If You Like “The Help”...

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The Little Giant of Aberdeen County
Tiffany Baker

BAKER

Truly Plaice, an overly large and ungainly girl, is the polar opposite of her sister, Serena Jane, the epitome of feminine perfection. With their parents dead, Truly and Serena Jane are separated. While Serena Jane’s beauty proves to her biggest curse, Truly finds her calling and the possibility of love in unexpected places.


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We Are All Welcome Here: A Novel
Elizabeth Berg

BERG

It is the summer of 1964. In Tupelo, Mississippi, tensions are mounting over civil-rights demonstrations occurring ever more frequently. Challenged by the effects of polio, Paige is nonetheless determined to live as normal a life as possible and to raise her daughter, Diana, in the way she sees fit—with the support of her tough-talking black caregiver, Peacie.


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The Postmistress
Sarah Blake

BLAKE

In London covering the Blitz with Edward R. Murrow, Frankie Bard meets a Cape Cod doctor in a shelter and promises that she’ll deliver a letter for him when she finally returns to the United States. “The Postmistress” is a sweeping novel about the loss of innocence of two extraordinary women—and of two countries torn apart by war.


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Brothers and Sisters
Bebe Moore Campbell

CAMPBELL

Struggling with her own personal issues after the Los Angeles riots, Esther Jackson, a Black employee at a downtown bank, is heartened when a Black man is hired as senior vice-president, until he sexually harasses her white friend and coworker.


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Great Neck
Jay Cantor

CANTOR

Describes a group of friends, black and white, growing up radical amid the turbulence of the sixties and seventies, following them from their 1960 sixth-grade class in Great Neck to their involvement in civil rights and peace movements..


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Little Bee: A Novel
Chris Cleave

CLEAVE

A haunting novel about the tenuous friendship that blooms between two disparate strangers—one an illegal Nigerian refugee, the other a recent widow from suburban London.


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The Summer We Got Saved
Pat Cunningham Devoto

DEVOTO

Tab and Tina, relatives of a founder of Ku Klux Klan, are whisked away to an interracial Civil Rights school one summer. There, they befriend both a black polio patient and the biracial daughter of a Yankee and a Civil Rights leader. Can the girls be saved from the racist traditions of their Alabama family?


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A Lesson Before Dying
Ernest J. Gaines

OPRAH GAINES

In a small Louisiana Cajun community in the late 1940’s, Jefferson, a young illiterate black man, is falsely convicted of murder and is sentenced to death. Grant Wiggins, the plantation schoolteacher, agrees to talk with the condemned man. The two men forge a bond as they come to understand what it means to resist and defy one’s own fate.


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The Queen of Palmyra: A Novel
Minrose Gwin

GWIN

An atmospheric debut novel about growing up in the changing South in 1960s Mississippi in the tradition of The Secret Life of Bees and The Help.


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Saving CeeCee Honeycutt: A Novel
Beth Hoffman

HOFFMAN

For years, 12-year-old CeeCee Honeycutt has been the caretaker of her psychotic mother. But when Camille is hit by a truck and killed, CeeCee is left to fend for herself. To the rescue comes her previously unknown great-aunt from Savannah, Tootie Caldwell, who whirls CeeCee into her world of female friendship, strong women, wacky humor, and good old-fashioned heart.


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The Sweet By and By: A Novel
Todd Johnson

JOHNSON

Five very different Southern women meet in a nursing home and develop a friendship that resonates over the decades.


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Mudbound
Hillary Jordan

JORDAN

Mudbound takes on prejudice in its myriad forms on a Mississippi Delta farm in 1946. City girl Laura McAllen attempts to raise her family despite questionable decisions made by her husband. Tensions continue to rise when her brother-in-law and the son of a family of sharecroppers both return from WWII as changed men bearing the scars of combat.


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The Secret Life of Bees
Sue Monk Kidd

KIDD

Lily Owens is a young girl who lives on the peach farm that her abusive father owns. Rosaleen is a black woman hired by Lily’s father to be a stand in mother for Lily. When Rosaleen insults some of the biggest racists in their town, Lily and Rosaleen go to live with the three Boatwright sisters on their honey farm.


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The Four Corners of the Sky: A Novel
Michael Malone

MALONE

A Navy pilot must deal with her estranged and dying father and return a gift he gave her if she wants to learn the truth about her mother’s identity.


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Right as Rain: A Novel
Bev Marshall

MARSHALL

Living and working side-by-side on the rural Southern farm belonging to their white employers, Tee Wee and Icey forge a bond based on their shared servitude and their equally painful pasts.


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Four Spirits
Sena Jeter Naslund

NASLUND

In the wake of racial tensions in 1960s Alabama, sheltered white college student Stella participates in her first freedom movement and finds her life changed in several ways when she develops friendships with local African Americans.


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The Persia Cafe
Melany Neilson

NEILSON

The disappearance of a black boy in a small Mississippi town in 1962 plunges young Fannie, who dreams of cooking her way to a better life, into her town’s own heart of darkness.


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Freshwater Road
Denise Nicholas

NICHOLAS

Celeste Tyree, a black 19-year-old college student, travels to Mississippi to take part in the 1964 summer campaign to register disenfranchised African American voters.


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I'll Take You There: A Novel
Joyce Carol Oates

OATES

In a novel set in the early 1960s, a young white woman falls in love with a black philosophy student and then must face a person from her past whom she believed had died.


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Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy
Gary D. Schmidt

HIST TEEN SCHMIDT

In 1911, Turner Buckminster hates his new home of Phippsburg, Maine, but things improve when he meets Lizzie Bright Griffin, a girl from a poor, nearby island community founded by former slaves that the town fathers-and Turner’s-want to change into a tourist spot.


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The Space Between Us: A Novel
Thrity Umrigar

UMRIGAR

Captures the delicate balance of class and gender in contemporary India as witnessed through the lives of two women—Sera Dubash, an upper middle-class housewife, and Bhima, an illiterate domestic hardened by a life of loss and despair..


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The Angels of Morgan Hill
Donna VanLiere

INSPIR VANLIERE

Jane Gable thinks 1947 will be like every other year in Morgan Hill, Tennessee, but it’s the year everything changes. Jane first sees Milo Turner the day that her abusive, alcoholic father is buried. The Turners are the first black family ever to move into the area, and their presence challenges the comfort of many in the small community.


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