Teen fiction seems to be trending toward ever-darker themes these days—think The Hunger Games and the Divergent series—and Henry Franks (2012), the debut novel of Peter Adam Salomon 89C, easily finds its place on that shelf. When we meet the book’s sixteen-year-old title character, he is recovering from a horrifying accident that ravaged his body, destroyed his memory, and killed his mother. All but ignored by his distant father, Henry is tormented by nightmares and loneliness. Meanwhile, a murder mystery is unfolding in his small Georgia town. Described on Amazon as “a dark, psychological thriller about a boy’s search for himself,” Henry Franks is a Frankenstein homage that Booklist called “the thinking teen’s horror choice of the year.”
Law School Life: Set against the backdrop of a Southern university, Things Are Going to Slide (2012) by Rangeley Wallace 72C follows a law professor through a difficult period in her life: her husband has left her, pregnant with their second child; she loses a coveted academic position to an old boyfriend; and her law clinic is challenged by a difficult, and potentially devastating, case. Wallace’s second novel, available in digital editions, blends romance with university politics and legal suspense. Her first novel, No Defense, was published in 1997.
Support Group: In Reawakening Rebekah: The Gift of the CLAMOR Girls (2013), Deidre Ann deLaughter 80C introduces a woman whose successful, satisfying life has suddenly unraveled, giving way to depression and painful, but necessary, self-exploration through therapy and group support. DeLaughter, an Atlanta native, now lives in Athens and is the director of Learning Support at the University of North Georgia.
Group Dynamic: Timothy Kelly 84C, a professor of social work at the University of Dundee, shares his expertise in group dynamics in A-Z of Groups and Groupwork (2013), coauthored with Mark Doel. The book is a useful guide for those interested in working in mental health, adult or children’s services, health, social work, community work, or youth work roles.
Middle East Expertise: Jonathan Schanzer 94C, vice president for research at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, explores a new side of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in his third book, State of Failure: Yasser Arafat, Mahmoud Abbas, and the Unmaking of the Palestinian State (2013). An expert on the Middle East, Schanzer suggests that the reasons for Palestine’s stalled progress toward independence are more complex than Israeli interests. Schanzer previously worked at the Department of the Treasury, the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, the Jewish Policy Center, and the Middle East Forum; he has testified before Congress and appeared on Fox News, CNN, and Arabic language television channels including Al Jazeera.