All Time Faves: Issue-Driven Women's Fiction

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Midwives
By Bohjalian, Chris A.
1998/11 - Vintage Books USA
0375706771 Find It

With a suspense, lyricism, and moral complexity that recall To Kill a Mockingbird and Presumed Innocent, this compulsively readable novel explores what happens when a woman who has devoted herself to ushering life into the world finds herself charged with responsibility in a patient's tragic death.

The time is 1981, and Sibyl Danforth has been a dedicated midwife in the rural community of Reddington, Vermont, for fifteen years. But one treacherous winter night, in a house isolated by icy roads and failed telephone lines, Sibyl takes desperate measures to save a baby's life. She performs an emergency Caesarean section on its mother, who appears to have died in labor.
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White Oleander
By Fitch, Janet
1999/04 - Little Brown and Company
0316285269 Find It

When a woman murders a former lover and is imprisoned for life, her daughter must navigate a new reality--that of a series of foster homes, each its own universe, each with its own limits and dangers. ...More

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A Map of the World
By Hamilton, Jane
1994/05 - Doubleday Books
0385473109 Find It

A spectacularly taut drama about a rural American family, by the author of The Book of Ruth. Set in the small Midwestern town of Prairie Center, here is an achingly accurate rendering of how one event--the drowning of a child--can change forever the lives of everyone involved. Reading tour. ...More

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The Things We Do for Love
By Hannah, Kristin
2005/06 - Ballantine Books
0345467515 Find It

"New York Times bestselling author Kristin Hannah "touches the deepest, most tender corner of our hearts" (Tami Hoag). Her last novel, "Between Sisters, was chosen by CBS's "The Early Show as one of the best books of the summer. Now she returns with "The Things We Do for Love--a poignant, evocative story that celebrates the magic of motherhood, the joys of coming home, and the price we so willingly pay for love.

The youngest of three daughters, Angela DeSaria Malone was always "the princess" of the family, a girl who thought she knew how her life would unfold. High School. College. Marriage. Motherhood. That was how it had gone for her sisters, her cousins, her friends. But it didn't work out that way for Angie. She and her husband tried desperately to have a child; year after year, their perfectly decorated nursery remained empty. ...More

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The Girls
By Lansens, Lori
2006/05 - Little Brown and Company
0316069035 Find It

Winner - 2007 ALA Notable Fiction Selection
BookPage Notable Title
In Lori Lansens' astonishing second novel, readers come to know and love two of the most remarkable characters in Canadian fiction: Rose and Ruby, 29-year-old conjoined twins.
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A Song I Knew By Heart
By Lott, Bret
2004/05 - Random House
0375503773 Find It

A BookPage Notable Title
A Song I Knew by Heart is about the healing power of family--in particular, the bond between a mother-in-law and daughter-in-law. As Ruth and Naomi share their individual sorrows, together they find an uncommon strength. The pages of Bret Lott's deeply moving novel flow with a lilting beauty that is as heartrending and as restorative as the relationship at its center.
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The World Below
By Miller, Sue
2001/10 - Knopf
0375410945 Find It

From the author of "While I Was Gone", a magnificent new novel that exposes the nerves that lie hidden in marriages, families, and the lives of women. Catherine Hubbard takes up residence in her grandmother's old house and stumbles upon the true story of her grandmother's life and the misunderstanding upon which she built a lifelong love. ...More

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The Breakdown Lane
By Mitchard, Jacquelyn
2005/04 - HarperCollins Publishers
0060587245 Find It

A BookPage Notable Title
When her husband decides to defect from their life together, advice columnist Julianne Ambrose Gillis must carry on alone. In his absence, Julie is diagnosed with a serious illness, which drives her children to undertake a dangerous journey to find their dad.
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The Center of Everything
By Moriarty, Laura
2003/07 - Hyperion Books
1401300316 Find It

In Moriarty's extraordinary first novel, a young girl tries to make sense of an unruly world spinning around her. Growing up with a single mother who is chronically out of work and dating a married man, ten-year old Evelyn Bucknow learns early how to fend for herself. Accelerated Reader: Reading Level 5, 18 Points. ...More

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My Sister's Keeper
By Picoult, Jodi
2005/02 - Washington Square Press
0743454537 Find It

2005 ALA Young Adult Top Ten Selection
Written with grace, wisdom, and sensitivity, this novel is about a teen who was conceived as a bone marrow match for her sister Kate, and what happens when she begins to question who she really is.
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Three Women
By Piercy, Marge
2000/11 - HarperTorch
9780061014673 Find It

A woman's neat, buttoned-up life starts to unravel after her daughter returns home, angry and unemployed, and her vital, working mother suffers a debilitating stroke. ""Three Women" is a passionately told story, an uninhibited mix of politics, protest, and pain, a searing treatise on the situation of women".--"Chicago Tribune". ...More

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Blessings
By Quindlen, Anna
2002/09 - Random House
0375502238 Find It

In this richly written novel by the author of "One True Thing, " Skip Cuddy, caretaker of the Blessing estate, finds a baby asleep in a box and decides he wants to keep her. The secrets of the past, how they affect the decisions and lives of people in the present--these are at the center of this work by the beloved author called "a national treasure" by Alice Hoffman. ...More

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Icy Sparks
By Rubio, Gwyn Hyman
2001/03 - Penguin Books
0142000205 Find It

The eponymous heroine of Gwyn Rubio's Icy Sparks is only 10 years old the first time it happens. The sudden itching, the pressure squeezing her skull, and the "little invisible rubber bands" attached to her eyelids are all symptoms of Tourette's syndrome. At this point, of course, Icy doesn't yet have a name for these unsettling impulses. But whenever they become too much to resist, she runs down to her grandparents' root cellar, and there she gives in, croaking, jerking, cursing, and popping her eyes. Nicknamed the "frog child" by her classmates, Icy soon becomes "a little girl who had to keep all of her compulsions inside." Only a brief confinement at the Bluegrass State Hospital persuades her that there are actually children more "different" than she. ...More

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The Weight of Water
By Shreve, Anita
1998/01 - Little Brown and Company
0316780375 Find It

Enthusiastically embraced by critics, readers, and booksellers across the country, this powerful novel of obsession and betrayal is now available in paperback. When a photographer researches a legendary crime that took place a century earlier, she immerses herself in the details of the case--and finds herself caught in the grip of an uncontrollable emotion. ...More

 

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