Books

The Sweet Girl

Random House $29.95
Annabel Lyon, MFA’96, assistant professor, UBC Creative Writing Program

A companion piece to Lyon’s first novel, The Golden Mean, The Sweet Girl is a historical fiction novel told from the point of view of Aristotle’s daughter, Pythias.

The Sweet Girl, takes place in the latter half of the fourth century BC, when Athens has lost its greatness and is ruled by Macedonians from the north. Aristotle’s family is part of the new privileged ruling class, while Alexander the Great is successfully pursuing global domination. However, when Alexander dies, sentiment turns against anyone associated with him, particularly his famous Macedonian-born teacher.

Aristotle and his family are forced to flee to Chalcis, a garrison town. Ailing, mourning and broken in spirit, Aristotle soon dies. After his death, 16-year-old Pythias, known as Pytho, attempts to maintain her independence in an ancient patriarchal society where unmarried women have few options. She discovers that the world is a place of superstition, not logic, and that a girl can be played upon by gods and goddesses, as much as by grown men and women. To safely journey to a place in which she can be everything she truly is, Aristotle’s daughter will need every ounce of wit she possesses, but also grace and the capacity to love.

Sussex Drive

Random House $22
Linda Svendsen, BA’77, professor, UBC Creative Writing Program

Torn from the headlines, Sussex Drive is a rollicking, cheeky, alternate history of big-ticket political items in Canada told from the perspectives of Becky Leggatt (the sublimely capable and manipulative wife of a hard-right Conservative prime minister) and just a wink away at Rideau Hall, Lise Lavoie (the wildly exotic and unlikely immigrant Governor General)—two wives and mothers living their private lives in public.

Godless but Loyal to Heaven

Great Plains Publications $29.95
Richard Van Camp, MFA’03

In Richard Van Camp’s fictionalized north anything can happen and yet each story is rooted in a vivid contemporary reality. The stories offer a potent mix tape of tropes from science fiction, horror, Western and Aboriginal traditions. The title story pits Torchy against the Smith Squad, fighting for love and family in a bloody, cathartic, and ultimately hopeful narrative. Van Camp’s characters repeatedly confront the bleakness of sexual assault, substance addiction and violence with the joy and humour of inspired storytelling.

Human Trafficking: Exploring the International Nature, Concerns, and Complexities

CRC Press
Editors: John Winterdyk, Benjamin Perrin (UBC Law professor), Philip Reichel

Human trafficking is a crime that undermines fundamental human rights and a broader sense of global order. It is an atrocity that transcends borders—with some regions known as exporters of trafficking victims and others recognized as destination countries. Edited by three global experts and composed of the work of an esteemed panel of contributors, the book examines techniques used to protect and support victims of trafficking as well as strategies for prosecution of offenders.

Bull Head

Arsenal Pulp Press $15.95
John Vigna, MFA’07

A collection of eight linked short stories that envelops readers into the gritty lives of social outcasts lost in purgatories of their own making. Vigna illuminates the plight of men living in small towns and backwoods who belong neither to history nor to the future. A line-dancing aficionado who visits his brother in jail in hopes of mending their relationship discovers his own unwitting role in his brother’s failed life. A man mourning his dead wife and daughters tries to survive the Thanksgiving weekend alone. A truck driver escapes his abusive wife in a fantasy world of strip clubs and personal ads.

Hidden Lives: Coming out on Mental Illness

Brindle & Glass Publishing Ltd., $24.95
Edited by Lenore Rowntree, LLM’87, Dip(Ed)’99, MFA’12;  Andrew Boden.
Foreword by Gabor Maté, MD

A collection of evocative essays, written by writers who either suffer from or have close family members diagnosed with mental illness or a developmental disorder, aim to break down the stigma that surrounds one of the most devastating of human tribulations. The writers recount their experiences with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, autism, obsessive-compulsive disorder, clinical depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, and dissociative identity disorder. What does it feel like to be psychotic? What sorts of thoughts go through your mind while you are killing yourself? How does a mother go on after her schizophrenic son throws himself into an unfinished construction site? The anthology drills to the core of compassion and disappointment—transcending hope and sometimes finding beauty in insanity.

With a foreword by physician and bestselling author Gabor Maté, MD, Hidden Lives gives readers a place to turn and communicate not despair, but courage.

Local Climate Change Law: Environmental Regulation in Cities and Other Localities

Edward Elgar Publishing
Benjamin J. Richardson, professor, Faculty of Law

Local Climate Change Law examines the role of local government, especially within cities, in addressing climate change through legal, policy, planning and other tools. This timely study offers a multi-jurisdictional perspective, featuring international contributors who examine both theoretical and practical dimensions of how localities are addressing climate mitigation and adaptation in Australia, Canada, China, Europe, South Africa and the United States, as well as considering the place of localities in global climate law agreements and transnational networks.

