University of Pittsburgh

Archive for the ‘Bookshelf’ Category

A Cat with Compassion

The aromatherapy scents of flowers and herbs surround a Rhode Island grandmother as she lays in her bed at a nursing home. It’s the final hour of her life. Her son looks on silently. The only noise is the soft purr of a furry, gray-and-brown spotted cat curled up next to the woman, Marion McCullough. […]

What Happened to Anna K.

It’s a quiet fall evening as a writer sits on her sofa, a laptop perched atop her knees. She is working on her first novel, and she usually writes for several hours every day. Now, with nearly 100 pages written, she senses an intruder. It’s the mysterious Anna Karenina, the aristocratic figure from the enduring […]

Recently Published

The Lost Throne The cryptic ramblings of a famed archeologist spark a global adventure, more than a century after his death. In The Lost Throne (Putnam), the fourth thriller by Chris Kuzneski (A&S ’91, EDUC ’93G), the plot unfolds through the investigation of a massacre at a Greek monastery and the search for an American […]

Incident at the Edge of Bayonet Woods

The poem’s writing begins in a New York City apartment, where the newly married graduate student, far from the rural setting of her youth, blocks out the everyday roar of noisy city life and reimagines what happened, what might have happened. In this suspended space, she uses time, memories, and the inspiration of single words […]

Recently Published

Along These Rivers Recalling the scent of steel and “the sweet smell of our father’s labors,” the “blackish green” of the Monongahela, and other aspects of Pittsburgh’s story, Along These Rivers: Poetry and Photography from Pittsburgh (Quadrant Publishing) is a compilation of written and visual images from Pittsburgh artists created in honor of the city’s […]

Make the Impossible Possible

The gangly limbed youth sulks as he trudges down the long dim hallway of the high school, feeling awkward and unsure of himself, in teenage angst. A teacher motions him into an airy studio. Bright canvasses and clay pots are perched all about. Sunlight sparkles through the wide windows, turning the dust into diamonds. Jazz […]

Recently Published

Diamonds and Roses An aspiring medical researcher is branded a traitor after unearthing a military secret about the Vietnam War. The discovery sets Justin Love on a tangled journey. Author John D’Ambrosio (A&S ’83) sets Diamonds and Roses (CreateSpace) in the fictional town of Hope Hollow, Pa. The novel explores conflicts that emerge between individuals […]

She Touched the World: Laura Bridgman

Driving down the highway on a warm autumn day, the third-grade teacher spots something odd. In the sunlight shining off passing cars, a little black line, like a crooked spiral, hovers in the air. She dismisses it, goes to her job, returns home, carries on with her life. But when it happens again, the line […]

Recently Published

Just Enough Anxiety: The Hidden Driver of Business Success For the busy executive, the right amount of uneasiness could be the key to business triumphs. Using clinical psychology, his background as a CEO, and his experience advising corporate leaders, Robert H. Rosen (A&S ’80G,’82G) reveals his know-how in Just Enough Anxiety (Penguin Group). The book […]

Runaway Grandma

A few winters ago, an aspiring novelist walked into the quiet of a friend’s log cabin in rural Pennsylvania. She spied an oil portrait on the wall and was spellbound by the image. In the painting, a handsome, elderly woman stared out from the canvas with a bare hint of emotion. The visitor asked her […]

Recently Published

The Wanderer Manuel Aven (A&S ’51, ’55G), a scientist and author, writes of sacrifice and love in The Wanderer (Xlibris), a memoir in three parts: “The War Bride,” “Tale of Two Cities,” and “Pursuit of the Wind.” In part one, Aven describes how World War II ravaged his country, Estonia. He shares his war adventures […]

Janie’s New Legs

In the company of a once-abused horse named Silver, a young girl finds herself. Paralyzed in a car accident, the youngster can’t use her legs and is confined to a wheelchair, but her friend- ship with Silver helps her to heal within. Galloping along on the rescued horse, Janie, too, is set free. Told from […]

Sarah’s Girls: A Chronicle of Big Ugly Creek

Aunt Lena returns to the community of Big Ugly, West Virginia, to care for nieces Madge, Pearl, Ida, and Edna after their mother dies. In Sarah’s Girls: A Chronicle of Big Ugly Creek (Ohio University/Swallow Press), author Lenore McComas Coberly (KGSB ’47) draws inspiration from some of the family stories she heard as a young […]

The Gospel Remix: Reaching the Hip Hop Generation

In hip-hop, booming music and lyrics will move a crowd. Pastor Ralph C. Watkins (SOC ’97) learns this as he spins records at his daughter’s party. The party comes to life but then a fight breaks out. Suddenly, Watkins wonders if he is in the right place. His book, The Gospel Remix (Judson Press), which […]


A raging bonfire, leaping velvet, snakes freezing into stone—such imagery surrounds poet Romy Shinn Piccolella (A&S ’00) in her work “Mid-Afternoon Bonfire.” In her book Tether (Pudding House Publications), she reflects on life and the confluence of nature and space, love and death, birth and release. Sometimes graphic, sometimes gentle, this first collection of poems […]

The Mysteries of Home

On an Alaskan island, writer Michael Chabon meanders through a harbor town, observing the locals as they move in a landscape between the mountains and the sea. While he strolls past fur stores and diners, he wonders what the streets would be like if the United States had followed through with a 1940 plan to […]