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Author: Katie Peralta ’10

RuneWarriors: Sword of Doom, James Jennewein ’77 and Tom S. Parker (HarperCollins Publishers). Part II of the RuneWarriors series for middle-grade readers, this lively novel is set in the ancient Viking world and follows Dane the Defiant, who is summoned to receive the final piece of his father’s legacy, an ancient sword bearing mysterious runes. The hero’s mother is kidnapped, and he must embark on a dangerous quest to save her and claim his enchanted prize.

Tears of Pearl, Tasha Alexander (St. Martin’s Minotaur). South Bend native and ’92 Notre Dame graduate Tasha Gutting Tyska adds to her Lady Emily mystery series with this fourth historical fiction novel set in Constantinople. Nominated for the Bruce Alexander Memorial Historical Mystery and RT Book Review awards.

Happiness, Economics and Politics: Towards a Multi-Disciplinary Approach, Amitava Dutt and Benjamin Radcliff (Edward Elgar Publishing). The two Notre Dame professors examine the effects on happiness of American liberal public policies, such as a state’s level of spending on social programs. The economic and political perspectives of the authors suggest that progressive governments best contribute to human happiness and overall quality of life.

Nelson Gregory’s 2084, Guy Weismantel ’53 (Frequent Flyer Books & Music). Akin to the theme of George Orwell’s classic 1984, the novel explores the possibility of big government takeover of private American lives. Here, federal troops level several mosques in Detroit, in a fictional plot the author uses to illustrate the possible danger of an out-of-control growth of American government.

Souls in Transition: The Religious and Spiritual Lives of Emerging Adults, Christian Smith with Patricia Snell ’09M.A. (Oxford University Press). Based on a series of candid interviews with thousands of 18-to-24-year-olds, this book reveals how the religious practices of young people evolve as they move into adulthood. Smith, a Notre Dame sociology professor, and Snell, associate director of the Center for the Study of Religion and Society, offer what has been called “the gold standard for research on religion and adolescents.”

Cinderella of Wall Street, Lydia Fisher ’77 (Grace Printing). Along with tracing the evolution of the financial world over the past 30 years, the author examines both her personal and professional experiences on Wall Street as well as her experience as member of one of the first classes of women at Notre Dame. Faith, Fisher demonstrates, is the sustaining theme at the crossroads of life, especially in the midst of a financial crisis.

Witch Hunts in the Western World: Persecution and Punishment from the Inquisition through the Salem Witch Trials, Brian Pavlac ’82 M.A., ’86 Ph.D. (Greenwood Publishing Group). This historical resource explores the intersection of the supernatural, religion and politics that initiated the infamous witch hunts in Europe and the Americas. The author explores attitudes toward religious nonconformity through a variety of historical backdrops, from the Holy Roman Empire to the colonization of the British Isles.

Praying from the Heart of Holy Cross Spirituality, Joel Giallanza, CSC (Ave Maria Press). A daily prayer companion offering morning and evening reflections inspired by the spirituality of Blessed Basil Moreau, founder of the Congregation of Holy Cross. The 30 prayers focus on such themes as trust in God’s providence, faith, persistence in prayer, charity and hope in the cross.

American Grandfather: Tenets of Success, edited by Charles Smith ’60 and Arthur Smith ’63 (Trafford Publishing). Edited by two brothers, this essay was written by their grandfather, Charles Ritter (1893-1958), who stepped in as a father figure for his grandchildren after the death of his son-in-law, Arthur Charles Smith, who graduated from ND in the early 1930s. “The Scrolls of South Bend,” as their grandfather called it, contained advice he shared with his grandsons through the years.

Poet’s Crossing, Barbara Botch (Mystic Publishers). This colorful collection of poetry was inspired by Botch’s strong Irish roots as well as her love for the Emerald Isle. Botch, the wife of Dennis Botch, a ’68 ND graduate, also chronicles her love of Notre Dame in such poems as “Land of the Fighting Irish,” which illustrates a late autumn game day on campus.

The Unwanted Child: The Fate of Foundling, Orphans and Juvenile Criminals in Early Modern Germany, Joel F. Harrington ‘81 (University of Chicago Press). An examination of the reality of abandoned, neglected, delinquent and abused children in 16th century Nuremburg. Focusing on six individual stories, the author illustrates how child abandonment burdened families, governments and society.

Values-Based Multinational Management: Achieving Enterprise Sustainability through a Human Rights Strategy, Lee. A. Tavis and Timothy M. Tavis (University of Notre Dame Press). The book argues that multinational firms need to adopt an ethical stance to serve their long-term interests. The authors suggest that global firms and their embrace of human rights through, for example, partnership with NGOs, may be beneficial for globalization as a whole. Lee Tavis is a Notre Dame professor emeritus of finance.

Celebrities of the Late ’50s …, photographs by Ed Mertz ’59 ( As a student, Merz was a photographer for Scholastic and the Dome. This collection of photographs taken from 1955-60 illustrates the celebrities and notables who visited campus. The book depicts the first commencement on campus featuring a sitting president, Dwight D. Eisenhower, for example, as well as such entertainers as The Crew Cuts, Louis Armstrong, and Debbie Reynolds and Eddie Fisher.

The Man Who Would Be Polka King, directed by John Mikulak ’90. A cheeky look at the life of the Grammy-nominated polka superstar Jan Lewan, who defected from Poland to the West in the 1970s. The documentary film also examines the fall of his polka empire after it was rocked by financial scandal. For more information, see

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