The Cul-de-Sac Kids

Tradewind Books $9.95
Alison Acheson, BA’94, MFA’96

Kezie, Patrick and Jed are left behind when Noli moves away. The house on the corner is empty, and the cul-de-sac kids wonder who will move in. Who will play hockey with them? Who will supply the cookies? One day, a moving van pulls up. But the new neighbour is not at all what they were hoping for…

Modern Warfare: Armed Groups, Private Militaries, Humanitarian Organizations, and the Law

UBC Press
Benjamin Perrin, professor, Faculty of Law

Today’s armed conflicts have outpaced the laws governing them, making this edited volume by Prof. Perrin an essential part of the contemporary debate on the future of international humanitarian law and the proliferation of non-state armed groups, private military and security companies, and humanitarian organizations.

All Souls’

Signal Editions $18
Rhea Tregebovassociate professor, UBC Creative Writing Program

Bold poems of beauty and power.

Inspired by crises both personal (divorce, adult children, aging parents) and societal (global warming, financial implosion), All Souls’ bracingly addresses the quandary at the heart of our present moment: the fear of change and the fear of standing still.

Radio Belly: Stories

Douglas & McIntyre $19.95
Buffy Cram, MFA’10

A smug suburbanite becomes obsessed with the “hybrids,” the wandering mob of intellectual vagrants overrunning his complacent little cul de sac, snacking on pate and reciting poetry; a father and daughter’s post-apocalyptic Pacific island civilization, built of floating garbage and sustained entirely by rubber, is beginning to fray, literally, revealing something disastrously like moss beneath its smooth synthetic skin; following an appendectomy, a young woman’s belly starts transmitting what sound like Russian radio signals: a young publishing assistant, demoted at work and dumped by her boyfriend, finds herself unable to control her strange new appetites.

Road to Ganneious

Conundrum Press $20
Gerald Richardson Brown, MSc’66, PhD’71

A story, told through fact and fiction, about the life and times of the ancestors of one Canadian family in their journey from deep in the mountains of Austria to the shores of Hay Bay on Lake Ontario.

Appreciative Inquiry in Higher Education: A Transformative Force

Jossey-Bass $40
Joan McArthur-Blair, EdD’05, Jeanie Cockell, BA’71, MA’93, EdD’05

A work created out of practices and stories of two lifetime educators and consultants who are committed to the use of Appreciative Inquiry (AI) in higher education. Their theories, concepts, and stories are woven together with those of colleagues from around the world who have provided insights into how AI can harness the drive and imagination of individuals, groups and institutions.

Tears of Mehndi

Caitlin Press $24.95
Raminder Sidhu, BEd’00

A courageous and timely novel that explores the rich, complex and often heartbreaking lives of a tight-knit community in Vancouver’s Little India.

Delbert Pillage

Infinity Publishing $16.95
Donald A. (Sandy) Graham, BASc’61

The story of a harassed BC boy who matures at UBC into Canada’s youngest test pilot only to live through the Avro Arrow cancellation and separation from the girl he loves.

Maggie’s Chopsticks

Kids Can Press $18.95
Alan Woo, BA’99

The story of a little girl who can’t use her chopsticks properly, and everyone around her has something to say about it, until she learns a very important life lesson about herself and individuality.

Sport & Peace.  A Sociological Perspective

Oxford University Press $51.95
Brian Wilson, MA’95

Innovative look at the nuanced and controversial relationship between sport and peace. Divided into five parts, the text examines current literature in the fields of sport and peace through the lens of critical social theory while introducing students to all sides of this complex debate and proposing practical solutions for the future.

Native Performers in Wild West Shows

University of Oklahoma Press $34.95
Linda Scarangella McNenly, MA’02

Now that the West is no longer so wild, it’s easy to dismiss Buffalo Bill Cody’s world-famous Wild West shows as promoters of stereotypes and clichés. But looking at this unique American genre from the Native American point of view provides thought-provoking new perspectives.  Focusing on the experiences of Native performers and performances, Linda Scarangella McNenly begins her examination of these spectacles with Buffalo Bill’s 1880s pageants. She then traces the continuing performance of these acts, still a feature of regional celebrations in both Canada and the United States—and even at Euro Disney.

The Shells of When

Windways Press/Lulu.com $11.76
James Giles, BA’80, MA’83

A book of poetic reflections tied intimately to the experience of moving through the world. The poems take the reader on a journey through different lands and cultures while  following an interior journey through the poet’s mind.

The Selector of Souls

Random House $32
Shauna Singh Baldwin, MFA’10

A novel about two fascinating, strong-willed women who must deal with the relentless logic forced upon them by survival: Damini, a Hindu midwife, and Anu, who flees an abusive marriage for the sanctuary of the Catholic church.

