Bad Summer People

Best New Books: Week of 5/23/23

“Memory sifts. Memory lifts. Memory makes due with what it is given. Memory is not about facts. Memory is an inconsistent measurement of the pain in one’s life.” – Brandon Taylor, Real Life

The Art of Ruth E. Carter: Costuming Black History and the Afrofuture, from Do the Right Thing to Black Panther by Ruth E. Carter

nonfiction / memoir / art / design / film.

The Art of Ruth E. CarterRuth E. Carter is a living legend of costume design. For three decades, she has shaped the story of the Black experience on screen—from the ’80s streetwear of Do the Right Thing to the royal regalia of Coming 2 America. Her work on Marvel’s Black Panther and Black Panther: Wakanda Forever not only brought Afrofuturism to the mainstream, but also made her the first Black winner of an Oscar in costume design and the first Black woman to win two Oscars in any category. In 2021, she became the second-ever costume designer to receive a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

In this definitive book, Carter shares her origins—recalling a trip to the sporting goods store with Spike Lee to outfit the School Daze cast and a transformative moment stepping inside history on the set of Steven Spielberg’s Amistad. She recounts anecdotes from dressing the greats: Eddie Murphy, Samuel L. Jackson, Angela Bassett, Halle Berry, Chadwick Boseman, and many more. She describes the passion for history that inspired her period pieces—from Malcolm X to What’s Love Got to Do With It—and her journey into Afrofuturism.

Carter’s wisdom and stories are paired with deluxe visuals, including sketches, mood boards, and film stills. Danai Gurira, beloved for her portrayal of Okoye in Black Panther, has contributed a foreword. Fans will even get a glimpse behind the scenes of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.

At its core, Carter’s oeuvre celebrates Black heroes and sheroes, whether civil rights leaders or Wakandan warriors. She has brought the past to life and helped us imagine a brighter future. This book is sure to inspire the next generation of artists and storytellers.

“…stunning… Carter emerges as a calm, confident woman fully in charge of her domain with a sense of humor and flexibility that have endeared her to numerous actors and directors.” – Lesley Williams, Booklist, STARRED REVIEW

“No book about costuming would be complete without visuals, and this book does not disappoint. The pages are filled with fascinating original illustrations, stunning photographs, and eye-catching stills highlighting Carter’s artistry in full, glorious color. An appealing read for anyone interested in moviemaking, and an essential for aspiring costumers.” – Shannon Titas, Library Journal, STARRED REVIEW

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Bad Summer People by Emma Rosenblum

fiction / mystery / suspense.

Bad Summer PeopleNone of them would claim to be a particularly good person. But who among them is actually capable of murder?

Jen Weinstein and Lauren Parker rule the town of Salcombe, Fire Island every summer. They hold sway on the beach and the tennis court, and are adept at manipulating people to get what they want. Their husbands, Sam and Jason, have summered together on the island since childhood, despite lifelong grudges and numerous secrets. Their one single friend, Rachel Woolf, is looking to meet her match, whether he’s the tennis pro-or someone else’s husband. But even with plenty to gossip about, this season starts out as quietly as any other.

Until a body is discovered, face down off the side of the boardwalk.

Stylish, subversive and darkly comedic, this is a story of what’s lurking under the surface of picture-perfect lives in a place where everyone has something to hide.

“A heck of a beach read.” – Kirkus Reviews, STARRED REVIEW

“In Rosenblum’s scintillating debut, liars, cheaters, and scoundrels converge on Fire Island for the summer… Rosenblum does a terrific job of establishing the setting and atmosphere, and adds complexity to the plot by revisiting events from various points of view. This is wickedly entertaining.” – Publishers Weekly, STARRED REVIEW

Bad Summer People is the sharp, funny, juicy read you didn’t know you needed… Rosenblum starts with a delicious set up—readers will love to tut at these people and their shenanigans—and she rides it like a bike, Sperry boat shoes perched on the handlebars, to a deeply gratifying conclusion in this stylish who’s-guilty pleasure.” – Vannessa Cronin, Amazon

The Hog Island Book of Fish & Seafood by John Ash

nonfiction / food / cooking.

