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Book in Common Selection

Help Us Select TWU's Book-in-Common 2022-2024

Hello TWU Community,

It is time to begin the selection process for our 2022-2024 Book-in-Common (BIC) and I need your help in determining the book.

Step one: Use the "Options" tabs below to read about each book.

Step two: Use this link to share your thoughts about the books:

There are approximately 20 books on the list at this time. Based on campus feedback, the list will be narrowed to approximately five.

The TWU community will have another opportunity to provide feedback on the top five. Members of the BIC reading sub-committee will read each book this summer. The recommendations of the TWU community and the BIC reading sub-committee will be merged to recommend a book for adoption.

Your input will add great value to the 2022-2024 Book-in-Common selection process.

Please let me know if you have any questions.

Thank You,

Dr. Lindsay

TLindsay1@twu.edu 

Proposed Books for 2022

Praises & Reviews
“This book should be on the ‘important reads list’ for everyone over the age of eighteen living in the United States; for survivors, for those who care about and for them, for medical and criminal justice professionals, psychotherapists, and social activists who insist on dignity for all. It takes a deeply personal look at the experiences of one rape survivor combined with the systemic and shocking societal brokenness that multiplies that harm. And yet, Michelle Bowdler reminds us, "sustained change takes time and persistence and it is never only about one person."  It is about all of us and our everyday actions both small and large.”  - Janet Yassen, LICSW,  co-founder of the Boston Area Rape Crisis Center
“In her stellar, unsettling book, Bowdler, seeks answers—about why her own case disappeared, but also why America seems so comfortable continuously, systemically failing survivors.” - TIME Magazine
"Is Rape a Crime? is a unique intervention in the memoir and social justice genres. Bowdler is an uncommonly gifted writer. She is thoughtful even when describing horrible wrongs; lucid and captivating even when describing the sort of psychic pain that typically eludes words." - Moira Donegan, The Guardian
 

About the Author
Michelle Bowdler is the Executive Director of Health & Wellness at Tufts University and, after graduating from the Harvard School of Public Health, has worked on social justice issues related to rape for over a decade. She is a recipient of a 2017 Barbara Deming Memorial Award and has been a Fellow at Ragdale and the MacDowell Colony. Michelle’s writing has been published in the New York Times and her essays “Eventually You Tell Your Kids” and “Babelogue” were nominated for Pushcart Prizes.
 

Author's Website and Interviews

Praises & Reviews
“Disability rights activist Alice Wong brings tough conversations to the forefront of society with this anthology. It sheds light on the experience of life as an individual with disabilities, as told by none other than authors with these life experiences. It's an eye-opening collection that readers will revisit time and time again.” —Chicago Tribune, "Best books published in summer 2020"

“Shares perspectives that are too often missing from such decision-making about accessibility.” —The Washington Post

“Implicitly (and sometimes explicitly) makes the case for acknowledging and accommodating society’s overlooked population of disabled people.” —The New York Times Book Review

About the Author
Alice Wong is a disabled activist, media maker, and research consultant based in San Francisco, California. She is the founder and director of the Disability Visibility Project, an online community dedicated to creating, sharing, and amplifying disability media and culture. Alice is also the host and co-producer of the Disability Visibility podcast and co-partner in a number of collaborations such as #CripTheVote and Access Is Love. From 2013 to 2015, Alice served as a member of the National Council on Disability, an appointment by President Barack Obama. 

Author Website and Interviews

Praises & Reviews
“She has written a memoir that converts the ongoing experience of sexual assault into literature…Beautiful.“─The Atlantic
“To tell her story at all is enough…the fact that Miller tells it beautifully, caring enough for her reader to spin golden sentences from her pain, is a gift on top of a gift.” ─Vogue
“Know My Name is an act of reclamation. On every page, Miller unflattens herself, returning from Victim or Emily Doe to Chanel, a beloved daughter and sister…Know My Name marks the debut of a gifted young writer. Miller’s words are purpose. They are maps. And she is a treasure who has prevailed.”─Jennifer Weiner, The New York Times

About the Author
Chanel Miller is a writer and artist. Her memoir, Know My Name, was a New York Times bestseller, a New York Times Book Review Notable Book, and a winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award, the Dayton Literary Peace Prize, the Ridenhour Book Prize, and the California Book Award. It was also a best book of the year in Time, The Washington Post, Chicago Tribune, NPR, and People, among others. She was named one of the Forbes 30 Under 30 and a Time Next 100 honoree, and was a Glamour Woman of the Year honoree under her pseudonym Emily Doe.

Author Website and Interviews

Praises & Reviews
“Acevedo has done it again: the multi-award-winning author of The Poet X (2018) here delivers perfection... This sophomore novel is simply stunning.” - Booklist 

“[A] stunning sophomore novel from National Book Award and Printz winner Acevedo.... With evocative, rhythmic prose and realistically rendered relationships and tensions, Acevedo’s unvarnished depiction of young adulthood is at once universal and intensely specific.” - Publishers Weekly 

“The acclaimed author follows up her celebrated The Poet X with a love letter to food and a tribute to young, single mothers... Acevedo’s second serving offers a much-needed nuanced exploration of teen parenting that belongs on all shelves.” - School Library Journal

About the Author

Elizabeth Acevedo is the New York Times-bestselling author of The Poet X, which won the National Book Award for Young People’s Literature, the Michael L. Printz Award, the Pura Belpré Award, the Carnegie medal, the Boston Globe–Horn Book Award, and the Walter Award. She is also the author of With the Fire on High—which was named a best book of the year by the New York Public Library, NPR, Publishers Weekly, and School Library Journal—and Clap When You Land, which was a Boston Globe–Horn Book Honor book and a Kirkus finalist.
She holds a BA in Performing Arts from The George Washington University and an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Maryland. Acevedo has been a fellow of Cave Canem, Cantomundo, and a participant in the Callaloo Writer’s Workshops. She is a National Poetry Slam Champion, and resides in Washington, DC with her love.

