Becoming Free Indeed: by Jinger Vuolo
Becoming Free Indeed: My Story of Disentangling Faith from Fear by Jinger Vuolo
Jinger Vuolo, the sixth child in the famous Duggar family of TLC’s 19 Kids and Counting and Counting On, recounts how she began to question the unhealthy ideology of her youth and learned to embrace true freedom in Christ.
When Jinger Duggar Vuolo was growing up, she was convinced that obeying the rules was the key to success and God’s favor. She zealously promoted the Basic Life Principles of Bill Gothard.
Jinger, along with three of her sisters, wrote a New York Times bestseller about their religious convictions. She believed this level of commitment would guarantee God’s blessing, even though in private she felt constant fear that she wasn’t measuring up to the high standards demanded of her.
In Becoming Free Indeed, Jinger shares how in her early twenties, a new family member—a brother-in-law who didn’t grow up in the same tight-knit conservative circle as Jinger—caused her to examine her beliefs. He was committed to the Bible, but he didn’t believe many of the things Jinger had always assumed were true. His influence, along with the help of a pastor named Jeremy Vuolo, caused Jinger to see that her life was built on rules, not God’s Word.
Jinger committed to studying the Bible—truly understanding it—for the first time. What resulted was an earth-shaking realization: much of what she’d always believed about God, obedience to His Word, and personal holiness wasn’t in-line with what the Bible teaches.
Now with a renewed faith of personal conviction, Becoming Free Indeed shares what it was like living under the tenants of Bill Gothard, the Biblical truth that changed her perspective, and how she disentangled her faith with her belief in Jesus intact.
Black Cake: A Novel by Charmaine Wilkerson
We can’t choose what we inherit. But can we choose who we become?
In present-day California, Eleanor Bennett’s death leaves behind a puzzling inheritance for her two children, Byron and Benny: a black cake, made from a family recipe with a long history, and a voice recording. In her message, Eleanor shares a tumultuous story about a headstrong young swimmer who escapes her island home under suspicion of murder. The heartbreaking tale Eleanor unfolds, the secrets she still holds back, and the mystery of a long-lost child challenge everything the siblings thought they knew about their lineage and themselves.
Can Byron and Benny reclaim their once-close relationship, piece together Eleanor’s true history, and fulfill her final request to “share the black cake when the time is right”? Will their mother’s revelations bring them back together or leave them feeling more lost than ever?
Charmaine Wilkerson’s debut novel is a story of how the inheritance of betrayals, secrets, memories, and even names can shape relationships and history. Deeply evocative and beautifully written, Black Cake is an extraordinary journey through the life of a family changed forever by the choices of its matriarch.
In development as a Hulu original series produced by Marissa Jo Cerar, Oprah Winfrey (Harpo Films), and Kapital Entertainment.
Black Joy by Tracey Michae’l Lewis-Giggetts
Black Joy: Stories of Resistance, Resilience, and Restoration by Tracey Michae’l Lewis-Giggetts
With deeply personal and uplifting essays in the vein of Black Girls Rock, You Are Your Best Thing, and I Really Needed This Today, this is “a necessary testimony on the magic and beauty of our capacity to live and love fully and out loud” (Kerry Washington).
When Tracey M. Lewis-Giggetts wrote an essay on Black joy for The Washington Post, she had no idea just how deeply it would resonate. But the outpouring of positive responses affirmed her own lived experience: that Black joy is not just a weapon of resistance, it is a tool for resilience.
With this book, Tracey aims to gift her community with a collection of lyrical essays about the way joy has evolved, even in the midst of trauma, in her own life. Detailing these instances of joy in the context of Black culture allows us to recognize the power of Black joy as a resource to draw upon, and to challenge the one-note narratives of Black life as solely comprised of trauma and hardship.
“Lewis-Giggetts etches a stunning personal map that follows in her ancestors’ footsteps and highlights their ability to take control of situational heartbreak and tragedy and make something better out of it….A simultaneously gorgeous and heartbreaking read” (Kirkus Reviews, starred review).
Black Women Will Save the World: An Anthem by April Ryan
In this long-overdue celebration of Black women’s resilience and unheralded strength, the revered, trailblazing White House correspondent reflects on “The Year That Changed Everything”—2020—and African-American women’s unprecedented role in upholding democracy.
“I am keenly aware that everyone and everything has a story,” April D. Ryan acknowledges. “Also, I have always marveled at Black women and how we work to move mountains and are never really thanked or recognized.” In Black Women Will Save the World, she melds these two truths, creating an inspiring and heart-tugging portrait of one of the momentous years in America, 2020—when America elected its first Black woman Vice President—and celebrates the tenacity, power, and impact of Black women across America.
From the beginning of the nation to today, Black women have transformed their pain into progress and have been at the frontlines of the nation’s political, social, and economic struggles. These “Sheroes” as Ryan calls them, include current political leaders such as Maxine Waters, Valerie Jarrett, and Kamala Harris; LaTosha Brown, and other activists. Combining profiles and in-depth interviews with these influential movers and shakers and many more, Ryan explores the challenges Black women endure, and how the lessons they’ve learned can help us shape our own stories.
Ryan also chronicles her personal journey from working-class Baltimore to the elite echelons of journalism and speaks out about the hurdles she faced in becoming one of the most well-connected members of the Washington press corps—while raising two daughters as a single mother in the aftermath of a messy divorce.
It is time for everyone to acknowledge Black women’s unrivaled contributions to America. Yet our democracy remains in peril, and their work is far from done. Black Women Will Save the World presents a vital kaleidoscopic look at women of different ages and from diverse backgrounds who devote their lives to making the world a better place—even if that means stepping out of their “place.”
Call Me a Woman: On Our Way to Equality and Peace by Laurie Levin
It’s time to raise the bar. There are more months in the year than countries in the world where women and men have equal rights. This imbalance is the cause of the most pressing challenges we face today.
Angry about sexism and misogyny and what you personally have endured? Afraid the world won’t get its act together in time to save itself?
Call Me A Woman combines Laurie Levin’s personal story, including multiple sexual assaults, years of research, personal interviews, global studies, and activism to ramp up awareness and change perceptions of how we view what happens to girls and women world-wide.
Equality can become our reality when each of us comes to terms with how we uphold inequality. The long-standing domination of men over women is reflected in our language, traditions, choices, votes, and what we do and don’t pay attention to.
Call Me A Woman is a call to action and roadmap that will speed our way to gender equality and a more peaceful world.
After all, women are half of every race, religion, ethnic group, economic class, and nation.
Become part of the solution and create a safer and more just world for girls and women. When women rise, we take the world with us.
Cooking from the Spirit by Tabitha Brown
Cooking from the Spirit: Easy, Delicious, and Joyful Plant-Based Inspirations by Tabitha Brown
Tabitha Brown, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Feeding the Soul, presents her first cookbook—full of easy, family-friendly vegan recipes and stories from the spirit, inspired by her health journey and love of delicious food.
Sometimes people say to Tabitha Brown, “I’ve never eaten vegan before.” As Tab says, “Have you ever eaten an apple?”
