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Amanda's Social Issue Picks

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Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780553447453
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Broadway Books - February 28th, 2017

I heard that author Roxane Gay was asked what was "the last book that made you furious?" She answered: "'Evicted,' by Matthew Desmond, which was reason enough for me to pick up this book. It is devastating and infuriating and such a necessary read. Matthew Desmond’s research-driven prose is a dazzling work of examination and insight. Within these pages, the business and culture of evictions is dissected down to the very dollars and cents that uphold this thriving industry. The judicial system and the role it plays is scrutinized, and the lives of 8 families are put on intimate display for readers to bear witness to.


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Not That Bad: Dispatches from Rape Culture Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780062413512
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Harper Perennial - May 1st, 2018

Roxane Gay has built an anthology so strong, both in subject matter and in style.  This book finds its strength in the many diverse voices that speak out and speak their truth. Every voice chips away at the ugly and foul thing that we call rape culture perpetuated by toxic masculinity, misogyny and the patriarchal world we live in. Above all, Not That Bad is a declaration of war, especially in the current #MeToo movement. It is as empowering as it is dark.


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Three Women Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9781451642292
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Avid Reader Press / Simon & Schuster - July 9th, 2019

Wow. This book is incredibly written and thought out. You can tell how much time and care Lisa took in her immersive reporting with each woman over the course of 8 years. I was surprised at how well she simply presented the women’s stories without bias or judgement. The stories are intense, compelling, and great conversation starters. This is the most raw portrait of desire I’ve ever read. 


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Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780062300553
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Harper Paperbacks - May 1st, 2018

Hillbilly Elegy is a story that demonstrates the full measure of the brokenness that wracks Appalachia, but it is also a story that exemplifies the depths of familial love and opportunity. Vance tells us about his family of “crazy hillbillies,” and, in the process of telling us the story of his family, he tells us the story of America too. His journey is inspirational, his thoughts are provoking, and his story is clear, concise, and well told.


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What My Mother and I Don't Talk About: Fifteen Writers Break the Silence Cover Image
By Michele Filgate (Editor)
$26.00
ISBN: 9781982107345
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Simon & Schuster - April 30th, 2019

This collection of essays is human, vulnerable, and at times cathartic. It is uneven at times, but highlights unique and diverse literary voices and encourages self reflection and forgiveness. The essays are varied in style and subject matter, but I found it fitting since we all have different relationships with our mothers. 


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The Radium Girls: The Dark Story of America's Shining Women Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9781492650959
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Sourcebooks - March 6th, 2018

This is a well-researched story, and it shows. The sense of injustice is palpable, the story flows evenly, but varies from the fact-delivering, non-fictional voice as Kate Moore enters into more emotional territory and paints the picture of scenes one could only imagine. Moore tells the Radium Girls' stories through their personalities, hopes, and friendships. A compelling account of another era, the evolution of the rights of the average worker, but especially those working women whose voices they tried, in vain, to suppress and invalidate.