A look at recently published works by UCR faculty, staff, and alumni
“Overdue: Reckoning with the Public Library”
By Amanda Oliver ’21
Chicago Review Press
March 2022, 224 pages
Oliver examines the inequity of public libraries including issues involving racial bias, class inequity, homelessness, and mental health. “Overdue” asks readers to set aside romantic notions of quiet study nooks and think critically about how the public library exposes and shapes communities.
Oliver earned a master’s degree in creative writing and writing for the performing arts.
By Don Handfield and Joshua Malkin
December 2021, 196 pages
When Mae discovers her wild stallion, Percy, is actually a unicorn, she and her friends must band together to save him. A winding tale complete with evil billionaires, magic unicorn horns, and an epic quest, “Unikorn” is a fairytale reimagined.
Malkin is an adjunct associate professor in the UCR Palm Desert Low-Residency MFA program.
By Susan Straight
Farrar, Straus and Giroux
March 2022, 384 pages
Straight crafts a captivating story of life in Southern California in her latest novel. Following highway patrolman Johnny Frías, “Mecca” explores the overlapping strands of identity weaving through Frías’ life and a split second decision that continues to haunt him.
Straight is a distinguished professor of creative writing.
“Look at This Blue”
By Allison Hedge Coke
Coffee House Press
March 2022, 168 pages
Hedge Coke’s book-length poem “Look at This Blue” explores the threat to life on Earth posed by climate change. Interwoven stories of past, present, and future catastrophe coalesce to ask hard questions about the ways we live our lives, and how we might imagine them otherwise.
Hedge Coke is a distinguished professor of creative writing.
“Okamoto Kidō: Master of the Uncanny”
By Okamoto Kidō; Translated by Nancy H. Ross ’75
October 2020, 180 pages
Japanese author and reporter Okamoto Kidō covered all manner of topics in the early 20th century as well as writing fictional works of horror. This translated compilation focuses on his fiction, with a particular interest on stories that exemplify Kidō’s unique writing style.
Ross earned a bachelor’s degree in liberal studies.
By Natashia Deón ’12
November 2021, 320 pages
It’s 1930s Los Angeles, and Lou, a young Black woman, wakes up with no memory of who she is. Deón, whose first novel “Grace” was named New York Times Book of the Year, offers readers a winding and beautiful portrait of LA in the ’30s and the search for one’s identity in her latest novel, “The Perishing.”
Deón earned a master’s degree in creative writing and writing for the performing arts.