What we’re reading, watching and listening to from UW alumni this summer

Whether you need a book to dive into on your next plane ride, a podcast for a long walk or a TV show for a rainy day, UW alumni are ready to keep you company this summer.

Soul Boom: Why We Need a Spiritual Revolution

By Rainn Wilson
Hachette Books
The former UW student turned actor, producer and writer explores how spirituality can help us create solutions for an increasingly challenging world. Wilson, best known for playing Dwight Schrute in “The Office,” is the co-founder of the media company SoulPancake.

The Women

By Kristin Hannah, ’83
St. Martin’s Publishing Group
The latest novel from The New York Times best-selling writer is both an portrait of a young nurse coming of age in a challenging time and an epic tale of a nation divided by the Vietnam war and broken by politics, of a generation both fueled by dreams and lost on the battlefield.

Red Right Hand

Starring Garret Dillahunt, ’87
Prime Video, Apple TV and video on demand
This action thriller stars Dillahunt, a Yakima native who earned a bachelor’s degree in English from the UW and has appeared in numerous small-screen comedies (“The Mindy Project”) and dramas (such as “Deadwood” and “ER”). Here, he plays a former drug addict and ex-gang member who has become a preacher.

The Good Doctor

Starring Christina Chang, ’96; Bria-Samoné Henderson, ’18
Since 2017, Chang has played Dr. Audrey Lim on the series, which is now in its final season. Born and raised in Taipei, Taiwan, she moved with her family to the U.S. at 17 and attended the University of Kansas before switching to the UW. She starred in Seattle Children’s Theatre plays before moving to New York City and getting roles in TV.


Starring Jean Smart, ’78
The third season of the comedy starring gay icon, national treasure and UW alumna Jean Smart lives up to the hype. Smart’s Deborah Vance (Joan Rivers meets Lucille Bluth) and Gen Z comedienne Ava Daniels (played by Hannah Einbinder) reunite as changed women. Need some good news? On the cusp of Pride Month, it was announced that “Hacks” would be renewed for a fourth season.

Sunny Day Real Estate: “Diary”

Dan Hoerner, ’93
For Sunny Day Real Estate, it all started in the dorms at the UW, where Hoerner first met Nate Mendel, ’92. They’d go on to found an essential post-hardcore band, recording their album “Diary” in 1994. Mendel, also bassist for Foo Fighters, came and went through the band’s various reincarnations, but Hoerner—who lives in Spokane and ran the beloved venue Big Dipper for a decade—has been involved since the beginning. Sunny Day Real Estate has re-recorded “Diary” at London Bridge Studio in Shoreline, known for hosting bands like Pearl Jam, Death Cab for Cutie and Soundgarden. They’re headed off on tour this summer, playing three nights at The Showbox in late August.

Ten Thousand Things

Shin Yu Pai, ’09
UW Magazine’s own staff writer Shin Yu Pai hosts an award-winning podcast when she’s not interviewing famous photographers, documenting the local arts scene or fulfilling her duties as the Civic Poet of Seattle. Ten Thousand Things celebrates and examines modern-day artifacts of Asian American life. The third season is out now, with stories from a professional flutist, an MMA Cage fighter, a tree in Seattle’s Chinatown-International District and the host herself.

Dim Lights & Stiff Drinks: The Dive Bars of Seattle

Brad Holden, ’97
Local historian Brad Holden, who earned an anthropolgy degree from the UW, specializes in Seattle’s illicit past: prohibition, bootleggers and dive bars. His podcast explores Seattle’s favorite drinking establishments, from Hattie’s Hat to Blue Moon to the oldest operating bar in town, Merchant’s Cafe. The fourth season is available now.