New & Noteworthy
A look at the latest works by our faculty, staff and alumni.
LOOK BOTH WAYS
BY BROOKE ELLISON, PhD ‘12
In her new book, Look Both Ways (published by Small Batch Books), Brooke Ellison discusses her life, the last 31 years of which were lived with ventilator-dependent quadriplegia after a devastating accident that took place on Nicolls Road. Stony Brook University was the institution that saved her life, and it is now the institution where she has built her career as a health policy and medical ethics expert. In this book, Ellison – Director of the Center for Community Engagement and Leadership Development (CCE) in the School of Health Professions at Stony Brook – examines not only the events that have shaped who she has become, but also the lessons of hope, vulnerability, and leadership that she has learned from these events.
THICKER THAN WATER: THE QUEST FOR SOLUTIONS
TO THE PLASTIC CRISIS
BY ERICA CIRINO, BA ‘14, MA ‘15
After years of working with and writing about wildlife, Erica Cirino investigates how plastic has become a global threat in her first book, Thicker Than Water: The Quest for Solutions to the Plastic Crisis, which was published in October 2021 by Island Press. Cirino – who earned her bachelor’s degree in environmental studies and her master’s in journalism at Stony Brook – worked on the book for the better part of five years, including spending three years conducting research in Copenhagen, Denmark. The book takes readers on a globe-hopping journey to meet the scientists and activists telling the real story of the plastic crisis and its crushing impact on our oceans and sea life. From the deck of a plastic-hunting sailboat with a disabled engine, to the labs doing cutting-edge research on microplastics and the chemicals we ingest, Cirino paints a full picture of how plastic pollution is threatening wildlife and human health.
A MESSAGE IN POISON
A Dr. Lily Robinson Novel
BY BJ MAGNANI, MS ‘76, PHD ‘84
In this third medical suspense thriller by pathologist and Stony Brook alumna BJ Magnani, Dr. Lily Robinson — a Boston physician who becomes an assassin for the U.S. Government — investigates two seemingly unrelated deaths, that of a U.S. Senator and the president of a developing nation. Yet, the cause of death implies a link between the two — one that only a mind versed in poisons and politics can decipher. Magnani spins a web of intrigue using her expertise in clinical chemistry and toxicology. The former chair of the Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at Tufts Medical Center earned her masters in marine environmental science and her PhD in oral biology and pathology at Stony Brook. She credits her interest in poisons to her thesis advisor, Charles Wurster, associate professor emeritus in the School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences, who led efforts to ban the pesticide DDT.
Proceeds from Magnani’s novels help support the College of American Pathologists Foundation’s See, Test & Treat program, which provides free breast and cervical cancer screening. More information on Magnani’s work and her other novels can be found on her website, bjmagnani.com.
USING VISUAL THINKING TO UNDERSTAND COMPLEX CONCEPTS IN THE CLASSROOM
BY PATRICIA DUNN, PROFESSOR OF ENGLISH
Patricia Dunn’s latest text, Drawing Conclusions, was recently published by TC Press, Columbia University. She’s received rave reviews on providing a well-balanced examination on the use of juxtaposed visual representations to help teachers grapple with abstract concepts, theories, or complex controversies in education. According to Shelbie Witte, Endowed Chair of English Education, Oklahoma State University, Dunn “masterfully illustrates how teachers and learners can more deeply define and discuss complex concepts and ideas through visual representations, and in turn become more critical creators and consumers of the world.”
Brookmarks welcomes submissions of books, albums or films by SBU faculty, students, staff or alumni that have recently debuted or will debut within the year. Email with the details: SBUMagazine@stonybrook.edu.