After living with a terrible undiagnosed illness for more than a year and a half, Tab was willing to try anything to stop the pain. Inspired by the documentary What the Health, she tried a thirty-day vegan challenge—and never looked back. Wanting to inspire others to make changes that might improve their own lives, she started sharing her favorite plant-based recipes in her signature warm voice with thousands, and now millions, of online fans.
Tab’s recipes are flexible, creative, and filled with encouragement, so you trust yourself to cook food the way it makes you happy. If you’re already a “cooking from the spirit” sort of person, you’ll love how much freedom Tab gives to make these delicious vegan dishes your own. If you’re newer to cooking—or to vegan cooking—Tab will help you get comfortable in the kitchen and, most important, have fun doing it!
In this joyful book, Tab shares personal stories, inspirational “Tabisms,” and more than eighty easy, family-friendly recipes.
Cooking from the Spirit is for anyone interested in plant-based eating and all lovers of food, plus anyone who wants a little warm inspiration in their lives. As Tab says, “Honey, now let’s go on and get to cooking from the spirit. Yes? Very good!”
Dawn (Lilith’s Brood, 1) by Octavia E. Butler
One woman is called upon to rebuild the future of humankind after a nuclear war, in this revelatory post-apocalyptic tale from the award-winning author of Parable of the Sower.
When Lilith lyapo wakes from a centuries-long sleep, she finds herself aboard the vast spaceship of the Oankali. She discovers that the Oankali—a seemingly benevolent alien race—intervened in the fate of the humanity hundreds of years ago, saving everyone who survived a nuclear war from a dying, ruined Earth and then putting them into a deep sleep. After learning all they could about Earth and its beings, the Oankali healed the planet, cured cancer, increased human strength, and they now want Lilith to lead her people back to Earth—but salvation comes at a price.
Hopeful and thought-provoking, this post-apocalyptic narrative deftly explores gender and race through the eyes of characters struggling to adapt during a pivotal time of crisis and change.
Embers on the Wind: A Novel by Lisa Williamson Rosenberg
The past and the present converge in this enthralling, serpentine tale of women connected by motherhood, slavery’s legacy, and histories that span centuries.
In 1850 in Massachusetts, Whittaker House stood as a stop on the Underground Railroad. It’s where two freedom seekers, Little Annie and Clementine, hid and perished. Whittaker House still stands, and Little Annie and Clementine still linger, their dreams of freedom unfulfilled.
Now a fashionably distressed vacation rental in the Berkshires, Whittaker House draws seekers of another kind: Black women who only appear to be free. Among them are Dominique, a single mother following her grand-mère’s stories to Whittaker House in search of an ancestor; Michelle, Dominique’s lover, who has journeyed to the Berkshire Mountains to heal her own traumas; and Kaye, Michelle’s sister, a seer whose visions reveal the past and future secrets of the former safehouse―along with her own.
For each of them, true liberation can come only from uncovering their connection to history―and to the spirits awaiting peace and redemption within the walls of Whittaker House.
Girl Get Up! – 21 Day Devotional by Temeka Davis
Girl Get Up!: 21 Day Devotional and Journal by Temeka Davis
Girl Get Up is a 21-day devotional and journal that will encourage, inspire and motivate you to Get Up!
Get up and go get everything God has for you! Girl get up and get moving! Get up and pray!
You have dreams, goals and visions that you need to work on. There’s a journal included in the back of the book for you to write down things as God speaks to you.
Get up and start that business. Get up and go back to school. Get up and move!
Hold You Down: A Novel by Tracy Brown
Hold You Down is an edgy novel from rising star Tracy Brown about the perils of love and the ties that bind…
New York City. Late 1980s to early 1990s.
Mercy and Lenox Howard have always only had each other. Growing up on the mean streets of Harlem with an absentee mother meant that they had to have each other’s backs. Now young, smart mothers they are determined to survive in New York City while raising their two sons, who have bright futures ahead of them.
Mercy is the quiet, straight laced hospital administrator, struggling to make ends meet. At night and on weekends, she pours her heart into her cooking and her dream of owning her own restaurant. Lenox is the diva, the wild child, looking for excitement and her big come up in life and love. Their boys, Deon and Judah, have been raised more like brothers than cousins, forging a bond that is unbreakable.
When Lenox heads down a path that she believes will bring success and power, it changes the entire course of her life and her family’s life forever. As a result of their mother’s choices, cousins Deon and Judah soon find themselves in uncharted territory.
It’s Not All Downhill From Here: A Novel by Terry McMillan
It’s Not All Downhill From Here: A Novel by Terry McMillan
After a sudden change of plans, a remarkable woman and her loyal group of friends try to figure out what she’s going to do with the rest of her life—from Terry McMillan, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of How Stella Got Her Groove Back and Waiting to Exhale
“McMillan brings her signature wit and wisdom to It’s Not All Downhill From Here.”—O: The Oprah Magazine
Loretha Curry’s life is full. A little crowded sometimes, but full indeed. On the eve of her sixty-eighth birthday, she has a booming beauty-supply empire, a gaggle of lifelong friends, and a husband whose moves still surprise. True, she’s carrying a few more pounds than she should be, but Loretha is not one of those women who think her best days are behind her—and she’s determined to prove wrong her mother, her twin sister, and everyone else with that outdated view of aging wrong. It’s not all downhill from here.
But when an unexpected loss turns her world upside down, Loretha will have to summon all her strength, resourcefulness, and determination to keep on thriving, pursue joy, heal old wounds, and chart new paths. With a little help from her friends, of course.
Jefa in Training: The Business Startup Toolkit for Entrepreneurial and Creative Women by Ashley K. Stoyanov Ojeda
Step-by-Step Toolkit to Turn Your Passion Project into a Successful Business
“…a much-needed guide for all of us who need a blueprint to becoming a successful entrepreneur.” —Eva Longoria, award-winning actress, producer, director, activist, philanthropist and CEO of UnbeliEVAble Entertainment
Women, now is the time to build your enterprise. Jefa in Training is the only Spanglish project-launching toolkit and female entrepreneur planner specially made for a new generation of boss women.
A solopreneur and small business guide. A business startup planner and toolkit for women in leadership, business, and beyond, Jefa in Training offers women entrepreneurs the female empowerment needed to take a side hustle to the next level. Whether it’s learning to define your brand, set up a beta test group, or draft an LLC operating agreement, this compendium of lessons, anecdotes, worksheets, templates, and quotes teaches the next generation of women in business how to work for yourself and turn your ideas into something much bigger.
Solopreneurs and creatives, you are invited to let go of your fears and finally launch your blog, project, or platform. Jefa in Training isn’t your typical small business book. Part Latinx book, it is a conversation with a special tribe of Latina immigrants, Hispanic American generations, and women of color in financial, media, entrepreneurial, and creative spaces. Explore a more complex view of Latinidad, covering everything from imposter syndrome to micro-aggressions and bilingualism.
