Holiday Weekend Reads

Designed Leadership

Holidays are made for reading. As we head into the Fourth of July holiday weekend we thought we’d share a round-up of recent excerpts for you to dip into to help discover your next great read. Whether you’re hightailing it out of town on a train or plane, headed to the beach, relaxing at a backyard bbq, or waiting for a fireworks display, we’ve got something for you.


“When Fascist Heroes Took Over the Movies” – in a feature on fascism, Slate ( ran an excerpt from Thomas Doherty’s Pre-Code Hollywood.

Mark Hamm and Ramón Spaaij, the authors of The Age of Lone Wolf Terrorism, discuss the U.S.’s approach for combating lone wolf terrorism in an excerpt in Foreign Policy‘s Best Defense blog.

The June issue of Natural History has an excerpt from Mark Denny’s Making Sense of Weather and Climate on geoengineering and the modification weather. It’s not just science fiction. Denny explains the implications, the history, and the future of the practice.

Get a snapshot of 1960s New York in an excerpt form Down the Up Staircase, in which authors Bruce D. Haynes and Syma Solovitch recount the hustle and bustle of the Harlem of Haynes’s youth.

Jadaliyya, the e-zine of the Arab Studies Institute, has an excerpt from Irene Gendzier’s Dying to Forget that examines the roots of U.S. policy toward Israel and Palestine.

Robert McNally’s Crude Volatility provides an eye-opening history of the oil market. To find out why boom-bust oil prices might be here to stay, listen to an interview with the author and read the introduction to Crude Volatility on the Marketplace website.


Ch’ae Manshik was one of 20th century Korea’s most accomplished writers, known for his distinctive voice and colloquial style. His short story “Angel For A Day”, published in Lit Hub, captures city life and traveling by public transportation. The newly published anthology Sunrise: A Ch’ae Manshik Reader, edited and translated by Bruce and Ju-Chan Fulton, includes this story and collects Ch’ae’s work across different genres.

It’s hard to summarize the writer Iliazd’s Modernist novel Rapture, newly rediscovered and translated into English by Thomas Kitson. Open Letters Monthly called it “a fast-paced, mordantly funny yarn that borrows from (and subverts) the adventure genre.” The best thing you can do is check it out for yourself. For those in the Boston area, there will be an event for Rapture next Friday, July 7th, at The Center for Arts at the Armory Cafe in Somerville, MA.

Yi Mun-yol is one of Korea’s most celebrated writers. His Meeting with My Brother, translated by Heinz Insu Fenkl with Yoosup Chang, is a semi-autobiographical novella, about a divided family and the volatile relationship between the two Koreas, which the Times Literary Supplement called “a seminal and timeless work.” You can read an excerpt from the book here.

Often compared to Franz Kafka, Abe Kōbō is one of Japan’s greatest post-war writers. Abe’s early novel Beasts Head For Home, translated by Richard Calichman, follows Kuki Kyūzō, a Japanese youth, as he struggles to return home to Japan from Manchuria in the wake of World War II. You can read an excerpt in the Guardian‘s Translation Tuesday blog and can read a second excerpt here.

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