UC Davis Magazine Shares Alumni Books of 2022

Alumni authors covered a myriad of topics with new books in 2022, from true crime to political analyses, demonstrating Aggies wide-ranging expertise.


  • Karen Joy Fowler, M.A. ’74, centers her newest novel, Booth, (Penguin Random House, 2022) on the siblings of Lincoln assassin John Wilkes Booth.
  • Mike Chen ’00 details a possible alien abduction, combining action with family drama in his newest novel, Light Years from Home (Mira, 2022).
  • Lauren Kate, M.A. ’09, delivers a juicy enemies-to-lovers romance about an editor, her bestselling author and one life-changing secret with By Any Other Name (G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 2022).


  • Deborah Holt Larkin ’70 tells the true story of a 1958 murder and the last woman to be executed in California in A Lovely Girl: The Tragedy of Olga Duncan and the Trial of One of California’s Most Notorious Killers (Pegasus Crime, 2022).
  • Jeanne C. DeFazio ’73 offers a retrospective with The Christian World Liberation Front: The Jesus Movement’s Model of Revival and Social Reform for the Postmodern Church (Wipf and Stock Publishers, 2022).
  • With coauthor Matthew Bentley, John Bloom ’84 examines competing versions of manhood in The Imperial Gridiron: Manhood, Civilization and Football at the Carlisle Indian Industrial School (University of Nebraska Press, 2022).
  • In “Beyond This Narrow Now” Or, Delimitations, of W.E.B. Du Bois, Nahum Dimitri Chandler ’96 executes close readings of Du Bois’ early essays, studying his work as a philosophical writer and thinker with contemporary implications (Duke University Press, 2022).
  • Patrick Moser, Ph.D. ’97, highlights a pioneer in early surfer culture in Surf and Rescue: George Freeth and the Birth of California Beach Culture (University of Illinois Press, 2022)
  • Horror movie buff and religion scholar Brandon R. Grafius, M.A. ’00, explores the parallels between the two subjects in Lurking Under the Surface: Horror, Religion, and the Questions that Haunt Us, and will be published by (Broadleaf Books, 2022).
  • Joan S.M. Meyers, M.A. ’01, Ph.D. ’09, takes an inside look at worker cooperatives to challenge some long-held views in Working Democracies: Managing Inequality in Worker Cooperatives (Cornell University Press, 2022).
  • Alexander Moss ’05 self-published A More Perfect Union (Briefs): Reimagining the United States as a European Union-Style Federation, which looks at the idea of breaking up the country into new nations and developing a plan to make it possible.


  • Stacey Lee, J.D. ’96, updated beloved children’s story The Cricket in Times Square (Square Fish, 2022) by George Selden about a New York mouse and cat meeting a talented cricket from the country.
  • The new, Starla Jean chapter book series, by Elana K. Arnold, M.A. ’98, continues with Starla Jean Takes the Cake, in which the protagonist celebrates her sister’s first birthday (Roaring Brook Press, 2022).
  • Angie Li ’17 follows a cat’s exploration of a garden willed with magical things for her new picture book, What’s In That Garden? (Fulton Books, 2022). 


  • Part cookbook and part memoir, Six California Kitchens (Chronicle Books, 2022) features farm-to-table recipes and stories from Sally Schmitt ’52, the founder of famed Yountville restaurant The French Laundry (written with Bruce Smith).
  • Craig McNamara ’76 comes to terms with the legacy of his father, Robert McNamara, the architect of the Vietnam War as the secretary of defense under John F. Kennedy, in Because Our Fathers Lied: A Memoir of Truth and Family, From Vietnam to Today (Little, Brown and Company, 2022).
  • Former cold case investigator Paul Holes ’90 has written a memoir charting his experiences on some of the country’s most notorious cases, Unmasked: My Life Solving America’s Cold Cases (Celadon Books, 2022).

Short stories

  • Building on his collection of works about California’s Central Valley, Ken White ’72, Cred. ’73, released a fictional memoir and collection of short stories, The Flatland Chronicles (2022).
  • Ryan Johnston ’06 published his first book, A Reel Job: Short Stories & Thoughts From the River (2022), a collection gathered from his work as a fishing guide and the founder of Cast Hope, a nonprofit organization that aims to introduce outdoor activities to at-risk kids.
  • Jamil Jan Kochai, M.A. ’17, explores the ghosts of war and feelings of displacement in a new collection, The Haunting of Hajji Hotak And Other Stories (Viking, 2022).


  • Artist Stephen Zaima, M.F.A. ’71, released a monograph Fear Not, featuring selected works from 1984 to 2021.

The UC Davis Books Blog, a project of News and Media Relations, announces newly published books by faculty and staff authors, and awards and events related to books by faculty and staff authors. Contact the books blog by email.

Media Resources

Dateline Staff: Dave Jones, editor, 530-752-6556, dateline@ucdavis.edu; Cody Kitaura, News and Media Relations specialist, 530-752-1932, kitaura@ucdavis.edu.

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