Ashley K. Stoyanov Ojeda is an author, community-builder, business development strategist, coach, and socialpreneur. Originally from Queens, NYC and born to a Mexican mom and French-American father, Ashley’s career started in the music industry in 2012, working at major record labels, publishers, and venues. After relocating to Portland, OR post-college, she created her own network for local womxn songwriters, now a national organization that has been featured in The Recording Academy, called #WomxnCrush Music.
Since the rapid growth of her organization, she has dedicated her career to creating opportunities and developing businesses and communities of underrepresented entrepreneurs through her coaching and consulting, and has become known as the Business Hada Madrina (Business Fairygodmother).
Love, Honor, Betray by Mary Monroe
Award-winning New York Times bestselling author Mary Monroe delivers the latest thrillingly scandal-filled novel in her Depression-era saga of a church-going lady and her oh-so-upstanding husband racing to cover up their many sins—and gambling on one scheme too many. . .
With mysterious serial murders putting peaceful Lexington, Alabama, on edge, Jessie and Hubert Wiggins’ steadfast calm and devotion to each other reassures everyone that faith will see them through. But Jessie and Hubert have paid a terrible hidden cost to maintain their devout facade and respectable standing. Nothing can allay the guilt they feel—or stop the growing distrust between them . . .
Hubert thought he and his secret lover, Leroy, could continue seeing each other on the down-low in peace. But when Leroy’s ex-wife moves back in with him, a heartbroken Hubert is driven to distraction trying to keep Jessie in the dark—and quell his mounting jealousy. And his need for satisfaction is driving Hubert to reckless extremes—and desperate risks. . .
Jessie believes the struggles between her and Hubert will all be worth it if she can connive him to finallyconsummate their marriage—no matter what she has to do. But his erratic behavior and her frustration soon has her trying yet another new lover, who is as charming as he is unreliable—and unexpectedly dangerous. . .
Now with their secrets out of control—and the police perilously near—Jessie and Hubert discover who might be behind the deaths plaguing their town. But can they risk a pursuit that could expose their own web of lies? When their only choice pits them and their suspicions against each other, their next move will either bury their deceptions deep for good—or reveal the one truth they can’t escape.
My Name Is Ona Judge by Suzette D. Harrison
New Hampshire, 1796. “My name is Ona Judge, and I escaped from the household of the President of the United States. I was the favored maid of George and Martha Washington, but they deemed me a slave and thought me property, and I hear ten dollars is offered as reward for my capture. Now I must write the truth that I have lived, and tell my story…”
Chincoteague, Virginia, present day. Rain soaks Tessa Scott as she runs from her car to the old, vine-covered property she has been called to survey. She’s too busy to accept a new job, but doing this favor for the grandmother of her childhood sweetheart delays a painful decision she must make about a future with her controlling boyfriend.
But when Tessa finds a tattered journal carefully hidden inside the house’s ancient fireplace, the tragic story of how Ona was ripped from her mother’s arms to live and work in the palatial Mount Vernon, and the heart-shattering betrayal that led her to risk her life and run, has Tessa spellbound. Could discovering this forgotten scandal at the heart of her nation’s history force her to confront her own story? As she races to reach the final page, will anything prepare her for the desperate moment when Ona’s captors find her again? Will it inspire Tessa to take ownership of her own life and set herself free?
A completely heartbreaking tale of love, loss and redemption, based on an astonishing true story from the founding of America. Perfect for fans of Before We Were Yours, Marie Benedict and America’s First Daughter.
Night Wherever We Go: A Novel by Tracey Rose Peyton
A gripping, radically intimate debut novel about a group of enslaved women staging a covert rebellion against their owners.
On a struggling Texas plantation, six enslaved women slip from their sleeping quarters and gather in the woods under the cover of night. The Lucys—as they call the plantation owners, after Lucifer himself—have decided to turn around the farm’s bleak financial prospects by making the women bear children. They have hired a “stockman” to impregnate them. But the women are determined to protect themselves.
Now each of the six faces a choice. Nan, the doctoring woman, has brought a sack of cotton root clippings that can stave off children when chewed daily. If they all take part, the Lucys may give up and send the stockman away. But a pregnancy for any of them will only encourage the Lucys further. And should their plan be discovered, the consequences will be severe.
Visceral and arresting, Night Wherever We Go illuminates each woman’s individual trials and desires while painting a subversive portrait of collective defiance. Unflinching in her portrayal of America’s gravest injustices, while also deeply attentive to the transcendence, love, and solidarity of women whose interior lives have been underexplored, Tracey Rose Peyton creates a story of unforgettable power.
Play to Win: A Novel by Jodie Slaughter
Jodie Slaughter’s latest rom-com, Play to Win, is a sizzling romance where a winning lottery ticket is meant to be a new start but instead becomes a second chance at love.
Miriam Butler’s life is going nowhere in the slowest, most excruciating way possible. Stuck in the same barely-paying job she’s had since she was sixteen and spending every night sleeping in the spare twin bed in her mother’s house, her existence might be hilarious if it wasn’t so bleak. One trip to her favorite Quickie Mart upends everything when she finds herself the winner of a Mega Millions Lottery Jackpot. Unfortunately, not even life-altering roses come without their painful thorns. Hers just so happen to be in the form of an estranged husband who has the right to claim his share of her money.
It’s been eight years since Leo Vaughn has had a conversation with his wife. When she calls out of the blue, practically begging him to come back to Greenbelt, the last thing he expects her to tell him when he gets there is that she’s come into a whole heap of money. She offers him a life-changing proposition of his own. Take a lump sum, finally sign the divorce papers, and be done with her for good. Only, a forever without her is the last thing Leo wants. So he gives a proposition of his own. One that won’t cost her nearly as many millions, but will buy him the time to do the one thing he’s been hungry to do since he left — win her back.
Purple Lotus: A Novel by Veena Rao
“The dazzling tale of an Indian-American woman finding her way through the labyrinth of tradition to self-awareness in the modern world. The writer employs an energetic prose style interspersed with melodic passages to make the writing itself a hybrid. Set in particular times and places, Purple Lotus nonetheless appeals to readers everywhere, especially women, to claim the full measure of their human rights. A vivid and resplendent novel for our time.”―Elaine Neil Orr, critically acclaimed author of Swimming Between Worlds
Tara moves to the American South three years after her arranged marriage to tech executive Sanjay. Ignored and lonely, Tara finds herself regressing back to childhood memories that have scarred her for life. When she was eight, her parents had left her behind with her aging grandparents and a schizophrenic uncle in Mangalore, while taking her baby brother with them to make a new life for the family in Dubai.
Tara’s memories of abandonment and isolation mirror her present life of loneliness and escalating abuse at the hands of her husband. She accepts the help of kind-hearted American strangers to fight Sanjay, only to be pressured by her patriarchal family to make peace with her circumstances. Then, in a moment of truth, she discovers the importance of self-worth—a revelation that gives her the courage to break free, gently rebuild her life, and even risk being shunned by her community when she marries her childhood love, Cyrus Saldanha.
Life with Cyrus is beautiful, until old fears come knocking. Ultimately, Tara must face these fears to save her relationship with Cyrus—and to confront the victim-shaming society she was raised within.
