News Story

November 15, 2018

La Roche College English Professor to Publish Fantasy Novel

PITTSBURGH, Nov. 15, 2018 – Author and La Roche University English Professor Joshua David Bellin, Ph.D., will release his new fantasy novel “The Devouring Land” on Nov. 20.

“The Devouring Land” is the second book in a trilogy beginning with “Ecosystem” and concluding with “House of Earth, House of Stone,” set to release in 2019. The trilogy tells the tale of a future Earth in which the physical environment has evolved into a conscious—and malevolent—entity, forcing humankind to the brink of extinction. The novel’s protagonist, a 17-year-old orphan named Sarah, must learn a new way to coexist with the sentient Ecosystem in order to protect and preserve her people.

“I’ve always loved spending time in nature, and I’ve always been fascinated by extreme environments—deserts, swamps, mountains. Writing the ‘Ecosystem’ trilogy gave me an opportunity to combine my passions within a fantasy narrative that features fast-paced action as well as contemplation on humanity’s place in the natural world,” Dr. Bellin said.

Dr. Bellin graduated from Wesleyan University and earned his Ph.D. in English at the University of Pennsylvania. He teaches college English at La Roche, has published four nonfiction books and has taken part in the movement to protect the environment. He lives with his wife and two children in the Frick Park area of Pittsburgh. 

A launch party to celebrate the release of the novel will be held at Riverstone Books in McCandless Crossing from 6:30 to 8 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 26. The launch party is free and open to the public.

“The Devouring Land” can be purchased through Amazon and local, independent booksellers. The novel is available as a paperback book and an e-book. For more information about Dr. Bellin or “The Devouring Land,” please visit


About La Roche University: A private liberal arts college in the North Hills of Pittsburgh, La Roche University offers more than 50 undergraduate majors, six graduate degree programs and one doctoral program, with particular strengths in education, business, criminal justice, psychology, and health and medical sciences as well as interior design and graphic design. This residential college provides a vibrant campus community for more than 1,400 men and women enjoying 30-plus student organizations and an exciting NCAA Div. III athletics program. Founded by the Sisters of Divine Providence in 1963, La Roche University embraces its Catholic heritage while welcoming people of all faiths and backgrounds. With a legacy of social justice and a commitment to international exchange, La Roche University educates students to be lifelong learners and achievers in an increasingly diverse and global society.