New books by Peace Corps writers | May — June 2023


To purchase any of these books from — CLICK on the book cover, the bold book title, or the publishing format you would like — and Peace Corps Worldwide, an Amazon Associate, will receive a small remittance from your purchase that will help support the site and the annual Peace Corps Writers awards.

We include a brief description for each of the books listed here in hopes of encouraging readers  to order a book and/or  to VOLUNTEER TO REVIEW IT.

 See a book you’d like to review for Peace Corps Worldwide? Send a note to Marian at, and she will send you a free copy along with a few instructions.

P.S. In addition to the books listed below, I have on my shelf a number of other books whose authors would love for you to review. Go to Books Available for Review to see what is on that shelf.

Please, please join in our Third Goal effort and volunteer to review a book(s)!!!


The Streets of Newtowne: A Story of Cambridge, MA
Suzanne Preston Blier (Dahomey ( Benin 1969–71); Jim Blake (Illustrator)
Imagine and Wonder
80 pages
May 2023
$19.99 (paperback), $24.99 (hardcover), $.99 (Kindle)

A history of Cambridge, MA, for students from the 4th to 6th grade.



Wayward Guilt
H.M.S. Brown (Bulgaria 2001-02)
Leavx Cay Press
278 pages
July 2023
$2.99 (Kindle)

Three friends leave home to serve their country. Only two make it back.



Why We Tell Stories
By Dorcas Kiptoo & Arthur Dobrin (Kenya 1965-67)
Nsemia Publishers, Kenya
80 pages
February 2023
$5.86 (paperback)

Read such tales from Kenya as “Why Goats Don’t like Leopards,” “Why Hyenas Walk on Stilts,” and “Why There Are Ogres”.

Memoir with portion on Peace Corps

Memories of Choices, People, Places, and Events That Shaped My Life
by John F. Fanselow (Nigeria 1961–63, staff: Somalia 1966–68)
Peace Corps Writers
679 pages
May 2023
$20.00 (paperback)

In Memories . . . John Fanselow tells the story of his love of teaching and his revolutionary mantra of “Try the opposite” — from Nigeria to New York to New Zealand, and many places in between. After receiving a BA and MA from Northern Illinois University, he applied to become a Peace Corps Volunteer in Latin America. While there were no openings there, he was fortunately accepted to teach at a teacher training college in Nigeria for two years, and it was there that his “Try the opposite” technique blossomed into his life-long calling.


Keeper of the Stars: The Poems, Volume 1
by Donald aka Azure Dirnberger (West Indies 1977-79)
Spanish Edition
May 2023
241 pages
$44.81 (Paperback); $51.31 (Hardcover)

The words began before my trip to El Salvador, but continued and finished while doing a Global Village Build with Habitat for Humanity International and HFH El Salvador. The members of the team, the people of the country of El Salvador, the families who wanted to construct their new homes with the understanding that a home is the starting point of a better life and a better world, to them and for them I wrote. 



The Fly that Flew Off the Handle
by Jonathan Foret (Tonga 2004-06) and Alexis Braud (illustrator)
Bayou Country Holdings Publisher
36 pages
April 2023
$25.00 (Hardcover)

We all need to find where we belong to be happy. Lester is a fly with some problems. He’s angry. He’s frustrated, and he keeps flying off the handle! In The Fly that Flew off the Handle, Jonathan Foret tells a story of a bug on a mission to get himself on track.


The Hardway: From Cairo to Cape Town
Christian  Harris (Kenya 1999–2001)
Independently published
304 pages
2022 (2nd. ed)
$6.88 (paperback)

When I finished my PC service in 2001, a seed was planted to travel from Cairo to Cape Town.  In 2018, a time before the pandemic, civil wars in Sudan and Ethiopia, and yet another economic collapse in Zimbabwe, I fulfilled that aspiration of traveling across Africa (mostly) by myself using public transportation. This is a travel journal/diary, capturing the exploits — both the mundane and the life threatening. 