Intimate and deeply moving, Purple Lotus is the story of one woman’s ascension from the dark depths of desolation toward the light of freedom.
Sankofa: A Novel by Chibundu Onuzo
Named a Best Book of the Month by Entertainment Weekly, Harper’s Bazaar, and Time • Named a Most Anticipated Book of the Month by Goodreads, PopSugar, PureWow, LitHub, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, and Buzzfeed
A woman wondering who she really is goes in search of a father she never knew—only to find something far more complicated than she ever expected—in this “stirring narrative about family, our capacity to change and the need to belong” (Time).
Anna is at a stage of her life when she’s beginning to wonder who she really is. In her 40s, she has separated from her husband, her daughter is all grown up, and her mother—the only parent who raised her—is dead.
Searching through her mother’s belongings one day, Anna finds clues about the African father she never knew. His student diaries chronicle his involvement in radical politics in 1970s London. Anna discovers that he eventually became the president—some would say dictator—of a small nation in West Africa. And he is still alive…
When Anna decides to track her father down, a journey begins that is disarmingly moving, funny, and fascinating. Like the metaphorical bird that gives the novel its name, Sankofa expresses the importance of reaching back to knowledge gained in the past and bringing it into the present to address universal questions of race and belonging, the overseas experience for the African diaspora, and the search for a family’s hidden roots.
Examining freedom, prejudice, and personal and public inheritance, Sankofa is a story for anyone who has ever gone looking for a clear identity or home, and found something more complex in its place.
Self-Love in Action: Practical Ways to Bring Self-Compassion Into Work, Relationships & Everyday Life by Zo Crook
A practical approach to self-love with evidence-based therapy skills to trust your inner voice, make confident decisions, and live with greater personal empowerment in your relationships, career, and everyday life.
Many studies show that self-love is central to good mental health. Self-Love in Action helps you cultivate compassion, accountability, and self-respect in all areas of your life. In this practical, everyday guide, self-love becomes a verb–a moving declaration towards personal empowerment. This psychology-driven book offers proactive strategies to redirect you back to your authentic self by learning to listen to the voice within. Guided by a therapist, you’ll confront the past, examine the present, and prepare for the future by setting boundaries, taking accountability, and practicing the ultimate act of self-love.
Boost confidence with small rituals that shift the focus from “them” to “me”–reminding you that true love flows from the inside out.
Implement “Time to Practice” exercises to pause, set boundaries, say no, and invest in yourself.
Take self-love quizzes to reflect on the ways current habits might impede self-love action.
Explore real examples of clients who have overcome common hardships through their commitment to self-love.
Shine Bright: Black Women in Pop by Danyel Smith
Shine Bright: A Very Personal History of Black Women in Pop by Danyel Smith
American pop music is arguably this country’s greatest cultural contribution to the world, and its singular voice and virtuosity were created by a shining thread of Black women geniuses stretching back to the country’s founding. This is their surprising, heartbreaking, soaring story—from “one of the generation’s greatest, most insightful, most nuanced writers in pop culture” (Shea Serrano)
“Sparkling . . . the overdue singing of a Black girl’s song, with perfect pitch . . . delicious to read.”—Oprah Daily
ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR: Publishers Weekly
A weave of biography, criticism, and memoir, Shine Bright is Danyel Smith’s intimate history of Black women’s music as the foundational story of American pop.
Smith has been writing this history for more than five years. But as a music fan, and then as an essayist, editor (Vibe, Billboard), and podcast host (Black Girl Songbook), she has been living this history since she was a latchkey kid listening to “Midnight Train to Georgia” on the family stereo.
Smith’s detailed narrative begins with Phillis Wheatley, an enslaved woman who sang her poems, and continues through the stories of Mahalia Jackson, Dionne Warwick, Aretha Franklin, Gladys Knight, and Mariah Carey, as well as the under-considered careers of Marilyn McCoo, Deniece Williams, and Jody Watley.
Shine Bright is an overdue paean to musical masters whose true stories and genius have been hidden in plain sight—and the book Danyel Smith was born to write.
Somebody’s Daughter: A Memoir by Ashley C. Ford
“This is a book people will be talking about forever.” ―Glennon Doyle, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Untamed
“Ford’s wrenchingly brilliant memoir is truly a classic in the making. The writing is so richly observed and so suffused with love and yearning that I kept forgetting to breathe while reading it.” ―John Green, #1 New York Times bestselling author
One of the most prominent voices of her generation debuts with an extraordinarily powerful memoir: the story of a childhood defined by the looming absence of her incarcerated father.
Through poverty, adolescence, and a fraught relationship with her mother, Ashley C. Ford wishes she could turn to her father for hope and encouragement. There are just a few problems: he’s in prison, and she doesn’t know what he did to end up there. She doesn’t know how to deal with the incessant worries that keep her up at night, or how to handle the changes in her body that draw unwanted attention from men. In her search for unconditional love, Ashley begins dating a boy her mother hates. When the relationship turns sour, he assaults her. Still reeling from the rape, which she keeps secret from her family, Ashley desperately searches for meaning in the chaos. Then, her grandmother reveals the truth about her father’s incarceration . . . and Ashley’s entire world is turned upside down.
Somebody’s Daughter steps into the world of growing up a poor Black girl in Indiana with a family fragmented by incarceration, exploring how isolating and complex such a childhood can be. As Ashley battles her body and her environment, she embarks on a powerful journey to find the threads between who she is and what she was born into, and the complicated familial love that often binds them.
Speak: Find Your Voice, Trust Your Gut and Get from Where You Are to Where You Want to Be by Tunde Oyeneyin
From Tunde Oyeneyin, the massively popular Peloton instructor, fitness star, and founder of SPEAK, comes an empowering, inspiring book that shows how she transformed grief, setbacks, and flaws into growth, self-confidence, and triumph—for fans of Shonda Rhimes, Brene Brown, and Glennon Doyle.
On any given day, thousands of devoted people clip into their bikes and have their lives changed by Tunde Oyeneyin. From her platform in a Peloton studio, she encourages riders with her trademark blend of positivity, empathy, and motivational “Tunde-isms,” to push themselves to their limits both on and off the bike.
Now, fans and readers everywhere can learn about her personal journey, and discover how they too can “live a life of purpose, on purpose” with Speak, a memoir-manifesto-guide to life inspired by her immensely popular Instagram Live series of the same name.
Taking us through each step of the SPEAK acronym—Surrender, Power, Empathy, Authenticity, and Knowledge—Oyeneyin shares the lessons she has learned about loss, love, body image, and how she has successfully created an intentional, joyful life for herself, offering an accessible blueprint for anyone looking to make a positive change in their lives.
Stella Knox FBI Mystery Series by Mary Stone
Killer Smile (Stella Knox FBI Mystery Series Book 1) by Mary Stone
If looks can kill, a smile can be deadly.
Special Agent Stella Knox became an FBI agent to find the dirty cops responsible for her father’s murder and make them pay. But fresh out of Quantico, her first case has her seeking justice for a different victim—three of them, in fact.
