On The Shelf – Albright College

On The Shelf

By Carey Manzolillo

Pairing the almighty pen, with intrinsic imagination.

We asked alumni and faculty to share their latest creations with our readers, resulting in this eclectic collection, spanning fiction and nonfiction.

Caroline Vazzana '14, "Making It In Manhattan"

“Making It in Manhattan: The Beginner’s Guide to Surviving & Thriving in the World of Fashion”
Genres: Nonfiction, self-help
Penned by: Caroline Vazzana ’14
Albright Major: Fashion design and merchandising
College Involvement: Cross country, track, Fashion Lion editor-in-chief, Greek life, Club Vogue president

Albright fashion graduate Caroline Vazzana ’14 has styled celebrities for red-carpet events such as the MTV Video Music Awards, The Tony Awards and Comicon, and has been featured in VOGUE, Elle, Harper’s Bazaar and Vanity Fair. Albright internships with Anna Sui and Marie Claire magazine helped Vazzana land a job with Teen Vogue’s fashion print team immediately after graduation. Later, building her digital skills at InStyle led her to create an editorial website and a newly released book “Making It in Manhattan: The Beginner’s Guide to Surviving & Thriving in the World of Fashion,” (Skyhorse, 2018). Today, she lends her unique eye, voice, style and message to a multitude of brands.

Frank Morelli ’01, "No Sad Songs"

“No Sad Songs”
Genres: Fiction, teen and young adult

“Please Return To: Norbert M. Finkelstein”
Genres: Fiction, children’s humor

Penned by: Frank Morelli ’01
Albright Major: Communications
College Involvement: The Albrightian, WXAC radio, Greek life, POPs

“No Sad Songs” (2018), about a student surviving high school while caring for a grandfather with Alzheimer’s disease, was nominated for a 2019 YALSA Quick Pick for Reluctant Readers award and named the winner of an American Fiction Award for best coming of age story. Released in September 2019, “Please Return To: Norbert M. Finkelstein” is about a big-hearted middle school teacher and wrestling coach with a secret identity. Morelli’s fiction and essays have appeared in numerous publications, including The Saturday Evening Post, Cobalt Review, Philadelphia Stories and Jersey Devil Press. A Philadelphia native, he now lives in North Carolina. Connect with him on Twitter @frankmoewriter or on his author site frankmorelliwrites.com.

Ashley (Brown) Franklin ’06, “Not Quite Snow White”

“Not Quite Snow White”
Genres: Fiction, children’s literature
Penned by: Ashley (Brown) Franklin ’06
Albright Major: English
College Involvement: ACRE researcher, Greek life, Residence Life staff

Ashley (Brown) Franklin’s picture book debut, “Not Quite Snow White,” was released July 9, 2019 through Harper Collins. It features an African-American girl with big dreams of playing her favorite princess, Snow White, in her school’s musical despite the lack of support from her peers. Look for an upcoming short story in the collection “Once Upon an Eid: Stories of Hope and Joy by 15 Muslim Voices” and possibly a second picture book in the future. Franklin lives in Arkansas with her husband, Michael, and her sons, Bilal and Mikhail.

Harry Martin ’73, “Harry Martin Underwater Fashion”

“Harry Martin Underwater Fashion”
Genres: Nonfiction, art catalog
Penned by: Harry Martin ’73
Albright Major: Psychobiology
College Involvement: pre-med, WXAC radio

Martin is an Emmy award-winning television journalist with more than 45 years of experience that spans daily news, talk shows, even on-location hurricane and 9/11 reporting. Currently president and CEO of Martin Digital Media, Martin uses his experience on New York’s Fox News and anchoring Eyewitness News to train Fortune 100 executives, sports stars and others. But his early roots as a news photographer stuck with him, leading to more than a half dozen self-published travel photography books and underwater photos, including a catalog of underwater photos titled “Harry Martin Underwater Fashion” (Blurb, 2014). Visit harrymartinunderwater.com.

Adrienne Kisner, Ph.D. '00 “Dear Rachel Maddow”

“Dear Rachel Maddow”
Genres: Fiction, teen and young adult

“The Confusion of Laurel Graham”
Genres: Fiction, Teen and young adult

Penned by: Adrienne Kisner, Ph.D. ’00
Albright Major: religious studies, Spanish
College Involvement: The Albrightian, AGON, WXAC radio, Domino Players, Jacob Albright Scholar, Gold “A” Award, Greek life, Residence Life staff

Now a college residence life professional and Chaplain in Boston, Kisner earned two master’s degrees and a doctoral degree in theology after graduating from Albright. Her debut novel, “Dear Rachel Maddow” (2018), won a PEN New England Susan P. Bloom Discovery Award and was a top pick for Best Fiction for Young Adults. “The Confusion of Laurel Graham” (2019) follows a teenaged birder, coping with her grandmother’s coma and an obsession to identify a mystery bird. A third book, “Six Angry Girls,” is slated to be released this spring. Though her home is in Boston, Kisner says she “will always be a Pennsylvanian at heart.” Visit her at adriennekisner.com.