Author Website and Interviews

Praises & Reviews

“This book will change everything. . . . A perfect book about imperfection.” - Juan Felipe Herrera, Poet Laureate of the United States
 
“A wonderfully complex and interesting character.” - Los Angeles Review of Books
 
“Blistering. Julia’s persona rockets off the page and into your face from the get-go.” - Christian Science Monitor
 
“If you ever wanted to [understand] the harsh truths of immigrant life, this is the book you need to read.” - Bustle

About the Author

Erika L. Sánchez is the daughter of Mexican immigrants. A poet, novelist, and essayist, her debut poetry collection, Lessons on Expulsion, was published by Graywolf in July 2017, and was a finalist for the PEN America Open Book Award. Her debut young adult novel, I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter, is a New York Times Bestseller and a National Book Awards finalist.  

Erika was a 2017-2019 Princeton Arts Fellow, and a recent recipient of the 21st Century Award from the Chicago Public Library Foundation and a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship in Poetry. She has recently been appointed the Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz Chair in the Latin American and Latino Studies Department at DePaul University and is part of the inaugural core faculty of the Randolph College Low Residency MFA Program.

Erika grew up in the Mexican working class town of Cicero, Illinois, which borders the city’s southwest side. In fact, her childhood apartment was so close to Chicago that she could hit it with her shoe if she flung it out the window. (Maybe she tried this, maybe she didn’t.)
As a daughter of undocumented Mexican immigrants, Erika has always been determined to defy borders. And, not surprisingly, her clothes perpetually smelled of fried tortillas when she was a child. Her role model was—and continues to be—Lisa Simpson. As a result, she was a young and sometimes overbearing (but in a cute way?) feminist and overachiever. Ever since she was a 12-year-old nerd in giant bifocals, she’s dreamt of becoming a successful writer.

Erika graduated Phi Beta Kappa and Magna Cum Laude from the University of Illinois at Chicago, then went onto Madrid, Spain on a Fulbright Scholarship. There, she wrote poems late into the night, taught English at a secondary school, and ate a medley of delicious cured meats. After her scholarship, Erika moved to Albuquerque, New Mexico where she received an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of New Mexico. She did not love Albuquerque but was pleased with the clear skies and ample parking. She graduated with distinction.

Erika has received a CantoMundo Fellowship, Bread Loaf Scholarship, and the 2013 “Discovery”/Boston Review Prize. In 2015, Erika was awarded a Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Poetry Fellowship from The Poetry Foundation.

Erika’s poems have appeared or are forthcoming in many prestigious literary journals, including Poets.org, Vinyl Poetry, Guernica, diode, Boston Review, ESPN.com, the Paris Review, Gulf Coast, POETRY Magazine, The New York Times Magazine, and The New Yorker. Her poetry has also been featured on “Latino USA” on NPR and published in Please Excuse This Poem: 100 New Poems for the Next Generation (Viking 2015).
In the fall of 2014, the Guild Complex of Chicago invited Erika and four other writers to participate in Kapittel, the International Festival of Literature and Freedom of Speech in Stavanger, Norway where she met incredible exiled writers from around the world and ate pickled fish for breakfast.
Erika is fluent in Spanish, Spanglish, and “cat.”  She has a socially awkward cat who is named after the two best Simones in history—Nina and de Beauvoir. Simone does not live up to her name (she’s not very bright), but she’s adorable and sweet, which is good enough.

Author Website and Interviews

Praises & Reviews

"Dances into hard truth. [Harjo’s] fine crafting of words and deft braiding of mythic visions throughout the text almost―almost―draw you past the truth of her personal story. That story is harsh and scary, mystical and loving, and, ultimately, triumphant and healing." - Indian Country

"Joy Harjo has always been able to see with more than her eyes. Her writing is a testament to this gift. Her memoir honors her own journey as well as those who fell along the wayside. Her hero’s journey is a gift for all those struggling to make their way." - Sandra Cisneros

"Joy Harjo is a giant-hearted, gorgeous, and glorious gift to the world. Her belief in art, in spirit, is so powerful, it can’t help but spill over to us―lucky readers. Wildly passionate and honest as a hound, Crazy Brave invites us into a whole new way of seeing―deeper, less cluttered, and vastly more courageous than our own. It’s a book for people who want to re-fall in love with the world." - Pam Houston

About the Author

Joy Har­jo, the 23rd Poet Lau­re­ate of the Unit­ed States, is a mem­ber of the Mvskoke Nation and belongs to Oce Vpofv (Hick­o­ry Ground). She is only the sec­ond poet to be appoint­ed a third term as U.S. Poet Laureate. 

Born in Tul­sa, Okla­homa, she left home to attend high school at the inno­v­a­tive Insti­tute of Amer­i­can Indi­an Arts, which was then a Bureau of Indi­an Affairs school. Har­jo began writ­ing poet­ry as a mem­ber of the Uni­ver­si­ty of New Mexico’s Native stu­dent orga­ni­za­tion, the Kiva Club, in response to Native empow­er­ment move­ments. She went on to earn her MFA at the Iowa Writ­ers’ Work­shop and teach Eng­lish, Cre­ative Writ­ing, and Amer­i­can Indi­an Stud­ies at Uni­ver­si­ty of Cal­i­­for­­nia-Los Ange­les, Uni­ver­si­ty of New Mex­i­co, Uni­ver­si­ty of Ari­zona, Ari­zona State, Uni­ver­si­ty of Illi­nois, Uni­ver­si­ty of Col­orado, Uni­ver­si­ty of Hawai’i, Insti­tute of Amer­i­can Indi­an Arts, and Uni­ver­si­ty of Ten­nessee, while per­form­ing music and poet­ry nation­al­ly and internationally.