The bodies of three teenage boys have turned up in a sleepy town outside of Nashville, TN. There’re no fingerprints, no DNA, and very little to connect the murders, except for a smiley face drawn in blood near two of the bodies. But why only two? The case makes zero sense, and the questions outnumber the answers.
Are the crimes related? Could it be the work of one calculating serial killer, or are they looking for three separate assailants?
One thing Stella knows for sure: someone is threatening the teenagers of small-town Cherry Farms, and they aren’t finished. As she and the team race against the clock to stop the nightmare that has descended upon this rural community, Stella has one more question…who will be next?
Enigmatic and gripping, Killer Smile is the first book in the new Stella Knox Series by bestselling author Mary Stone and Stacy O’Hare—a nail-biter that will make you wonder just how safe small towns really are.
Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid
A striking and surprising debut novel from an exhilarating new voice, Such a Fun Age is a page-turning and big-hearted story about race and privilege, set around a young black babysitter, her well-intentioned employer, and a surprising connection that threatens to undo them both.
Alix Chamberlain is a woman who gets what she wants and has made a living, with her confidence-driven brand, showing other women how to do the same. So she is shocked when her babysitter, Emira Tucker, is confronted while watching the Chamberlains’ toddler one night, walking the aisles of their local high-end supermarket. The store’s security guard, seeing a young black woman out late with a white child, accuses Emira of kidnapping two-year-old Briar. A small crowd gathers, a bystander films everything, and Emira is furious and humiliated. Alix resolves to make things right.
But Emira herself is aimless, broke, and wary of Alix’s desire to help. At twenty-five, she is about to lose her health insurance and has no idea what to do with her life. When the video of Emira unearths someone from Alix’s past, both women find themselves on a crash course that will upend everything they think they know about themselves, and each other.
With empathy and piercing social commentary, Such a Fun Age explores the stickiness of transactional relationships, what it means to make someone “family,” and the complicated reality of being a grown up. It is a searing debut for our times.
Survival Math by Mitchell S. Jackson
Survival Math: Notes on an All-American Family by Mitchell S. Jackson
An electrifying, dazzlingly written reckoning and an essential addition to the national conversation about race and class, Survival Math takes its name from the calculations award-winning author Mitchell S. Jackson made to survive the Portland, Oregon of his youth.
This dynamic book explores gangs and guns, near-death experiences, sex work, masculinity, composite fathers, the concept of “hustle,” and the destructive power of addiction—all framed within the story of Jackson, his family, and his community. Lauded for its breathtaking pace, its tender portrayals, its stark candor, and its luminous style, Survival Math reveals on every page the searching intellect and originality of its author.
The primary narrative, focused on understanding the antecedents of Jackson’s family’s experience, is complemented by poems composed from historical American documents as well as survivor files, which feature photographs and riveting short narratives of several of Jackson’s male relatives.
The sum of Survival Math’s parts is a highly original whole, one that reflects on the exigencies—over generations—that have shaped the lives of so many disenfranchised Americans. As essential as it is beautiful, as real as it is artful, Mitchell S. Jackson’s nonfiction debut is a singular achievement, not to be missed.
Sweet Baby Mine by Maria Daversa
“My whole life I’ve wanted someone to believe in me, to believe I was worthy of love. I never thought that someone would be me.”
~Quote from Sweet Baby Mine
“Why is it all the bad things we’ve done in the past never stay in the past?”
Ana will do anything to hold on to Tony. He’s the love of her life–the Heathcliff to her Catherine, the Rivera to her Kahlo, the Sid to her Nancy. Without him, she’s nothing.
But Ana also has a secret–a youthful indiscretion that shouldn’t have happened. So, when her estranged daughter, Chloe, calls in the middle of the night to say she wants to come home, Ana finds herself caught in a web of deceit as mother and daughter share a secret so troubling it could destroy her marriage.
Set in the 20th arrondissement of Paris, Sweet Baby Mine is an adult coming of age tale about the collateral damage left behind when a marriage fails spectacularly. Told in real time and from the perspectives of the two main characters: Ana and Tony, the story documents the toll secrets, lies, betrayals, and mental illness can have on a couple who once believed they’d found in each other true love.
The tale is brutal, oftentimes heartbreaking, but always hopeful as it never deviates from its message. On the road to self-discovery, you will eventually learn that no matter what anyone says—no matter what flawed message you believed about yourself growing up, you are a good person and deserving of love.
A dark psychological drama, Sweet Baby Mine is unputdownable.
The Black Girl’s Guide to Financial Freedom: Build Wealth, Retire Early, and Live the Life of Your Dreams by Paris Woods
Are you tired of spinning your wheels following financial advice that leaves you feeling broker than before? Are you pulling your hair out trying to follow the complicated instructions offered by the gurus? In The Black Girl’s Guide to Financial Freedom, Paris Woods takes the guesswork out of wealth-building and presents a plan that anyone can follow.
Paris spent years working in education and wanted to find a way to build wealth without changing careers or taking the traditional real estate or business routes. This book is the result of years of research and practice that helped her find a simpler path. Through real-life stories coupled with clear and actionable advice, you will learn to:
Build generational wealth
Avoid common financial traps
Earn your next degree debt-free
Achieve financial independence and retire early
Design a dream life you can start living today
This book is perfect for Black women of any age, including young professionals just starting to set financial goals and mid-career women who are tired of following the same old rules and are ready to live life on their own terms. If freedom is your goal, then this is the book for you.
The Deep by Rivers Solomon
Octavia E. Butler meets Marvel’s Black Panther in The Deep, a story rich with Afrofuturism, folklore, and the power of memory, inspired by the Hugo Award–nominated song “The Deep” from Daveed Diggs’s rap group Clipping.
Yetu holds the memories for her people—water-dwelling descendants of pregnant African slave women thrown overboard by slave owners—who live idyllic lives in the deep. Their past, too traumatic to be remembered regularly is forgotten by everyone, save one—the historian. This demanding role has been bestowed on Yetu.
Yetu remembers for everyone, and the memories, painful and wonderful, traumatic and terrible and miraculous, are destroying her. And so, she flees to the surface escaping the memories, the expectations, and the responsibilities—and discovers a world her people left behind long ago.
Yetu will learn more than she ever expected about her own past—and about the future of her people. If they are all to survive, they’ll need to reclaim the memories, reclaim their identity—and own who they really are.
The Deep is “a tour de force reorientation of the storytelling gaze…a superb, multilayered work,” (Publishers Weekly, starred review) and a vividly original and uniquely affecting story inspired by a song produced by the rap group Clipping.
The Dictionary of Lost Words: A Novel by Pip Williams
“A marvelous fiction about the power of language to elevate or repress.”—Geraldine Brooks, New York Times bestselling author of People of the Book
Esme is born into a world of words. Motherless and irrepressibly curious, she spends her childhood in the Scriptorium, an Oxford garden shed in which her father and a team of dedicated lexicographers are collecting words for the very first Oxford English Dictionary. Young Esme’s place is beneath the sorting table, unseen and unheard. One day a slip of paper containing the word bondmaid flutters beneath the table. She rescues the slip and, learning that the word means “slave girl,” begins to collect other words that have been discarded or neglected by the dictionary men.
