2016 University Press Books


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"Outstanding" Rated Titles from the University Press Books Committee

The following titles received ratings of "Outstanding" (O) by members of the 2013 University Press Books Committee. "Outstanding" titles are defined as having exceptional editorial content and subject matter. They are essential additions to most library collections.


Numbers, Ronald L. and Kostas Kampourakis (Editors)

Newton's Apple and Other Myths about Science

Harvard University Press

"This book consists of short chapters that highlight accepted scientific theories that were debunked and why. Some of the chapters, though short, are strenuous, vocabulary heavy reads. However, this book is worth the time and effort for students interested in science. It is a valuable addition to an advanced science curriculum."—Annemarie Roscello (AASL)

"Newton's Apple might be too advanced for the average reader, but the book provides a huge service to the community by addressing the growing number of scientific myths. Within a public library, the information provided by Numbers and Kampourakis allows the general public to question cold hard historical facts taught in our high school classes and popular media."—Phillip Ballo (RUSA/CODES)


Cuthbertson, Ken (Foreword by Morley Safer)

A Complex Fate: William L. Shirer and the American Century

McGill-Queen's University Press

"William L Shirer was the European correspondent for the Chicago Tribune from 1925-1932 and then worked in Germany from 1934-1940. In 1945, Shirer returned to Germany for the Nuremberg Trials. After returning stateside, he won the Nation Book Award in Nonfiction for The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich in 1961. This book is thick, but accessible, and will amaze the reader with the story of the life of this famous reporter and how his work shaped Americas' views of Hitler, Ghandi, and others who changed the world. Students who enjoy non-fiction will enjoy this book and it will become a utilized source for Holocaust units."—Annemarie Roscello (AASL)


Gómez-Lobo, Alfonso (With John Keown)

Bioethics and the Human Goods: An Introduction to Natural Law Bioethics

Georgetown University Press

"This brief text introduces the reader to the foundations of natural law theory in relation to bioethics as it relates to the beginning and ending of life. Topics include genetics, abortion, infanticide, nutrition and hydration, physician-assisted suicide and transplant ethics. The brief entries provide good preliminary material for students doing research on these topics."—Pat M. Couts (AASL)


Francaviglia, Richard

The Mapmakers of New Zion: A Cartographic History of Mormonism

University of Utah Press

"A map is any illustration that helps orient people to place,' explains Richard Francaviglia in his introduction. The design of maps—what is at the center or on the periphery, labels and accompanying text—reveal the mapmakers' attitudes about the world.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, aka the Mormons, was established in the mid 19th-century when the science and technology of surveying, cartography, and printing were well-developed. As the Mormons charted their way, they moved westward from upstate New York to Ohio, Illinois, Missouri, and eventually to Utah Territory. Accurate description of topography, climate, and native inhabitants was vital information. Pioneer Mormon towns, not only of Salt Lake City but also of other communities, were laid out on specific grids with the church at the center. In addition to mapping their immediate surroundings, the Mormons also created maps of the ancient world as described in the Book of Mormon. As Mormon missions expanded to other countries and continents so did their mapmaking.

The book is illustrated with images of historic maps, manuscript pages from explorers' and surveyors' accounts, and period and contemporary photographs of referenced sites.

The book will appeal to Western historians, geography buffs, and map collectors as well as those who are interested in LDS church history."—Nann Blaine Hilyard (RUSA/CODES)


McCarthy, Colman

Teaching Peace: Students Exchange Letters with Their Teacher

Vanderbilt University Press

"A strong contribution to the area of Social Sciences / Social Processes as well as to Education. This book speaks compellingly to the how and what we teach, as well as to the social values of peace and justice. Thought-provoking and convicting content as well as commentary on effective (and valuable) teaching methods. Teaching Peace is required reading for thoughtful K-12 educators as well as to post-secondary students and instructors: a pleasure to read, and convicting."—Janie Pickett (AASL)


Bayoumi, Moustafa

This Muslim American Life: Dispatches from the War on Terror

New York University Press

"This uniquely informative and engaging book illuminates a topic the American public needs to be aware of. We decry racial profiling easily when it involves skin color and social justice, but somehow our desire for fair play lags when it deals with the profiling of American Muslims. An exceptional reveal of the other side we seldom hear about."—Janie Pickett (AASL)


Fleisher, Mark S.