Har­jo is the author of nine books of poet­ry, includ­ing her most recent, the high­ly acclaimed An Amer­i­can Sun­rise (2019), which was a 2020 Okla­homa Book Award Win­ner; Con­flict Res­o­lu­tion for Holy Beings (2015), which was short­list­ed for the Grif­fin Prize and named a Notable Book of the Year by the Amer­i­can Library Asso­ci­a­tion; and In Mad Love and War (1990), which received an Amer­i­can Book Award and the Del­more Schwartz Memo­r­i­al Award. Her first mem­oir, Crazy Brave, was award­ed the PEN USA Lit­er­ary Award in Cre­ative Non Fic­tion and the Amer­i­can Book Award, and her sec­ond, Poet War­rior: A Call for Love and Jus­tice, is forth­com­ing from W.W. Nor­ton in Fall 2021.

She has pub­lished two award-win­n­ing children’s books, The Good Luck Cat and For a Girl Becom­ing; a col­lab­o­ra­tion with photographer/​astronomer Stephen Strom; an anthol­o­gy of North Amer­i­can Native women’s writ­ing; sev­er­al screen­plays and col­lec­tions of prose inter­views; and three plays, includ­ing Wings of Night Sky, Wings of Morn­ing Light, A Play, which she toured as a one-woman show and was recent­ly pub­lished by Wes­leyan Press. 

She is Exec­u­tive Edi­tor of the anthol­o­gy When the Light of the World was Sub­dued, Our Songs Came Through — A Nor­ton Anthol­o­gy of Native Nations Poet­ry and the edi­tor of Liv­ing Nations, Liv­ing Words: An Anthol­o­gy of First Peo­ples Poet­ry, the com­pan­ion anthol­o­gy to her sig­na­ture Poet Lau­re­ate project fea­tur­ing a sam­pling of work by 47 Native Nations poets through an inter­ac­tive ArcGIS Sto­ry Map and a new­ly devel­oped Library of Con­gress audio collection.

Har­jo per­forms with her sax­o­phone and flutes, solo and with her band, the Arrow Dynam­ics Band, and pre­vi­ous­ly with Joy Har­jo and Poet­ic Jus­tice. She/​they have toured across the U.S. and in Europe, South Amer­i­ca, India, Africa, and Cana­da. Har­jo has pro­duced six award-win­ning music albums includ­ing Wind­ing Through the Milky Way, for which she was award­ed a NAM­MY for Best Female Artist of the year, and her newest album, I Pray for My Ene­mies, with Sun­y­a­ta Records.

Har­jo is a chan­cel­lor of the Acad­e­my of Amer­i­can Poets, holds a Tul­sa Artist Fel­low­ship, directs For Girls Becom­ing, an arts men­tor­ship pro­gram for young Mvskoke women, and is a found­ing board mem­ber and Chair of the Native Arts and Cul­tures Foun­da­tion. She lives in Tul­sa, Oklahoma. 

Author Website and Interviews

Praises & Reviews

“A must-read for those interested in women’s and World War II history.” - Library Journal (Starred)

A compelling history that brings forgotten heroes back in the spotlight.” - Kirkus Reviews

Beautifully written and painstakingly researched, The Women with Silver Wings is an unforgettable portrait of these fearless, groundbreaking women and their long fight for justice.” - Goodreads

About the Author

Katherine Sharp Landdeck is an associate professor of history at Texas Woman’s University, the home of the WASP archives. A Guggenheim Fellow at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum and a graduate of the University of Tennessee, where she was a Normandy Scholar and earned her Ph.D. in American History, Landdeck has received numerous awards for her work on the WASP and has appeared as an expert on NPR’s Morning Edition, PBS, and the History channel. Her work has been published in The Washington Post, The Atlantic, and Time, as well as in numerous academic and aviation publications. Landdeck is a licensed pilot who flies whenever she can.

Author Website and Interviews

Praises & Reviews

 “A terrifying true story of life in North Korea…Told in simple prose, this is a shocking and devastating tale of a country’s utter contempt for its citizens.” - Kirkus Reviews

“In his achingly straightforward memoir, Ishikawa vividly describes the horrendous conditions that the tyrannical and cultish state inflicts on its people…Ishikawa relates his painful story with sardonic humor and unwavering familial love even in the depths of despair, making human the often impersonal news coverage of mysterious and threatening North Korea.” - Booklist 

 “Masaji Ishikawa was born in Japan to a Korean father but repatriated as a boy to the supposed paradise of North Korea. Newly translated into English, this account of his life and appalling times should become a classic.” - South China Morning Post

About the Author

Born in 1947 in Kawasaki, Japan, Masaji Ishikawa moved with his parents and three sisters to North Korea in 1960 at the age of thirteen, where he lived until his escape in 1996. He currently resides in Japan.

