Summer Must-Read Roundup: Books by Brockport
Hundreds of faculty members, emeriti, and alumni are published authors. Browse some summer reading material written by Brockport’s own.
Professor, Department of English
This novel is a Nixon-era caper of broken men and stoic runaways. Angela Sloan, a seemingly average teenager living in the suburbs of Washington, D.C., is left to lie low and fend for herself when her father, a retired CIA officer, skips town in the wake of the Watergate scandal. Driving a Plymouth Scamp she has just learned to operate, Angela encounters strangers literally at every turn. A fugitive Chinese waitress won’t get out of the car. A jaded lady spy offers up free therapy and roadside assistance. A restless pair of hippies keeps preaching about the evils of monogamy. And an anteater lurks in the unlikeliest of places. But through all of her outlandish adventures, Angela keeps focused on one urgent wish: to reunite with her father.
Professor, Department of Environmental Science
Christopher Norment grew up mesmerized by maps, which served functional and allegorical roles in showing him worlds that he might come to know and helping him understand worlds that he had already explored. This memoir explores the complex relationship among maps, memory, and experience. Interweaving a personal narrative with stories about maps as told by scholars, poets, and fiction writers, it provides a dazzlingly rich account of what many of us take for granted. Page by page, readers will confront the aesthetics, mystery, function, power, and shortcomings of maps, causing them to reconsider the role that maps play in their lives.
Dellenna Harper ’13 with Jane Sutter Brandt
A 2013 graduate of the Greater Rochester Collaborative Master of Social Work program has written a mesmerizing account of her descent into addiction and prostitution, and her challenging climb out to become a dedicated social worker. This is the life journey of a survivor who cried out from the depth of her soul. Dellenna Harper takes the reader through the darkness of addiction and prostitution, to the challenges of recovery and the incredible resilience of the human spirit. What Dellenna shares is honest and inspirational and provides a pathway that others may follow. People struggling with addiction, people in recovery, families affected by addiction will all find hope by following Dellenna’s transformation.
G.A. Brandt ’69/’74
Haunted by the mistaken killing of civilians in Vietnam, Lt. Logan Giroux must seek the grace of God while fleeing the Army and his vengeful brother. Can Logan ever return home to his family and former life? Will his own father, Colonel Giroux who has three sons serving in Vietnam, ever allow him back? This is the story of a large multi-generational American-Canadian military family with a century of distinguished service, until the oldest son fails to return from his leave to the U.S. Army, sparking a family conflict as big as the war itself. Follow Logan Giroux on his quest for understanding and moral redemption in this gripping novel.
Dennis O’Connor ’73
O’Connor has written over 50 short stories of life lessons, extraordinary adventures, nothing ventured nothing gained, that carry the reader through unbelievable experiences. “The Green Canoe and Me” is a legacy for his children and grandchildren, but is also an enjoyable read of surprising encounters with famous people, close calls, interesting tales of what one can achieve, and how you can pull yourself out of humble beginnings into a full, rich life. Come along on a journey of challenges, wins, losses, adventures, and joys — like partying with The Jackson Five, riding on the Goodyear Blimp, and close encounters with polar bears. Many stories occur in Upstate New York, with some references to SUNY Brockport and the Class of 1973.
Nancy Kress ’77/’79
Former Faculty Member, Department of English
This novel is the story of a human colony settling on a distant planet, a colony formed by Jake Holman, a man trying to escape a dark past. But as this diverse group of thousands comes to terms with their new lives on a new world, they make a startling discovery: primitive humanoid aliens. There are only a few isolated villages, and the evidence seems to indicate the aliens aren’t native to the planet — even though they live in thatched huts and possess only primitive tools. When the humans finally learn the truth, they find themselves caught up in an interstellar war. In the end, this handful of human colonists will have to choose sides in the struggle. A lot is riding on their decision — not just the fate of their new home, but the fate of all humanity.
Associate Professor Emerita, Department of Education and Human Development
From her first convention speech in 1852 to the publication of her magnum opus, Woman, Church and State, her speeches, writings, and advocacy were and remain an education in women’s history. Gage’s greatest contribution to the women’s movement rests on her scholarship, based on careful research, well documented, and written in the best scholarly manner. Today we can assess her as an historian, a pioneering scholar of women’s history and the world history movement. Her work as an advocate, activist, intellectual, and leader is now also being acknowledged in larger ways.
Professor Emeritus, Department of Political Science & International Studies
Neal McGrath is not a spy. He’s a university professor visiting Havana to research a book. Before he left the States, an old colleague from the CIA pressured him for a favor: get in touch with Elena Rodriguez, a beautiful and mysterious woman from McGrath’s past. One meeting with Elena is enough to trap Neal in a life-and-death game of international conspiracy. Elena now works for Cuba’s top-secret intelligence agency, the Ministry of Interior, and the information she possesses can sway governments — or get her killed. Neal offers to help her, all while struggling to make sense of events that draw him and Elena ever deeper into Cuba’s cutthroat world of power and lies.
Jane Lebak ’96
29-year-old Lee has a Park Slope apartment with easy access to Manhattan, loves her job as an auto mechanic, and can see her guardian angel (a wisecracker with a fascination for the Rumours album.) That’s kind of a full life for a kid in the world’s biggest playground. Despite what everyone thinks, she doesn’t need, or want, a romantic relationship. Far more comfortable in blue jeans and flannel than in heels and satin, Lee finds herself lying to every man she dates. To the physical trainer, she’s a preschool teacher; to the guy at the bowling alley, she’s a secretary. The lies keep romance at arm’s length even as they drive the angel to distraction until the day she realizes she’s fallen for a straight-laced accountant. But now he thinks she’s someone she’s not.