Emily Grayson’s Best Reads of 2016

graysonMy name is Emily Grayson, and I live in Evanston with my daughter and husband in a very cool six-unit building with some of my dearest friends.  I hold a variety of great jobs around Evanston and Chicago: I work professionally as an actor and singer, I’m a standardized patient at the Feinberg School of Medicine, and I’ve been a massage therapist for the past 16 years and currently see clients at the Evanston Athletic Club.  In my spare time, I can often be found knitting, sewing, singing or drinking coffee at various Evanston locales.

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1)  The Warmth of Other Suns by Isabel Wilkerson (2010)

This was the first in a series of books I read for a Black Lives Matter reading group I started last January.  It began a year-long discussion about race in America and the conversation has never been dull and has often been humbling.  Wilkerson’s book and its first-person accounts of the three migrants at the center helped to give us context for our subsequent reads, and I can’t recommend it highly enough.

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Stacey Gibson’s Best Reads of 2016

staceyMy name is Stacey Gibson.  I’m a parent, educator, and Evanston resident who enjoys a well-crafted story and the sun.

1)  John Crow’s Devil by Marlon James (2005)

James peppers the pages with anvil heavy Jamaican patois, mystical practices of redemption, and sweeping battles where good and evil masquerade with and as the other. Continue reading “Stacey Gibson’s Best Reads of 2016”

Michelle Cohen’s Best Reads of 2016

notes-from-no-mans-landMy name is Michelle Cohen.  I live in Evanston with my husband and two children.  When I’m not designing lush gardens and landscapes for my clients, I can usually be found reading a book, or at the very least, talking about them.

1)  Notes From No Man’s Land by Eula Biss (2009)

Intimate and nuanced essays about living in a racist society.  Essential reading.

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Chris Skoglund’s Best Reads of 2016

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Photo by Katie Barthelemy

My name is Chris Skoglund, and I am the librarian at Willard Elementary School in Evanston, where I have worked for almost thirteen years.  I am an avid reader of books for both children and adults (which made picking only five books really difficult), so I consider myself to have the best job in the world!

1)  Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead (2016)

An extraordinary mix of historical fiction and science fiction, this novel drew me in and would not let me go.  Full of elegant imagery and characters that will linger in your mind long after the story is finished, each element worked seamlessly together.

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Marcus Campbell’s Best Reads of 2016

marcus-campbellMy name is Marcus Campbell.  I am the Assistant Superintendent and Principal at Evanston Township High School.  I have been at ETHS for 15 years and started my career there teaching English.  I love to read and enjoy the food scene.

1)  The Souls of Black Folk by W.E.B. Dubois (1903)

I always read something each year from the list of canonical black texts.  I find these readings informative in that many of these texts written long ago are still applicable today.

 

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An Interview with Dr. Michelle M. Wright

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Find “An Interview with Dr. Michelle M. Wright” at Off the Shelf’s new home on Evanston Public Library’s redesigned website.

See you there!!