Book Notes

In the Spotlight
From the Fishhouse: An Anthology of Poems that Sing, Rhyme, Resound, Syncopate, Alliterate, and Just Plain Sound Great

Edited by Matt O’Donnell ’95, Camille T. Dungy and Jeffrey Thomson

Claiming a converted codfish-drying shack in Pittson, Maine, as their headquarters, From the Fishouse is dedicated to promoting and archiving the oral tradition of contemporary poetry. Its free online audio archive ( offers listeners the rare treat of hearing modern poems read by their authors, and gives emerging poets a forum to discuss their writing process. Founded in 2004 by Matt O’Donnell ’95 and Camille Dungy, From the Fishouse also strives to be an educational resource for students and teachers.

The new anthology (Persea Books, New York, 2009) includes almost 200 poems by dozens of poets categorized into 10 whimsical chapters, including “To Whoever Set My Truck on Fire: Poems that Make Various Sorts of Address” and “Late Twentieth Century in the Form of Litany: Poems that Use Repetition Very Very Well.” The book is accompanied by an audio CD featuring 36 performances of poems from the book, so that readers can also indulge in the auditory pace and flow of the authors’ work. “We imagine the reader of this book charging into the next room,” O’Donnell says, “thumb on a dog-eared page, saying to anyone in earshot ‘You have to hear this!’ The gut response we want people to have is the urge to read these poems aloud, and to others.” Selected for their use of consonance, sibiliance, assonance, rhythm and certainly rhyme, the poems in the book cover territory from love and lust to getting an echocardiogram. Some pieces are followed by personal notes from the poets about the mechanics of their writing or their writing practices, drawing the reader even closer to the poems themselves.


The Cost of Bad Behavior: How Incivility Is Damaging Your Business and What to Do About It

Christine Porath ’95 and Christine Pearson
(Portfolio, the Penguin Group, 2009)

While managers everywhere are trying to cut costs and maximize productivity, chances are they are missing one potentially devastating expense: the high cost of bad behavior. Whether it’s a standoffish coworker, an arrogant boss or an abrasive person in another department, incivility has become an everyday problem for many. In an accessible style, authors Christine Porath ’95 and Christine Pearson examine the toll that bad behavior can have on the bottom line in otherwise well-functioning companies. They reveal strategies successful companies use to stop incivility before it takes hold.


How to Raise a Drug-Free Kid

Joseph A. Califano Jr. ’52

Based on nearly two decades of research at The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University, How to Raise a Drug-Free Kid: The Straight Dope for Parents offers advice and information on how to prepare your child for crucial decision-making moments. It covers many of the most daunting parenting topics, including when and how to talk to your kids about drugs and alcohol; how to respond when your child asks, “Did you do drugs?”; how to know when your child is most at risk; and how to prepare your teen for the freedoms and perils of college.


Chasing the Green

Emilio Iasiello ’91 and Craig Frankel
(FEO International, 2009)

Chasing the Green is the story of two brothers (one is author Craig Frankel) who became millionaires in the 1990s while still in their 20s. They were among the first to market electronic terminals for credit card transactions, but their drive and ambition led them into hot water with the Federal Trade Commission and the eventual undoing of their enterprise. Along the way their triumphs and antics fueled their self-assured camaraderie, all of which are captured in the book.