Books Acquired Recently

Over the past few weeks I’ve acquired several books with holiday money that I received.

Brackett, Leigh. The Long Tomorrow. 1955. Rockville, MD: Phoenix Pick, n.d.

I first heard about this science fiction classic several years ago because it has Mennonite characters. More and more Mennonite SF continues to appear, so I thought now would be a good time to read it.

This, Lima and Carmona’s anthology, and Vermette’s novel were purchased from amazon.com’s network of independent sellers.

Driver, John. Life Together in the Spirit: A Radical Spirituality for the Twenty-First Century. Walden, NY: Plough Publishing House, 2015.

I received this book as a gift for renewing my membership to the Mennonite Historical Society. It’s not something I would normally read, but it might be interesting.

Lima, Rossy Evelin, and Christopher Carmona, ed. Outrage: A Protest Anthology for Injustice in a 9/11 World.

I heard about this anthology because I have a friend with a poem in it, and decided to buy it now because the amount of injustice is only going to grow in the current political climate. It is bilingual, which I appreciate.

Wambach, Abby. Forward: A Memoir. New York: Dey Street, 2016.

I bought this autobiography (i.e., it’s yet another misnamed “memoir”) at Barnes & Noble for 50% off. I’ve already read it and I wish it went more in-depth about Wambach’s playing career. Her descriptions of significant matches are quite short; they feel rushed.

Vermette, Katherena. The Break. Toronto: House of Anansi Press, 2016.

I just heard about Vermette’s recent novel and ordered it right away because of her Mennonite connections.

Published by danielshankcruz

I grew up in New York City and lived in Lancaster, Pennsylvania; Goshen, Indiana; DeKalb, Illinois; and Salt Lake City, Utah before coming to Utica, New York. My mother’s family is Swiss-German Mennonite (i.e., it’s an ethnicity, not necessarily a theological persuasion) and my father’s family is Puerto Rican. I have a Ph.D. in English and currently teach at Utica College. I have also taught at Northern Illinois University and Westminster College in Salt Lake City. My teaching and scholarship are motivated by a passion for social justice, which is why my research focuses on the literature of oppressed groups, especially LGBT persons and people of color. While I primarily read and write about fiction, I am also a devoted reader of poetry because, as William Carlos Williams writes, “It is difficult / to get the news from poems / yet [people] die miserably every day / for lack / of what is found there.” Thinkers who influence me include Marina Abramovic, Kathy Acker, Di Brandt, Ana Castillo, Samuel R. Delany, Percival Everett, Essex Hemphill, Jane Jacobs, Walt Whitman, and the New York School of poets. I am also fond of queer Mennonite writers such as Stephen Beachy, Jan Guenther Braun, Lynnette Dueck/D’anna, and Casey Plett. In my free time I’m either reading, writing the occasional poem, playing board games (especially Scrabble, backgammon, and chess), watching sports (Let’s Go, Mets!), or cooking (curries, stews, roasts…).

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