother, the eighth dwarf, long gone on a quest of his own.
Come Closer
Sara Gran, J93
Soho Press

In her second novel, Sara Gran tells the story of Amanda, an architect happily married to Ed and satisfied with her life. But soon her contentment is shattered. Odd noises haunt the couple’s apartment; Amanda suffers blackouts that have no medical explanation; she and Ed squabble; the image of a beautiful woman from the past invades Amanda’s dreams. When a volume titled Demons Possession, Past and Present arrives at her door instead of the book she ordered, Amanda begins to question her life: Does everything that has happened have a rational explanation? Are the coincidences that have occurred just that? Or has she been possessed by a female demon known to students of the Kabbalah as Naamah?
On a Night Like This
Ellen Sussman, J76
Warner Books

First-time novelist Ellen Sussman offers the story of Blair Clemens, a fiercely independent single mother who must learn to confront loss in order to find love. Blair, once the weird and lonely hippie-chick in high school, reconnects with Luke Bellingham, the golden boy of their youth, rich, handsome, and destined for greatness. When they meet again, years later, Luke has fulfilled his early promise and is one of the country’s most acclaimed screenwriters, while Blair struggles to raise a teenage daughter alone, earn a living as a chef, and hide a tragic secret that will test all her emotional resources. Blair’s life and love are only for her daughter when she crosses paths again with Luke and is faced with the decision of her life: What to do when the right man comes along . . . at the wrong time.

See You Down the Road
Kim Ablon Whitney, J95
Knopf Books

In her first novel, Kim Ablon Whitney looks at the life and culture of the Irish Travelers in America. Welcome to Bridget’s world, where home is a trailer that moves the family from place to place and scam to scam, a prearranged wedding maps the future, and parental pressure is forcing her to quit high school. All these stresses force Bridget to question whether the Traveler life is one she would choose for herself. But if she leaves the life, she’s out of the family for good.

Natchez: The Houses and History of the Jewel of the Mississippi
Hugh Howard, A74
Photos by Roger Straus III

Boasting over 500 houses, churches, and other buildings predating the Civil War, Natchez, Mississippi, is one of a few Southern towns that has produced and preserved such a rich architectural heritage. With text by Hugh Howard, the author of Thomas Jefferson Architect, Natchez is a sumptuous entrée to the houses and gardens that abound in this richly historic, deeply Southern town that draws thousands of visitors each year. Filled with beautiful photographs, Natchez is a splendid look at the “jewel by the river” and a must-have for both the residents and tourists who make Natchez a popular destination year after year.
The Breakup Repair Kit: How to Heal Your Broken Heart
Marni Kamins, J98, and Janice MacLeod
Conari Press

Breaking up may be hard to do, but with The Breakup Repair Kit, breaking up can also be a lot of fun. Packed with activities, inspiration, advice, and even recipes, the book is like a wise—and hilarious—girlfriend who can help anyone get over him and get a life. Whether you’re the dump-er or the dump-ee, authors Marni Kamins and Janice MacLeod help readers mend broken hearts and get back in the game.
1600 Perfect Score: The Seven Secrets of Acing the SAT
Tom Fischgrund, A70

Every year nearly 2.3 million high school students take the SAT; of those, only 650 on average achieve a perfect score. Such a statistic raises obvious questions: Who are these kids? What are they like? And how do they do it? In a new landmark study, educator and executive recruiter Tom Fischgrund became the first researcher ever granted comprehensive access to these high aca-demic achievers by the College Board, the body that administers the SAT. Weaving together in-depth interviews with perfect-score students, insights from their parents, and exclusive College Board data, he reveals the seven secrets that separate the rest of the cream from the crop.
Textual Knowledge: Teaching the Bible in Theory and in Practice
Barry W. Holtz, A68
Jewish Theological Seminary of America

Dr. Barry W. Holtz, a professor at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, has written a book aimed at anyone who wishes to explore what it means to teach the Bible. In this volume, he explores the largest issues involved in Bible teaching: What are our purposes? What are the outcomes that we are looking for? How do we conceptualize the Bible as subject matter? How do we develop theories of Bible teaching? And how do we move from theory to practice? By looking at alternative perspectives, Holtz offers clarity about a teacher’s goals and practical advice about what it means to attain them.
A Compassionate Conservative: A Political Biography of Joseph W. Martin Jr., Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives
James J. Kenneally, G51
Lexington Books

Joseph W. Martin Jr. was a longtime Republican leader and chairman of the Republican National Committee and National Conventions. In this first full-length, scholarly examination of Martin’s career, readers encounter a devoted public servant who often modified his party’s extreme stances on domestic matters during the Great Depression and on foreign policy issues leading up to World War II. This political biography effectively illustrates that bipartisanship does not mean abandonment of principles, that kindness, integrity, and gentility are compatible with effective leadership, and that close friendships with members of the opposing party can contribute to a more effective Congress.
Adventure Capitalism: Globalization and the Political Economy of Stock Markets in Africa
Todd Moss, A92
Palgrave Macmillan

Sub-Saharan Africa, the poorest and least integrated region of the world, is now home to 15 stock markets. Todd Moss, a research fellow at the Center for Global Development in Washington, D.C., examines the economic and political forces behind this trend and discusses the potential consequences of financial market integration for developing countries. Using a political economy approach, the book finds that financial globalization presents a formidable challenge for African policymakers, but also an opportunity with a range of benefits.