As she grows up, Esme realizes that words and meanings relating to women’s and common folks’ experiences often go unrecorded. And so she begins in earnest to search out words for her own dictionary: the Dictionary of Lost Words. To do so she must leave the sheltered world of the university and venture out to meet the people whose words will fill those pages.
Set during the height of the women’s suffrage movement and with the Great War looming, The Dictionary of Lost Words reveals a lost narrative, hidden between the lines of a history written by men. Inspired by actual events, author Pip Williams has delved into the archives of the Oxford English Dictionary to tell this highly original story.
The Dictionary of Lost Words is a delightful, lyrical, and deeply thought-provoking celebration of words and the power of language to shape the world.
The Girls in the Wild Fig Tree by Nice Leng’ete
An “elegant and inspiring memoir” by the human rights activist who changed the minds of her elders, reformed traditions from the inside, and is creating a better future for girls and women throughout Africa (Sonia Faleiro, New York Times).
Nice Leng`ete was raised in a Maasai village in Kenya. In 1998, when Nice was six, her parents fell sick and died, and Nice and her sister Soila were taken in by their father’s brother, who had little interest in the girls beyond what their dowries might fetch. Fearing “the cut” (female genital mutilation, a painful and sometimes deadly ritualistic surgery), which was the fate of all Maasai women, Nice and Soila climbed a tree to hide.
Nice hoped to find a way to avoid the cut forever, but Soila understood it would be impossible. But maybe if one of the sisters submitted, the other would be spared. After Soila chose to undergo the surgery, sacrificing herself to save Nice, their lives diverged. Soila married, dropped out of school, and had children–all in her teenage years–while Nice postponed receiving the cut, continued her education, and became the first in her family to attend college.
Supported by Amref, Nice used visits home to set an example for what an uncut Maasai woman can achieve. Other women listened, and the elders finally saw the value of intact, educated girls as the way of the future. The village has since ended FGM entirely, and Nice continues the fight to end FGM throughout Africa, and the world.
Nice’s journey from “heartbroken child and community outcast, to leader of the Maasai” is an inspiration and a reminder that one person can change the world–and every girl is worth saving.
The Housemaid: Psychological Thriller by Freida McFadden
“Welcome to the family,” Nina Winchester says as I shake her elegant, manicured hand. I smile politely, gazing around the marble hallway. Working here is my last chance to start fresh. I can pretend to be whoever I like. But I’ll soon learn that the Winchesters’ secrets are far more dangerous than my own…
Every day I clean the Winchesters’ beautiful house top to bottom. I collect their daughter from school. And I cook a delicious meal for the whole family before heading up to eat alone in my tiny room on the top floor.
I try to ignore how Nina makes a mess just to watch me clean it up. How she tells strange lies about her own daughter. And how her husband Andrew seems more broken every day. But as I look into Andrew’s handsome brown eyes, so full of pain, it’s hard not to imagine what it would be like to live Nina’s life. The walk-in closet, the fancy car, the perfect husband.
I only try on one of Nina’s pristine white dresses once. Just to see what it’s like. But she soon finds out… and by the time I realize my attic bedroom door only locks from the outside, it’s far too late.
But I reassure myself: the Winchesters don’t know who I really am.
They don’t know what I’m capable of…
An unbelievably twisty read that will have you glued to the pages late into the night. Anyone who loves The Woman in the Window, The Wife Between Us and The Girl on the Train won’t be able to put this down!
The Island of Missing Trees: A Novel by Elif Shafak
Winner of the 2022 BookTube Silver Medal in Fiction * Shortlisted for the Women’s Prize for Fiction
“A wise novel of love and grief, roots and branches, displacement and home, faith and belief. Balm for our bruised times.” ―David Mitchell, author of Utopia Avenue
A rich, magical new novel on belonging and identity, love and trauma, nature and renewal, from the Booker-shortlisted author of 10 Minutes 38 Seconds in This Strange World.
Two teenagers, a Greek Cypriot and a Turkish Cypriot, meet at a taverna on the island they both call home. In the taverna, hidden beneath garlands of garlic, chili peppers and creeping honeysuckle, Kostas and Defne grow in their forbidden love for each other. A fig tree stretches through a cavity in the roof, and this tree bears witness to their hushed, happy meetings and eventually, to their silent, surreptitious departures. The tree is there when war breaks out, when the capital is reduced to ashes and rubble, and when the teenagers vanish. Decades later, Kostas returns. He is a botanist looking for native species, but really, he’s searching for lost love.
Years later a Ficus carica grows in the back garden of a house in London where Ada Kazantzakis lives. This tree is her only connection to an island she has never visited— her only connection to her family’s troubled history and her complex identity as she seeks to untangle years of secrets to find her place in the world.
A moving, beautifully written, and delicately constructed story of love, division, transcendence, history, and eco-consciousness, The Island of Missing Trees is Elif Shafak’s best work yet.
The Light We Carry by Michelle Obama
The Light We Carry: Overcoming in Uncertain Times by Michelle Obama
In an inspiring follow-up to her critically acclaimed, #1 bestselling memoir Becoming, former First Lady Michelle Obama shares practical wisdom and powerful strategies for staying hopeful and balanced in today’s highly uncertain world.
There may be no tidy solutions or pithy answers to life’s big challenges, but Michelle Obama believes that we can all locate and lean on a set of tools to help us better navigate change and remain steady within flux. In The Light We Carry, she opens a frank and honest dialogue with readers, considering the questions many of us wrestle with: How do we build enduring and honest relationships? How can we discover strength and community inside our differences? What tools do we use to address feelings of self-doubt or helplessness? What do we do when it all starts to feel like too much?
Michelle Obama offers readers a series of fresh stories and insightful reflections on change, challenge, and power, including her belief that when we light up for others, we can illuminate the richness and potential of the world around us, discovering deeper truths and new pathways for progress. Drawing from her experiences as a mother, daughter, spouse, friend, and First Lady, she shares the habits and principles she has developed to successfully adapt to change and overcome various obstacles—the earned wisdom that helps her continue to “become.” She details her most valuable practices, like “starting kind,” “going high,” and assembling a “kitchen table” of trusted friends and mentors. With trademark humor, candor, and compassion, she also explores issues connected to race, gender, and visibility, encouraging readers to work through fear, find strength in community, and live with boldness.
“When we are able to recognize our own light, we become empowered to use it,” writes Michelle Obama. A rewarding blend of powerful stories and profound advice that will ignite conversation, The Light We Carry inspires readers to examine their own lives, identify their sources of gladness, and connect meaningfully in a turbulent world.
The Perfect Stranger by Charlotte Byrd
The Perfect Stranger (5 Book Series) by Charlotte Byrd
From USA Today Bestselling Author Charlotte Byrd comes a twisted dark second-chance romance about a secret billionaire, second-chances and escaped prisoner identities.