The Hog Island Book of Fish & SeafoodFrom James Beard Award–winning chef and author John Ash, The Hog Island Book of Fish & Seafood takes a comprehensive dive into the world of cooking shellfish, crustaceans, finned fish, and many more.

Featuring favorites from the kitchens of Hog Island Oyster Bars and other talented chefs who have embraced the company’s sustainability ethos, this authoritative compendium showcases over 250 dishes from cuisines around the world, including regional favorites like San Francisco cioppino, Southern crayfish étouffée, and New England clam chowder. Presenting a wide variety of cooking methods—such as steaming, roasting, grilling, pan-frying, curing—along with illustrated techniques like shucking oysters, opening clams, and filleting fish, this comprehensive cookbook will guide you through the basics of seafood preparation. And the extensive list of sauces, butters, and seasonings will help you turn your choice of seafood into a stellar dish. The Hog Island Book of Fish & Seafood is a master class from an award-winning chef who shows home and professional cooks how to bring culinary gifts from the water to the table at their peak of perfection.

“Looking for a MasterClass in seafood? This is it… sure to become a dog-eared staple on your shelf.” – Jessica Yadegaran, Marin Independent Journal

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Identity by Nora Roberts

fiction / romance / suspense / mystery.

IdentityFormer Army brat Morgan Albright has finally planted roots in a friendly neighborhood near Baltimore. Her friend and roommate Nina helps her make the mortgage payments, as does Morgan’s job as a bartender. But after she and Nina host their first dinner party—attended by Luke, the flirtatious IT guy who’d been chatting her up at the bar—her carefully built world is shattered. The back door glass is broken, cash and jewelry are missing, her car is gone, and Nina lies dead on the floor.

Soon, a horrific truth emerges: It was Morgan who let the monster in. “Luke” is actually a cold-hearted con artist named Gavin who targets a particular type of woman, steals her assets and identity, and then commits his ultimate goal: murder.

What the FBI tells Morgan is beyond chilling. Nina wasn’t his type. Morgan is. Nina was simply in the wrong place at the wrong time. And Morgan’s nightmare is just beginning. Soon she has no choice but to flee to her mother’s home in Vermont. While she struggles to build something new, she meets another man, Miles Jameson. He isn’t flashy or flirtatious, and his family business has deep roots in town. But Gavin is still out there hunting new victims, and he hasn’t forgotten the one who got away.

“Roberts effectively enhances the plot of her latest stellar, perfectly paced novel of suspense and romance with a superbly realized cast of characters that underscores the importance in life of family and friends.” – John Charles, Booklist

“Roberts shows Gavin’s slow descent into obsession and madness as the inverse of Morgan’s healing journey back to herself and her community… [and] revisits a favorite theme: The power of community can defeat a great evil.” – Kirkus Reviews

I Didn’t Do It by Jamie Lynn Hendricks

fiction / mystery / suspense / comedy.

I Didn't Do ItA murder at a suspense writer convention makes everyone a suspect―especially the victim’s literary rivals. Murderpalooza, the premier thriller writers conference, is meant to be an exciting celebration of the genre and its preeminent writers. But when bestselling author and industry favorite Kristin Bailey is found dead in her hotel room, four rival authors―a midlister, an egomaniac, a has-been, and a newbie―also get targeted by an anonymous social media account and wonder if they’re next.

First, they find themselves bonding to try to find out who’s behind it. As the account taunts them, it slowly reveals secrets that each of them have connected to Kristin―secrets that make them a suspect in each other’s eyes. Soon, they are turning on each other and silently accusing each as a killer. With time running out until the awards ceremony where the social media account has promised a big reveal, the only thing they know for sure is that no one is better at both creating and solving a mystery than the people who write them for a living.

Jaime Lynn Hendricks gives the reader a thrilling peek into the thriller writing world and those that inhabit it in this gripping suspense novel.

