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Summer Reads

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Great Books Brought to You by Great Faculty

​This summer, the Department of English invites you to participate in an online reading group focused on three books selected by three faculty members. Read at your own pace and then come together for a community discussion via Zoom. All are welcome!

  • On June 15, 2:00–3:30 p.m., Professor McKay Jenkins will lead a discussion on his very own Bloody Falls of the Coppermine: Madness, Murder and the Collision of Cultures in the Arctic, 1913.
  • On July 15, 2:00–3:30 p.m., Professor Mary Bowden will lead a discussion on John Wyndham's The Day of the Triffids.
  • On August 14, 2:00–3:30 p.m., Professor Michael McCamley will lead a discussion on Louise Erdrich's Love Medicine.
For each meeting, join the Zoom chat, crack open your book, and start discussing! 

Contact Professor Sarah Wasserman with questions, and please download and share a Summer Reads flyer.

June 15: Bloody Falls of the Coppermine (2005) by McKay Jenkins

Cover of McKay Jenkins's Bloody Falls of the Coppermine

Bloody Falls of the Coppermine is a true account of colonialism, mysticism, adventure, and murder. It describes the winter 1913 expedition of two Catholic missionaries as they traveled into the Arctic to convert its indigenous peoples. After the two priests were killed and cannibalized, worlds collided during the ensuing investigations into their deaths and the trials that followed.


Profess McKay Jenkins will lead a discussion of Bloody Falls of the Coppermine on June 15 from 2:00–3:30 p.m. You can join via the reading group Zoom chat. You can also borrow an e-book of Bloody Falls of the Coppermine through the Hathi Trust ETAS program and the University of Delaware Library. The e-book can be used by one UD reader at a time. Instructions for borrowers are available.



July 15: The Day of the Triffids (1951) by John Wyndham

Cover of John Wyndham's The Day of the Triffids

​In this post-apocalyptic novel, carnivorous mobile plants called triffids wreak havoc in Cold War-era England. When a freak meteor shower (or something more insidious) leaves much of the population blind and the triffids free to roam and slaughter, biologist Bill Masen and his compatriots must fight for survival amid the chaos. As they do so, they battle not only the deadly triffids, but more human dangers as well.


Professor Mary Bowden will lead a discussion of The Day of the Triffids on July 15 from 2:00–3:30 p.m. You can join via the reading group Zoom chat. You can also borrow an e-book of The Day of the Triffids from the University of Delaware Library. Access is unlimited, so several people can borrow it simultaneously.



August 14: Love Medicine (1984) by Louise Erdrich

Cover of Louise Erdrich's Love Medicine

Love Medicine describes the hardships and joys of five Ojibwe families in the Upper Midwest as their lives intertwine throughout the twentieth century. This novel, a rich tapestry of voices, genres, and styles, provides readers with an opportunity to grapple with complex and timely topics like identity, survival, home, and belonging. 


Professor Michael McCamley will lead a discussion of Love Medicine on August 14 from 2:00–3:30 p.m. You can join via the reading group Zoom chat. You can also borrow an e-book of Love Medicine through the Hathi Trust ETAS program and the University of Delaware Library. The e-book can be used by one UD reader at a time. Instructions for borrowers are available.

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  • Department of English
  • 203 Memorial Hall
  • Newark, DE 19716, USA
  • University of Delaware
  • Phone: 302-831-2361
  • english@udel.edu