May 28, 2024

Not From Here: The Song of America

Immigrating to modern-day America is the theme of Leah Lax’s vivid, sensitively framed collection of interviews first collected years earlier as the basis for her libretto to Houston Grand Opera’s 2007 production The Refuge.

From conversations with 123 Houstonians, Lax shares six full-length accounts (offering short, pithy quotations from others in between), prefaced by descriptions […]


March 12, 2024

Connected: Building Relationships to Achieve Success and Make a Lasting Impact

“Relationships make the world go around,” writes psychotherapist Patricia Bathory, who states emphatically, “all significant accomplishments take a village, whether we’re raising healthy children, running a successful business or pursuing our life purpose.” In this book, Bathory elucidates how “relationships can fast track your success.”

Bathory describes the extensive support she received from her husband, […]


March 5, 2024

Dead Dog Road: A True Story Into The Dark World Of An Abused Child

In her urgent, remarkable memoir, author Diane M. Black, a licensed professional counselor and director of a children’s home, recalls her efforts to save three adopted children from sadistic and ineffable abuse.

Alexey and his sisters were adopted from Russia by the Deckerts of Caney Head, Texas—a place where incest was common. Alexey, who frequently […]


March 5, 2024

Swimming to the Horizon: Crack, Psychosis, and Street-Corner Social Work

A therapist shares vivid portraits of the clients and challenges he encounters through a Chicago community treatment program.

After leaving manual labor for social work, author Zak Mucha first joins, then takes over running an assertive community treatment (ACT) program in Chicago. The job introduces him to clients suffering from severe and chronic psychotic disorders, […]


January 30, 2024

The Soul of Adolescence Aligns with the Heart of Democracy: Orphans, Rebels and Civic Lovers Unite

Activist and educator Alfred H. Kurland offers an expansive overview of how to best mentor teens for civic participation and community improvement.

Kurland’s ambitious project covers enough material for multiple books. In the opening section, he reflects on his 30 years of involvement in youth education and services, noting experiences of violence (including a roommate […]


November 28, 2023

The Shepherds of Inequality: And the Futility of Our Efforts to Stop Them

In The Shepherds of Inequality, Dawn Pretorius declares money laundering “one of the world’s biggest and most vociferous sustainable industries.”

Defining dirty cash as profits from drug dealing, people trafficking, arms smuggling, illegal logging and mining operations, as well as tax evasion, insider trading, embezzlement, cybercrimes, identity theft and other “white-collar” shenanigans, Pretorius presents 60 […]


August 28, 2023

Ending Wars on Uganda’s Children

This first-person account from a clinical psychologist tells of the attempts of a small group of American women to improve the educational opportunities of the children of war-ravaged Uganda.

The women, calling themselves “The Team,” working with Ugandans, begin in the States, setting up a nonprofit to receive donations and arranging their passage to Africa. […]


February 7, 2023

Movement Makers: How Young Activists Upended the Politics of Climate Change

Growing up with an impending sense of doom from the threat to our planet, younger generations feel a deep sense of urgency around the issue of climate change. In Movement Makers, Nick Engelfried recounts the history of youth-led climate activism in the 21st century.

Engelfried divides this history into three parts: first, he examines the […]


December 13, 2022

Good Intentions–Bad Consequences: Voters’ Information Problems

This is a serious book by an American emeritus economics professor who argues that voters could use better information to elect better leaders, to the greater good.

Author Phillip Nelson acknowledges voters need better information, but he focuses on just one group: “naïve altruistic liberals.” Citing economics literature, he argues that most liberals want to […]


November 15, 2022

Where in the World is God? Humanity as Mirror

Hope Raymond’s Where in the World is God explores the evolution of human consciousness from our earliest myths to our current technological era, offering speculation on the role of spirituality.

The book offers three sections. Part One explores the rise of Judeo-Christian tradition in which humans defined themselves in relation to God before science eroded […]


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