“[A] furious, riotous, meta-romp right up to the last deflating twist. A dishy balm for every aspiring author who’s envied those established figures at mystery conventions.” – Kirkus Reviews, STARRED REVIEW

“[A] brisk, funny thriller… Hendricks’s plotting is impeccable, and she knows precisely when to jump perspectives for maximum suspense. Her humor, too, is razor-sharp: she has fun taking shots at the anxieties and unchecked egos of writers at all stages of their career (‘Is it really narcissism if I know I have it? Or just an overinflated ego,’ one character wonders). This is good fun for anyone enmeshed in the writing world or thinking of jumping in.” – Publishers Weekly

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The Late Americans by Brandon Taylor 


The Late AmericansIn the shared and private spaces of Iowa City, a loose circle of lovers and friends encounter, confront, and provoke one another in a volatile year of self-discovery. At the group’s center are Ivan, a dancer turned aspiring banker who dabbles in amateur pornography; Fatima, whose independence and work ethic complicates her relationships with friends and a trusted mentor; and Noah, who “didn’t seek sex out so much as it came up to him like an anxious dog in need of affection.” These three are buffeted by a cast of poets, artists, landlords, meat-packing workers, and mathematicians who populate the cafes, classrooms, and food-service kitchens of Iowa City, sometimes to violent and electrifying consequence. Finally, as each prepares for an uncertain future, the group heads to a cabin to bid goodbye to their former lives—a moment of reckoning that leaves each of them irrevocably altered.

A novel of intimacy and precarity, friendship and chosen family, The Late Americans is Brandon Taylor’s richest and most involving work of fiction to date, confirming his position as one of our most perceptive chroniclers of contemporary life.

“A stunning work of fiction, with characters that are unforgettable and writing that is frequently breathtaking. I can’t shout its praises enough.” – David Vogel, BuzzFeed

“Erudite, intimate, hilarious, poignant… A gorgeously written novel of youth’s promise, of the quest to find one’s tribe and one’s calling.” – Leigh Haber, Oprah Daily

The Late Americans is Brandon Taylor’s best book so far… For all their disagreements and misunderstandings and incompatibilities, [his characters are] all attempting to make peace with the cosmic bêtise of existence, to figure out how to live without compromising everything they value. It’s beautiful and wrenching to watch them try.” – Charles Arrowsmith, Boston Globe

“Brandon Taylor’s third book is the most dazzling example of his sharp pen and keen observations of human nature yet… Taylor develops his characters so precisely, they feel like close friends: recognizable, sometimes infuriating, and always worth following to the book’s last page.” – Halie LeSavage, Harper’s Bazaar

The Lost Journals of Sacajewea by Debra Magpie Earling

fiction / historical fiction.

The Lost Journals of Sacajewea“In my seventh winter, when my head only reached my Appe’s rib, a White Man came into camp. Bare trees scratched sky. Cold was endless. He moved through trees like strikes of sunlight. My Bia said he came with bad intentions, like a Water Baby’s cry.”

Among the most memorialized women in American history, Sacajewea served as interpreter and guide for Lewis and Clark’s Corps of Discovery. In this visionary novel, acclaimed Indigenous author Debra Magpie Earling brings this mythologized figure vividly to life, casting unsparing light on the men who brutalized her and recentering Sacajewea as the arbiter of her own history.

Raised among the Lemhi Shoshone, in this telling the young Sacajewea is bright and bold, growing strong from the hard work of “learning all ways to survive”: gathering berries, water, roots, and wood; butchering buffalo, antelope, and deer; catching salmon and snaring rabbits; weaving baskets and listening to the stories of her elders. When her village is raided and her beloved Appe and Bia are killed, Sacajewea is kidnapped and then gambled away to Charbonneau, a French Canadian trapper.

Heavy with grief, Sacajewea learns how to survive at the edge of a strange new world teeming with fur trappers and traders. When Lewis and Clark’s expedition party arrives, Sacajewea knows she must cross a vast and brutal terrain with her newborn son, the white man who owns her, and a company of men who wish to conquer and commodify the world she loves.

