100 Top Books By 100 UW Authors Print
Written by Tom Griffin & Eric McHenry   
Article Index
100 Top Books By 100 UW Authors
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ImageParrington, Vernon Louis
Main Currents in American Thought
This monumental literary history was an upset winner of the Pulitzer Prize in 1928, nudging aside Charles Beard’s The Rise of American Civilization. Parrington looked at American literature through the lens of his populist politics.
ImagePellegrini, Angelo, ’27, ’42
The Unprejudiced Palate: Classic Thoughts on Food and the Good Life
First published in 1948 by the UW English professor and native of Tuscany, this memoir-cum-cookbook inspired a generation to go beyond casseroles and TV dinners. “So far ahead of his time, he still makes us seem backward.”—Gourmet Editor Ruth Reichl
ImagePressly, Thomas
Americans Interpret Their Civil War
History Professor Pressly investigates how American historians have interpreted the Civil War since 1861, tracking revisionist trends, Freudian fads and a never-ending blame-game. The book sold more than 45,000 copies.
ImageRader, Melvin
False Witness
What is it like to be falsely accused of being a Communist during the McCarthy era? Philosophy Professor Rader’s memoir of the Canwell Committee’s 1948 investigation at the UW—and his subsequent vindication—is a chilling reminder of a dark time in American history.
ImageReyes, Lawney, ’59
White Grizzly Bear’s Legacy: Learning to Be Indian
Reyes comes from the Sin Aikst, which is now known as the Lakes tribe, in eastern Washington. He uses personal and family history to explore the larger forces that have confronted all Native Americans: displacement, acculturation and the potent force of self-renewal.
ImageRobinson, Marilynne, ’68
Housekeeping
On the strength of this single, slim novel, which she began writing while completing her Ph.D. at the UW, Robinson came to be widely regarded as one of the preeminent writers of her generation. Her second novel, Gilead, published in 2004, won both the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award.
ImageRoethke, Theodore
Collected Poems
Roethke’s many honors included the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award. He was, quite simply, one of the most important American poets of the last 100 years.
ImageRule, Ann, ’53 
The Stranger Beside Me
In one of the most popular—and certainly one of the most unique—true-crime books ever published, Rule documents her longtime friendship with another UW alumnus, serial killer Ted Bundy, and her coming to grips with what he had done.
ImageRuss, Joanna
The Female Man
In this influential novel, Russ uses the tools of science fiction—four protagonists from four different planets—to raise large questions about gender identity.
ImageSale, Roger
Seattle, Past to Present
Known for his literary criticism (he was an early defender of Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings), English Professor Sale crossed over to history for this look at Seattle told partly through brief biographies of some its most colorful characters.