After a few bad relationships, I have given up on love until a man from my past shows up on my doorstep and puts a knife to my throat. He doesn’t want me to know his real identity because then I would get involved and try to protect him. What I don’t yet know is that taking this chance will lead me to an adventure of a lifetime and a love that I will never forget. But what happens when the authorities start to close in? What if we can’t prove his innocence?
A man breaks into my home and puts a knife to my throat. Who is he? What does he want? He takes a step closer and I realize that I know him. I haven’t seen him in years but I’ve never stopped thinking about him.
He is dark, rich and powerful and he has a secret. Anger rushes through me.
Who does he think he is coming here? But when I open my mouth to yell at him, our lips touch and I can’t pull away…
Young love doesn’t last forever but neither of us ever forgot each other. What I didn’t know, however, was that he had spent the last few years serving time for a murder he didn’t commit. He found a way to escape from prison and came to see me, the one person who could help. But what if I can’t?
From 1.5+ million books bestselling author Charlotte Byrd comes an extra steamy romance featuring forbidden love, second-chances, and secret billionaire identity. This complete series ends with a happily ever after.
The Secret Women: A Novel by Sheila Williams
The author of Dancing on the Edge of the Roof, now a Netflix film starring Alfre Woodard, returns with a riveting, emotionally rich, novel that explores the complex relationship between mothers and daughters in a fresh, vibrant way—a stunning page-turner for fans of Terry McMillan, Tayari Jones, and Kimberla Lawson Roby.
Elise Armstrong, Carmen Bradshaw, and DeeDee Davis meet in a yoga class. Though vastly different, these women discover they all have one thing in common: their mothers have recently passed away. Becoming fast friends, the trio make a pact to help each other sort through the belongings their mothers’ left behind. But when they find old letters and diaries, Elise, Carmen, and DeeDee are astonished to learn that each of their mothers hid secrets—secrets that will transform their own lives.
Meeting each month over margaritas, the trio share laughter, advice, and support. As they help each other overcome challenges and celebrate successes, Elise, Carmen, and DeeDee gain not only a better understanding of the women their mothers were, but of themselves. They also come to realize they have what their mothers needed most but did not have during difficult times—other women they could trust.
Filled with poignant life lessons, The Secret Women pays tribute to the power of friendship and family and the bonds that tie us together. Beautiful, full of spirit and heart, it is a thoughtful and ultimately uplifting story of unconditional love.
The Wishing Pool and Other Stories by Tananarive Due
In her first new book in seven years, Tananarive Due further cements her status as a leading innovator in Black horror and Afrofuturism
“Due masterfully maintains suspense all the while delineating her characters with a psychological realism that makes the unbelievable credible.”—Washington Post Book World
“Tananarive Due’s characters quietly move into your heart and take up residence. You love them, you fear for them, and they scare you half to death.”—Nalo Hopkinson, author of Skin Folk
“An eerie epic . . . I loved this novel.” —Stephen King on My Soul to Keep
American Book Award–winning author Tananarive Due’s second collection of stories ranges from horror to science fiction to suspense. From the mysterious, magical town of Gracetown to the aftermath of a pandemic to the reaches of the far future, Due’s stories all share a sense of dread and fear balanced with heart and hope.
In some of these stories, the monster is racism itself; others address the monster within, or other universal struggles set against the supernatural or surreal. All of them are written with Due’s trademark attention to detail and deep characterization. In addition to previously published work, this collection contains brand-new stories, including “Rumpus Room,” a supernatural horror novelette set in Florida about a woman’s struggle against both outer and inner demons.
The Woman in My Home by Kerry Fisher
I was starting to believe it might be my turn for the fairy tale. A man who adored me, someone to return to at the end of the day and to share my life with. And Rebecca. Capable, reliable Rebecca who could help me to manage my busy home…
Finally, Cath has met someone: a man she loves, Robin, and who adores her in return. And after years of managing fine on her own, running a successful business, raising her son, and caring for her elderly mother, she feels she deserves some happiness. And who better to provide it than charming, fun-loving Robin?
She expected everyone to be delighted for her. But her friends and family are suspicious of Robin. And Rebecca, a desperate single mother who Cath has hired as a live-in housekeeper, doesn’t trust him either. He’s too slick, he’s too perfect and it all happened too fast… how well does Cath really know him?
Cath is used to taking care of herself; she’s nobody’s fool. But when things start to go wrong in the house that’s been her haven for all these years, she’s forced to ask herself whether the man she loves is really what he seems… And having let Rebecca in to every part of her life, is Cath ready to face the secrets she might find there?
From the Amazon charts bestselling author of The Silent Wife and The Woman I Was Before, The Woman in My Home is a gripping read about family secrets and lies. Perfect for fans of Liane Moriarty and Diane Chamberlain.
Undefeated Woman by Desange Kuenihira
Undefeated Woman by Desange Kuenihira (Memoirs of Women)
Sometimes, it takes a journey to find your voice.
As a young girl, Desange Kuenihira was told repeatedly that she was meaningless. An arranged marriage and motherhood before twenty—guaranteeing a life in poverty—were all she was told to expect. But Desange knew she had more inside her, and that education was the key to unlocking her potential.
In Undefeated Woman, Desange Kuenihira takes us on the challenging journey of her childhood. She recalls fleeing with her siblings from the civil war raging in Congo and the daily struggle of life in a refugee camp in Uganda, where she suffered many forms of abuse. She relates her journey to America, the culture clash of living with American foster families, and her quest for her education and the ability to control her own life. Now a college graduate and determined to pay forward the kindness of those that helped her through, Desange has launched the nonprofit UnDEfeated to empower women and girls in Uganda.
Desange’s inspirational story shows us all how we can overcome any odds through education, determined perseverance, and the kindness of caring people.
Uphill: A Memoir by Jemele Hill
One of Oprah Daily’s Best Fall Nonfiction Books of 2022
An empowering, unabashedly bold memoir by the Atlantic journalist and former ESPN SportsCenter coanchor about overcoming a legacy of pain and forging a new path, no matter how uphill life’s battles might be.
Jemele Hill’s world came crashing down when she called President Trump a “white supremacist”; the White House wanted her fired from ESPN, and she was deluged with death threats. But Hill had faced tougher adversaries growing up in Detroit than a tweeting president. Beneath the exterior of one of the most recognizable journalists in America was a need―a calling―to break her family’s cycle of intergenerational trauma.
Born in the middle of a lively routine Friday night Monopoly game to a teen mother and a heroin-addicted father, Hill constantly adjusted to the harsh realities of not only her own childhood but the inherited generational pain of her mother and grandmother. Her escape was writing.
Hill’s mother was less than impressed with the brassy and bold free expression of her diary, but Hill never stopped discovering and amplifying her voice. Through hard work and a constant willingness to learn, Hill rose from newspaper reporter to columnist to new heights as the coanchor for ESPN’s revered SportsCenter. Soon, she earned respect and support for her fearless opinions and unshakable confidence, as well as a reputation as a trusted journalist who speaks her mind with truth and conviction.
In Jemele Hill’s journey Uphill, she shares the whole story of her work, the women of her family, and her complicated relationship with God in an unapologetic, character-rich, and eloquent memoir.
