Reading List, part one: UNP’s Holiday Gift Guide

The University of Nebraska Press is your one-stop shop this holiday season. We’ve got something for everyone on your list and our three part holiday guide will help you find it. From your stubborn Uncle Stewart to your picky daughter Penny, there is something to satisfy even the most difficult to shop for.

For the space buff

Rockets & Revolution

Rockets and Revolution: A Cultural History of Early Spaceflight

Rockets and Revolution offers a multifaceted study of the race toward space in the first half of the twentieth century, examining how the Russian, European, and American pioneers competed against one another in the early years to acquire the fundamentals of rocket science, engineer simple rockets, and ultimately prepare the path for human spaceflight.

Add-on gift idea: name a star after him or her

For the NFL fan

The Game before the Money

The Game before the Money: Voices of the Men Who Built the NFL

Through player interviews, Jackson Michael recounts the National Football League’s story and the evolution of America’s most popular sport in the vivid words of men who built the NFL. This unprecedented look at football history from the players’ perspective combines the stories of icons such as Frank Gifford and Bart Starr with those of journeymen who shared the huddle with Johnny Unitas and rallied to halftime speeches from legendary coaches Vince Lombardi and George Halas. Featuring players from the 1930s through the 1970s, these personal accounts trace professional football in its journey from post-barnstorming days through the first two decades of the Super Bowl.

Add-on gift idea: a t-shirt with their favorite team’s logo

For the poet

Reliquaria

Reliquaria

In his prize-winning poetry collection Reliquaria, R. A. Villanueva embraces liminal, in-between spaces in considering an ever-evolving Filipino American identity. Languages and cultures collide; mythologies and faiths echo and resound. Part haunting, part prayer, part prophecy, these poems resonate with the voices of the dead and those who remember them. In this remarkable book, we enter the vessel of memory, the vessel of the body. The dead act as witness, the living as chimera, and we learn that whatever the state of the body, this much rings true: every ode is an elegy; each elegy is always an ode.

Add-on gift idea: a journal

For the hockey lover

Frozen in Time

Frozen in Time: A Minnesota North Stars History

In 1967 the National Hockey League decided to double its size from six teams to twelve. This expansion was the first of its kind, and Minnesota, with its rich hockey history, was a natural choice for a new franchise. Thus the Minnesota North Stars were born. Frozen in Time examines the organization’s signature seasons, from the late 1970s, when the club was at its worst, to its two surprising runs to the Stanley Cup Finals. The team’s engaging history is brought to life with vivid recollections from former players and legends, including Cesare Maniago, Tom Reid, and Bobby Smith, and from journalists, broadcasters, front office executives, and faithful fans. Also including season-by-season summaries, player profiles, and statistics, Frozen in Time offers an authoritative and nostalgic look at Minnesota’s still-beloved North Stars and a bygone era of pro hockey.

Add-on gift idea: personalized mouth guard

For the environmentalist

Downwind

Downwind: A People’s History of the Nuclear West

Downwind is an unflinching tale of the atomic West that reveals the intentional disregard for human and animal life through nuclear testing by the federal government and uranium extraction by mining corporations during and after the Cold War. Sarah Alisabeth Fox highlights the personal cost of nuclear testing and uranium extraction in the American West through extensive interviews with “downwinders,” the Native American and non-Native residents of the Great Basin region affected by nuclear environmental contamination and nuclear-testing fallout. In chilling detail Downwind brings to light the stories and concerns of these groups whose voices have been silenced and marginalized for decades in the name of “patriotism” and “national security.”

Add-on gift idea: make a donation to cancer research in his or her name

For those interested in Native literature

Sky Loom

Sky Loom: Native American Myth, Story, and Song

Sky Loom offers a dazzling introduction to Native American myths, stories, and songs drawn from previous collections by acclaimed translator and poet Brian Swann. With a general introduction by Swann, Sky Loom is a stunning collection that provides a glimpse into the intricacies and beauties of story and myth, placing them in their cultural, historical, and linguistic contexts. Each of the twenty-six selections is translated and introduced by a well-known expert on Native oral literatures and offers entry into the cultures and traditions of several different tribes and bands. Sky Loom takes the reader on a wide-ranging journey through literary traditions older than the “discovery” of the New World.

Add-on gift idea: a Native American work of art

For the religious studies major

Catholic Borderlands

Catholic Borderlands: Mapping Catholicism onto American Empire, 1905-1935

In 1905 Rev. Francis Clement Kelley founded the Catholic Church Extension Society of the United States of America. Drawing attention to the common link of religion, Kelley proclaimed the Extension Society’s duty to be that of preventing American Protestant missionaries, public school teachers, and others from separating people from their natural faith, Catholicism. Though domestic evangelization was its founding purpose, the Extension Society eventually expanded beyond the national border into Mexico in an attempt to solidify a hemispheric Catholic identity. Exploring international, racial, and religious implications, Anne M. Martínez’s Catholic Borderlands examines Kelley’s life and actions.

Add-on gift idea: a rosary or labyrinth

For anyone who appreciates an underdog

Perfectly Awful

Perfectly Awful : The Philadelphia 76ers’ Horrendous and Hilarious 1972-1973 Season

During the 1972–1973 basketball season, the Philadelphia 76ers were not just a bad team; they were fantastically awful. Doomed from the start after losing their leading scorer and rebounder, Billy Cunningham, as well as head coach Jack Ramsay, they lost twenty-one of their first twenty-three games. A Philadelphia newspaper began calling them the Seventy Sickers, and they duly lost their last thirteen games on their way to a not-yet-broken record of nine wins and seventy-three losses. Charley Rosen recaptures the futility of that season through the firsthand accounts of players, participants, and observers. Although the team was uniformly bad, there were still many memorable moments, and the lore surrounding the team is legendary.

Add-on gift idea: a mini indoor basketball hoop

Peruse the gift ideas on our website here for more great options.