Living Black: Social Life in an African American Neighborhood

The University of Wisconsin Press

"This quality ethnography reads like a series of engaging stories. The study reflects both excellent research and a clear sense of the provisions that ensure quality in qualitative research. A clear voice supporting diversity and our awareness thereof."—Janie Pickett (AASL)


Marinoni, Giuseppe and Giovanni Chiaramonte

The Evolving European City

McGill-Queen's University Press

"The best kind of picture book for grownups, this in-depth look at urban planning offers minimal but lucid text with amazingly instructive photography to demonstrate fresh perspectives on architecture of place and culture. A pleasure to browse, but a powerhouse to examine for engineering, architecture, and public policy thinkers."—Janie Pickett (AASL)


Kadman, Noga

Erased from Space and Consciousness: Israel and the Depopulated Palestinian Villages of 1948

Indiana University Press

"This book about the changes in the landscape due to the 1948 war, and the depopulation of the Palestinian villages, is fascinating as well as written in a concise, easy to understand manner. Israel itself has done its best to erase these villages from the consciousness of Israelis and the world, but people like Noga Kadman are working to stop this."—Hilary Albert (RUSA/CODES)


Linker, Maureen

Intellectual Empathy: Critical Thinking for Social Justice

The University of Michigan Press

"The author presents an approach to considering issues of great divisiveness by engaging both our critical thinking and our emotions. Rather than calling for the change of one's beliefs, this book guides in critically examining personal values and discovering points of similarity that allow for empathetic understanding of those who are different. This book serves both for educators' professional reading as well as post-secondary curricular content."—Janie Pickett (AASL)


Regan, Margaret

Detained and Deported: Stories of Immigrant Families Under Fire

Beacon Press

"A fast-paced first-hand account of people caught in the inhumane and broken immigration system showcasing the blatant abuse endemic in the Border Patrol and US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) operations. Similarities are rampantly comparable to the prisons-for-profit network, as readers are informed of the elongated holds in privately ran detainment centers in which case studies show individuals who should be held for days are not being released after years of holding. Due to the privatization, the new detainment centers are free of government regulations and are not accountable to quality of life."—Sabrina Carnesi (AASL)

"Detained and Deported by Margret Regan is an important and informative book that explores the emotional and human side of the immigration issue. An interesting approach to a hot topic issue, Detained and Deported is a must have in public library collections."—Phillip Ballo (RUSA/CODES)


Hockenhull, Thomas (Editor)

Symbols of Power: Ten Coins That Changed the World

Columbia University Press

"Coins and currency are the physical representations of money, the medium of exchange that facilitates buying and selling of goods and services. This concise book traces the histories of ten coins as physical object across centuries and civilizations. The ancient Near East (including Mesopotamia, Persia, and Israel) created the shekel as a unit of weight 5,000 years ago. In 700 BCE the term was applied to the silver coins that weighted a shekel. The Greek drachma means 'a handful,' and refers to a unit of measure of an iron rod. Drachma coins got smaller as values decreased, to the point where people were advised to keep the smallest coins safe in their mouths, under their gums. The Romans coined the denarius with a variety of portraits as emperors changed. In Renaissance Italy the Florentines changed from silver to gold when they introduced the florin. 'Franc' means 'free,' and became the name for French money in 1360 when Jean II le Bon (John the Good) was released from British captivity. The rupee became the coin of India in the sixteenth century when the Mughals unified the subcontinent. The word is from the Sanskrit, 'to stamp' or 'to form.' The mark was adopted by the newly-unified Germany in 1871. The yen was also adopted in 1871; the word means 'round.' For centuries the British pound was more concept than coin. People dealt in silver pennies cut into halves and quarters (farthings). Gradually higher-value coinage was created and paper notes were introduced in the 17th century. The U.S. dollar was adopted in 1785 when the new nation standardized its currency. Thomas Jefferson successfully advocated for a decimal division and called the result 'cents,' after the French centime coin.