Written in lyrical, dreamlike prose, The Lost Journals of Sacajewea is an astonishing work of art and a powerful tale of perseverance—the Indigenous woman’s story that hasn’t been told.

“Earling lets Sacajewea tell her own story, in her own voice, revealing a complex, determined woman who makes hard choices in the face of ongoing loss and violence. It’s a beautiful and ultimately hopeful novel that lays bare many important truths about American history and myth-making.” – Laura Sackton, Book Riot

“…offers new perspective on what is known, and debated, about the life of Sacajewea… In poetic prose, Earling interweaves factual accounts of Sacajewea’s life with a first-person narrative deeply rooted in the physicality of landscape and brutality of the times.” – Jessica Gigot, Seattle Times

“The most remarkable thing about Debra Magpie Earling’s second novel, The Lost Journals of Sacajewea,is how uncompromising it is in its vision of a precolonial consciousness… Through Sacajewea’s voice, Earling rejects traditional English narrative forms as well as the sanitized version of westward expansion. Sacajewea’s words never delineate between her mind and her body, between people and the natural world around her, between the present and the eternal, between prose and poetry—dualities westerners and Western literature take for granted.” – Carlos Zayas-Pons, The Sewanee Review

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Lost Son: An American Family Trapped Inside the FBI’s Secret War by Brett Forrest

nonfiction / politics.

Lost SonA young American lost in Russia. An FBI-cover up. A mystery leading from Washington to the heart of the Kremlin’s war in Ukraine.

When Billy Reilly vanished, his parents embarked on a desperate search for answers. Was their son’s disappearance connected to his mysterious work for the FBI, or was it a personal quest gone wrong? Only when Wall Street Journal reporter Brett Forrest embarks on his own investigation does a picture emerge: of the FBI’s exploitation of US citizens through a secretive intelligence program, a young man’s lust for adventure within the world’s conflicts, and the costs of a rising clash between Moscow and Washington.

Sept. 11th roused Billy Reilly’s curiosity for religions, war, and the world and its people beyond his small town near Detroit. Online, Billy taught himself Arabic and Russian. His passions led him into jihadi Internet forums, attracting the interest of the FBI.

An amateur drawn into professional intelligence, Billy became a Confidential Human Source, one of thousands of civilians who assist FBI agents with investigative work, often at great hazard and with little recourse. When Russia stirred rebellion in Ukraine, Billy set out to make his mark.

In Russia, Billy’s communications dropped. His parents, frantic, asked the FBI for help but struggled to find answers. Grasping for clues, the Reilly family turned to Brett Forrest. Commencing a quest of his own, Forrest applied years’ worth of research, along with decades of extensive experience in Russia, illuminating the inner workings of the national-security machine that enmeshed Billy and his family, picking up the lost son’s trail.

A masterwork of reporting, composed like a thriller, blending political maneuvering and international espionage, Lost Son illustrates one man’s coming of age amid new global dangers.

“An intriguing, somber study of the manipulation of a single person in the context of big events.” – Kirkus Reviews

Raw Dog: The Naked Truth About Hot Dogs by Jamie Loftus

nonfiction / food / history / comedy / travel.

Raw DogHot dogs. Poor people created them. Rich people found a way to charge fifteen dollars for them. They’re high culture, they’re low culture, they’re sports food, they’re kids’ food, they’re hangover food, and they’re deeply American, despite having no basis whatsoever in America’s Indigenous traditions. You can love them, you can hate them, but you can’t avoid the great American hot dog.

Raw Dog: The Naked Truth About Hot Dogs is part investigation into the cultural and culinary significance of hot dogs and part travelog documenting a cross-country road trip researching them as they’re served today. From avocado and spice in the West to ass-shattering chili in the East to an entire salad on a slice of meat in Chicago, Loftus, her pets, and her ex eat their way across the country during the strange summer of 2021. It’s a brief window into the year between waves of a plague that the American government has the resources to temper, but not the interest.

