Mind-Opening Reads

After five teenagers defaced a historic black schoolhouse in Virginia with racist and anti-Semitic graffiti last year, a judge handed down an unusual sentence. She endorsed a prosecutor's order that they read one book each month for the next 12 months and write a report about it.

But not just any books: They must address some of history's most divisive and tragic periods... (from the New York Times, Feb. 9, 2017)

You can read the whole story here.

The Color Purple Cover Image
$14.95
ISBN: 9780156028356
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Harvest Books - May 12th, 2003

Now a Broadway musical

Winner of the Pulitzer Prize

Winner of the National Book Award


Native Son Cover Image
By Richard Wright, Arnold Rampersad (Introduction by)
$13.00
ISBN: 9780060929800
Availability: Special Order
Published: Harper Perennial - December 1st, 2003

Right from the start, Bigger Thomas had been headed for jail. It could have been for assault or petty larceny; by chance, it was for murder and rape. Native Son tells the story of this young black man caught in a downward spiral after he kills a young white woman in a brief moment of panic.


Exodus Cover Image
$8.99
ISBN: 9780553258479
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Bantam Books - October 1st, 1983

Exodus is an international publishing phenomenon--the towering novel of the twentieth century's most dramatic geopolitical event. Leon Uris magnificently portrays the birth of a new nation in the midst of enemies--the beginning of an earthshaking struggle for power.


Mila 18 Cover Image
$7.99
ISBN: 9780553241600
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Bantam - November 1983

It was a time of crisis, a time of tragedy--and a time of transcendent courage and determination.Leon Uris's blazing novel is set in the midst of the ghetto uprising that defied Nazi tyranny, as the Jews of Warsaw boldly met Wehrmacht tanks with homemade weapons and bare fists.Here, painted on a canvas as broad as its subject matter, is the compelling of one of the most heroic struggles of modern


Trinity Cover Image
$8.99
ISBN: 9780060827885
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Avon Books - July 25th, 2006

From the acclaimed author who enthralled the world with Exodus, Battle Cry, QB VII, Topaz, and other beloved classics of twentieth-century fiction comes a sweeping and powerful epic adventure that captures the "terrible beauty" of Ireland during its long and bloody struggle for freedom.


My Name Is Asher Lev Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9781400031047
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Anchor Books - March 11th, 2003

"A novel of finely articulated tragic power. . . . Little short of a work of genius." --The New York Times Book Review


The Chosen Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780449911549
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Ballantine Books - August 27th, 1996

"Anyone who finds it is finding a jewel. Its themes are profound and universal."
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL


The Sun Also Rises Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780743297332
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Scribner Book Company - October 17th, 2006

The quintessential novel of the Lost Generation, The Sun Also Rises is one of Ernest Hemingway's masterpieces and a classic example of his spare but powerful writing style.


Night Cover Image
By Elie Wiesel, Marion Wiesel (Translator), Elie Wiesel (Preface by)
$9.95
ISBN: 9780374500016
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Hill & Wang - January 16th, 2006

A New Translation From The French By Marion Wiesel


The Crucible Cover Image
By Arthur Miller, Christopher W. E. Bigsby (Introduction by)
$15.00
ISBN: 9780142437339
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Penguin Books - March 25th, 2003

A haunting examination of groupthink and mass hysteria in a rural community


The Kite Runner Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781594631931
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Riverhead Books - March 5th, 2013

The #1 New York Times bestselling debut novel that introduced Khaled Hosseini to millions of readers the world over.


A Thousand Splendid Suns Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781594483851
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Riverhead Books - November 25th, 2008

Propelled by the same superb instinct for storytelling that made The Kite Runner a beloved classic, A Thousand Splendid Suns is at once an incredible chronicle of thirty years of Afghan history and a deeply moving story of family, friendship, faith, and the salvation to be found in love.


Things Fall Apart Cover Image
$13.00
ISBN: 9780385474542
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Anchor Books - September 1st, 1994

Things Fall Apart is the first of three novels in Chinua Achebe's critically acclaimed African Trilogy. It is a classic narrative about Africa's cataclysmic encounter with Europe as it establishes a colonial presence on the continent.


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The Handmaid's Tale Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9780385490818
Availability: On Our Shelves Now - Call to Confirm
Published: Anchor Books - March 13th, 1998

From the bestselling author of Alias Grace and the MaddAddam trilogy, here is the #1 New York Times bestseller and seminal work of speculative fiction from the Booker Prize-winning author.

Now a Hulu series starring Elizabeth Moss, Samira Wiley, and Joseph Fiennes. Includes a new introduction by Margaret Atwood.


To Kill a Mockingbird Cover Image
$8.99
ISBN: 9780446310789
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Grand Central Publishing - October 11th, 1988

The unforgettable novel of a childhood in a sleepy Southern town and the crisis of conscience that rocked it, To Kill A Mockingbird became both an instant bestseller and a critical success when it was first published in 1960. It went on to win the Pulitzer Prize in 1961 and was later made into an Academy Award-winning film, also a classic.


I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings Cover Image
By Maya Angelou, Oprah Winfrey (Foreword by)
$7.99
ISBN: 9780345514400
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Ballantine Books - April 21st, 2009

Here is a book as joyous and painful, as mysterious and memorable, as childhood itself. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings captures the longing of lonely children, the brute insult of bigotry, and the wonder of words that can make the world right. Maya Angelou's debut memoir is a modern American classic beloved worldwide.


The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781400052189
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Broadway Books - March 8th, 2011

Now an HBO(R) Film starring Oprah Winfrey and Rose Byrne


Caleb's Crossing Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780143121077
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Penguin Books - April 24th, 2012

A bestselling tale of passion and belief, magic and adventure from the author of The Secret Chord and of March, winner of the Pulitzer Prize.


