Books All Georgians Should Read (2015)
In July 2015, the Georgia Center for the Book announced its new lists of Books All Georgians Should Read and Books All Young Georgians Should Read. Check out the titles below.
Those Bones Are Not My Child is a staggering achievement, a major work of American fiction: the novel that Toni Cade Bambara was working on at the time of her death in 1995 -- a story that puts us at the center of the nightmare of the Atlanta child murders. It was called "The City Too Busy To Hate," but two decades ago more than forty black children were murdered there with grim determination, their bodies found -- in ditches, on riverbanks -- strangled, beaten, and sexually assaulted. Bambara was living in Atlanta at the time, and Those Bones Are Not My Child is the result of twelve years of first-hand research, as she delved into the murders and the world in which they occurred.
Ella Gertrude Clanton Thomas was an intelligent, spirited woman born in 1834 to one of the wealthiest families in Georgia. At fourteen, she began keeping a diary. Her accounts of life before, during, and after the Civil War filled 13 volumes with 450,000 words. The war and its aftermath changed her life forever.
A combination of Henry David Thoreau and Jane Goodall, Carol Ruckdeschel is a self-taught scientist who has become a tireless defender of sea turtles on Cumberland Island, a national park off the coast of Georgia. In recent years, Carnegie heirs and the National Park Service have clashed with Carol over the island's future. What happens when a dirt-poor naturalist with only a high-school diploma tries to stop one of the wealthiest families in America?
Sean Hill's debut collection, imaginative in the characters it invents and in the formal literary traditions it juxtaposes, is nevertheless firmly rooted in Hill's hometown of Milledgeville, Georgia, which he transforms into a poetic landscape that can accommodate the scope of his vision of collective and personal history. The poems create a call and response across six generations of family of the fictional Silas Wright, a black man born in 1907.
A Clear View of the Southern Sky reveals women in the twenty-first century doing what women have always done in pursuit of life, liberty, and happiness. In each of the ten tales from southern storyteller Mary Hood, women have come--by circumstances and choice--to the very edge of their known worlds. Some find courage to winnow and move on; others seek the patience to risk and to stay.
"From the PEN/Faulkner finalist and critically acclaimed author of Hold it 'Til it Hurts comes a dark and socially provocative southern-fried comedy about four liberal UC Berkeley students who stage a mock lynching during a Civil War reenactment--a fierce, funny, tragic work from a bold new writer."--Provided by publisher.
Three young women are drawn to the Chief Vann House Historic Site in Chatsworth, Georgia, where scenes of extreme cruelty and equally extraordinary compassion once played out. Jinx is exploring her tribe's complicated racial history. Ruth, a writer, is there on assignment. Cheyenne seeks to connect with a meaningful personal history. Together they discover the secrets of the Cherokee plantation, and find that attempts to connect with the strong spirits of the past will help them reconcile the conflicts in their own lives.
Written between 1946 and 1947, while O'Connor was a student far from home at the University of Iowa, this spiritual journal was only recently discovered. It provides a rare portal into the interior life of a great writer, and is a record of a young woman's cry from the heart for love, grace, and art.
While Louis W. Sullivan was a student at Morehouse College, Morehouse president Benjamin Mays said something to the student body that stuck with him for the rest of his life. "The tragedy of life is not failing to reach our goals," Mays said. "It is not having goals to reach." In Breaking Ground, Sullivan recounts his extraordinary life beginning with his childhood in Jim Crow south Georgia and continuing through his trailblazing endeavors training to become a physician in an almost entirely white environment in the Northeast, founding and then leading the Morehouse School of Medicine in Atlanta, and serving as secretary of Health and Human Services in President George H. W. Bush's administration.
The Southern Poetry Anthology, Volume V: Georgia brings together over one hundred of Georgia's poets, including David Bottoms, Natasha Trethewey, Leon Stokesbury, Thomas Lux, Kathryn Stripling Byer, Alice Friman, Judson Mitcham, and Stephen Corey, as well as myriad other luminous voices. The volume marks the fifth of the series Art & Literature has called "one of the most ambitious projects in contemporary Southern letters."
When Zebra and his enthusiastic friend Moose are asked to exit a book about shapes, Moose has other plans.
Jack loves everything about Coppertown except its thriving mining industry, which long ago drove nature out of the town, but when a strike threatens to close the mine, Jack's family and others may be forced to leave for new jobs and homes.
Philip Reid was an enslaved African American who volunteered to work with the delicate plaster mold needed to create Freedom, the statue that stands atop the capital building in Washington, D.C., playing an important role in seeing the statue through to completion.
Congressman John Lewis, an American icon and one of the key figures of the civil rights movement, continues his award-winning graphic novel trilogy with co-writer Andrew Aydin and artist Nate Powell, inspired by a 1950s comic book that helped prepare his own generation to join the struggle.
Living with stepsisters and having a bad history with female friends, Charlotte enjoys the easy relationships that come with managing an all-male band but things get complicated when dating becomes an issue, and she is urged to sing in public.
Missy wants to take home the class pets, but another girl, Tiffany, has already asked their teacher so Missy and her friend Oscar need to come up with a plan to make Tiffany change her mind.
Both haunted and inspired by the shadow of his best friend, Melanie, since her disappearance and presumed death when they were six, Richard, now sixteen, is completely unprepared when a new classmate, Melanie, arrives at Savannah Arts Academy High School claiming to be that same friend.
On a trip to the park with her mother, a young girl hears a rhythm coming from the world around her and begins to move to the beat, finally beginning an impromptu dance in which other children join her.
Devastated when her parents separate, twelve-year-old Rebecca must move with her mother from Baltimore to Gran's house in Atlanta, where Rebecca discovers an old bread box with the power to grant any wish--so long as the wished-for thing fits in the bread box.
It's 1964 in Greenwood, Mississippi, and Sunny's town is being invaded by people from up north who are coming to help people register to vote. Her personal life isn't much better, as a new stepmother, brother, and sister are crowding into her life, giving her little room to breathe.