October 31, 2019

Adelphi Alumni and Professor Release New Books This Fall

This fall saw the publication of three books by Adelphi’s own. Bestselling authors Jacqueline Woodson ’16 (Hon.) and Alice Hoffman ’73, ’02 (Hon.) published their latest in a succession of critically acclaimed works. They are joined by Deborah Serani, PsyD, senior adjunct professor in the Gordon F. Derner School of Psychology, whose first work of fiction was also released.

Red at the Bone by Jacqueline Woodson ’16 (Hon.)

Woodson is best known for her books for children and young adults. Her latest work, like last year’s Another Brooklyn, is for adult readers. Red at the Bone explores the complex relationships between family members and families, in this case, those of two teenagers who become parents. The book jumps between different character perspectives, times and places, from Brooklyn in the 2000s to Oklahoma in 1921. Woodson touches on the themes of class, racism, gentrification, family history and the African American experience.

A National Public Radio reviewer said the book “reads like poetry and drama, a cry from the heart that often cuts close to the bone.”

Woodson is the bestselling author of more than two dozen award-winning books, including the National Book Award winner for Brown Girl Dreaming and National Book Award finalist for Another Brooklyn, four-time John Newbery Medal winner and two-time Coretta Scott King Book Award winner.

Read The New York Times feature “Jacqueline Woodson Transformed Children’s Literature. Now She’s Writing for Herself. The award-winning author on her mission to diversify publishing—and why she turned back to adult readers with her new novel, Red at the Bone” and the review “A Dazzling, Sweetly Aching New Novel from Jacqueline Woodson.”

The World That We Knew by Alice Hoffman ’73, ’02 (Hon.)

Hoffman brings her trademark magical realism to Europe during World War II in a novel The New York Times calls a “hymn to the power of resistance, perseverance and enduring love in dark times,” this time drawing on the Jewish legend of the golem, a man created and brought to life by a medieval rabbi to protect his people.

A German-Jewish mother plans to send her daughter out of the country to escape the Nazi regime. For the girl’s protection, she seeks the help of a rabbi’s daughter. Referencing legends of golems, they create one to accompany the girl, but this golem is a young woman who begins to discover her humanity.

Hoffman is the author of more than 30 works of fiction for adults, young adults and children, and one work of nonfiction.

The Ninth Session by Deborah Serani, PsyD, senior adjunct professor in the Gordon F. Derner School of Psychology

The Ninth Session is a psychological thriller that follows Dr. Alicia Reese, a psychologist who takes on a new patient. Lucas Ferro suffers from crippling anxiety, and as the sessions progress, he begins to share the reasons why he’s struggling. As Ferro’s narrative becomes more menacing, Dr. Reese finds herself wedged between the cold hard frame of professional ethics and the integrity of personal truth. And, finally, when Ferro reveals his secrets, Dr. Reese learns how far she’s willing to go, willing to risk and willing to lose to do the right thing. The Ninth Session mixes psychotherapy, sign language and CODA (Children of Deaf Adults) culture to create a unique thriller.

Dr. Serani is a psychologist in practice for 30 years and a senior adjunct professor at Adelphi University. She is an award-winning author of several books and has been a technical adviser for the NBC television show Law & Order: Special Victims Unit. She is the author of Living With Depression: Why Biology and Biography Matter Along the Path to Hope and Healing; Depression and Your Child: A Guide for Parents and Caregivers; and Depression in Later Life: An Essential Guide. This is her first novel.


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