Watching You: A Novel by Lisa Jewell
The instant New York Times and #1 Sunday Times bestselling author of the Then She Was Gone delivers another suspenseful
We Lie Here: A Thriller by Rachel Howzell Hall
A woman’s trip home reveals frightening truths in a twisty novel of murder and family secrets by the New York Times bestselling author of And Now She’s Gone and These Toxic Things.
TV writer Yara Gibson’s hometown of Palmdale, California, isn’t her first choice for a vacation. But she’s back to host her parents’ twentieth-anniversary party and find the perfect family mementos for the celebration. Everything is going to plan until Yara receives a disturbing text: I have information that will change your life.
The message is from Felicia Campbell, who claims to be a childhood friend of Yara’s mother. But they’ve been estranged for years—drama best ignored and forgotten. But Yara can’t forget Felicia, who keeps texting, insisting that Yara talk to her “before it’s too late.”
But the next day is already too late for Felicia, whose body is found floating in Lake Palmdale. Before she died, Felicia left Yara a key to a remote lakeside cabin. In the basement are files related to a mysterious tragedy, unsolved since 1998. What secrets was Felicia hiding? How much of what Yara knows about her family has been true?
The deeper Yara digs for answers, the more she fears that Felicia was right. Uncovering the truth about what happened at the cabin all those years ago will change Yara’s life—or end it.
“In We Lie Here, Rachel Howzell Hall gives us a tight, lean, eye-level look at the Gibson family—flawed, normal, abnormal, and each affected by a deadly secret left buried for years—while weaving a page-turning tapestry of dread, cold-blooded murder, and nail-biting tension. What a ride. What a wonderful writer. More, please.” —Tracy Clark, author of the Chicago Mystery series
“Rachel Howzell Hall continues to shatter the boundaries of crime fiction through the sheer force of her indomitable talent.” —S. A. Cosby, author of Blacktop Wasteland
Well Behaved Wives: A Novel by Amy Sue Nathan
Well Behaved Wives: A Novel by Amy Sue Nathan
Perfect wives, imperfect lives, and upending the rules of behavior in 1960s America.
Law school graduate and newlywed Ruth Appelbaum is acclimating to life and marriage in a posh Philadelphia neighborhood. She’ll do almost anything to endear herself to her mother-in-law, who’s already signed up Ruth for etiquette lessons conducted by the impeccably accessorized tutor Lillian Diamond. But Ruth brings something fresh to the small circle of housewives—sharp wit, honesty, and an independent streak that won’t be compromised.
Right away Ruth develops a friendship with the shy Carrie Blum. When Carrie divulges a dark and disturbing secret lurking beneath her seemingly perfect life, Ruth invites Lillian and the Diamond Girls of the etiquette school to finally question the status quo.
Together they form an unbreakable bond and stretch well beyond their comfort zones. For once, they’ll challenge what others expect from them, discover what they expect from themselves, and do whatever it takes to protect one of their own—fine manners be damned.
Where There Was Fire by John Manuel Arias
A lush and lyrical debut novel about a Costa Rican family wrestling with a deadly secret, from rising literary star John Manuel Arias.
Costa Rica, 1968. When a lethal fire erupts at the American Fruit Company’s most lucrative banana plantation burning all evidence of a massive cover-up, the future of Teresa Cepeda Valverde’s family is changed forever.
Now, twenty-seven years later, Teresa and her daughter Lyra are still picking up the pieces. Lyra wants nothing to do with Teresa, but is desperate to find out what happened to her family that fateful night. Teresa, haunted by a missing husband and the bitter ghost of her mother, Amarga, is unable to reconcile the past.
What unfolds is a story of a mother and daughter trying to forgive what they do not yet understand, and the mystery at the heart of one family’s rupture, steeped in machismo, jealousy, labor uprisings, and the havoc wreaked by banana plantations in Central America.
Brimming with ancestral spirits, omens, and the anthropomorphic forces of nature, John Manuel Arias weaves a brilliant tapestry of love, loss, secrets, and redemption.
John Manuel Arias is a queer, Costa Rican-American poet and writer. He is a Canto Mundo fellow & alumnus of the Tin House Summer Writers Workshop. His prose and poetry have been published in PANK, The Rumpus, F(r)iction, Joyland Magazine, and Akashic Books. He has lived in Washington D.C., Brooklyn New York, and in San José, Costa Rica with his grandmother and four ghosts. Where There Was Fire is his debut novel.
Where You Are Is Not Who You Are: A Memoir by Ursula Burns
The first Black female CEO of a Fortune 500 company looks back at her life and her career at Xerox, sharing unique insights on American business and corporate life, the workers she has always valued, racial and economic justice, how greed is threatening democracy, and the obstacles she’s conquered being Black and a woman.
“I am a black woman, I do not play golf, I do not belong to or go to country clubs, I do not like NASCAR, I do not listen to country music, and I have a masters degree in engineering. I, like a typical New Yorker, speak very fast, with an accent and vernacular that is definitely New York City, definitely Black. So when someone says I’m going to introduce you to the next CEO of Xerox, and the options are lined up against a wall, I would be the first one voted off the island.”
In 2009, when she was appointed the Chief Executive Officer of the Xerox Corporation, Ursula Burns shattered the glass ceiling and made headlines. But the media missed the real story, she insists. “It should have been ‘how did this happen? How did Xerox Corporation produce the first African American woman CEO?’ Not this spectacular story titled, “Oh, my God, a Black woman making it.”
In this smart, no-nonsense book, part memoir and part cultural critique, Burns writes movingly about her journey from tenement housing on Manhattan’s Lower East Side to the highest echelons of the corporate world. She credits her success to her poor single Panamanian mother, Olga Racquel Burns—a licensed child-care provider whose highest annual income was $4,400—who set no limits on what her children could achieve.
Ursula recounts her own dedication to education and hard work, and how she took advantage of the opportunities and social programs created by the Civil Rights and Women’s movements to pursue engineering at Polytechnic Institute of New York.
Burns writes about overcoming the barriers she faced, as well as the challenges and realities of the corporate world. Her classmates and colleagues—almost all white males—“couldn’t comprehend how a Black girl could be as smart, and in some cases, smarter than they were. They made a developed category for me. Unique. Amazing. Spectacular. That way they could accept me.” Her thirty-five-year career at Xerox was all about fixing things, from cutting millions to save the company from bankruptcy to a daring $6 billion acquisition to secure its future. Ursula also worked closely with President Barack Obama as a lead on his STEM initiative and Chair of his Export council, where she traveled with him on an official trade mission to Cuba, and became one of his greatest admirers.
Candid and outspoken, Ursula offers a remarkable look inside the c-suites of corporate America through the eyes of a Black woman—someone who puts humanity over greed and justice over power. She compares the impact of the pandemic to the financial crisis of 2007, condemns how corporate culture is destroying the spirit of democracy, and worries about the workers whose lives are being upended by technology. Empathetic and dedicated, idealistic and pragmatic, Ursula demonstrates that, no matter your circumstances, hard work, grit and a bit of help along the way can change your life—and the world.