Politics and history crackle through the plotlines of our recommended books this month, as we travel the world experiencing struggle and mourning in a many-layered collage of contexts. Here are four varied works of “healing imagination,” as books both simple and unconventional examine trauma unflinching and then look to what happens next.
Nora Webster by Colm Toibin, Book of Ruth by Robert Seydel, The Association of Small Bombs by Karan Mahajan, Jam on the Vine by LaShonda Katrice Barnett
Once upon a time there was a girl named Božena. She grew up in a small village where she loved to gather strawberries and play in the fields. As a teenager she was given special permission to visit the castle library, where she read romantic books and dreamed of a future filled with love and literature. She was known for her shiny dark hair and her dancing, and was crowned the Queen of the Dahlia Ball. Soon after, she got married, but she did not live happily ever after.