The fascinating histories of each coin are accompanied by dozens of photographs. General readers will enjoy this book. It will also be useful for both middle and high school students."—Nann Blaine Hilyard (RUSA/CODES)


Regan, Richard J.

A Constitutional History of the U.S. Supreme Court

The Catholic University of America Press

"This is an easy to understand collection of the history of the U.S. Supreme Court. It lists the justices of each court and landmark decisions. It discusses both the constitutional history and the politics. It is really a just the facts approach and great for any student."—Hilary Albert (RUSA/CODES)


Davis, Lennard J.

Enabling Acts: The Hidden Story of How the Americans with Disabilities Act Gave the Largest US Minority Its Rights

Beacon Press

"This is a very well-written book. Easy to understand and perfect for a public library. It shows clearly how the activists and the politicians came together to create a law that would change the lives of millions of people."—Hilary Albert (RUSA/CODES)


Meyer, Doug

Violence against Queer People: Race, Class, Gender, and the Persistence of Anti-LGBT Discrimination

Rutgers University Press

"Violence against Queer People serves to educate on anti-LGBT discrimination by revealing the complexity of the subject. Drawing on research and firsthand interviews with nearly fifty victims, Meyer presents the many other issues surrounding violence against LGBT individuals, including gender dynamics and homophobia, racism, social hierarchy, and the way in which the violence is covered by today's media."—Sara Frey (AASL)


Browne, Arthur

One Righteous Man: Samuel Battle and the Shattering of the Color Line in New York

Beacon Press

"A biography about Samuel Battle was written by Langston Hughes but was never published. Another attempt to tell his story, with a foreword by Eleanor Roosevelt never made it into the public's hands. It is only now, with Browne's biography of New York City's first African American police officer, that Battle's 'against-all-odds journey' is shared with the world. More than the story of one man, One Righteous Man invokes questions about racial relations and policing in 2016."—Sara Frey (AASL)


Weimann, Gabriel (Foreword by Bruce Hoffman)

Terrorism in Cyberspace: The Next Generation

The Woodrow Wilson Center Press/Columbia University Press

"Gabriel Weimann's Terrorism in Cyberspace: The Next Generation provides an authoritative analysis of an emerging issue in global studies and national security. The book's organization prevents his depth of knowledge and research from becoming overwhelming."—Sara Frey (AASL)


Westheimer, Joel

What Kind of Citizen? Educating Our Children for the Common Good

Teachers College Press

"The sound and fury of school reform often overlooks this key element: preparing our children to engage as informed and ethical leaders in their communities. This short but compelling discussion is essential reading for its practical application of the intriguing theoretical overview Westheimer provides."—Janie Pickett (AASL)


Hrabowski III, Freeman A.

Holding Fast to Dreams: Empowering Youth from the Civil Rights Crusade to STEM Achievement

Beacon Press

"A small but powerful book that opens the mind to the personal aspect of aspirations for racial equity and opportunity. Compelling and accessible, Dr. Hrabowski makes real what, for many of us, have been distant stories. Cogent reading for all."—Janie Pickett (AASL)


Borkowski, David

A Shot Story: From Juvie to Ph.D.

Fordham University Press

"An engaging memoir that will appeal to so many profiles of reader: literacy, life transitions, delinquency to academic. Borkowski has all the bona fides to make this a trustworthy reference source, but his writing creates a strong narrative that makes it entertaining to read."—Janie Pickett (AASL)


Klassen, Thomas R. and John A. Dwyer

How to Succeed at University (and Get a Great Job!): Mastering the Critical Skills You Need for School, Work, and Life

University of British Columbia Press

"The authors echo the perspective that today's university and career fields have changed. The stellar draw for this book is the identification of four key skill sets: skills that work for success in university learning and in job achievement. Echoing Wagner and Christensen, the authors point to communication skills, problem solving, teamwork, and adaptability as crucial. The book is brilliant for its identifying the relevancy of higher education to the reality of career and employment."—Janie Pickett (AASL)


