New Releases

Spring 2016

Mary Waters-Sayer ’89
Mary Waters-Sayer ’89
The Blue Bath
(St. Martin’s Press, May 2016)

Kat Lind, an American expat living in London with her husband and their young son, attends an art gallery opening and is astonished to see her own face on the walls. Through the 20 years since her affair with the artist, Daniel Blake, he has continued to paint her. When Daniel appears in London, Kat is drawn back into the sins and solace of a past that is no longer far away. When the portraits catch the attention of the public, threatening to reveal her identity and all that lies beyond the edges of the canvases, Kat comes face to face with all that she now stands to lose.

 
John Smelcer, PhD ’11
John Smelcer, PhD ’11
Indian Giver
(Leapfrog, 2016)

Smelcer wrote many of the poems included in Indian Giver while he was a graduate student at Binghamton University. Smelcer is an Alaskan native of the Ahtna tribe and is now the last tribal member who reads and writes in Ahtna. He is the former chair of the Alaska Native Studies program at the University of Alaska in Anchorage, poetry editor of Rosebud magazine and the author of more than 40 books. Maria Mazziotti Gillan, director of Binghamton University’s Creative Writing Program and the Binghamton Center for Writers, says Indian Giver is “an exploration of what it means to be Native American in the 21st century, replete with irony and wit.” The book includes a foreword by the late poet Ruth Stone, who taught at Binghamton.

 
Alexander Barnes, MA ’83
Alexander Barnes, MA ’83
To Hell with the Kaiser: America Prepares for War 1916–1918
Schiffer Publishing Ltd., 2015)

To Hell with the Kaiser is a two-volume series about America’s entry into the “Great War.” It discusses how the U.S. military and civilian leadership assembled and trained the doughboys for combat in France. In less than a year and a half, the U.S. Army grew from training a small force to deploying more than a million soldiers in the Meuse-Argonne campaign. Barnes’ book addresses the complex nature of building an Army almost from scratch, the use of African-American soldiers, the integration of immigrants into the force and the terrible effects of Spanish Flu.

 
Laura Lynne (Osvald) Jackson ’94
Laura Lynne (Osvald) Jackson ’94
The Light Between Us
(Spiegel & Grau, 2015)

Jackson, a high school English teacher, wife and mother of three children, and a psychic medium, converses with souls from the other side. In her memoir, The Light Between Us, Jackson shares what she’s learned about the universe from the psychic readings she has performed for people who have lost loved ones. Her book is intended to teach us to embrace our own intuitive abilities and transform how we see our world. Gary E. Schwartz, author of The Afterlife Experiments and The Sacred Promise, says Jackson’s book is, “one of the most insightful and inspiring books about mediumship I have ever read ... destined to become a classic.”

 
Elana (Epstein) Reiser ’00, MA ’02
Elana (Epstein) Reiser ’00, MA ’02
Teaching Mathematics Using Popular Culture
(McFarland, 2015)

Reiser, who teaches mathematics at St. Joseph’s College on Long Island, says teachers can more effectively motivate students by incorporating popular media into their methodology. Her book is organized on the subject strands of Common Core and explores math concepts featured in recent films and TV shows, offering examples that educators can use to design lessons using pop culture references that will resonate with students.

 
Barbara Solomon Josselsohn ’81
Barbara Solomon Josselsohn ’81
The Last Dreamer
(Lake Union Publishing, 2015)

Josselsohn, a writer for publications such as The New York Times, Consumers Digest and Parents, has written her first novel. The Last Dreamer focuses on a former acclaimed journalist who put her career aside to start a family. Although she deeply loves her husband and kids, she can’t help wondering — more than a decade later — how life became little more than carpooling and errands. Kirkus Reviews calls the book an engaging look at “the anxieties and insecurities of modern womanhood as well as the whims of celebrity-obsessed culture.”

