Tag Archives: Indiana

Books Acquired Recently: Ervin Beck Edition

Ervinbooks

The above photograph shows the 51 books that my former professor Ervin Beck gave me when I visited his home in Goshen, Indiana, last week. I took his Mennonite Literature course my junior year of college and have basically been obsessed with the field since then. He generously let me take a selection of his books in the field as part of his retirement downsizing.

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Books Acquired Recently

Hall, Donald E., and Annamarie Jagose, eds. The Routledge Queer Studies Reader. London: Routledge, 2013.

I recently had a friend recommend this anthology to me, and I have been wanting to read queer theory in a more systematic way than I have in the past, so thought this book would be a good place to start. I acquired it from one of amazon.com’s network of independent sellers.

Hess, J. Daniel. An Invitation to Criticism. Goshen: Pinchpenny, 1984.

I took a trip to Goshen, Indiana, last week to do some research, and while I was there I made a stop at Better World Books. I found this old Pinchpenny Press book with an intriguing title in good condition. I am always interested in the history of Mennonite attitudes toward education and art, so I look forward to discovering what Hess has to say on the subject.

Isherwood, Christopher. Christopher and His Kind. 1976. London: Vintage, 2012.

I received this book as a gift from someone who knows about my interest in queer literature. I have never read Isherwood before, so it is nice that now I have impetus to do so.

Reimer, Al. My Harp is Turned to Mourning. Winnipeg: Windflower, 1990.

This is the other book I bought at Better World. It is one of the first novels to depict the Mennonite struggles in Russia under Stalin, and an important text in the Mennonite literary canon. To be frank, I get a little tired of this narrative sometimes, but I found this volume in excellent condition for a good price, thus decided to buy it and finally get around to reading it this summer.

Richardson, Suzanne. The Softest Part of a Woman is a Wound. Georgetown: Finishing Line, 2016.

Richardson is one of my colleagues at Utica College, and she just came out with her first book of poetry! I am very excited to read it.

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Books Acquired Recently

Castillo, Ana. Give It To Me. New York: Feminist, 2014.

I read the first draft of this book when Castillo and I were colleagues at Westminster College for a semester and loved it. It is sexy, humorous, and scandalous. I bought it as soon as I found out it had been released.

This, Plett’s, and Samatar’s books were acquired from amazon.com’s network of independent sellers.

Hanh, Thich Nhat. You Are Here: Discovering the Magic of the Present Moment. Boston: Shambhala, 2010.

I have been struggling to stay in the present recently and was feeling the need for some guidance about how to do so. I came across this book in the “Eastern Religions” section of my local Barnes & Noble and decided to buy it in part because it sounded like what I was looking for and in part because I have had a number of friends recommend Hanh’s writing to me. I have read the first few chapters, which have been fantastic.

Larkin, Philip. Collected Poems. Ed. Anthony Thwaite. New York: Farrar, 2004.

I’ve been meaning to read Larkin for quite some time, and have not read any poetry for a while, so earlier this week when I was in the campus bookstore checking to see whether the books for my courses had come in and I saw that one of my colleagues has assigned this book for one of his courses I bought it.

Pashley, Jennifer. The Conjurer. Syracuse: Standing Stone, 2013.

I received this as a belated holiday gift. I really enjoyed Pashley’s other collection of stories, States, so I am eager to read this one.

Plett, Casey. A Safe Girl To Love. New York: Topside, 2014.

I was super-excited to buy this book, as I have read and enjoyed several of Plett’s short stories. I read through it in one sitting last night. It is excellent writing, though emotionally draining (which are not necessarily mutually exclusive characteristics).

Samatar, Sofia. A Stranger in Olondria: Being the Complete Memoirs of the Mystic, Jevick of Tyom. Easthampton: Small Beer, 2013.

I recently heard about this book via my alma mater Goshen College’s alumni magazine. Samatar is also a Goshen grad. Very little Mennonite literature (Goshen is a Mennonite school and Samatar was raised Mennonite) is written in the fantasy genre, so this is an important addition to the field.

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