Books: March/April 2011

April 1, 2011


Book Cover: Give Smart

Give Smart: Philanthropy That Gets Results by Thomas Tierney and Joel L. Fleishman. PublicAffairs/Perseus Books Group, 2011. 272 pages. $23.99.

With the increase in the number of donors such as Warren Buffett and Bill and Melinda French Gates ’86, M.B.A. ’87 who are directing significant wealth into initiatives that have a positive social impact, philanthropists have the potential to achieve real, lasting change around some of society’s most intractable problems. Tierney, cofounder and chair of The Bridgespan Group, and Fleishman, Duke professor of law and public policy studies, provide a primer for donors and nonprofit leaders who want to maximize the effectiveness of their philanthropic activities.


Book Cover: Fair Pay Fair Play

Fair Pay, Fair Play: Aligning Executive Performance and Pay by Robin Ferracone ’75. Jossey-Bass, 2010. 288 pages. $34.95.

Ferracone analyzes how executive pay should be tied to performance, the external market, and standards of fairness and propriety. A member of Duke’s board of trustees, she has more than thirty years’ experience advising executives at companies including Microsoft, Motorola, and eBay on executive compensation. She is the founder and executive chair of Farient Advisors, an independent executive-compensation advisory firm.


Book Cover: Methods in Medical Ethics

Methods in Medical Ethics, Second Edition coedited by Jeremy Sugarman ’82, M.D. ’86 and Daniel Sulmasy. Georgetown University Press, 2010. 376 pages. $39.95.

The field of medical ethics draws upon methods from a wide array of disciplines, including anthropology, economics, epidemiology, health-services research, philosophy, psychology, and theology. This revised edition includes contributions by more than two dozen ethicists, including coeditor Sugarman, the Harvey M. Meyerhoff professor of bioethics and medicine and deputy director for medicine at the Johns Hopkins Berman Institute of Bioethics.


Book Cover: End of Story

End of Story by John M. Bowers ’71. Sunstone Press, 2010. 230 pages. $22.95.

The debut novel by Bowers, a former Rhodes Scholar and an English professor at the University of Nevada at Las Vegas, begins on the eve of World War I and ends in New York during the destruction of the World Trade Center on 9/11. Cast as a sequel of sorts to E.M. Forster’s Maurice, End of Story weaves together characters and stories from disparate times in exploring attitudes toward same-sex relationships and the universal nature of love.


Book Cover: Five Flavors of Dumb

Five Flavors of Dumb by Antony John A.M. ’98, Ph.D. ’02. Dial Books/Penguin Group, 2010. 352 pages. $16.99.

In this young-adult novel, Piper, a deaf high-school senior, discovers her parents have used her college fund to get cochlear implants for her baby sister. Set against the backdrop of Seattle’s hip music scene, the book follows Piper as she decides to earn money and exert her independence by managing a ragtag rock band named Dumb. This is the second young-adult novel by John, whose Duke degrees are both in music composition.


Book Cover: One Illness Away

One Illness Away: Why People Become Poor and How They Escape Poverty by Anirudh Krishna. Oxford University Press, 2010. 256 pages. $39.95.

Krishna, an associate professor at Duke’s Sanford School of Public Policy, presents the first large-scale examination of the reasons that people fall into poverty and how they escape it. Drawing upon personal interviews with 35,000 households in different parts of India, Kenya, Uganda, Peru, and the U.S., the book includes facts, analyses, and life stories of people who fell into abject poverty and others who managed to escape their seemingly predetermined fates. Feeding directly into current public-health debates, One Illness Away offers an agenda for policy-oriented action and suggestions for keeping people out of poverty in the first place.