 
Stacy (Werner) Hoff ’91
Stacy (Werner) Hoff ’91
Desire in the Arctic
(Soul Mate Publishing, 2016)

Desire in the Arctic is an action/adventure romance set in Alaska’s Gates of the Arctic National Park. It is a sequel to Desire in the Everglades and the third novel from Werner, who is a lawyer by day and a romance writer (writing under the name Hoff) by night. stacyhoff.com

 
David Martinez ’94 
David Martinez ’94 
Mr. P.’s Fabulous Piñata Factory
(Friesen Press, 2015)

As a child, Martinez broke countless piñatas. As a grownup, he went in the opposite direction and crafted piñatas for friends and family. Now he has written a book about the pleasures of the piñata. Mr. P.’s Fabulous Piñata Factory is a whimsical take on an old-fashioned assembly-line facility. A group of children tours the factory where Mr. P., the owner, and his creative team teach the kids about each step that goes into making a piñata.

 

Fall 2015

Steve Heckman ’72
Steve Heckman ’72
Search for Peace
Jazzed Media

Heckman, a clinical and forensic psychologist in the San Francisco area, is a jazz saxophonist with experience that dates back to his days playing in the jazz band and in small combos at Harpur College. Search for Peace has hit the No. 10 spot on the Jazz Week charts for national airplay and reached No. 3 on the Roots Music Report. He has received prominent coverage in the San Francisco Chronicle.

 
Scott Mautz ’91
Scott Mautz ’91
Make It Matter
(AMACOM, 2015)

How does an organization motivate its workers to do more with less when studies show that employees, who already may be putting in long hours, don’t find their work particularly meaningful? Mautz, a 20-plus year executive at Procter & Gamble, shows how managers can help employees find motivation, meaning and inspiration in their jobs

 
Seth Kaufman ’85
Seth Kaufman ’85
The War Against Boredom
(Sukuma Books, 2015)

This book delivers more than 20 wildly inventive pieces that unlock and mock our collective mania for movies, coffee, big data, stoner culture, rock stars and sex scandals. Kaufman, a humor contributor to newyorker.com, focuses on culture clashes, entertainment engagements and domestic dustups.

 
Joe Lurie ’64
Joe Lurie ’64
Perception and Deception: A Mind-Opening Journey Across Cultures
(Cultural Detective, 2015)

Lurie is executive director emeritus of the University of California Berkeley’s International House, a dynamic multinational residential center serving the campus, local community and 1,000 residents from more than 75 countries annually. Its mission is to foster intercultural respect and understanding for the promotion of a more peaceful world. He says his awareness about perceptions and misperceptions across cultures was fostered during his time as a Peace Corps volunteer teacher in Kenya.

 
Michael Blumenthal ’65
Michael Blumenthal ’65
Because They Needed Me: The Incredible Struggle of Rita Miljo to Save the Orphaned Baboons of South Africa
(Aequitas Books, November 2015)

In 1980, a 50-year-old former member of the Hitler Youth spirited a battered young baboon from a national park in Angola. That woman, Rita Miljo, created the Centre for Animal Rehabilitation and Education in South Africa and spent the next several decades nursing orphaned and injured baboons back to health and finding ways to reintroduce them into their natural habitat. Miljo entrusted Blumenthal with 30 years of her journals, from which he produced this book. He is formerly director of creative writing at Harvard University and is now visiting professor and co-director of the Immigration Clinic at the West Virginia University College of Law.

 
Michael Laser ’75
Michael Laser ’75
My Impending Death
(The Permanent Press, 2015)

Cynical, obese misanthrope Angus Truax profiles victims of misfortune for a New Jersey newspaper. His articles touch hearts and inspire charity. Unfortunately for Angus, he loathes his job, his subjects and his life — so much that he decides to end it. Before he can make his exit, one last unlucky soul comes knocking at his door, pleading for help. To his astonishment, he finds himself falling into what he calls the world’s oldest trap. Kirkus Reviews says: “Laser works writing magic … The novel becomes a seesaw of tender moments, total screw-ups and a suspense that becomes unbearable.”

 

Fall 2015

Russ Miller ’80, MA ’82, PhD ’84, and Brian Miller
Russ Miller ’80, MA ’82, PhD ’84, and Brian Miller
Escher’s Enigma
Russ Miller ’80, MA ’82, PhD ’84, and Brian Miller

Russ and his son, Brian, provide introspective songwriting, covering a contiguous set of adult contemporary musical styles. The 2015 disc contains eight original songs and interpretations of two popular tunes by well-known artists. eschersenigma.com