The Tortilla Curtain Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780140238280
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Penguin Books - September 1996

T.C. Boyle's "compelling" (The Chicago Tribune) novel about assimilation and the price of the American dream


The Bluest Eye Cover Image
$14.95
ISBN: 9780307278449
Availability: On Our Shelves Now - Call to Confirm
Published: Vintage Books USA - May 8th, 2007

Pecola Breedlove, a young black girl, prays every day for beauty. Mocked by other children for the dark skin, curly hair, and brown eyes that set her apart, she yearns for normalcy, for the blond hair and blue eyes that she believes will allow her to finally fit in.Yet as her dream grows more fervent, her life slowly starts to disintegrate in the face of adversity and strife.


Hope in the Unseen Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780767901260
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Broadway Books - May 4th, 1999

It is 1993, and Cedric Jennings is a bright and ferociously determined honor student at Ballou, a high school in one of Washington D.C.'s most dangerous neighborhoods, where the dropout rate is well into double digits and just 80 students out of more than 1,350 boast an average of B or better. At Ballou, Cedric has almost no friends.


Down These Mean Streets Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9780679781424
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Vintage - November 25th, 1997

Thirty years ago Piri Thomas made literary history with this lacerating, lyrical memoir of his coming of age on the streets of Spanish Harlem. Here was the testament of a born outsider: a Puerto Rican in English-speaking America; a dark-skinned morenito in a family that refused to acknowledge its African blood.


Black Boy Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9780061130243
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Harper Perennial - April 2007

Richard Wright grew up in the woods of Mississippi amid poverty, hunger, fear, and hatred. He lied, stole, and raged at those around him; at six he was a -drunkard, - hanging about in taverns.


The Beautiful Struggle: A Father, Two Sons, and an Unlikely Road to Manhood Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780385527460
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Spiegel & Grau - January 6th, 2009

An exceptional father-son story from the National Book Award-winning author of Between the World and Me about the reality that tests us, the myths that sustain us, and the love that saves us.


Eichmann in Jerusalem: A Report on the Banality of Evil Cover Image
By Hannah Arendt, Amos Elon (Introduction by)
$17.00
ISBN: 9780143039884
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Penguin Books - October 2006

The controversial journalistic analysis of the mentality that fostered the Holocaust, from the author of The Origins of Totalitarianism


The Underground Railroad Cover Image
$26.95
ISBN: 9780385542364
Availability: On Our Shelves Now - Call to Confirm
Published: Doubleday Books - August 2nd, 2016

Winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award, the #1 New York Times bestseller from Colson Whitehead, a magnificent tour de force chronicling a young slave's adventures as she makes a desperate bid for freedom in the antebellum South


Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir in Books Cover Image
$18.00
ISBN: 9780812979305
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Random House Trade - November 4th, 2008

Every Thursday morning for two years in the Islamic Republic of Iran, Azar Nafisi, a bold and inspired teacher, secretly gathered seven of her most committed female students to read forbidden Western classics. Some came from conservative and religious families, others were progressive and secular; some had spent time in jail.


The Rape of Nanking: The Forgotten Holocaust of World War II Cover Image
$18.99
ISBN: 9780465068364
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Basic Books - January 10th, 2012

In December 1937, the Japanese army swept into the ancient city of Nanking. Within weeks, more than 300,000 Chinese civilians and soldiers were systematically raped, tortured, and murdered-a death toll exceeding that of the atomic blasts of Hiroshima and Nagasaki combined.


Infidel Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780743289696
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Free Press - April 2008

One of today's most admired and controversial political figures, Ayaan Hirsi Ali burst into international headlines following the murder of Theo van Gogh by an Islamist who threatened that she would be next. She made headlines again when she was stripped of her citizenship and resigned from the Dutch Parliament.


The Orphan Master's Son Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780812982626
Availability: On Our Shelves Now - Call to Confirm
Published: Random House Trade - August 7th, 2012

The Pulitzer Prize-winning, New York Times betselling novel of North Korea: an epic journey into the heart of the world's most mysterious dictatorship.

"Imagine Charles Dickens paying a visit to Pyongyang, and you see the canvas on which Adam] Johnson is painting here."--The Washington Post


The Help Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780425232200
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Berkley Publishing Group - April 5th, 2011

The #1 New York Times bestselling novel and basis for the Academy Award-winning film.


Cry, the Beloved Country Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780743262170
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Scribner Book Company - September 29th, 2003

An Oprah Book Club selection, Cry, the Beloved Country, the most famous and important novel in South Africa's history, was an immediate worldwide bestseller in 1948. Alan Paton's impassioned novel about a black man's country under white man's law is a work of searing beauty.


Too Late the Phalarope Cover Image
$15.00
ISBN: 9780684818955
Availability: Special Order
Published: Scribner Book Company - January 3rd, 1996

From the author of Cry, The Beloved Country comes a powerful novel of terror and remorse "written in exquisitely balanced prose" (Chicago Sun-Times) about a white policeman who has an affair with a native girl in South Africa.


A Dry White Season Cover Image
$13.99
ISBN: 9780061138638
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Harper Perennial - September 19th, 2006

As startling and powerful as when first published more than two decades ago, Andre Brink's classic novel, A Dry White Season, is an unflinching and unforgettable look at racial intolerance, the human condition, and the heavy price of morality.


Ghost Soldiers: The Epic Account of World War II's Greatest Rescue Mission Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780385495653
Availability: We can get this book for you, usually within two days.
Published: Anchor Books - May 7th, 2002

"The greatest World War II story never told" (Esquire)--an enthralling account of the heroic mission to rescue the last survivors of the Bataan Death March.