Praise & Reviews

“This book is both a tour de force of social justice reportage and a literary masterpiece.” - Judges’ Citation for the PEN/John Kenneth Galbraith Award

“A book of extraordinary intelligence [and] humanity . . . beyond groundbreaking.” - Junot Díaz, The New York Times Book Review

“Reported like Watergate, written like Great Expectations, and handily the best international nonfiction in years.” - New York

“Incandescent writing and excruciatingly good storytelling.” - The Philadelphia Inquirer

About the Author

Katherine Boo is the author of the National Book Award winner for Nonfiction, the 2013 PEN/John Kenneth Galbraith Award winner, and a 2013 Pulitzer finalist, Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death, and Hope in a Mumbai Undercity. In 2001, after many years spent exploring how people get out of poverty in the United States, she met Sunil Khilnani, an Indian writer and political historian. His country, which has one-third of the world’s poor and is also one of the fastest-growing economies in the world, became her country, too. Over time, moving between the U.S. and India, she came to feel that the style of reporting she practiced in America—a mix of intimate immersion and investigation—might have some value in India as well. From November 2007, when Boo first walked into Annawadi, until March 2011, when she completed her reporting, she documented the experiences of residents with written notes, video recordings, audiotapes, photographs, and thousands of public records.

Boo, a staff writer at The New Yorker, has also published in the Washington Post, Washington City Paper, and The Washington Monthly. Her writing about disadvantaged populations has garnered numerous awards, including a Pulitzer Prize for Public Service, a National Magazine Award for Feature Writing, and a MacArthur “Genius” Award.

Interviews

Reviews & Praises

“Magnificent . . . a trailblazing work on the birth of inequality . . . Caste offers a forward-facing vision. Bursting with insight and love, this book may well help save us.” - O: The Oprah Magazine

“This book has the reverberating and patriotic slap of the best American prose writing. . . . Wilkerson has written a closely argued book that largely avoids the word ‘racism,’ yet stares it down with more humanity and rigor than nearly all but a few books in our literature. . . . It’s a book that changes the weather inside a reader.” - Dwight Garner, The New York Times

“A surprising and arresting wide-angle reframing . . . Her epilogue feels like a prayer for a country in pain, offering new directions through prophetic language.” - Bilal Qureshi, The Washington Post

 

About the Author

Isabel Wilkerson, winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the National Humanities Medal, has become a leading figure in narrative nonfiction, an interpreter of the human condition, and an impassioned voice for demonstrating how history can help us understand ourselves, our country, and our current era of upheaval.

Through her writing, Wilkerson brings the invisible and the marginalized into the light and into our hearts. Through her lectures, she explores with authority the need to reconcile America’s karmic inheritance and the origins of both our divisions and our shared commonality.

Her debut work, The Warmth of Other Suns, won the National Book Critics Circle Award, the Heartland Prize for Nonfiction, the Anisfield-Wolf Award for Nonfiction, the Lynton History Prize from Harvard and Columbia universities, and the Stephen Ambrose Oral History Prize and was shortlisted for both the Pen-Galbraith Literary Award and the Dayton Literary Peace Prize.

She is a native of Washington, D.C., and a daughter of the Great Migration, the mass movement that she would go on to write about. She won the Pulitzer Prize for Feature Writing in 1994, as Chicago Bureau Chief of The New York Times, making her the first African-American woman to win a Pulitzer Prize in journalism. She then devoted fifteen years and interviewed more than 1,200 people to tell the story of the six million people, among them her parents, who defected from the Jim Crow South.

As for her new book, Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents, the venerable U.K. bookseller, Waterstone’s calls it an “expansive, lyrical and stirring account of the unspoken system of divisions that govern our world.”

Author Website and Interviews

Praise & Reviews

“Fascinating . . . . The inspiring story about the Kurdish women warriors who took on the terrorists of the Islamic State in Syria and won.” - Good Morning America

“For many people outside Iraq and northeastern Syria, the Islamic State remains an abstraction. For the commanders of the Kurdish Women’s Protection Units (YPJ), one of the most intrepid fighting forces on the ground, the terrorist group was anything but. . . . Few, if any, writers have told their story better than Gayle Tzemach Lemmon, whose The Daughters of Kobani records in rich detail the story of the female Kurdish fighters who achieved mythical status as a key part of the U.S.-backed force that ultimately defeated the Islamic State. Lemmon . . . vividly chronicles the YPJ’s grueling fight with the Islamic State on the battlefield. . . . The reader can feel the tension in a sniper’s knees as she crouches for a shot and hear the hiss of Islamic State fighters taunting the female commanders over the radio.” - Foreign Policy

“A riveting story of women in combat. . . . Compelling. . . . A tale that’s sure to shock anyone who believes that combat is exclusively a man’s job.” - Military.com

About the Author

Gayle Tzemach Lemmon is the author of the New York Times bestsellers, The Dressmaker of Khair Khana (2011), about a young entrepreneur who supported her community under the Taliban, Ashley’s War: The Untold Story of a Team of Women Soldiers on the Special Ops Battlefield (2015), and The Daughters of Kobani (2021), the story of what ISIS has left in its wake: the most far-reaching experiment in women’s equality in the least likely place in the world brought to you by women who have been battling ISIS town by town, street by street since 2013. These women served as America’s ground force in the fight to defeat the Islamic State and The Daughters of Kobani tells for the first time this David and Goliath story of how they came to serve ISIS its first battlefield defeat. Ashley’s War is currently being developed into a major motion picture at Universal with Reese Witherspoon producing, and The Daughters of Kobani has been optioned by HiddenLight Productions, founded by former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, Sam Branson, and Chelsea Clinton. 