Deutsch, Stephanie

You Need a Schoolhouse: Booker T. Washington, Julius Rosenwald, and the Building of Schools for the Segregated South

Northwestern University Press

"An important but engaging piece of history that our current world needs to read. Though the narrative begins in the 1800s, the main figures in the story, along with their values and experiences, should inform our own actions and principles today."—Janie Pickett (AASL)


Plotch, Philip Mark

Politics Across the Hudson: The Tappan Zee Megaproject

Rutgers University Press

"Plotch has written a masterful account of the politics and history of building the new Tappan Zee Bridge. A project that is now one of the longest and most expensive bridges in the world spanned six NYS governors and three Westchester County executives. This is a book of regional interest for local history projects. The focus is not just on a timeline but also the politics, economics, and public policy that went into this, yet to be completed, project. A fascinating read, and an essential resource for those in the New York City metropolitan area."—Annemarie Roscello (AASL)


The Elves (Foreword by Pat Koch, Head Elf, Afterword by Emily Weisner Thompson)

Letters to Santa Claus

Indiana University Press

"Entertaining assembly of scanned letters and drawings sent to Santa Claus, Indiana. The collection dates from the 1930's to 2010's. Students will note historical changes, through gifts being requested—from a Shirley Temple doll in the 1930's to a computer and electronics in the 2000's. This book could supplement the teaching of letter writing and societal changes. Or, it could be read for fun!"—Carrie E. Turner (AASL)


Wolvengrey, Arok (Editor)

First Nations Language Readers Series

University of Regina Press

"This is an outstanding series of readers in First Nations languages. Each volume shares the impeccable linguistic and academic fides of the whole. The linguistic information is thorough, and the stories and tales are a pleasure."—Janie Pickett (AASL)


Kober, Nancy, et al.

Reaching Students: What Research Says About Effective Instruction in Undergraduate Science and Engineering

The National Academies Press

"This highly accessible book provides clear and cogent information for improving college science instruction. Despite that narrow focus, the book offers significant content for all instructors for all ages of learners. Years in the writing, this volume beautifully marries research, academics, and powerful pedagogy. Widely applicable."—Janie Pickett (AASL)


Gimbel, Steven

Einstein: His Space and Times

Yale University Press

"A wonderful concise book that brings together both the personal and professional. The book is accurate and well-balanced focusing on his family, politics, and his science. It is fascinating indeed."—Hilary Albert (RUSA/CODES)


Higham, Nicholas J., et al. (Editors)

The Princeton Companion to Applied Mathematics

Princeton University Press

"This is a comprehensive reference manual on applied mathematics with nearly 200 entries that include popular culture references, illustrations and in-text citations for further reading. It is user-friendly without sacrificing the language of the subject matter. Both mathematicians and students of mathematics will appreciate this book."—Sara Frey (AASL)


Calaprice, Alice, Daniel Kennefick, and Robert Schulmann

An Einstein Encyclopedia

Princeton University Press

"With entries on his personal life, scientific work and involvement in humanitarian issues, An Einstein Encyclopedia presents the famous scientist's many sides. The encyclopedia format allows for research and casual browsing, while its bibliographies alone are enough to interest readers. Along with the book's references, Calaprice, Kennefick and Schulmann include an annotated bibliography of biographies and specialized books, children's books and documentary films, as well as a select annotated bibliography of Einstein's publications."—Sara Frey (AASL)


Harris, Amanda

Fruits of Eden: David Fairchild and America's Plant Hunters

University Press of Florida

"An excellent story. It is well-written. Without these individuals we might still be eating only brown and white foods. I learned so much about how plants arrived in this country. David Fairchild and his many explorer colleagues did a great deal for our food culture. They introduced oranges, durum wheat, avocados and other amazing foods that we now take for granted."—Hilary Albert (RUSA/CODES)


Frey, Valerie J.

