Senior Books Gallery

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Soham Banerji

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  • Year of Graduation: 2010
  • Library Department: Technology Support
  • Worked 3 years in the library

SOHAM’S BOOK SELECTION

Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts

ABOUT THE SELECTION

Gregory David Roberts, the author of this semi-autobiographical novel, is an ex-junkie and an ex-con. A one-time gun-runner; dealer in drugs, black-market currencies, and forged passports; favored associate of a Bombay mafia don; escapee from an Australian maximum security prison, this book gives us a novel based closely on the events of the authors remarkable life. Shantaram, “man of peace”, is the story of a violent man’s search for the man of peace within himself. So it is not just a book; it is a sojourn, a spiritual journey into life that shows that even the most complex and powerful systems have at their core a simple and beautiful pattern. Shantaram is a great read and I would certainly recommend it!

ON WORKING IN THE LIBRARY

Meeting people and working with Ron Joslin and the crew has been wonderful! I’ve really enjoyed my time as a student employee of the library. Thank you for all the memories!

Laura Bartolomei-Hill

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  • Year of Graduation: 2010
  • Library Department: Reference
  • Worked 3 years in the library

LAURA’S BOOK SELECTION

Something from the Oven by Laura Shapiro

ABOUT THE SELECTION

Laura Shapiro challenges gendered domesticity and the way its marketed to women, but also recognizes and respects the intelligence, power, and agency of homemakers. She writes about how the processed food industry took advantage of the women’s “liberation from the kitchen” movement to replace nutritious and lovingly cooked meals with frozen TV dinners. It’s fascinating; it makes me want to challenge domestic gender norms AND cook for everyone I know.

ON WORKING IN THE LIBRARY

I love working at the reference desk! The librarians are wonderful, and I get to help a lot of stressed out people get a little bit less stressed.

Evan Coles-Harris

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  • Year of Graduation: 2010
  • Library Department: Technology Support
  • Worked 4 years in the library

EVAN’S BOOK SELECTION

The People Could Fly by Virginia Hamilton

ABOUT THE SELECTION

This was one of my favorite story books as a child. My dad used it to teach me to read, and so it was one of the first books that I ever read in its entirety.

ON WORKING IN THE LIBRARY

The POWER!!!!!

Jenny Darwent

  • Year of Graduation: 2010
  • Library Department: Reference
  • Worked 4 years in the library

JENNY’S BOOK SELECTION

A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s court by Mark Twain

ABOUT THE SELECTION

Twain is one of my favourite authors. I chose this book because it made me laugh out loud – it was that funny.

Matt Day

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  • Year of Graduation: 2010
  • Library Department: Reference
  • Worked 2 years in the library

MATT’S BOOK SELECTION

The Good Soldiers by David Finkel

ABOUT THE SELECTION

It echoes Tim O’Brien’s “The Things They Carried” for our generation. A journalist’s reporting on events during the Iraq War through the eyes of American soldiers, without agenda or favor. When the dust settles and the value of political spin has evaporated, this will stand as a primary source for the scholars who go in afterward asking “what happened?” Ultimately, all journalism is about people. It is a point that is easily forgotten.

ON WORKING IN THE LIBRARY

The library is filled with dedicated students and staff. The clear, overwhelming priority is service, no one is turned away. It’s a good culture to be a part of. Working here has sharpened my research skills and given me an appreciation for academic work that I wouldn’t have developed otherwise.

Courtney Flathers

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  • Year of Graduation: 2010
  • Library Department: Reserves
  • Worked 3 years in the library

COURTNEY’S BOOK SELECTION

Charlotte’s Web by E. B. White

ABOUT THE SELECTION

Charlotte’s Web is the first book I remember reading over and over again as a child. I want to acknowledge my family, friends, the faculty of Macalester, and the library staff for helping me reach this point in my education. This book is a reminder of how far I have come, and all of you helped make this journey possible.

Sara Gottlieb

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  • Year of Graduation: 2010
  • Library Department: Circulation
  • Worked 4 years in the library

SARA’S BOOK SELECTION

Are We Free? Psychology and Free Will by John Baer, James C. Kaufman, and Roy F. Baumeister

ABOUT THE SELECTION

This is an edited volume of essays that various psychologists and cognitive scientists wrote about what psychology can teach us about the philosophical problem of free will. Psychology and philosophy are two very separate disciplines with two very different methods, and during my time at Macalester, I have come to appreciate where the two intersect. This book does an excellent job of merging the two fields and has greatly influenced my research interests.

ON WORKING IN THE LIBRARY

The circulation desk is the best people watching spot on campus!

Hannah Lamb

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  • Year of Graduation: 2010
  • Library Department:Circulation
  • Worked 3 years in the library

HANNAH’S BOOK SELECTION

Everything Is Illuminated by Jonathan Safran Foer

ON WORKING IN THE LIBRARY

During the past three years working here, I have most enjoyed the people, both students and staff, who work with me. A memory that stands out is when the circulation summer workers from 2008, including Zorah and Arjay, all saw Mamma Mia together after work. That was both fun and ridiculous.

Amelia McNamara

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  • Year of Graduation: 2010
  • Library Department: Media Services
  • Worked 3 years in the library

AMELIA’S BOOK SELECTION

The Absolute Sandman by Neil Gaiman

ABOUT THE SELECTION

I firmly believe that graphic novels should be considered literature. The Sandman series, by Neil Gaiman, is one of the best examples I’ve found to support this point. It’s chock full of literary and historical references, so there’s a great payoff for the reader. Since Gaiman used different illustrators, inkers and letterers every issue, each story has a different feel. The fact that the series hangs together as a coherent narrative is a testament to Gaiman’s narrative powers.

