From Costa Rica to a taco truck with UOP authors

Books and music by University of the Pacific authors and artists range in subjects matter from the Nez Perce Indians to Roman Empire women of the Christian movement to jazz and opera recordings.
Jennifer Lopez, a former Record reporter, has been recognized by Time magazine for “Stef Soto, Taco Queen ¬ her first novel for children.
Unique holiday-time gifts that keep the bucks in the community:
Encounters with the People: Written and Oral Accounts of Nez Perce Life to 1858,” by William Swagerty, Washington State University Press, $50, 522 pages. Swagerty, history prof and director of UOP’s John Muir Center creates Nez Perce history from unpublished stories and unique sources, including Native American oral histories, diaries, reports and maps. Swagerty, with co-editors Dennis Baird, professor emeritus at the University of Idaho, and Diane Mallickan, a Nez Perce and Shoshone-Paiute and park ranger. The book won the 2016 Western History Association’s Dwight L. Smith Award for bibliographic or research in Western Americana.
Melania: Early Christianity Through the Life of One Family,” by Caroline Schroeder, University of California Press, $95, 344 pages. A UOP religious-studies prof assembles concepts of 16 scholars to see Christianity through eyes of Melania the Elder and granddaughter Melania the Younger. They used their wealth and status to help shape what now is Christianity. The volume illuminates women’s roles in Christian evolution.
City of Flowers: An Ethnography of Social and Economic Change in Costa Rica’s Central Valley,” by Susan E. Mannon, Oxford University Press, $20, 224 pages. An associate professor of sociology reveals social and economic changes in Costa Rica and four social classes cope. Class, race and gender aspirations and anxieties play a roles. One in a series examining issues caused by globalization and its impacts.
“Garlic Capital of the World: Gilroy, Garlic, and the Making of a Festive Foodscape,” by Pauline Adema, University Press of Mississippi, $55 hardcover, $27 paperback, 212 pages. Adema, UOP’s director of the university’s food-studies program in San Francisco, first West Coast program of its kind. Adema examines the way food festivals create brand identity. Specifically, garlic’s role in developing Gilroy into a tourist destination.
“Stef Soto, Taco Queen,” by Jennifer Torres, Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, $10, 176 pages. Torres’s debut novel is one of five children’s books highlighted in Time magazine’s Dec. 12 edition. She’s UOP’s director of community relations, Stefania “Stef” Soto wants independence from her overly-protective parents. She, wishes they’d retire to run her father’s taco truck, Tia Perla. She wants to be a normal seventh-grader Family and friendship win out.
“Blood Flag: A Paul Madriani Novel,” by Steve Martini, William Morrow and Co., $19, 336 pages. Martini, a McGeorge School of Law graduate’s 14th Paul Madriani thriller. He gets drawn into a possible World War II conspiracy when a client denies she killed her father and believes his death is connected to a package he received from a member of his Army unit. Madriani’s assistant and other Army-unit members’ deaths under similar circumstances prompt Madriani to seek the truth.
“Dessert First,” by Dean Gloster, Merit Press, $17, 304 pages. A UOP grad, Gloster, a former stand-up comedian, lawyer, and clerk to two U.S. Supreme Court justices, writes his first young-adult novel..A bone marrow transplant from Kat Monroe might be her younger brother’s only hope to recover from leukemia. She deals with loss and heartbreak, too.
“The Tsarina’s Legacy,” by Jennifer Laam, St. Martin’s Griffin, $17, 352 pages. In this latest historical novel, Laam ¬ director of advancement services at UOP and a 1994 grad,¬ connects the old Romanov throne with a modern heiress trying to decide between royal perks and staying true to herself and safeguarding a better future for her country.
“2014-2015 Brubeck Institute Jazz Quintet,” Brubeck Institute Jazz Quintet, released by UOP’ Brubeck Institute, $10, jazz. The 2014-15 Brubeck Fellows – Lucas Bere, tenor (saxophone); Joel Ross (vibraphone); Sean Britt (guitar); Sarah Kuo (bass); and Jalon Archie (drums) – combine on 12 songs theyl composed or arranged. Available on the Brubeck Institute’s website:
“Perspectives On Light and Shadow: Sonatas by Beaser, Ysaÿe, Bartók,” by Ann Miller and Sonia Leong, Hhr, $9 for MP3; $14 for CD. Miller (violin) and Leong (piano), The Conservatory of Music, professors perform music representing shadows, darkness and playful light. iTunes, Amazon, CDBaby, Spotify.
“Medea in Corinto,” by Giovanni Simone Mayr, Dynamic, $25, opera video. Marco Stefani, a graduate of UOP’s Conservatory of Music, performs “Tideo” in a double-DVD opera directed by Matteo Ricchetti. The story of revenge, jealousy and passion is based on Euripides. Available on Amazon and other video outlets.

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