Preserving Family Recipes: How to Save and Celebrate Your Food Traditions

University of Georgia Press

"In a warm, supportive, and inviting voice, Frey teaches readers how to preserve family treasures related to cooking in this accessible blend of culinary anthropology, genealogy, and archival studies. Frey addresses everything from handwritten recipes on scraps of paper to beloved cookbooks, kitchen equipment, and memories and stories born from sharing everyday meals and special occasions. In clear and well-organized chapters she covers preservation techniques, the research process, and methods of gathering, adapting, preserving, and sharing recipes. Wonderfully rich appendices, a generous sharing of her own recipe collection, and further reading lists augment what is already a winning work."—Neal Wyatt (RUSA/CODES)


Tipton-Martin, Toni (Forewords by John Egerton and Barbara Haber)

The Jemima Code: Two Centuries of African American Cookbooks

University of Texas Press

"This title is a must-purchase for all middle and high school libraries. Subtitled 'Two Centuries of African American Cookbooks,' author Toni Tipton-Martin has created an amazing and beautifully illustrated historical resource that provides new insight into history that has been lost to most of us. Organized chronologically, each chapter provides a short narrative overview of cookbooks published by African American cooks along with illustrations of the cover and selected recipes. In her introduction, Tipton-Martin explains the Jemima code as a system of words and images that portrays black chefs, cooks and cookbook authors as 'passive and ignorant laborers incapable of creative culinary artistry.' Share this title with your teachers and students to finally celebrate these contributions to our great food culture."—Judi Repman (AASL)

"Working against the stereotype of 'Aunt Jemima' advertising, Tipton-Martin presents a lavishly illustrated culinary history of African American cookery. Using over 150 examples of cookbooks, ranging over 200 years, she traces the myriad ways African American chefs created the foodways of the South and beyond. Thoughtful front matter provides historical context while the heart of the book presents the cookbooks themselves—with explanatory notes, facsimile covers, and sample pages (some showing recipes). Tipton-Martin's unique and engaging book equally supports beginning research and coffee table browsing."—Neal Wyatt (RUSA/CODES)


Bechard, Jerry and Cindee Borton-Parker

The Norske Nook Book of Pies and Other Recipes

The University of Wisconsin Press

"If you aren't able to make a personal visit to one of the Norske Nook's 'pie shrines' this title will certainly help any home baker re-create some of their amazing recipes. Of course there are old favorites like apple and cherry pie, but you can also find mouth-watering recipes for a Snickers caramel pie, a raspberry white chocolate pie, or a Northwoods root beer float pie. The basics like pie crusts and toppings are covered in their own chapters, and non-pie chapters are devoted to tortes, muffins, cookies and Scandinavian specialties. Even non-bakers will enjoy drooling over the beautiful photographs. The directions are clear and easy-to-follow, which should make this title very appealing to middle and high school aspiring pie bakers."—Judi Repman (AASL)


Fishkin, Shelley Fisher

Writing America: Literary Landmarks from Walden Pond to Wounded Knee (A Reader's Companion)

Rutgers University Press

"A wonderful travel guide for readers, Shelley Fisher Fishkin uses the National Register to illuminate American literature and history by taking us to the places that most influenced famous and favorite writers such as Mark Twain, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Allen Ginsberg and Zora Neale Hurston. The armchair traveler also gets an in-depth and diverse look at our nation's literary landscape and history, from the tenements of New York City, the peaceful woods of Walden Pond to Hollywood and the silver screen. A wonderful title for high schools, professionals, and literary lovers."—Marianne Fitzgerald (AASL)


Poe, Edgar Allen (Edited by Kevin J. Hayes) (Foreword by William Giraldi)

The Annotated Poe

Harvard University Press/Belknap Press

"Devotees of Edgar Allan Poe will delight in this Aladdin's Cave of an edition, finding themselves caught in its lavish attention to detail and design. Students searching for an edition of Poe to read for school assignments and leisure readers new to Poe's twisting tales and gripping poetry will equally thrill to this annotated edition, rich as it is with notes, illustrations, and explanations (of allusions, sources, critical interpretations, historical events, and more). While not a complete Poe, the selections hit the highlights, and the illustrations and production values make it a visual and tactile pleasure."—Neal Wyatt (RUSA/CODES)


