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This month's Midwest Connection Picks

The Lion's Binding Oath
Ahmed Ismail Yusuf

Religious and ethnic conflict is Somalia's most enduring legacy. The U.S. has welcomed Somali refugees yet views them with suspicion. Yusuf's collection is written with deep compassion for the lives of its characters, examining the stories of families, clans, lovers, neighbors, and friends beneath its history of war and displacement.

Recommended if you like What is Not Yours is Not Yours, Helen Oyeyemi.

book Our Towns
James Fallows and Deborah Fallows

A unique, revelatory portrait of the civic and economic renewal already taking place across America, town by town and generally out of view of the national media. A surprisingly hopeful view of the country between its coasts.

Recommended if you like Hillbilly Elegy, J.D. Vance.

bookThe Westing Game
Ellen Raskin

When Samuel W. Westing is found dead, the residents of Sunset Towers find themselves gathered for the reading of his will. What they are shocked to hear is that Westing was actually murdered and that his murderer is one of them! The residents are given a series of clues and tasked with solving the mystery. Winning means they inherit Westing’s vast fortune, but the further they move through the game, the more dangerous it becomes.

Recommended if you like Escape From Mr. Lemoncello’s Library, Chris Grabenstein.

bookNeck and Neck
Elise Parsley

Everybody loves Leopold the giraffe. He inspires awe and wonder. His adoring fans gaze and cheer. Best of all, they feed him lots of deeeelicious snacks! But, one day, a shiny, bobble-headed new rival comes in and ruins everything… a giraffe-shaped balloon! Just how far will Leopold go to prove that he's the hero of the zoo?

Recommended if you like Giraffes Can’t Dance, Guy Parker-Rees.


Some favorite past Midwest Picks

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