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Great summer reads by MSU Denver authors

Find an apocalyptic novel, poignant short-story collections and more on the Early Bird’s first-ever Roadrunner Summer Reading List.

By Lindsey Coulter

June 24, 2019

Copies of the book Summer melt happens to the best of us. This season, keep your mind sharp — and thoroughly entertained — with the Early Bird’s inaugural Roadrunner Summer Reading List.

Recommended by English Department faculty members, the list includes titles by Metropolitan State University of Denver faculty, alumni and current students. This literary journey leads from the Latinx community of Denver to 1980s San Francisco and beyond. Dive in to experience the full breadth of Roadrunner talent and imagination, and if you see a title we missed or find a new favorite read, be sure to comment.

“The Subject of Malice” by Cynthia Kuhn, Ph.D., professor

Kuhn specializes in traditional mysteries inspired by her own role as an educator. The fourth novel in her popular and award-winning Lila MacLean Academic Mystery series, “The Subject of Malice,” debuts July 23. The story follows MacLean to a literary conference that quickly becomes a crime scene. Check it out to dust off your own sleuthing skills.

“Your Own Eyes: Finding a Clear Vision in the Age of Indoctrination” by Jesse Van Horne, alumnus

Van Horne challenges readers to consider the many ways in which they have experienced indoctrination. He then offers a process for removing the proverbial blinders and says that “developing the dexterity to recognize our lenses is essential if we wish to evolve beyond our archaic, reactionary behavioral patterns as individuals and collectively as the human race.”

“Dog Men” by Alana Noël Voth, alumnus

Voth’s collection of coming-of-age stories has been described as haunting, surreal and deeply personal, featuring “people you know, and yet nothing you could have imagined.” If you like your love stories dark, this one is for you.

“The Time of Tears” by Jonathan Dominguez, student

Dominguez is developing a series of apocalyptic novels, but you can already find the first installation, “The Time of Tears,” on Amazon. The main character is a normal college student until violence on a global scale decimates society and much of humanity. Then, the fight for survival begins.

“The Cure for Lonely” by Jessica Thummel, alumnus

Thummel’s story begins on the Kansas plains, where a young transgender man plots his escape from small-town life. He eventually lands in San Francisco, where his job with a questionable HIV-drug trial leads to love and deeper questions about humanity and identity. Don’t miss this Dundee International Book Prize winner!

“Sabrina and Corinaby Kali Fajardo-Anstine, alumnus

Fajardo-Anstine’s collection of 11 short stories centers on Latinas of indigenous descent. Through her characters, readers experience the American West from Colorado to California and universal themes including friendship, family, femininity, heritage, loss and the concept of home. 

The English Department, in addition to offering courses in rhetoric, composition and professional writing, helps students develop creative-writing skills through introductory courses, writing workshops in fiction, poetry, drama and creative nonfiction, and writing studios in screenwriting, memoir and Speculative Fiction. Learn more about courses to jump-start your own literary imagination.

Topics: Academics, Community, Excellence

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