Carroll, Lewis (Illustrated by Salvador Dalí )

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland150th Anniversary Edition

Princeton University Press

"In 1969 Random House commissioned Salvador Dalí to illustrate Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and the title was published in a rare and expensive edition. To commemorate Alice's 150th birthday, Princeton University Press has made this wonderful marriage of author and illustrator available in an edition for all of us. The volume includes two illuminating introductory essays. The first, by Mark Burstein, shows the link between Dalí 's prints and Carroll's text. A second essay by Thomas Banchoff highlights Dalí 's 'mathematically based artwork.' Given that Carroll was also a mathematician, school librarians will have many new opportunities to build cross-curricular links between great art, great literature and mathematics. This title is a wonderful way to see a well-known piece of literature through an entirely new lens."—Judi Repman (AASL)


Masters, Ben

Unbranded: Four Men and Sixteen Mustangs. Three Thousand Miles across the American West

Texas A&M University Press

"Unbranded is loaded with 165 stunning photographs taken by Masters, Fitzsimons, Glover and Thamer. It describes the journey including: adopting and training the Mustangs, plotting the course, and riding through beautiful and treacherous landscapes. The photography captures the American West at its best."—Teri Maggio (RUSA/CODES)


Mawdsley, Evan (General Editor)

The Cambridge History of the Second World WarThree Volume Set

Cambridge University Press

"World War II was 'the most complex event of the 20th century,' states Evan Mawdsley in the introduction to this three-volume set. Eighty historians contributed chapters. Volume 1 describes the military aspects: strategies, campaigns, and personnel. Volume 2 covers the political and ideological framework that explains why the war began, how it was fought, and the post-war consequences. Volume 3 describes the effect of the war on the global economy, on societies, and culture including topics like farming, transportation, labor, and sexual violence. Illustrations include maps, photographs, and charts. The production quality is excellent with lightweight but opaque paper. Bibliographical essays provide recommendations for further reading. The limitation to this comprehensive and excellent reference set is the steep price ($450) which places it out of range for most public and school libraries."—Nann Blaine Hilyard (RUSA/CODES)


Schrag, Otto and Peter Schrag

When Europe Was a Prison Camp: Father and Son Memoirs, 1940-1941

Indiana University Press

"A World War II holocaust story written by a father and son. Otto Schrag, the father, wrote his memoir in 1941 and his son Peter Schrag began writing in the 1980's with the assistance of his mother. Otto writes in a matter of fact manner with political commentary of his time interned in France. As a child during WWII, Peter Schrag, a well known journalist and author, tells his story with extensive research to help the reader understand the political landscape."—Annemarie Roscello (AASL)


Dembowski, Peter F.

Memoirs Red and White: Poland, the War, and After

University of Notre Dame Press

"A moving memoir of a Polish Holocaust survivor. Not only were Dembowski's mother and sister arrested and killed, he became a prisoner of war. The memoir includes Dembowski's childhood, war years and immigration into Canada. This book is accessible to students in high school. The memoir is interwoven with political commentary and that is told in a straight 'matter of fact' manner. This book is all engrossing and a page turner."—Annemarie Roscello (AASL)


Davidson, James West

A Little History of the United States

Yale University Press

"Davidson begins his story centuries earlier, with the North American continent's discovery by the voyagers of Europe and the often terrible consequences that resulted. It is a fascinating book and easy to read as it details Plymouth Rock, Jamestown, the French and Indian War and events leading up to the American Revolution."—Teri Maggio (RUSA/CODES)


Wolff, Alexander

The Audacity of Hoop: Basketball and the Age of Obama

Temple University Press

"The author illuminates how President Obama has cultivated an era in American life where politics and basketball collide in unprecedented ways. What unifies it all are the many evocative photographs by White House photographer, Pete Souza. In the words of Ishmael Reed, he is 'the president of the Cool.'"—Teri Maggio (RUSA/CODES)

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