Into the Abyss

Random House $29.95
Carol Shaben, MFA’08

A dramatic true story of a deadly plane crash in Northern Alberta in 1984 (where the author’s father, Canada’s first Muslim cabinet minister, narrowly escaped death) and the intense bonds that form between survivors.

The Archive Carpet

Passfield Press $19.95
Michael Hetherington, LLB’83

The author wrote fragments of fiction every day for 2500 days between 1995 and 2002.The result is The Archive Carpet, a wild and wonderful ride over lands that are sad, funny, absurd, and scary. He has selected, revised, and arranged approximately 600 in The Archive Carpet, a weaving together of strands from his personal imaginative archive.

Black Ranching Frontiers

Yale University Press $45
Andrew Sluyter, BA’87, MA’90

The author demonstrates that Africans played significant creative roles in establishing open-range cattle ranching in the Americas. In so doing, he provides a new way of looking at and studying the history of land, labour, property, and commerce in the Atlantic world.

The Writer and the Overseas Childhood: The Third Culture Literature of Kingsolver, McEwan and Others

McFarland $40
Antje M. Rauwerda, BA’92

What does Ian McEwan have in common with Barbara Kingsolver? Or The Shack’s William Paul Young with The Way the Crow Flies’ Ann-Marie MacDonald? This study surveys 17 authors with “expat” backgrounds to define “third culture literature,” a burgeoning yet unrecognized branch of international writing characterized by expressions of dislocation, loss, and disenfranchisement.

Speaking of Teaching … Inclinations, Inspirations, and Innerworkings

Sense Publishers $39
Avraham Cohen, PhD’06; Marion Porath, BEd’74, MA’84; Anthony Clarke, MA’89, PhD’92; Heesoon Bai, PhD ’96; Carl Leggo; Karen Meyer, PhD’91

This book is a collaborative work by six educators who have been meeting regularly since 2006 to discuss the inner and outer worlds of teaching and learning. The focus is the personal practices that sustain and feed the authors’ educational identities. The book reflects the diversity of their practices – poetry, Daoism, philosophy, noticing and celebrating pedagogy in the everyday, art, living inquiry – and celebrates the complexity and depth of what it means to be an educator.

142 Short Stories…As Poems that Inspire, Entertain and Enlighten

Vantage, $23.95
Ed Pahl, BA’57

Book of verse that conveys tidbits of insight drawn from the author’s life experiences.

What’s So Important About Music Education

Routledge $39.95
Scott Goble, UBC Associate Professor of Music Education

The author explores the societal effects of the nation’s foundations in democracy and capitalism, the constitutional separation of church and state, and the rise of recording, broadcast, and computer technologies.

Red Quarter Moon: A Search for Family in the Shadow of Stalin

University of Toronto Press  $35.00
Anne Konrad, BA’55

This book entails the account of Konrad’s search for her missing extended family members within the Soviet Union. Her search took place over 20 years and five continents – on muddy roads, lonesome steppes, and in old letters, documents, or secret police archives. Her story emerges as both haunting and inspiring, filled with dramatically different accounts from survivors now scattered across the world. She aligns the voices of her subjects chronologically against the backdrop of Soviet policy, intertwining the historical context of the Terror Years with her own personal quest. Red Quarter Moon is an enthralling journey into the past that offers a unique look at the lives of ordinary families and individuals in the USSR.

Journey with No Maps. A Life of P.K. Page

McGill-Queen’s University Press $39.95
Sandra Djwa, BEd’64, PhD’68

This first biography of P. K. Page, one of Canada’s best-loved writers and visual artists. The product of over a decade’s research and writing, the book follows Page as she becomes one of Canada’s most influential writers. “A borderline being,” as she called herself, she recognized the new choices offered to women by modern life but followed only those related to her quest for self-discovery.

Texada Tapestry: A History

Harbour Publishing $32.95
Heather Harbord, BLS’66

Author Heather Harbord has dedicated years to research, including more than a hundred interviews of locals and old-timers to create a captivating book full of unforgettable characters, humorous anecdotes and many previously unpublished photographs.

Escape to Gold Mountain

Arsenal Pulp Press $19.95
David H.T. Wong, BSc’81, B’Arch’85

A story based on David Wong’s family’s 130 year history in the new world, historical documents, and interviews with elders. It is a vivid history of the Chinese in their search for “Gold Mountain” (the Chinese colloquialism for North America) as seen through the eyes of five generations of the Wong family.

The Gift: Awakening

FriesenPress $19.99
J.P. McLean, BCom’93

The first book of an urban fantasy trilogy set in contemporary coastal BC. When young Emelynn Taylor accepts a mysterious gift from a strange woman on the seashore, her life alters irrevocably. Haunted by strange dreams and terrifying powers she can’t control, Emelynn returns years later to the coast of British Columbia where she vows to take command of her unruly “gift”.

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