My most recent book,  Coxsackie: The Life and Death of Prison Reform, was published by Johns Hopkins University Press (2014).  Learn more about the book at the Johns Hopkins University Press page, or check it out here at  The book’s cover features a photograph of New York City reformatory inmates taken by Ben Shahn:


Below, are descriptions of my other published books, starting with the first.

My first book was Cocaine: From Medical Marvel to Modern Menace in the United States, published by Johns Hopkins University Press in 2000.  It remains in print today, so you can still order it!  Learn more at the Johns Hopkins University Press page for the book, or read a bit at Google Books. I still like the book’s cover, which features an 1836 botanical drawing of coca from Hooker’s Companion to the Botanical Magazine.

Cover of Cocaine












Following Cocaine, I was fortunate to work with a terrific group of historians (Rebecca Carroll, John Swann, and William McAllister) as well as my marvelous co-editor John Erlen, on Federal Drug Control: The Evolution of Policy and Practice (The Haworth Press, 2004).  I contributed three of the seven chapters of the book, and still find them worthwhile!  After some mergers and acquisitions in the publishing business, I think the book can now be found on the Informa Healthcare lists, but you can certainly still find it at Amazon, new or used.

Federal Drug Control Cover












I collaborated with John C. Burnham on Prison Work: A Tale of Thirty Years in the California Department of Corrections (Ohio State University Press, 2005), an edited memoir of correctional officer William Richard Wilkinson.  John Burnham conducted the interviews that fomed the basis of the book, interview which I helped edit (I also prepared the Editors’ Introduction).  This book was a great pleasure to do, and a wonderful collaboration.  Happily, this book is also still in print, and you can see more at Amazon.

Prison Work Cover







My most recent collaborative effort was with David Wolcott, author of the outstanding book Cops and Kids: Policing Juvenile Delinquency in Urban America, 1890-1940 (Ohio State University Press, 2005).  Together, we wrote a textbook, A History of Modern American Criminal Justice (Sage, 2013), which you can learn more about here.  We particularly liked the cover, a photograph of the “Bridge of Sighs,” that connected the Allegheny County Courthouse in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, with the old Allegheny County Jail.  The bridge suggests the constant flow of people through the different elements of the criminal justice system, and the juxtaposition with a modern skyscraper highlights the connections between past and present in that system.



One Response to Books

  1. Pingback: Points Editor Spillane Pushes Occupy Wall Street off the Front Page | Points: The Blog of the Alcohol and Drugs History Society

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