Weekly Book List: Week 1 (Pulitzer Prize Winner)

light

All the Light We Cannot See / Anthony Doerr

Set during World War II Europe, this novel is sobering without being sentimental. The tension builds as the alternating, parallel stories of Werner and Marie-Laure unfold, and their paths cross. (FIC DOERR)

 

man

The Old Man and the Sea / Ernest Hemingway

Santiago is a Cuban fisherman who encounters a giant marlin in the Gulf Stream and the battle for his catch becomes one of survival against a band of marauding sharks. (FIC HEMINGWAY)

 

orphanThe Orphan Master’s Son / Adam Johnson

The son of a singer mother whose career forcibly separated her from her family and an influential father who runs an orphan work camp, Pak Jun Do rises to prominence using instinctive talents and eventually becomes a professional kidnapper and romantic rival to Kim Jong Il. (FIC JOHNSON)

 

mockingbirdTo Kill a Mockingbird / Harper Lee

Scout Finch, daughter of the town lawyer, likes to spend her summers building treehouses, swimming, and catching lightning bugs with her big brother Jem. But one summer, when a black man is accused of raping a white woman, Scout’s carefree days come to an end. In the county courtroom, she will join her father in a desperate battle against ignorance and prejudice. (FIC LEE)

belovedBeloved / Toni Morrison

Sethe, an escaped slave living in post-Civil War Ohio with her daughter and mother-in-law, is persistently haunted by the ghost of her dead baby girl. (FIC MORRISON)

 

gileadGilead / Marilynne Robinson

As the Reverend John Ames approaches the hour of his own death, he writes a letter to his son chronicling three previous generations of his family, a story that stretches back to the Civil War and reveals uncomfortable family secrets. (FIC ROBINSON)

 

americanAmerican Pastoral / Philip Roth

A former athletic star, devoted family man, and owner of a thriving glove factory, Seymour “Swede” Levov finds his life coming apart during the social disorder of the 1960s, when his beloved daughter turns revolutionary terrorist out to destroy her father’s world. (FIC ROTH, PHILIP)

 

acresA Thousand Acres / Jane Smiley

Larry Cook, an Iowan farmer who has worked a thousand acre plot owned by his family for generations, abruptly decides to leave his farm to his three daughters and retire. His two eldest daughters are pleased with the decision but his youngest daughter has been cut out by her father and is angry. As the daughters’ activity on the land progresses, they notice a change in their father. Events begin to unfold that will threaten and destroy the family and their farm. (FIC SMILEY)

goldfinchThe Goldfinch / Donna Tartt

The story begins with an explosion at the Metropolitan Museum that kills narrator Theo Decker’s beloved mother and results in his unlikely possession of a Dutch masterwork called The Goldfinch. Shootouts, gangsters, pillowcases, storage lockers, and the black market for art all play parts in the ensuing life of the painting in Theo’s care. (FIC TARTT)

purpleThe Color Purple / Alice Walker

Two African American sisters, one a missionary in Africa and the other a child-wife living in the South, support each other through their correspondence, beginning in the 1920s. (FIC WALKER, ALICE)

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