Andrew McIntyre ’96 , “Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall, A Life from Moment to Moment”

“Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall, A Life from Moment to Moment”
Genres: Nonfiction, poetry, meditation
Penned by: Andrew McIntyre ’96
Albright Major: History

“Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall, A Life from Moment to Moment,” independently published in 2018, offers more than 450 poems, and shares history and reflection on living with grief. A second book expected to launch this year, titled “Giants,” was written one night while McIntyre was still in college. The children’s story “is a recollection of my father’s wake, and its immediate aftermath,” says McIntyre, who was four-years-old when his father died.

Karen Vasquez O’Donnell ’13, “Pepe and Pako: Cross-Country Adventure”

“Pepe and Pako: Cross-Country Adventure”
Genres: Fiction, children’s adventure
Penned by: Karen Vasquez O’Donnell ’13
Albright Major: Business administration

Growing up in El Salvador, Vasquez O’Donnell dreamed of being an explorer and discovering the many different lands and cultures of the United States. As the co-founder of Crazy Ventures, LLC, residing in Dallas, Texas, she toted a camera on a cross-country road trip with her sons — inspiring “Pepe and Pako: Cross-Country Adventure” (2019). The book takes readers on an extraordinary 18-day, 4,201-mile journey through the eyes of 10-year-old twin brothers Pepe and Pako as they visit 11 states seeing iconic sites such as Yellowstone National Park, Mount Rushmore and The Golden Gate Bridge. Visit www.pepepako.com.

Bobby Gosh ’58, “Confessions of a Marijuana Eater: A Songwriter’s Memoir”

“Confessions of a Marijuana Eater: A Songwriter’s Memoir”
Genres: Nonfiction, biography
Penned by: Bobby Gosh ’58
Albright Major: Economics
College Involvement: Greek life

Published by ByGosh Music Corp. (2016), songwriter Bobby Gosh’s memoir “Confessions of a Marijuana Eater” is part biography, popular music history and personal philosophy. Married to classmate Billi Gosh ’58, Bobby’s professional titles include singer, songwriter, music producer, conductor and author.

Melvin Sensenig, M.Div., Ph.D., “Rejected and Honored: King Jehoiachin in his Jeremianic Scribal Framework”

“Rejected and Honored: King Jehoiachin in his Jeremianic Scribal Framework”
Genres: Nonfiction, religious studies
Penned by: Melvin Sensenig, M.Div., Ph.D., Albright chaplain

King Jehoiachin, the last Judahite king exiled to Babylon, became the focus of conflicting hopes and fears about a revived Davidic kingship after the exile. As Sensenig demonstrates, this conflict stemmed from a drastic oracle from Jeremiah that seemed to categorically reject Jehoiachin, while the canon records that he not only survived but thrived in exile. This book is part of the “Perspectives on the Hebrew Scriptures and Its Contexts” series by Gorgias Press (2020).

Matthew D. Sonntag, Ph.D., “Raman Spectroscopy in the Undergraduate Curriculum”

“Raman Spectroscopy in the Undergraduate Curriculum”
Genres: Nonfiction, textbook
Penned by: Matthew D. Sonntag, Ph.D., assistant professor of chemistry and biochemistry

Raman spectroscopy has emerged as a versatile and powerful tool in a diverse set of scientific fields. Its implementation has grown markedly in the past 20 years due to technological advances and affordability of instrumentation. Edited by Matthew Sonntag and published by the American Chemical Society (2020), this book includes chapters penned by various authors, including Sonntag and Christian S. Hamann, Ph.D., associate professor of chemistry and biochemistry at Albright.

Jennifer Koosed, Ph.D., “Reading with Feeling: Affect Theory and the Bible”

“Reading with Feeling: Affect Theory and the Bible”
Genres: Nonfiction, religion and psychology
Penned by: Jennifer Koosed, Ph.D., professor of religious studies

Jennifer Koosed co-edited “Reading with Feeling: Affect Theory and the Bible” with Fiona C. Black, (SBL Press, 2019). Their collection of essays breaks new ground in biblical interpretation by deploying a range of emotional, psychological affect theory approaches. The book includes essays by 10 writers, including Koosed and Professor Rob Seesengood, M.Div., Ph.D.

Rev. Leonard S. Buxton ’52, “This is my story, This is my song”

“This is my story, This is my song”
Genres: Nonfiction, biography
Penned by: Rev. Leonard S. Buxton ’52
Albright Major: Psychology
College Involvement: WXAC radio, choral ensemble, Domino Players, Greek life

In the first of two expected volumes, Buxton recounts the first half of his life and his career in ministry. The son of a “fire-and-brimstone” Evangelical preacher who grew up during the Depression, he recounts how the strict mores of the 1950s changed through the turbulent social times of the 1960s and 1970s. Buxton also recalls his activism to break down the resistance to desegregation and to support the civil rights movement. Published by FriesenPress (2020).

Are you writing? Share your book releases with Albright at alumni@albright.edu.