by Eudora Welty
A vivid and charming portrait of a large southern family, the Fairchilds, who live on a plantation in the Mississippi delta. The story, set in 1923, is exquisitely woven from the ordinary events of family life, centered around the visit of a young relative, Laura McRaven, and the family's preparations for her cousin Dabney's wedding.
by Kaye Gibbons
In autumn, 1918, at the emotionally strangling confluence of a flu epidemic and rumors of imminent peace, Maureen Ross makes two important discoveries: She is married to an emotionally frozen tyrant, and she is pregnant with his child.
by Denise Nicholas
In the summer of 1964, 19-year-old Celeste Tyree, straddling the strong race consciousness of her father and the race aversion of her estranged mother, takes time off from college, travelling from Michigan to Mississippi to lend her efforts to Freedom Summer. She ends up in the small town of Pineyville, helping to register voters and witnessing the kind of poverty and racism her father fought to leave behind.
Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe
by Fannie Flagg
Evelyn Couch is having trouble in her marriage, and no one seems to take her seriously. While in a nursing home visiting relatives, she meets Ninny Threadgoode, an outgoing old woman, who tells her the story of Idgie Threadgoode, a young woman in 1920's Alabama. Through Idgie's inspiring life, Evelyn learns to be more assertive and begins to rejuvenate her own life.
by Jennifer Haigh
The story of the devastating effect Ken Kimble, a serial husband, has on the lives of three women he marries. It follows twenty-five years in his life as seen through the eyes of his three wives, from Birdie, who struggles with his abandonment; to heiress Joan, who is recovering from a personal loss; to Dinah, who suffers from an unhappy past.
by Hillary Jordan
On a stormy afternoon on the McAllans' Mississippi farm, Mudbound, Henry and his younger brother Jamie are burying their cantankerous father, Pappy. Henry's wife, Laura, and their two daughters join the funeral. As the coffin is nailed shut, Jamie reflects on the course of events and secrets that have led to this moment.
Saving CeeCee Honeycutt
by Beth Hoffman
For years, 12-year-old CeeCee Honeycutt has been the caretaker of her psychotic mother, Camille-the tiara-toting, lipstick-smeared laughingstock of an entire town. But when Camille is hit by a truck and killed, CeeCee is left to fend for herself. To the rescue comes her previously unknown great-aunt from Savannah, Tootie Caldwell, who whirls CeeCee into her world of female friendship, strong women, wacky humor, and good old-fashioned heart.
by Toni Morrison
At the heart of Sula is a bond between two women, a friendship whose intensity first sustains, then injures. Sula and Nel are both black, both smart, and both poor. Through their girlhood years, they share everything. All this changes when Sula gets out of the Bottom, the hilltop neighborhood where there hides a fierce resentment at the invisible line that cannot be overstepped.
The Color Purple
by Alice Walker
Celie is a poor black woman whose letters tell the story of 20 years of her life, beginning at age 14 when she is being abused and raped by her father and attempting to protect her sister from the same fate. The story continues over the course of her marriage to "Mister," a brutal man who terrorizes her. The rage she feels, combined with an example of love and independence provided by her close friend Shug, pushes her finally toward an awakening of her creative and loving self.
The Secret Life of Bees
by Sue Monk Kidd
Set in South Carolina in 1964, this is the tale of Lily Owens a 14 year-old girl who is haunted by the memory of her late mother. To escape her lonely life and troubled relationship with her father, Lily flees with Rosaleen, her caregiver and only friend, to a South Carolina town that holds the secret to her mother's past. Taken in by the intelligent and independent Boatwright sisters, Lily finds solace in their mesmerizing world of beekeeping.
To Kill a Mockingbird
by Harper Lee
Eight-year-old Scout tells about growing up as the daughter of Atticus Finch, a widowed lawyer, in the small town of Maycomb, Alabama during the 1930's. She and her older brother, Jem, happily occupy themselves with resisting "progressive education" and stalking the local bogeyman--until their father's courageous defense of a black man falsely accused of rape introduces them to the problems of race prejudice and brings adult injustice and violence into their childhood world.
We Are All Welcome Here
by Elizabeth Berg
In 1964 Mississippi, Paige Dunn is stricken with polio just before giving birth to her daughter. Challenged by the effects of her illness, Paige is nonetheless determined to live as normal a life as possible and to raise her daughter, Diana, in the way she sees fit--with the support of her tough-talking black caregiver, Peacie.