Read & Listen On

Recent Books & Music by UB Alumni


Metallica and Philosophy: A Crash Course in Brain Surgery

Edited by William Irwin, PhD ’96

Part of the Blackwell Philosophy and Pop Culture Series, “this book can serve as a guide for thinking through the soundtrack of your life,” says editor William Irwin, associate professor of philosophy at King’s College, Wilkes-Barre, PA. According to Joel McIver, author of Justice for All: The Truth About Metallica, “this book gives everyone’s favorite headbangers due credit for being intelligent, questioning, and even cerebral.” (Blackwell Publishing, 2007)

Computer Forensics: Principles and Practices

By Linda Volonino, PhD ’88 & MBA ’84, Reynaldo Anzaldua and Jana Godwin

During criminal investigations or legal proceedings, e-mail, social networks, Web site visits and other forms of electronic communication can leave many indelible trails. In this book, Linda Volonino, chair of the department of information systems at Canisius College, and her coauthors explain how different types of evidence vary in their ability to determine what actually happened. (Prentice-Hall, 2006)


By Deborah Meadows, BA ’77

In her fourth collection, Deborah Meadows offers a rigorous and spellbinding series of poems: innovative, experimental and featuring such unexpected collisions as French feminist psychoanalyst Luce Irigaray and French writer and philosopher Gilles Deleuze (1925–1995) encountering Zen philosophy. This volume features cover art from the Buffalo Museum of Science. The author teaches in the liberal studies department at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona. (Shearsman Books, 2007)

Awkward: A Detour

By Mary Cappello, PhD ’88

In a series of meditations, Mary Cappello, professor of English at the University of Rhode Island, mines her own life journeys to decipher the powerful messages that awkwardness can transmit. In doing so, she offers what Sarah Waters, author of The Night Watch, calls “a wonderful, multilayered piece of writing, with the insight of great cultural criticism and all the emotional pull of memoir.” (Bellevue Literary Press, 2007)

Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict

By Laurie Viera Rigler, BA ’79

This debut novel inspired by Jane Austen breezily blends comedy, love story and exploration of identity and one’s destiny. Courtney Stone, a modern Los Angeles woman reading a Jane Austen novel to help assuage her broken engagement, falls asleep and wakes up as the embodiment of Jane Mansfield, an aristocratic Englishwoman living during the Regency. The author is a freelance book editor in Los Angeles who also teaches writing workshops. (Penguin Group, 2007)

Vinnie’s Head

By Marc Lecard, BA ’74

In this debut novel, small-time Long Island criminal Johnnie LoDuco makes a grisly discovery that leads to zany complications. “This fast and funny read is an original take on the bumbling-criminal genre and will appeal to fans of Elmore Leonard and Carl Hiaasen,” says Booklist. Born and raised on Long Island, NY, Lecard now lives in Oakland, CA. (St. Martin’s Minotaur, 2007)

Perfecting Friendship: Politics and Affiliation in Early American Literature

By Ivy Schweitzer, BA ’73

In this exploration of early American literature and culture, Ivy Schweitzer, professor of English at Dartmouth College, uncovers friendships built on a classical model that is both public and political in nature. By recovering the public nature of friendship, Schweitzer establishes discourse about affection and affiliation as a central component of American identity and democratic community. (University of North Carolina Press, 2006)

How Joyce Wrote Finnegans Wake: A Chapter-by-Chapter Genetic Guide

Edited by Luca Crispi, PhD ’01 & MA ’96; and Sam Slote

In this landmark study, Luca Crispi, James Joyce research fellow at the National Library of Ireland; and Sam Slote, a noted Joyce scholar and author, bring together 13 other leading Joyce experts in a genetic guide to one of the 20th century’s most intriguing works of fiction. Each essay approaches Finnegans Wake through novel perspectives afforded by Joyce’s preparatory manuscripts. (University of Wisconsin Press, 2007)

Alan Siegel: On Branding and Clear Communications

By Louis J. Slovinsky, BA ’61

In this “working biography,” author Louis J. Slovinsky tells the story of Alan Siegel, one of the best-known figures in the branding business. With “breakthrough simplicity” and an insistence on clear communications, Siegel built a leading brand consultancy, Siegel+Gale, whose clients have included Disney, Microsoft, Dell, 3M and Sony, among other powerful brands. Slovinsky is retired as a corporate vice president at Time Warner Inc., where he directed corporate identity studies. (Jorge Pinto Books, 2006)

Cold Light: Creatures, Discoveries, and Inventions That Glow

By Anita Sitarski, MEd ’80

With light humor, author Anita Sitarski illuminates for young readers the discoveries that launched the science of cold light—the quest to understand how some objects and animals make light, but not heat. Young readers learn, for instance, how the firefly creates its light, or how the mouse that glows in the dark lights the way for a step forward in medicine. The author has taught in the classroom, online and as education director of a historic house-museum. (Boyds Mills Press, 2007)


Misfit King

Richard Gagnier, MLS ’89

In this 2007 CD, alternative comic and librarian Richard Gagnier presents his stand-up work, including an unedited performance recorded at Rochester’s Downstairs Cabaret Theater, as well as edited highlights from a second performance recorded at Alfred University. According to Gagnier, the Rochester performance is “both cerebral and raw, in a way that will appeal to both fans of Bob Newhart and fans of punk music.” Available on

Pretty on Thursday

Leah Zicari, MM ’88

In this 2005 CD of original pop/folk songs, award-winning songwriter and vocalist Leah Zicari offers poignant and intense songwriting, sweet and pure vocals and virtuosic acoustic guitar work. Pretty on Thursday features UB graduate Nick Corallo, MA ’99 & BFA ’84, on drums. Available at, and digitally through your favorite download site—information can be found at

Schoenberg Piano Music and His 17 Fragments

Yoko Hirota, MM ’89 & BFA ’86

Yoko Hirota, in her 2005 solo piano recording debut, performs rarely recorded repertoire by Arnold Schoenberg—Op. 11, 23 and 33—with consummate skill, artistry and understanding. “Hiroka’s performance of this music is bold and thoughtful,” writes CAML Review. Hirota is associate professor of piano at Laurentian University in Sudbury, ON. Available at

Attention Alumni Authors

UB Today publishes notices on recent books and CDs by alumni. Send brief, factual descriptions of the book or CD, along with copies of the publisher's or producer's blurb and critical reviews, if desired. Include the full name of the publishing house or recording company, year of publication or production and the author's UB degree (s) and the year(s) received. Indicate where the author now lives and any current credentials that relate to the subject matter of the book, or the content of the CD.

To accompany each listing, camera-ready book jacket or CD cover art, or the book or CD itself, may be sent to UB Today, 330 Crofts Bldg., Buffalo, NY 14260, and will be returned if requested. High-resolution digital book cover art (scanned at 300 dpi) is preferred for the print edition and may be sent, along with a description of the book or CD, to Preference is given to titles of wide general interest.

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