Yeah, it's a bit dated but this 1993 compilation, ALASKANA FOR LIBRARIES, A Core List of Book,s still stands. It was put together by a team that Included my dear friend Terrance Cole. Terrance is currently occupied slogging down what he calls "a junkyard smoothie made out of rusty nails and scrap iron," and I was looking over some of his books when I opened the list. Not biased here (sic) but I'm proud to see INROADS, An Anthology of Alaska's Fellowship Writers that I co-edited with Jean Anderson on the list.
I can't say enough good things about Terrance Cole. He's an inspiring professor at the University here in Fairbanks, a respected and accomplished historian, and a damn good writer. Here's a few of his books--they're mostly about the history of Fairbanks and Alaska-- and they're funny, accessible, never dry and always interesting like the author himself.
Here's a selection from a review of his FIGHTING FOR THE 49th STAR in the Fairbanks Daily News Miner:
Cole excels at providing truckloads of facts and data in a very readable, easily understood format. He gives back history of major characters in a way that does not distract the reader from the real story, but enhances our understanding of the players’ motivations and agendas. He is objective in his descriptions, using letters, newspapers, and other primary documents without interjecting opinion in inappropriate places.
Cole also details the early differences between Anchorage and Fairbanks, giving readers a glimpse into a rivalry that has existed almost since the beginning, but making it clear residents of both cities want only what’s best for the state and themselves.
“Fighting for the 49th Star: C.W. Snedden and the Crusade for Alaska Statehood” is an excellent birthday present for Alaskans, one that reminds us why we make this young, vibrant state our home.