Archive for July, 2019

MRS. EVERYTHING: a novel by Jennifer Weiner

July 18th, 2019

Jo & Bethie Kaufman were born into a world of promise.  Growing up in 1950s Detroit, they live in a perfect “Dick and Jane” house, where their roles in the family are clearly defined.  Jo is the tomboy, the bookish rebel with a passion to make the world more fair; Bethie is the pretty, feminine good girl, a would-be star who enjoys the power her beauty confers & dreams of a traditional life.

But the truth ends up looking different from what the girls imagined.  Jo & Bethie survive traumas & tragedies.  As their lives unfold against the background of free love & Viet Nam, Woodstock & woman’s lib, Bethie becomes an adventure-loving wild child who dives headlong into the counter-culture & is up for anything (except for settling down).  Meanwhile, Jo becomes a proper young mother in Connecticut, a witness to the changing world instead of a participant.  Neither  woman inhabits the world she dreams of, nor has a life she feels authentic or brings her joy.  Is it too late for the women to finally stake a claim on happily ever after?

GPL:  F Weiner

SURVIVAL MATH: Notes on an All-American Family by Mitchell S. Jackson

July 6th, 2019

An electrifying, dazzling written reckoning & essential addition to the national conversation about race & 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 & guns, near-death experiences, sex work, masculinity, composite fathers, the concept of “hustle”, & the destructive power of addiction—all framed within the story of Jackson, his family, & his community.

Lauded for its breathtaking pace, its tender portrayals, its stark candor, & its luminous style, Survival Math reveals on every page the searching intellect & originality of its author.  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.

GPL: 92 Jackson