Lemmon, who serves as an adjunct senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, along with private sector leadership roles in emerging technology and national security firms, began writing about entrepreneurship in conflict and post-conflict zones while studying for her MBA at Harvard following a decade covering politics at the ABC News Political Unit. This work from Afghanistan, Rwanda, Liberia, Bosnia and beyond has been published by the World Bank, Harvard Business School, the Financial Times, Harvard Business Review and CNN, among others. Following MBA study, she led public policy analysis during the global financial crisis at the global investment firm PIMCO.

Lemmon is a frequent speaker on national security topics, including at the Aspen Security Forum and TED forums, and has given talks at West Point, ODNI, the Defense Intelligence Agency, the U.S. Naval Academy, and the National Infantry Museum. Her TED Talk on Ashley’s War and the reshaping of the hero story to include women has received more than a million views worldwide.  She regularly appears on MSNBC, CNN, PBS, and National Public Radio. Along with her national security work, she has reported and written extensively on topics including child marriage in the United States for PBS NewsHour and on school choice, single moms and the power and importance of girls’ ambition for The Atlantic. Lemmon holds an MBA from Harvard and received the Dean’s Award for her work on women’s entrepreneurship. In addition to serving as a Robert Bosch Fellow in Germany, she served as a Fulbright scholar in Spain, on the board of the international aid organization Mercy Corps and is a member of the Bretton Woods Committee. She speaks Spanish, German and French and is conversant in Dari and Kurmanci. 

Author Website and Interviews

Praises & Reviews

“This moving memoir is the document of a life without documents, of belonging to two countries yet belonging to neither. Hernandez Castillo has created his own papers fashioned from memory and poetry. His motherland is la madre tierra, his life a history lesson for our times.” - Sandra Cisneros, author of The House on Mango Street

"The award-winning poet turns to memoir with the devastating account of his family's immigration to the U.S., from terrifying encounters with ICE offers to his father's ultimate deportation." - Entertainment Weekly

Honest and unsparing, this book offers a detailed look at the dehumanizing immigration system that shattered the author’s family while offering a glimpse into his own deeply conflicted sense of what it means to live the so-called American dream. < A heartfelt and haunting memoir just right for the current political and social climate.
- Kirkus Reviews

About the Author

Marcelo Hernandez Castillo is a poet, essayist, translator, and immigration advocate. He is the author of Cenzontle, which was chosen by Brenda Shaughnessy as the winner of the 2017 A. Poulin, Jr. Prize published by BOA editions in 2018, as well as the winner of the Great Lakes Colleges Association New Writer Award for poetry, the 2019 Golden Poppy Award from the Northern California Independent Booksellers Association, and the Bronze in the FOREWORD INDIE best book of the year. Cenzontle is also a finalist for the Lambda Literary Award, the California Book Award, the Publishing Triangle's Thom Gunn Award for Gay Poetry, and the Northern California Book Award. Cenzontle was listed among one of NPR's and the New York Public Library top picks of 2018. His first chapbook, DULCE, won the Drinking Gourd Poetry Prize published by Northwestern University press. His memoir, Children of the Land is forthcoming from Harper Collins in 2020.

He was born in Zacatecas, Mexico and immigrated to the California central valley. As an AB540 student, he earned his B.A. from Sacramento State University and was the first undocumented student to graduate from the Helen Zell Writers Program at the University of Michigan. He is a founding member of the Undocupoets campaign which successfully eliminated citizenship requirements from all major first poetry book prizes in the country and was recognized with the Barnes and Noble Writers for Writers award. He has helped to establish The Undocupoet Fellowship which provides funding to help curb the cost of submissions to journals and contests for undocumented writers.

He is the translator of the Argentinian modernist poet, Jacobo Fijman and is currently at work translating the poems of the contemporary Mexican Peruvian poet Yaxkin Melchy. He co-translated the work of the Mexican poet Marcelo Uribe with C.D. Wright before her untimely passing.

His work has been adopted to opera through collaboration with the composer Reinaldo Moya and has appeared or been featured in The New York Times, The Paris Review, The Academy of American Poets, PBS Newshour, Fusion TV, Buzzfeed, Gulf Coast, New England Review, People Magazine, and Indiana Review, among others.

A graduate of the Canto Mundo Latinx Poetry fellowship, he has also received fellowships to attend the Vermont Studio Center and the Squaw Valley Writers Workshop. He teaches at the Ashland Low-Res MFA Program and teaches poetry workshops for incarcerated youth in Northern California.

Author Website and Interviews

Praises & Reviews

“Poignant . . . This detailed offering, the first specifically intended for young audiences, has multiple curriculum applications.” - Booklist, starred review

“Thoroughly sourced and meticulously documented, this stomach-churning, blood-boiling, tear-jerking account synthesizes a city's herculean efforts to access safe, clean water. . . . This compulsively readable, must-buy narrative nonfiction serves as the ultimate antidote to civic complacence.” -School Library Journal, starred review

“A careful, conscious encapsulation of a consequential U.S. frontier for renewed environmental justice activism.” - Kirkus Reviews

About the Author

Marc Aronson is an author, professor, speaker, editor and publisher who believes that young people, especially pre-teens and teenagers, are smart, passionate, and capable of engaging with interesting ideas in interesting ways.

He writes books, visits schools, teaches classes, and publishes books that affirm this belief. His mission is to inspire young people to ask questions, to look around, behind, inside of the stories the world tells us – whether that means being a detective, examining the clues history has left behind, or a reporter, telling the truth about the modern world.

Candy J. Cooper is a Pulitzer Prize finalist and winner of the Selden Ring Award for Investigative Reporting. She has been a staff writer for four newspapers, including the The Detroit Free Press and the San Francisco Examiner. Her work has appeared in the The New York Times, The Columbia Journalism Review and The Chronicle of Higher Education, among other publications. She has written several nonfiction series books for the classroom for Scholastic, and her essay on stepfamilies is part of an anthology, My Father Married Your Mother: Dispatches from the Blended Family, published by W. W. Norton.