So grab a dog, lay out your picnic blanket, and dig into the delicious and inevitable product of centuries of violence, poverty, and ambition, now rolling around at your local 7-Eleven.

“There’s a lot to digest here, and Raw Dog will leave you nourished.” – Emerson Malone, BuzzFeed

“Equal parts meat-processing indictment, travelogue, hot dog history, and odd facts, this book is irreverent, hilarious, entertaining, honest, and, at times, gross. Will fascinate readers interested in hot dogs, road trips, and regional recipes.” – Laurie Selwyn, Library Journal

“Comedian Jamie Loftus takes readers on a hot dog-sampling road trip that is by turns eye-opening and gut-clenching, hilarious and poignant, scatological and existential… Raw Dog is a wonderfully weird and wild mashup of history, social commentary, personal revelation and food journalism. The author’s passion for her work shines through as she makes a compelling case for more informed hot dog consumption while maintaining her love for the quintessential cookout food.” – Linda M. Castellitto, BookPage

The Senator’s Wife by Liv Constantine

fiction / suspense / mystery.

The Senator's WifeIn this town, anyone is replaceable…

After a tragic chain of events led to the deaths of their spouses two years ago, D.C. philanthropist Sloane Chase and Senator Whit Montgomery are finally starting to move on. The horrifying ordeal drew them together, and now they’re ready to settle down again—with each other.

As Sloane returns to the world of White House dinners and political small talk, this time with her new husband, she’s also preparing for an upcoming hip replacement—the latest reminder of the lupus diagnosis she’s managed since her twenties. With both of their hectic schedules, they decide that hiring a home health aide will give Sloane the support and independence she needs post-surgery. And they find the perfect fit in Athena Karras.

Seemingly a godsend, Athena tends to Sloane, and even helps her run her charitable foundation. But Sloane slowly begins to deteriorate—a complication, Athena explains, of Sloane’s lupus. As weeks go by, Sloane becomes sicker, and her uncertainty quickly turns to paranoia as she begins to suspect the worst. Why is Athena asking her so many probing questions about her foundation—about her past? And could Sloane be imagining the sultry looks between Athena and her new husband?

Riveting, fast-paced, and full of unbelievable twists, The Senator’s Wife is a psychological thriller that upends the private homes of those who walk the halls of power. Because when you have it all, you have everything to lose.

“[A] well-crafted thriller… [with a] shattering denouement.” – Jane Murphy, Booklist

“…deviously plotted… [the] perfect storm of perfidy swirls to a shocking climax… Constantine reliably delivers what her fans expect.” – Publishers Weekly

Sing Her Down by Ivy Pochoda

fiction / suspense / mystery / western.

Sing Her DownFlorence “Florida” Baum is not the hapless innocent she claims to be when she arrives at the Arizona women’s prison―or so her ex-cellmate, Diosmary Sandoval, keeps insinuating.

Dios knows the truth about Florida’s crimes, understands the truth that Florence hides even from herself: that she wasn’t a victim of circumstance, an unlucky bystander misled by a bad man. Dios knows that darkness lives in women too, despite the world’s refusal to see it. And she is determined to open Florida’s eyes and unleash her true self.

When an unexpected reprieve gives both women their freedom, Dios’s fixation on Florida turns into a dangerous obsession, and a deadly cat-and-mouse chase ensues from Arizona to the desolate streets of Los Angeles.

With blistering, incisive prose, the award-winning author Ivy Pochoda delivers a razor-sharp Western. Gripping and immersive, Sing Her Down is a spellbinding thriller setting two indelible women on a path to certain destruction and an epic, stunning showdown.

