I love the holidays because not only do I get lots of books as gifts (some from others, some from myself), but I have lots of time off to read! Unless otherwise noted, all of the volumes below were presents I’ve received in the past week.
Carpenter, Steven P. Mennonites and Media: Mentioned in It, Maligned by It, and Makers of It: How Mennonites Have Been Portrayed in Media and How They Have Shaped Media for Identity and Outreach. Eugene, OR: Wipf & Stock, 2015.
This book looks like an interesting overview of how Mennonites have been portrayed and have portrayed themselves through the years. Mennonites love to write about Mennonite subject matter, and this book fits perfectly in that trend.
Eby, Omar. Mill Creek. N.p.: Xlibris, 2010.
Eby taught English at Eastern Mennonite College/University for decades. I have read one of his other novels, A Long, Dry Season, and am excited to read this more recent effort.
Epstein, Robert, and Miriam Wald, ed. Every Chicken, Cow, Fish and Frog: Animal Rights Haiku. West Union, WV: Middle Island Press, 2016.
I have a poem in this collection (“confused birdsong / seventy degrees / in November”), so I bought a copy for posterity’s sake. For the record, while I respect vegetarianism, I love meat.
Friesen, Lauren. Prairie Lands, Private Landscapes: Re-framing a Mennonite Childhood. Indianapolis: Dog Ear Publishing, 2016.
Friesen is an important scholar of Mennonite drama and music, and I look forward to reading this memoir of his to learn more about his journey.
Hart, Lynda. Between the Body and the Flesh: Performing Sadomasochism. New York: Columbia University Press, 1998.
This book is a classic examination of BDSM that I haven’t gotten around to reading yet, but will do so soon.
Jordan, Hillary. When She Woke. 2011. Chapel Hill, NC: Algonquin Books, 2012.
I’ve already finished this novel, which is like an updated version of Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale. It’s not as skillful as Atwood’s book, but was enjoyable nonetheless. In this age of political madness in the U.S. we need as many of these narratives as we can get.
Kurlansky, Mark. Paper: Paging Through History. New York: W.W. Norton, 2016.
I love books, and so of course I am intrigued by this history of paper and its role in shaping broader human history.
Musser, Amber Jamilla. Sensational Flesh: Race, Power, and Masochism. New York: New York University Press, 2014.
I am always interested in reading theorizations of BDSM, thus I ordered this book immediately when I came across a citation of it in my research. I purchased it and Wirzba’s book from amazon.com’s network of independent sellers.
Weaver-Zercher, Valerie. Thrill of the Chaste: The Allure of Amish Romance Novels. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2013.
I was browsing in the Old Country Store in Intercourse, Pennsylvania, last week while visiting relatives and came across this book, which I had previously heard about. I decided to finally buy a copy with some money I had received as a gift.
Wirzba, Norman. Living the Sabbath: Discovering the Rhythms of Rest and Delight. Grand Rapids, MI: Brazos Press, 2006.
I struggle with living in the moment, enjoying the daily joys of life instead of constantly worrying about the future. I recently read about Wirzba’s book on making restfulness a daily habit and thought it sounded helpful.