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CLOUD HOPPER by Beth Kephart C’82 (Penny Candy Books, 2020, $17.99.) Three misfit best friends in a rural town watch as a girl in a homemade hot air balloon falls out of the sky. Where did she come from? Why won’t she talk? And what should they do? Illuminating the perils of undocumented immigration in America, this young adult novel by the prolific memoirist, fiction writer, and occasional Gazette contributor explores themes of family, loss, and tragedy. Buy this book

THE NATIONAL TRAILS SYSTEM: An Illustrated History by Steve Elkinton GLA’76 (Vertel Publishing, 2020, $26.99.) Established by federal law in 1968, the National Trails System grew from only two trails—the Appalachian and Pacific Crest Scenic Trails—to 30 national scenic and historic trails that, combined with auxiliary paths, create a network larger than the Interstate Highway System. Elkinton, who worked on the National Trails System for 25 years, provides a chronological history, rich with photographs and maps. Buy this book

A PASSION FOR ISRAEL: Adventures of a Sar-El Volunteer by Mark Werner L’78 (Gefen Publishing, $29.95.) Werner, a US corporate lawyer whose ardent Zionism spurred him to volunteer on Israeli military bases through the Sar-El organization, recounts 14 years of drama, quotidian labor, and solidarity with Israeli soldiers and civilians. Buy this book

THE CHEATING CELL: How Evolution Helps Us Understand and Treat Cancer by Athena Aktipis G’04 Gr’08 (Princeton University Press, 2020, $24.95.) Aktipis, a psychology professor at Arizona State University, takes readers back billions of years to explore the evolution of cells. When unicellular forms became multicellular organisms, cells learned to cooperate—but rogue “cheating” cells also arose, overusing resources and replicating out of control, giving rise to cancer. Buy this book

RESOLVED: Debate Can Revolutionize Education and Help Save our Democracy by Robert Litan W’72 (Brookings Institution Press, 2020, $24.99.) Litan says there is a feasible and powerful way to prepare the next generation for the rigorous demands of a constantly changing economy and society: debate. This book explains how one targeted educational reform can help address the nation’s political divide and can fundamentally change the country for the better. [See “Expert Opinion,” this issue.] Buy this book

POTOMAC PRINCESS: An Election Tale by Peter S. Greenberg C’65 L’68 (Greenville Publishing, 2020, $14.99.) In this novel, 37-year-old US representative Kati Case is masterminding the presidential campaign of a handsome senator—who is also her lover. Populated by a colorful group of Capitol characters, this is a story of a presidential election full of twists, turns, and surprises. Buy this book

FIND YOUR FIRE: Stories and Strategies to Inspire the Changemaker Inside You by Terri Broussard Williams SPP’20 (Williams Strategies LLC, 2020, $17.99.) In this guide, Williams, a teaching fellow at Penn, introduces 13 women she calls “#Firestarters … someone who sees a need and who starts a movement bigger than herself.” At age 28, Williams was the lead strategist promoting the Louisiana Smoke-Free Air Act. Here, she shares tips for creating community change. Buy this book

THE GUMBO COALITION: 10 Leadership Lessons That Help You Inspire, Unite, and Achieve by Hon. Marc H. Morial C’80 (HarperCollins, 2020, $24.99.) Former mayor of New Orleans Marc Morial contends that effective leadership—and good gumbo—results from mixing a variety of ingredients. Diverse neighbors, grassroots activists, business leaders, clergy, and many others should have a voice in the community. “A good gumbo depends on diversity and inclusion,” he writes. “As I grew older, I realized that my penchant for coalition building was really gumbo practices at work in the world.” Buy this book

HAUNTED PRAGUE: Stories of Spirits, Sorcerers, and the Supernatural by Michele Patrick G’90 (Penfield Books, 2019, $19.95.) The 39 supernatural legends in this book double as a guide to Czech history, culture, arts, and famous people. Buy this book

WINNING CONDITIONS: How to Achieve the Professional Success You Deserve by Managing the Details That Matter by Christine Hofbeck C’93 (Viva Editions, 2020, $18.95.) People succeed not simply because they deliver a winning product but also because they deliver their work in a winning way. Hofbeck, an actuary, speaker, and former contestant on Survivor, reveals how to present your work and ideas so that they are more likely to be recognized, accepted, and celebrated. Buy this book

INNUMERACY IN THE WILD: Misunderstanding and Misusing Numbers by Ellen Peters EAS’89 W’89 (Oxford University Press, 2020, $39.95.) With more than two decades of experience in the decision sciences, Peters demonstrates how our ability—or inability—to grasp numbers and uncertainty affects decision-making and reasoning. Buy this book

BODIES AND SOCIAL RHYTHMS: Navigating Clinical Vulnerability and Emotional Fluidity by Steven H. Knoblauch C’70 (Routledge, 2020, $38.95.) Psychoanalysts can enhance their therapy practice by focusing on the rhythms of speech, tonality, pauses, and accents of the client. Attention to these embodied components of language can encourage emotionally significant communication during psychoanalysis. However, cultural practices and beliefs can sometimes lead to misrecognition and conflict of the embodied experience of language. Buy this book

ARCHIVES OF CONJURE: Stories of the Dead in Afrolatinx Cultures by Solimar Otero Gr’02 (Columbia University Press, 2020, $30.00.) In various Afrolatinx religious practices, the dead tell stories. Communicating with and through mediums, they give advice, make requests, and propose future rituals. With this book, Otero, a professor of folklore at Indiana University, offers new perspectives on how spirits shape communities through rituals, archives, and material culture. Buy this book


Very Briefly

SHADOW OF A PILGRIM: An Apostate Walks Two Caminos in Spain by Thomas Connell L’79 (Self-Published, 2020, $31.00.) Buy this book

SOMETHING IN RETURN: Memoirs of a Life in Medicine by Dr. George Kurz C’50 M’54 GM’55 (Luminare Press, 2020, $15.65.) Buy this book

PARENTS WHO LEAD: The Leadership Approach You Need to Parent With Purpose, Fuel Your Career, and Create a Richer Life by Steward D. Friedman (faculty) and Alyssa F. Westring C’02 (Harvard Business Review Press, 2020, $30.00.) Buy this book

WE WERE LIKE EVERYONE ELSE by Ken Victor C’77 (Cormorant Books, 2019, $18.95.) Buy this book

TIGER PAPA THREE: Memoir of a Combined Action Marine in Vietnam by Edward Palm Gr’93 (McFarland, 2020, $29.95.) Buy this book

A MOST WELCOME CHANGE by Douglass Mann C’53 (Self-Published, 2018, $11.99.) Buy this book

DEATH BY YOUR OWN DEVICE by Dr. Peter Kowey M’75 (Self-Published, 2020, $20.99.) Buy this book

EXTRACTED: Rampant Antisemitism in America’s Higher Education by Dr. S. Perry Brickman GD’60 (Morgan James Publishing, 2019, $19.95.) Buy this book

RIGHT FROM THE START—A Practical Guide for Helping Young Children with Autism by Karin Donahue C’87 GEd’88 GrEd’96 and Kate Crassons (Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2019, $30.00.) Buy this book

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