What We’re Reading

November Staff Reading List

UNP staff members are always reading new books within our list and outside of what we publish. Here are some of the books our noses have been buried in.


dark matter

Dark Matter and the Dinosaurs: The Astounding Interconnectedness of the Universe

by Lisa Randall

“I picked it up as a galley at Heartland Fall Forum because the book description fascinated me. So far, it’s been worth it. Pretty lofty in some aspects but also really engaging.”—Martyn Beeny


30 sec

Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo

by Cap. Ted W. Lawson

“A classic book about Doolittle’s raid on Japan in the early days of WWII.”—Roger Buchholz



Wyrd Sisters

by Terry Pratchett

“I am reading the entire Discworld series for the fourth time and thoroughly enjoying every minute. It’s like sitting down with old friends who I haven’t seen in a long time and picking up right where we left off.”—Rob Buchanan



The Great Plantation: A Profile of Berkeley Hundred and Plantation Virginia from Jamestown to Appomattox

by Clifford Dowdey

“This profile of the famous Berkeley Plantation can be a bit dry at times, but overall it gives a thorough history of the important events which occured here throughout American history and an interesting perspective on the creation of the social class system.”—Emily Wendell



The Unspeakable: And Other Subjects of Discussion

by Meghan Daum

“I’m reading it because I’ve read and loved Meghan’s other titles and I like her candid and incisive views of our culture as she tries to find her place in it.”—Alison Rold



Cupcakes, Pinterest, and Ladyporn: Feminized Popular Culture in the Early Twenty-First Century

edited by Elana Levine

“So far—fascinating content and a great example of a scholarly work that’s accessible and of interest to a general reader.”—Alicia Christensen



The City and The City

by China Mieville

“I read three books while in Europe, all of which I recommend highly. Singularly the most inventive novel I have ever read; stunning.”—Donna Shear



Intelligence in the Flesh: Why Your Mind Needs Your Body Much More Than It Thinks

by Guy Claxton

“Embodied intelligence fascinates me; an NPR interview about the intelligence of manual labor (waitresses, crafting, etc.) led me to this book.”—Tish Fobben



The Witches: Salem, 1692

by Stacy Schiff

“A Salem witchcraft story. My wife said, ‘Here, read this.’ So I am.”—Tom Swanson



Jenna’s Flaw

by Lee Tasey

“He is a local author who teaches at Doane. I’m not very far into it, so I will say it’s intriguing. I’m anxious to see where this book goes.”—Shirley Thornton




by René Steinke

“This is a little like Friday Night Lights meets Erin Brockovich, but better.”—Bridget Barry



The Meursault Investigation

by Kamel Daoud

“This is a reimagining of Albert Camus’s The Stranger from an Algerian perspective. Mind-blowingly good so far.”—Alisa Plant

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