Mass Bookshelf for August 2015

Here are the titles published by Massachusetts authors this month. Did we miss your book published in August 2015?  If so, email bookawards@massbook.org with the information.  Thanks!

CHILDREN/YOUNG ADULT

In Marika McCoola’s debut graphic novel, Baba Yaga’s Assistant, the resourceful young Masha must pass a succession of tests to earn her place as assistant to the Russian Folklore character Baba Yaga. This spooky yet touching tale is beautifully illustrated by renowned graphic artist Emily Carroll.

FICTION

In Stepdog by Nicole Galland, Sara first fires – then marries – the handsome Rory O’Connor, in order to provide him with a green card. Rory inadvertently allows her beloved dog to be kidnapped by Sara’s sociopathic ex-boyfriend, then undertakes a quest to retrieve the pup and convince Sara that they all actually belong together.

Alice Hoffman has published The Marriage of Oppositesset on the island of St. Thomas and focusing on the woman who gave birth to Camille Pissarro, the “Father of Impressionism.”  It’s a hit!  (NY Times Bestseller List for 23 August 2015)

NONFICTION

Caroline Heller’s Reading Claudius is a dual memoir – of both her parents’ lives and her own – which follows her parents from their circle of intellectuals in pre-war Prague to the United States, and examines how people use literature to survive the dark times.

We Are Market Basket by Daniel Korschun & Grant Welker. When Arthur T. Demoulas – long-time CEO of the Market Basket supermarket chain – was unseated by his cousin, employees at all levels walked out en masse to protest, and were joined by loyal customers at huge rallies. The unprecedented display of support challenged the board of directors to take corrective measures, and the people ultimately prevailed. Includes an array of first-hand accounts.

In A River Runs Again: India’s Natural World in Crisis, from the Barren Cliffs of Rajasthan to the Farmlands of Karnataka, Meera Subramanian depicts her encounters with the ordinary people who are determined to revive a ravaged India. With examples ranging from villagers resuscitating a river run dry to a bold young woman teaching adolescents about sexual health, the book suggests the possibility of a sustainable future through microenterprise – for India and the world.

Faith Ed by Linda K. Wertheimer examines to what extent school systems should teach students about the religions of the world. Through examples of both good and bad real-life experiences at various schools, the author exposes how school systems struggle with the issue, and explores a possible map for raising a new generation of religiously literate Americans.

— Compiled by Kirstie David, Mass Center for the Book.

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