Author Website and Interviews

Praises & Reviews

"Bobrow-Strain writes like a journalist and sociologist, with clear information on history and policy, along with plenty of narrative tension. Hernandez is not a perfect immigrant (she has a criminal record), but she’s a real one, and her story provides insight into how the larger immigration machine actually works." - Adriana E. Ramirez, Los Angeles Times

“The Death and Life of Aida Hernandez gives a human perspective to the politics surrounding immigration … It is a powerful story...” - The Denver Post

"The Death and Life of Aida Hernandez weaves the personal narrative of a single immigrant with the complex history of the southern border, where many people used to feel that their culture and identity traversed the border line . . . Aida’s story―of border flight, immigration court, for-profit detention, and family separation―is required reading in the age of Trump." - Rosa Furneaux, Mother Jones

About the Author

Aaron Bobrow-Strain writes and teaches about food politics, immigration, political economy, and the U.S-Mexico border.

Is a professor and Baker Ferguson Chair of Politics and Leadership at Whitman College, where he teaches courses on food, immigration, and the U.S.-Mexico border. He is the author of White Bread: A Social History of the Store-Bought Loaf and Intimate Enemies: Landowners, Power, and Violence in Chiapas. In the 1990s, he worked on the U.S.-Mexico border as an educator and activist. He is a founding member of the Walla Walla Immigrant Rights Coalition.

Along with academic journals in the U.S. and Mexico, his writing has appeared in The Believer, The Chronicle of Higher Education Review, Salon, Gastronomica, and The Huffington Post.

The Death and Life of Aida Hernandez: A Border Story (Hardback - Farrar, Straus, and Giroux 2019 & Paperback - Picador 2020) won the Washington State Book Award and the Pacific Northwest Book Award, was named a Southwest Books of the Year Top Choice, a Goodreads People’s Choice Award Semifinalist, and an AudioFiles Magazine Best Audio Book of 2019, and was shortlisted for the Brooklyn Public Library Literary Award.

He  has an MA in Latin American Studies from Stanford University and a Ph.D. in Geography from the University of California, Berkeley. He’s received grants and fellowships from the National Science Foundation and Social Science Research Council and won teaching prizes from UC Berkeley and Whitman College.

Author Website and Interview

Praises & Reviews

“Representation matters—and as a Black woman with a physical disability, Keah Brown offers a refreshing narrative from several intersecting communities whose stories have historically been overlooked. But the most important label she sports is writer—and her honest essays force those of us who are able-bodied and white and privileged in a host of different ways to confront our own biases and behaviors about disability, to walk in her shoes for a few hundred pages (resting when necessary!), and ultimately to celebrate her compelling voice. The Pretty One is a game-changer.” - Jodi Picoult, New York Times bestselling author of Small Great Things and A Spark of Light

"Keah Brown is a force to be reckoned with, and The Pretty One is a soaring debut that marks her introduction to the literary world. Her writings about love, disability, chairs she has loved, and more uniquely declare the following: get ready to feel all the feelings, for here is an important new voice." - Esmé Weijun Wang, New York Times bestselling author of The Collected Schizophrenias and The Border of Paradise

“What does it mean to live at the intersections of blackness, womanhood, and disability? In her admirable debut, The Pretty One, Keah Brown answers this question with heart, charm, and humor. Across twelve finely-crafted essays, Brown explores the matter of representation in popular culture, the vulnerability of facing self-loathing and learning to love herself, the challenge of repairing fractured relationships with family, the yearning for romantic love. Through her words we see that Brown is not just the pretty one; she is the magnificently human one.” - Roxane Gay

About the Author

Keah Brown is a journalist, author, and screenwriter.

She is the creator of #DisabledAndCute. Keah has a B.A. in journalism from The State University of New York at Fredonia.

Her work has appeared in Teen Vogue, Elle, Harper’s Bazaar, Marie Claire UK, And The New York Times, among other publications.

Her Debut essay collection, The Pretty One is out now. Her debut picture book, Sam’s Super Seats will be out Fall 2022 via Koklia books.

Keah loves TV and film, and she tweets, at @Keah_Maria, about cheesecake and how she should be writing.

Authors Website and Interviews

Praises & Reviews

“We know personally of the incredible commitment, ingenuity, and solutions that José brings to our world and the impact this book can have in actually making changes and improving the way we deal with natural disasters. We feel privileged to call him our friend.” - Gloria and Emilio Estefan

“When disaster hit Puerto Rico, José Andrés didn’t wait . . . His big heart and boundless energy could not be restrained by red tape. People were hungry, and José is a chef. Chefs feed people. . . He is a leader, an innovator, and a true hero.” - Anthony Bourdain

“A manifesto asking governments and nonprofit groups to rethink the way they feed people after a natural disaster…as close to a page-turner as current-affairs nonfiction gets.” - Washington Post

