The article “Some Books Are More Equal Than Others” reminds us that reading for pleasure doesn’t always mean readerly fiction novels like “The Hunger Games” (although any reading is good reading), enjoyment can also be found in more writerly texts that require the reader to work for the meanings behind the author’s plot to gain both “verbal and world knowledge.” Here is a list of some fiction and non-fiction books available (in stock or order) at our non-profit bookstore Teaching for Change that are worth considering.
A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole
Pulitzer Prize-winning novel tells the story of Ignatius J. Reilly and is known as a masterpiece of human folly and tragedy
One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Tells the story of the rise and fall, birth and death of the mythical town of Macondo through the Buendia family, a masterpiece of fiction.
The Dew Breaker by Edwidge Danticat
This book moves between the lives of Haitians in Haiti in the 1960s and New York City today. It’s an unforgettable story of love, regret and hope.
Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe
Probably the best-known African novel and one of the world’s most influential literary masterpieces.
Stone Butch Blues by Leslie Feinberg
Published in 1993, this novel is considered to be the finest account written about the complexities of a transgendered existence.
Walden by Henry David Thoreau
A collection of quotations by Thoreau, famous author, naturalist, and transcendentalist.
The Cut by George Pelecanos
The Cut is the latest confirmation of why Pelecanos is “perhaps America’s greatest living crime writer” (Stephen King)
Borderlands/La Frontera by Gloria Anzaldua
Essays and poems written by Gloria Anzaldua’s experience as a Chicana, a lesbian, and writer challenge the way we think about identity.
Radio Free Dixie: Robert E. Williams and the Roots of Black Power by Timothy Tyson
The story of Robert F. Williams, one of the most influential black activists of the generation that toppled Jim Crow laws.
Reborn: Journals and Notebooks 1947-1962 by Susan Sontag and David Rieff
The first three volumes of Susan Sontag’s journals and notebooks that reveal one of the most important writers and thinkers of the 20th century.
A People’s History of the United States by Howard Zinn
Historian Howard Zinn tells America’s story from the point of view of America’s “othered” – women, factory workers, African-Americans, Native-Americans, working poor and immigrant laborers.
The Big Sea: An Autobiography by Langston Hughes
Langston Hughes recounts memorable years in Harlem and Paris. Princeton Professor Arnold Rampersad writes the introduction.
Shock Doctrine by Naomi Klein
Naomi Klein challenges the myth of Milton Friedman’s free-market economic revolution. Klein shows how Friedman and his followers have harnessed terrible shocks and violence to implement their policies.
Malcolm X by Manning Marable
Marable’s acclaimed biography of Malcolm X does justice to one of the most influential and controversial figures of the twentieth century American history.