2020 Summer Reads
by Frank Garza
Tired of being cooped up indoors this summer? Here’s a list of Rattler reads to keep you company — books recently written by our very own St. Mary’s University alumni, professors and staff.
Frank R. Southers (J.D. ’60)
Take a trip back to the 1950s in this novel by law alumnus Southers, when one penny could buy an orange, if you learned to shop around a bit. This novel follows the story of a young boy named Johnny Porter, who suddenly finds himself alone in the world after his father is forced to stay in a nursing home.
Who Is It?
Kathryn Cervera (B.A. ’03, M.A. ’04)
A relatable and heartfelt young adult fiction novel written by alumna Kathryn Cervera, which tells the story of a boy who meets his dream girl.
Alex Z. Salinas (B.A. ’11, M.A. ’19)
Who are we? This debut collection of poetry penned by alumnus and staff member Salinas explores this existential question through a blend of seriousness and wit, through introspection and culture and meticulous word choice.
The Taco Magician
Diane Gonzales Bertrand, Visiting Lecturer of English Literature and Language
Arte Publico Press
Is there any greater magic trick than cooking a taco? In this future Rattler read (written in English and Spanish), Writer-In-Residence Bertrand paints vivid imagery of all the things children find relatable and important in their lives, such as a special blanket, a warm meal or a tía’s love.
A Century in Uniform: Military Women in American Films
Stacy Fowler, M.L.S., Professor, (with Deborah Deacon)
Fowler takes a deep dive into films featuring military women and examines the roles they played at home and in society as well as the status of military women throughout the 20th and 21st centuries.
Slavery in the Southwest: Genizaro Identity, Dignity and the Law
Robert William Piatt Jr., J.D., Professor of Law, (with Moises Gonzales)
The brutal reality of the American Southwest included Indians captured by the Spanish or by other Indians and kept or sold as slaves. Along with providing historical context, this book co-authored by Piatt analyzes legal approaches to alleviate the badges of servitude that still linger among descendants of the slaves, known as “Genízaros.”
Eduardo Vega (B.A. ’99)
What comes to mind when you hear the ever-present chicharra chorus in South Texas? In his poetry collection, Vega writes about life, death and the struggles we face in between. But don’t be fooled by his casual tone. His words — much like a chicharra chorus — will ring in your mind with a deeper meaning.
The Internship: A Novel About Engineering Ethics
Rafael Moras, Ph.D., Professor of Industrial Engineering
Amazon.com Services LLC
What happens when you’re faced with an ethical dilemma in the workplace? Will you compromise your integrity to advance your career? Moras writes about four university students who must face the daunting, gray areas of real-world problems when they embark on an internship-based senior project at a local company.