“Gripping, relentless… Sing Her Down is brutal and chaotic and entertaining, but somewhere down deep there’s a tiny beating heart with a few wise things to say about guilt and growth.” – Patrick Rapa, Philadelphia Inquirer

“Beautiful, affecting, and completely impossible to put down… Ivy Pochoda can continue to write just about anything, and I’ll continue to wait eagerly to read whatever she gives us next.” – Fiona Cook, Mystery & Suspense

“One of the best crime novels in recent years… Sing Her Down is a real accomplishment, a novel that interrogates the violence inherent in both the American carceral system and society as a whole.” – Michael Schaub, Alta

“We’re obsessed with Ivy Pochoda, whose previous books Wonder Valley and Visitation Street crackled with menace and energy… Pochoda’s writing is both poetic and violent, just like the story itself, and her searing, detailed descriptions make post apocalyptic L.A. feel like a character of its own. We loved this dark, page-turning read.” – Apple Books

Social Engagement by Avery Carpenter Forrey


Social EngagementIn an opulent honeymoon suite in Watch Hill, Rhode Island’s most desirable wedding venue, 29-year-old Callie Holt is spending her wedding night lying in a bathtub shoveling down a pizza; her expensive white dress now splattered with sauce and her groom passed out in the next room. With her seven-hour-old marriage already imploded, Callie turns to the place of record – her phone – sifting through the photographic evidence of the past year to pinpoint where it all went wrong.

Could it have started when Callie moved in with her best friend, Virginia Murphy, in the swanky Upper East Side pied-à-terre for which Virginia’s parents foot the bill? Or when Virginia’s irritatingly attractive cousin (and Callie’s secret ex) Ollie returned from pursuing his photography career abroad, throwing a wrench in Callie’s relationship with her kind (if a bit dim) finance bro boyfriend, Whit? Or was the true turning point when Callie stumbled upon a dark secret lurking in the Murphys’ well-heeled past, one with the potential to upend everything Callie knows about the people she considers her second family?

Over the course of one wedding-filled year, all these long-simmering secrets and resentments will come bubbling to the surface, leading to a reckoning that will strip Callie and everyone around her down to their most gruesomely real, filter-free selves. As Callie attends wedding after wedding, getting tagged in post after post, she begins to contemplate—and actualize through her own art—the gulf between the true selves of the people around her and the selves they present on their screens.

“Sharp, funny, and incisive.” – Melissa Minsker, Booklist

“If you’re looking for a page-turner with some bite, this one’s for you.” – theSkimm

“…smart and appealing… The author wrings plenty of tension from Callie’s complicated relationship with her benefactors, and portrays the book’s multifaceted characters with honesty and tenderness, especially as events build toward a climactic wedding-night confrontation. Readers will enjoy this heartfelt story.” – Publishers Weekly

Summer Stage by Meg Mitchell Moore


Summer StageAmy Trevino, a former aspiring playwright, has stayed close to her Rhode Island hometown while her famous brother, Timothy Fleming, pursued and achieved his Hollywood dreams. Now a high school English teacher and occasional drama director, Amy takes on the production manager role for her brother’s play in an effort to mend rifting family relationships.

Sam, Amy’s daughter, was a Disney child star who continued her pursuit for fame in a Manhattan TikTok house. Now she’s returned home unexpectedly. Her sudden arrival is shrouded in secrets, and Sam refuses to open up to her mother, deciding instead to join her uncle on Block Island for the summer.

Timothy, a successful and well-loved actor, is directing a summer production at a storied Block Island theater—and his famous ex-wife has the lead role.

As they work together to ensure the production is a success, Amy, Sam, and Timothy are forced to grapple with their desires for recognition and fortune, stand up for what they believe art and fame actually mean, and discover what they really want out of life.

A bighearted and delicious novel about family, ambition, and opportunity, Summer Stage is the must-read book of the summer.

“Moore delivers a great beach read… Taylor Jenkins Reid crossed with Elin Hilderbrand. Pull up an Adirondack chair and a sun hat and enjoy.” – Christine Perkins, Library Journal

“Moore brings summer theatre to life in her sparkling latest… The relationships feel real and engaging, and the dialogue is sharp and snappy, with smart writing that examines familial relationships with insight and aplomb. This one’s equally charming and satisfying.” – Publishers Weekly, STARRED REVIEW

“Moore’s latest deliciously captures the energy of a summer of creativity with this ensemble piece, combining a strong sense of place with likable narrators. From Sam’s stubborn vulnerability to Amy’s competence that belies bigger dreams, the characters are both relatable and aspirational.” – Susan Maguire, Booklist, STARRED REVIEW

Why Fathers Cry At Night: A Memoir in Love Poems, Recipes, Letters, and Remembrances by Kwame Alexander

nonfiction / memoir / poetry.

