• Cait Levin
  • [SWP News] More Great Books this Spring!
[SWP News] More Great Books this Spring!
Contributor
Written by
Cait Levin
February 2016
Contributor
Written by
Cait Levin
February 2016

A Drop in the Ocean by Jenni Ogden

On her 49th birthday, Anna Fergusson, Boston neuroscientist and dedicated introvert, arrives at an unwanted crossroads when the funding for her research lab is cut. With her confidence shattered and her future uncertain, on impulse she rents a cabin for a year on Australia's Great Barrier Reef. However Turtle Island, alive with sea birds and nesting Green turtles, is not the retreat she expected. Here she finds love—for the eccentric islanders who become her family; for Tom, the laid-back turtle whisperer; and for the turtles whose ancient mothering instincts move her to tears. But Anna finds that even on her idyllic drop in the ocean there is pain, and as the months fly past her dream for a new life is threatened by a darkness that challenges everything she has come to believe about the power of love.

Evocative and thought-provoking, A Drop in the Ocean is a story about second chances and hard lessons learned in the gentlest of ways.

The End of Miracles by Monica Starkman

Margo Kerber has endured difficult years battling infertility while trying to sustain her good marriage and satisfying career. When a seemingly miraculous pregnancy ends in a tragic late miscarriage, she finds relief from consuming grief in the unshakable, but false, belief that she is pregnant again—until an ultrasound convinces her of the truth. Following this revelation, she sinks into a deep depression requiring psychiatric hospitalization. But once in the hospital, Margo fears that the chaotic environment there is worsening her grip on reality. When she’s presented with an opportunity to flee, she seizes it—and outside, a chance encounter with a briefly unattended baby stirs up a fantasy that impels her to commit an unthinkable crime.

Written by a prominent psychiatrist, The End of Miracles is the gripping tale of one woman’s psychological unraveling.

(R)evolution: The Girls Write Now 2016 Anthology

From one of top after-school programs in the nation, Girls Write Now, comes the next installment in the organization’s award-winning anthology series: a stunning collection of poetry and prose written by young women and their mentors in exploration of the theme of “Revolution.”

Distinguished twice by the White House as one of the nation’s best after-school arts and cultural organizations, and recently honored by Newsweek in an article on after-school programs that make a difference, Girls Write Now works to empower underserved teen girls in New York City by pairing them with professional women writers who serve as their personal mentors. (R)evolution showcases the best poetry, prose, and essays from the mentees and mentors of Girls Write Now on the theme of “Revolution,” and includes a bonus section of writing exercises and prompts for individuals and groups. Powerful and inspiring, (R)evolution showcases the brave new voices that are changing the world of literature, one girl at a time.

There Was a Fire Here by Risa Nye

Less than a month before her 40th birthday, a devastating firestorm destroys Risa Nye’s home and neighborhood in Oakland, California. Already mourning the perceived loss of her youth, she now must face the loss of all tangible reminders of who she was before.

There Was a Fire Here is the story of how Nye adjusts to the turning point that will forever mark the “before and after” in her life—and a chronicle of her attempts to honor the lost symbols of her past even as she struggles to create a new home for her family.

Accidental Soldier by Dorit Sasson

At age nineteen, Dorit Sasson, a dual American-Israeli citizen, was trying to make the status quo work as a college student—until she realized that if she didn’t distance herself from her neurotic, worrywart of a mother, she would become just like her.

Accidental Soldier: A Memoir of Service and Sacrifice in the Israel Defense Forces is Sasson’s story of how she dropped out of college and volunteered for the Israel Defense Forces in an effort to change her life—and how, in stepping out of her comfort zone and into a war zone, she discovered courage and faith she didn’t know she was capable of.

The Shelf Life of Ashes by Hollis Giammatteo

When Hollis Giammatteo sought a job working with the elderly, she did so with the intention of finding models of healthy aging. And she failed.

In The Shelf Life of Ashes, Giammatteo chronicles her experiences with her wards, as well as the trip she embarks upon when her mother, who is convinced she is dying, entreats her to come “home.” Trips back, traumas triggered, identity in crisis, equanimity gained—this quasi-comic, concentrated journey engages the reader in the process of naming and facing the tasks involved in growing old, while asking a simple but weighted question: Can aging be done well?

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