ON WORKING IN THE LIBRARY

Working at Media Services has given me a great opportunity to interact with students and faculty that I would otherwise never see. I work with the media reserves, so I get to see what movies professors are using every semester, which gives me lots of great ideas about what to watch. Media Services is such a great resource, but I think it is underused by students– come visit us on the 4th floor of humanities!

Adam Oien

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  • Year of Graduation: 2010
  • Library Department: Technology Support
  • Worked 4 years in the library

ADAM’S BOOK SELECTION

The Butter Battle Book by Dr. Seuss

ABOUT THE SELECTION

The first time I experienced this book was in my early childhood when my parents read it to me. Back then, I enjoyed the colorful illustrations and interesting machines in the book. As I’ve grown older, I can appreciate the book on more levels and see that a powerful message can be delivered through a rhyming children’s story. This book shows that a single piece of literature can be important in many different ways throughout a person’s life.

ON WORKING IN THE LIBRARY

The library staff has been great! I’ve had the opportunity to interact with many members of the full-time staff and have yet to have a bad experience. They are always understanding of the many aspects that can complicate a student employee’s academic and work-study life. This has made the library a very comfortable and inviting place to work and study.

Catherine Polta

  • Year of Graduation: 2010
  • Library Department: Reserves
  • Worked 3 years in the library

CATHERINE’S BOOK SELECTION

House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski

ON WORKING IN THE LIBRARY

The excellent management! Elvi, Janet, and Suphachai are wonderful bosses.

Catherine Reuter

  • Year of Graduation: 2010
  • Library Department: Archives
  • Worked 4 years in the library

CATHERINE’S BOOK SELECTION

Death Comes for the Archbishop by Willa Cather

ABOUT THE SELECTION

I read this book for the first time at Macalester, checked out from the Library, and it has become one of my all-time favorites. It made me want to travel.

Kristin E. Riegel

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  • Year of Graduation: 2010
  • Library Department: Circulation
  • Worked 4 years in the library

KRISTIN’S BOOK SELECTION

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

Jason Rodney

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  • Year of Graduation: 2010
  • Library Department: Technology Support
  • Worked 4 years in the library

JASON’S BOOK SELECTION

Being Peace by Thich Nhat Hanh

ABOUT THE SELECTION

Being Peace was the first book I read to explore my own spirituality. It is incredibly accessible and helped me realize that one of the most important things I can do to work for justice and peace is to live in awareness, present to the life right in front of me, the breath that sustains me right now.

ON WORKING IN THE LIBRARY

Ron Joslin has been an excellent boss. Thanks. library, for great resources and occasional free food.

Rosemarie Sese

  • Year of Graduation: 2010
  • Library Department: Reference
  • Worked 3 years in the library

ROSEMARIE’S BOOK SELECTION

The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

ABOUT THE SELECTION

Even though this is a children’s book, I don’t think I actually read it till I was 18. That being said, I’ve read it every year since then. There’s probably a part of me that thinks I can reclaim my childhood through this book.

Arjay Velasco

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  • Year of Graduation: 2010
  • Library Department: Circulation
  • Worked 4 years in the library

ARJAY’S BOOK SELECTION

Maus Vol. I and II by Art Spiegelman

ABOUT THE SELECTION

Art Spiegelman’s extraordinary graphic novels detailing his family’s experiences in the Holocaust is an extraordinary accomplishment. Through Maus, Spielgelman brought upon a new form of Holocaust remembrance that will never soon be forgotten.

Mark Verdin

  • Year of Graduation: 2010
  • Library Department: Cataloging
  • Worked 4 years in the library

MARK’S BOOK SELECTION

The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman by Laurence Sterne

ABOUT THE SELECTION

Reading this book, I realized for the first time that literature is a very funny enterprise at heart.

Chelsea Voskuilen

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  • Year of Graduation: 2010
  • Library Department: Periodicals
  • Worked 4 years in the library

CHELSEA’S BOOK SELECTION

An American Childhood by Annie Dillard

Shivaun Watchorn

  • Year of Graduation: 2010
  • Library Department: Reference
  • Worked 4 years in the library

SHIVAUN’S BOOK SELECTION

Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell

ABOUT THE SELECTION

I found out about David Mitchell when I worked at a public library in high school and picked up Black Swan Green. Totally incredible book, but this one is even better. I spent my first summer in the Twin Cities sitting at the reference desk here reading this slowly and savoring Mitchell’s formal experiments and vivid fantasy worlds. I couldn’t recommend it enough.

ON WORKING IN THE LIBRARY

I have loved working at the Macalester library more than any other job I’ve had. I love interacting with patrons and helping people access information and resources that they need. I’ve loved working in multiple departments, participating in and understanding many different parts of the library workflow.

Ronny Watkins

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  • Year of Graduation: 2010
  • Library Department: Circulation
  • Worked 4 years in the library

RONNY’S BOOK SELECTION

Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis

ABOUT THE SELECTION

My faith is very important to me. This book cuts through many of the things that divide people in order to look at the teachings that unite the majority of Christians.

ON WORKING IN THE LIBRARY

I love the atmosphere at the library. All of the staff care about us as student workers and about all of the students who enter the library. That, and treats by the time clock.

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