Why Fathers Cry At NightThis powerful memoir from a #1 New York Times bestselling author and Newbery Medalist features poetry, letters, recipes, and other personal artifacts that provide an intimate look into his life and the loved ones he shares it with.

In an intimate and non-traditional (or “new-fashioned”) memoir, Kwame Alexander shares snapshots of a man learning how to love. He takes us through stories of his from being awkward newlyweds in the sticky Chicago summer of 1967, to the sometimes-confusing ways they showed their love to each other, and for him. He explores his own relationships—his difficulties as a newly wedded, 22-year-old father, and the precariousness of his early marriage working in a jazz club with his second wife. Alexander attempts to deal with the unravelling of his marriage and the grief of his mother’s recent passing while sharing the solace he found in learning how to perfect her famous fried chicken dish. With an open heart, Alexander weaves together memories of his past to try and understand his greatest love: his daughters.

Full of heartfelt reminisces, family recipes, love poems, and personal letters, Why Fathers Cry at Night inspires bravery and vulnerability in every reader who has experienced the reckless passion, heartbreak, failure, and joy that define the whirlwind woes and wonders of love.

“…sweet and raw… Among the memoir’s many treasures is a funny section about his long-running feud with the poet Nikki Giovanni, who knew nothing about his acrimony until after it faded into friendship.” – Ron Charles, Washington Post

“…heartfelt… this candid and courageous work finds poetry in places both ordinary and extraordinary. It’s a quiet triumph.” – Publishers Weekly, STARRED REVIEW

“A refreshing entry in the author’s bountiful oeuvre.” – Diego Báez, Booklist

“This magnanimous hybrid-form memoir is rich with solace and wisdom.” – Kirkus Reviews

Women We Buried, Women We Burned: A Memoir by Rachel Louise Snyder

nonfiction / memoir.

Women We Buried, Women We BurnedFor decades, Rachel Louise Snyder has been a fierce advocate reporting on the darkest social issues that impact women’s lives. Women We Buried, Women We Burned is her own story.

Snyder was eight years old when her mother died, and her distraught father thrust the family into an evangelical, cult-like existence halfway across the country. Furiously rebellious, she was expelled from school and home at age 16. Living out of her car and relying on strangers, Rachel found herself masquerading as an adult, talking her way into college, and eventually travelling the globe.

Survival became her reporter’s beat. In places like India, Tibet, and Niger, she interviewed those who had been through the unimaginable. In Cambodia, where she lived for six years, she watched a country reckon with the horrors of its own recent history. When she returned to the States with a family of her own, it was with a new perspective on old family wounds, and a chance for healing from the most unexpected place.

A piercing account of Snyder’s journey from teenage runaway to reporter on the global epidemic of domestic violence, Women We Buried, Women We Burned is a memoir that embodies the transformative power of resilience.

“[A] searingly honest and moving tribute.” – Kathleen McBroom, Booklist

“[A] gripping memoir… Snyder’s curiosity is matched by her own resilience; writing stories about survivors parallels her own story of overcoming trauma and finding grace.” – Washington Post

“Journalist Snyder offers a penetrating memoir on grief and redemption… Snyder delivers her inspiring story with lyrical prose and sharp insights… It’s an eloquent portrayal of the power of forgiveness.” – Publishers Weekly

“[A] propulsive, forceful account… riveting… nearly impossible to put down… Writing with a highly effective mixture of distance, reflection, and compassion, the author never loses a palpable sense of immediacy… powerful, beautifully rendered… Exceptional writing, a harrowing coming-of-age story, and critical awareness combine to make a must-read memoir.” – Kirkus Reviews, STARRED REVIEW


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