About the Author

Named one of Time Magazine’s “100 Most Influential People” in both 2012 and 2018, and awarded “Outstanding Chef” and “Humanitarian of the Year” by the James Beard Foundation, José Andrés is an internationally-recognized culinary innovator, New York Times bestselling author, educator, television personality, humanitarian, and chef/owner of ThinkFoodGroup. A pioneer of Spanish tapas in the United States, he is also known for his groundbreaking avant-garde cuisine and his award-winning group of more than 30 restaurants located throughout the country and beyond, ranging in a variety of culinary experiences from a food truck to his multi-location vegetable-focused fast casual Beefsteak, to world-class tasting menus like minibar by José Andrés and Somni, both of which have received two Michelin stars. As a naturalized citizen originally from Spain, Andrés has been a tireless advocate for immigration reform. In 2010, Andrés formed World Central Kitchen, a non-profit that provides smart solutions to end hunger and poverty by using the power of food to empower communities and strengthen economies. Notably, his team served over 3.6 million meals to the people of Puerto Rico following Hurricane Maria. Andrés’ work has earned awards and distinctions including the 2017 Lifetime Achievement Award from the International Association of Culinary Professionals and the 2015 National Humanities Medal, one of twelve distinguished recipients of the award from the National Endowment for the Humanities. Andrés was also named EY Master Entrepreneur of the Year in Greater Washington for his leadership and impact on the global business community and was awarded the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute’s Chair’s Medallion Award.

Authors Website and Interviews

Praises & Reviews

“Maria Hinojosa is hands down one of the most important, respected, and beloved cultural leaders in the Latinx community. . . . Hers is a voice we need to hear at this moment in our country!” - Julia Alvarez, author of How the García Girls Lost Their Accents

“I’ve known and admired Maria for many years. She is truly an outstanding journalist. I loved reading Once I Was You. It was so personal and moving, and told a very timely and critically important story for all Americans. I learned a lot about Maria, but more importantly, I learned a lot about what’s going on in so many parts of our country. Thanks, Maria, for writing this powerful book.” - Wolf Blitzer, lead political anchor for CNN

“Maria’s perspective is powerful and vital. Years ago, when In the Heights was just starting off-Broadway, Maria got the word out to our community to support this new musical about our neighborhoods. She has been a champion of our triumphs, a critic of our detractors, and a driving force to right the wrongs our society faces. When Maria speaks, I’m ready to listen and learn.” - Lin-Manuel Miranda, creator and original star of Hamilton

About the Author

Maria Hinojosa is an award-winning journalist who, for nearly thirty years, has reported on stories and communities in America that often go ignored by the mainstream media—from tales of hope in the South Bronx to the unseen victims of the War on Terror and the first detention camps in the US. Bestselling author Julia Álvarez has called her “one of the most important, respected, and beloved cultural leaders in the Latinx community.”

In Once I Was You, Maria shares her intimate experience growing up Mexican American on the South Side of Chicago. She offers a personal and illuminating account of how the rhetoric around immigration has not only long informed American attitudes toward outsiders, but also sanctioned willful negligence and profiteering at the expense of our country’s most vulnerable populations—charging us with the broken system we have today.

An urgent call to fellow Americans to open their eyes to the immigration crisis and understand that it affects us all, this honest and heartrending memoir paints a vivid portrait of how we got here and what it means to be a survivor, a feminist, a citizen, and a journalist who owns her voice while striving for the truth.

Interviews

Praises & Reviews

"A stirring memoir of love and resilience. Haben proves there are no limits for living joyously in the world. A fierce, glorious advocate for equal opportunity, she demonstrates that accessibility for all benefits all. Her memoir is a soul-inspiring gift." - Jewell Parker Rhodes, New York Times bestselling author of Ghost Boys

"Reading Haben's story moved me in a way I didn't think was possible. She's a gifted writer, and her story will teach you about strength, perseverance, and determination. This is a strong reminder to embrace the unknown, to stand up for yourself, and to never give up." - Mashal Waqar, co-founder and COO, The Tempest

"Extraordinary...Haben's is a story of inspiration-and new American patriotism. She gives all of us fresh strength and hope." - Lorene Cary, author of Black Ice and founder of Art Sanctuary

About the Author

The first Deafblind person to graduate from Harvard Law School, Haben Girma is a human rights lawyer advancing disability justice. President Obama named her a White House Champion of Change. She received the Helen Keller Achievement Award, a spot on the Forbes 30 Under 30 list, and TIME100 Talks. President Bill Clinton, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, and Chancellor Angela Merkel have all honored Haben. Haben believes disability is an opportunity for innovation, and she teaches organizations the importance of choosing inclusion. The New York Times, Oprah Magazine, and TODAY Show featured her memoir, Haben: The Deafblind Woman Who Conquered Harvard Law.

Haben was born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, where she currently lives. Her memoir takes readers on adventures around the world, including her parents’ homes in Eritrea and Ethiopia, building a school under the scorching Saharan sun, training with a guide dog in New Jersey, climbing an iceberg in Alaska, fighting for blind readers at a courthouse in Vermont, and talking with President Obama at The White House. Warm, funny, thoughtful, and uplifting, this captivating book is a testament to Haben’s determination to resist isolation and find the keys to connection.

Authors Website and Interviews

Praises & Reviews

“Alternately beautiful and devastating.” - Washington Post

"Nothing [Trethewey] has written drills down into her past, and her family’s, as powerfully as Memorial Drive. It is a controlled burn of chaos and intellection; it is a memoir that will really lay you out.... This is a book with a slow, steady build. This is restraint in service to release....Even though you intuit what is coming, the moment you learn of Gwendolyn’s death is as stunning as the moment when Anna Magnani is shot in the street in Roberto Rossellini’s Rome, Open City." - New York Times

"In Memorial Drive, Natasha Trethewey has transformed unimaginable tragedy into a work of sublimity. There’s sorrow and heartbreak, yes, but also a beautiful portrait of a mother and her daughter’s enduring love. Trethewey writes elegantly, trenchantly, intimately as well about the fraught history of the south and what it means live at the intersection of America’s struggle between blackness and whiteness. And what, in our troubled republic, is a subject more evergreen?" - Mitchell S.  Jackson, author of Survival Math

About the Author

Natasha Trethewey served two terms as the 19th Poet Laureate of the United States (2012-2014). She is the author of four collections of poetry, Domestic Work (2000), Bellocq’s Ophelia (2002), Native Guard (2006)—for which she was awarded the 2007 Pulitzer Prize—and Thrall, (2012). In 2010 she published a book of non-fiction, Beyond Katrina: A Meditation on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. She is a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets, and recipient of fellowships from the Academy of American Poets, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Guggenheim Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, the Beinecke Library at Yale, and the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard. In 2013 she was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and in 2017 she received the Heinz Award for Arts and Humanities.

