Friday, October 27, 2017

New Books Coming Your Way, October 31, 2017

Invocation to Daughters by Barbara Jane Reyes
96 p.; Poetry

Invocation to Daughters is a book of prayers, psalms, and odes for Filipina girls and women trying to survive and make sense of their own situations. Writing in an English inflected with Tagalog and Spanish, in meditations on the relationship between fathers and daughters and impassioned pleas on behalf of victims of brutality, Barbara Jane Reyes unleashes the colonized tongue in a lyrical feminist broadside written from a place of shared humanity.

Have You Met Nora? by Nicole Blades
320 p.; Fiction

She’s blossomed from a wealthy surgeon’s beautiful daughter to elegant socialite to being the top fashion stylist in the country. And Nora Mackenzie is only days away from marrying into one of New York’s richest, most powerful families. But her fairy tale rise is rooted in an incredible deception—one scandal away from turning her perfect world to ashes…

What no one knows is that Nora is the biracial daughter of a Caribbean woman and a long-gone white father. Adopted—and abused—by her mother’s employer, then sent to an exclusive boarding school to buy her silence, Nora found that “passing” as a white woman could give her everything she never had.

Now, an ex-classmate who Nora betrayed many years ago has returned to her life to even the score. Her machinations are turning Nora’s privilege into one gilded trap after another. Running out of choices, Nora must decide how far she will go to protect a lie or give up and finally face the truth.

The King Is Always Above the People: Stories by Daniel Alarcón
256 p.; Short stories

Migration. Betrayal. Family history. Art. Doomed love. In Alarcon’s hands, these topics are taken to heights of emotion and revelation. In “The Thousands,” people are on the move and forging into new lands, hopes and heartbreak abound. A man deals with the fallout of his blind relatives’ mysterious deaths and his father’s mental break down and incarceration in “The Bridge.” And in the tour de force story, “The Auroras”, a man severs from his old life and seeks to make a new one in a new city, only to find himself acting out the manipulations and desires of a powerful woman.

Deeply humane and richly drawn, full of unforgettable characters, these stories reveal a time and a place that is both foreign and yet eerily familiar. Throughout the book, you are in the hands of an accomplished master.

Justice for All: Selected Writings of Lloyd A. Barbee edited by Daphne E. Barbee-Wooten
304 p.; Political Science

Civil rights leader and legislator Lloyd A. Barbee frequently signed his correspondence with "Justice for All," a phrase that embodied his life’s work of fighting for equality and fairness. An attorney most remembered for the landmark case that desegregated Milwaukee Public Schools in 1972, Barbee stood up for justice throughout his career, from defending University of Wisconsin students who were expelled after pushing the school to offer black history courses, to representing a famous comedian who was arrested after stepping out of a line at a protest march. As the only African American in the Wisconsin legislature from 1965 to 1977, Barbee advocated for fair housing, criminal justice reform, equal employment opportunities, women’s rights, and access to quality education for all, as well as being an early advocate for gay rights and abortion access.

This collection features Barbee’s writings from the front lines of the civil rights movement, along with his reflections from later in life on the challenges of legislating as a minority, the logistics of coalition building, and the value of moving the needle on issues that would outlast him. Edited by his daughter, civil rights lawyer Daphne E. Barbee-Wooten, these documents are both a record of a significant period of conflict and progress, as well as a resource on issues that continue to be relevant to activists, lawmakers, and educators.

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