Words Create Worlds: Poems
Ada Jo Mann  (Chad 1967-69)
Peace Corps Writers
147 pages
April 2023
$14.99 (paperback)

Words Create Worlds is a collection of poems that span the life of the author, Ada Jo Mann,  who grew up in Detroit, Michigan and who was a Peace Corps volunteer in Chad from 1967-69. Her Peace Corps service led to a career in international development which took her to many countries around the world where she focused on building strong communities and organizations using a strength-based approach to change called “Appreciative Inquiry.” 

Upon the author’s retirement, she began taking courses at the independent bookstore, Politics and Prose, in Washington, DC. As a participant in the Poetry Circle she was inspired to try her hand at writing poetry and this collection of her poems was the result. In addition to the international focus of her poems, the author writes about memories of growing up and the impact of nature on her daily life.


Goodbye to Clocks Ticking: How We Live While Dying
Joseph  Monninger (Burkina Faso 1975–77)
208 pages
$16. 89 (Hardcover), $6.99 (Kindle)

An uplifting journey of truly seeing and appreciating what makes life worth living in the year following a terminal diagnosis.


YA SciFi

The Adventures of Mayana: The Quest To Save Humanity
David Michael Perry (Belize 1985-87)
Independently published
512 pages
May 2023
$2.99 (Kindle)

This is the continuing story of 17-year Mayana who spends months attempting to return from her homeland of Belize to the alternate reality that she visited on her first adventure (The Adventures of Mayana: Falling Off the Edge of the Earth) so that she can reconnect with her friends Shifu, Tata and Calypso. After almost giving up on ever seeing her friends again, she finally discovers how to return to the alternate reality. Upon her arrival in the ancient Maya city of Xunantunich, she again meets Shifu and many new friends, all of whom have discovered the powers of magic and how to use them for the “good of humanity.”


The Call: The Spiritual Realism of Sargent Shriver
by Jamie Price
SSPI Press
336 pages
March 2023
$11.49 (Kindle); $22.00 (Paperback)

The Call looks at the role of the spirit in the life and work of one of the most accomplished American peacebuilders of the 20th twentieth century, Robert Sargent Shriver (1915-2011), founder of the Peace Corps and architect of the War on Poverty. 

Social Science with Peace Corps references

The Fortunate Few: IVS Volunteers from Asia to the Andes
Thierry J. Sagnier
Peace Corps Writers
378 pages
June 2023
$20.00 (paperback), $4.99 (Kindle)

The Fortunate Few  is first and foremost a book about the men and women who volunteered their time and skills to improve the lives of millions throughout the International Voluntary Services (IVS). Here, nearly one hundred of theses volunteers speak about their service years and the impact their had on third futures and the people they served, often at great cost to themselves. Nearly a dozen volunteer died, victims of the armed conflict that raged across Southeast Asia with the war in Vietnam.

The effectiveness of IVS volunteers would eventually lead to the creation of a number of other international volunteer agencies including the Peace Corps.

Some RPCVs who either subsequently or previously served with IVS contributed to the  book.

YA stories

That’s My Moon Over Court Street: Dispatches from a Life in Flint
by Jan Worth-Nelson (Tonga 1976-78)
June 2023
453 pages
$18.00 (Paperback)

In this collection from Flint, Michigan’s venerable East Village Magazine2007-2022, Jan Worth-Nelson describes in personable, compelling prose what she observed, mourned, bemoaned, cherished and celebrated in one of the country’s most beleaguered cities. She lingers on nuthatches and drag queen bingo.



Peace Corps Memoir based on his journal

A Journey for Peace: A Journal of Peace – Episodes of Life from an Early Peace Corps Volunteer
Donald C. Yates (The Philippines 1962–64)
122 pages
Austin Macauley Publishers
March 2023
$10.95 (paperback), $4.50 (Kindle)

Don’s book captures the essence of an area of the world rarely seen or visited by an outsider while sharing how he grew as a young man in a foreign land.   

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Copyright © 2022. Peace Corps Worldwide.