Author Website and Interviews

Praises & Reviews

“This book is a detective story, and a good one, that tells what happens when rootless greed collides with rooted culture. But it’s also a classic slice of American history, and a tale of resilience in the face of remarkable trauma. Sierra Crane Murdoch is a patient, careful, and brilliant chronicler of this moment in time, a new voice who will add much to our literature in the years ahead.” - Bill McKibben, author of Falter: Has the Human Game Begun to Play Itself Out?

“In Yellow Bird, oilfield meets reservation, and readers meet a true-to-life Native sleuth unlike any in literature. Sierra Crane Murdoch takes a modest, ignored sort of American life and renders it large, with a murder mystery driving the action. It’s an empathetic, attentive account by a talented writer and listener.” - Ted Conover, author of Newjack: Guarding Sing Sing and Rolling Nowhere

“Journalist and first-time author Sierra Crane Murdoch follows an Arikara woman named Lissa Yellow Bird who is determined to solve the mystery of a missing white oil worker on the North Dakota reservation where her family lives. The book offers a gripping narrative of Yellow Bird’s obsession with the case, but it’s also about the harsh history of the land where the man vanished, how it was flooded and remade, first by an uncaring federal government and then again by industry. Yellow Bird teaches us that some things aren’t random at all—that a crime, and its resolution, can be a product of a time and a place, and a history bringing together the people involved.” - Outside magazine

About the Author

I am a journalist and essayist whose work concerns, primarily, communities in the American West. My first book, Yellow Bird: Oil, Murder, and a Woman's Search for Justice in Indian Country, was published by Random House and was named one of the best books of 2020 by The New York Times, NPR, Amazon, and Publisher’s Weekly. Part true crime, part social criticism, Yellow Bird chronicles a murder on the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation in North Dakota, tracing the steps of an Arikara woman, Lissa Yellow Bird, as she searches for a young white oil worker who went missing from the reservation. I’ve reported on the oil boom in North Dakota and its impact on the Mandan Hidatsa Arikara Nation since 2011. My writing has appeared on This American Life and in Harper’s, VQR, The New Yorker online, Orion, The Atlantic, and High Country News, where I was a staff writer and a contributing editor. I’ve received a Middlebury Fellowship in Environmental Journalism, an 11th Hour Food and Farming Fellowship, a visiting fellowship in the Investigative Reporting Program at the University of California Berkeley, and a MacDowell Fellowship. I live in Oregon.

Author Website and Interviews

Praises & Reviews

“For all the political debate that surrounds them, it remains rare for undocumented Americans to share their own stories in full. In this nearly decade-long feat of reporting, Karla Cornejo Villavicencio’s book, now a National Book Award finalist, shows the complex nature of undocumented immigrants’ lives.” - Time
 
“There’s nothing to do but sit down and read this book. Inside it, I feel deep in being, immersed in a frankness and a swerving bright and revelatory funkiness I’ve not encountered ever before concerning the collective daily life of an undocumented family in America. It’s a radical human story and Karla Cornejo Villavicencio is a great writer.” - Eileen Myles 
 
“This is the book we’ve been waiting for. Karla Cornejo Villavicencio offers an unflinching indictment of our current immigration system, one that separates families, inflicts trauma, and every day eats away at people’s dignity. At the same time, she writes about migrants in a way they’ve never been written about before—in all their complexity, messiness, humanity, and beauty. Cornejo Villavicencio understands in her bones that writers cannot give people voices or faces. The Undocumented Americans succeeds precisely because she sees their faces and hears their voices. Deeply personal and so superbly told, this is a work we will be talking about for a long time to come.” - Roberto G. Gonzales, author of Lives in Limbo: Undocumented and Coming of Age in America 

About the Author

Karla Cornejo Villavicencio became one of the first undocumented students to be accepted into Harvard University who graduated in 2011 and is now a Ph.D. candidate in American Studies at Yale University. Her parents brought her to the United States from Ecuador when she was five. Cornejo Villavicencio has written The Undocumented Americans, a book channeling that ambivalence into a series of dispatches from what we might call undocumented America: a country within a country, one that overlaps and undergirds the other. In six tight chapters, Cornejo profiles Staten Island day laborers who cleaned up New York City after Hurricane Sandy; “second responders” and delivery workers who cleared the rubble at Ground Zero; healers and pharmacists offering black-market cures in Miami; families poisoned by lead pipes and negligent politicians in Flint, Michigan; and the intimate fallout of the deportation machine. Throughout, Cornejo Villavicencio weaves in her own story, reflecting on her parents’ sacrifices and her daily battles with trauma and mental illness.

Karla is best known for her writings on immigration, music, beauty, and mental illness for The New York Times, The Atlantic, The New Republic, Glamour, Elle, Vogue, n+1, and The New Inquiry, among others. She lives in New Haven with her partner and their dog. 

Authors Website and Interviews