This book is incredible and it's no wonder The Yellow House won the National Book Award this year. Sarah M. Broom is not handing over the tourist's New Orleans. Here is New Orleans East, built on a swamp between the Mississippi, the new Mississippi, and a canal. Here in the past is the Yellow House and, here in the present is Broom's older brother, Carl, who spends his evenings near the concrete slab which was once the Yellow House. In-between is the story of a family, the politics of land and race, and the fight for recognition.
Lori Gottlieb worked on Friends and ER before the shows aired. She knew George Clooney when. In her 40s, though, she's a therapist in LA and experiences her own crisis, and begins to see a therapist named Wendell. Through different patients and her own humbling experience, Lori Gottlieb gives away the secret of therapy—how to get someone to open up and talk. Funny and straight-forward, this book takes you on a roller coaster of self-discovery.
Libby is adopted and on her 25th birthday she inherits a large house in Chelsea that has been held in trust. Her two siblings disappeared 25 years earlier after her birth parents and an unknown man were found dead in what appeared to be a suicide pact. They never returned to claim the house on their birthdays and so it remained empty and waiting for Libby. Told through three narrators, nothing is as it seems, and the house, worth millions, is about to reveal its secrets.
An evil headmistress, four orphans, and an escape of a lifetime. It's the last summer of prohibition and the beginning of the Great Depression and Odie, his brother, their best friend, and a small girl flee the Lincoln School, a place to assimilate Native American children, on a canoe headed for the Mississippi River. Those they meet--a one-eyed man, a faith healer, a tugboat captain--shape their travels to find the places they can call home, all while being hunted by Mrs. Brickman, the headmistress. It was hard to put this one down and when it was over I only wanted to know the next chapters of their lives.
Helen Phillips weaves together the story of Molly's work place, an archeological dig site where she uncovers a Bible and a Coke can that are just slightly off, and Molly's home where a masked intruder appears to know the house only as Molly can. This is a thriller to keep you up at night!
In Florida, in the 90s, T. Kira grows up. There's money and privilege, but racism and longing to belong. At its core, this book is a love letter to family and T. Kira finding parts of herself she didn't even know were missing. A story about parents who are both attentive and love madly, but who disappear into themselves. I read this book in six hours on a train. It is good. It will be up for all the awards; get ahead of them this year!
George Washington Black is born on a plantation in Barbados, but he is not fated to stay. Surrounded by violence, Wash becomes a manservant for Titch, the owner's brother, who is a naturalist and leads Wash around the plantation grounds to record and draw. When Wash witnesses a white man's suicide, Titch makes plans for them to escape, leaving the island on a hot air balloon and setting off on a journey to the arctic. As the plot unfolds, and Wash becomes more aware that a man is looking to collect a reward for his capture, he understands Titch is trying to get rid of him, and Washington Black must become his own person.