20 Books to Understand “What Happened” to America

“What happened?” is not just the title of a recent memoir by Hillary Clinton. It’s also a question I think many of us grapple with on a daily basis. How did “this” happen? “This” being a euphemism for many things: the election of Trump, sure, but also attacks on healthcare, efforts to dismantle or cut social services, a disturbing rise in political rage and intolerance, and so on. “This” is 2017, or whatever year you are reading this blog post in. “This” is modern America, and “This” looks different to all voters. But to own and change “This,” we have to be well informed. We can’t shy away from the darker corners in our country. We have to step into the shadows with the people trapped there and bring a candle so we can see each other. We will beat the dark down with light. Reading brings you to directly to confrontation, and change. Information is a weapon. And I have designed this list of books about social justice, current events, and political issues to arm you with knowledge and compassion to disarm hatred and inequality. There are many excellent writers conducting some truly groundbreaking research and combining that with a...

What I’m Reading | April 17, 2016 Edition

This week I added some books to my Goodreads “Currently Reading” shelf and brought the grand total to 16. Sixteen! And yet it wasn’t even accurate. Once a Goodreads addict, I’d let my record keeping slip and hadn’t been updating with any regularity. Of course I wasn’t reading 16 books…right? Doing some weeding, I trimmed the fat until all that remained was a list of eight books that I could genuinely claim I was reading at the moment. And so I’m starting a weekly column here looking at what my reading brain has been up to, what I’m reading at the moment. I was also inspired partly by the “Peek over Our Shoulder” monthly feature at Book Riot which looks at what us Rioters are reading at the moment (here’s one example from April 2016). Before I start, I want to ask you…what are you reading right now, dear blog reader? What’s ringing your bells, so to speak? Can you only read one book at once or do you scatter your reading time across six or, dare I say it, 16 books? Fill us in with a comment below the post. I have a lovely shelf on one of my home bookcases...

Blizzard Books: Best Books to Read in a Snowstorm

The East Coast is about to be pummeled with snow in the first blizzard of the season. This is no horror to me–I’m well insulated in my fortress of books. Blizzards really are the best time to read. It is so peaceful and all you want to do is snuggle up inside under a blanket reading. Here are my best books to read in a snowstorm, the kind of books to get snowed in with you’ll want to read this winter. From classics of romance to horror and literary fiction, these novels will help you have a pleasant winter reading session. The Winter King – C.L. Wilson (Fantasy, romance) At first I was a skeptic—high fantasy published by Avon romance? Could this be the romance equivalent of George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire? Well, kind of. C.L. Wilson writes epic high fantasy for the romance crowd in The Winter King. Whereas Martin’s “romance” is barely there, Wilson’s romance is front and center. Set in a land that looks like this: this novel is packed with all the enchantment of a fairy tale set in a land covered in snow. When a headstrong princess of the south (and a...

Book Recommendations for “Downton Abbey” Withdrawal

It’s finally happening. Downton Abbey is airing its last season here in the U.S. In just a few short weeks, we will bid goodbye to a show that has united people around the globe in a shared love for melodramatic courtship, gossip and upstaging, stunning costumes, somber piano music, and, well, British accents. But it does not have to end there.  If you are already experiencing symptoms of Downton Abbey withdrawal then you’ve come to the right place. Book recommendations for Downton Abbey withdrawal is my specialty. Last year I went through a whirlwind phase of researching books for Downton Abbey fans. I distinctly remember one summer afternoon when I went to the library and picked up 5 or 6 books recommended for Downton Abbey fans that had come in as holds. I crammed them all into my tote bag, explaining to one of our librarians that I was doing research to prepare me for today. Faced with this melancholy reality, I oversteep my tea and find out it’s gone bitter, make awkward jokes about my Edith-like spinsterhood, and every so often hear an imaginary bell chiming in the distance. But, dear reader, I have prepared for this moment and bring...

Book Recommendations for “Game of Thrones” Fans

Lost among  political intrigue and (quite literally) backstabbing dynastic wars is the fact that the hit HBO blockbuster drama series is deeply rooted in the fantasy genre. The HBO adaptation of George R. R. Martin’s  can sometimes go episodes before anything epically fantastically magical happens. Then the White Walkers emerge from the biting cold, kill a shit-ton of people, and remind you that the television series is, oh right, still rooted in epic fantasy conventions.  Clearly, though, Game of Thrones has such broad appeal for more than just fantastical elements since the show has definite crossover appeal for non-fantasy viewers and readers. So if you are looking for book recommendations for “Game of Thrones” fans, you’ve come to the right place. The following list offers book recommendations for Game of Thrones fans who might not want to read a fantasy novel by deconstructing some of the series’ appeal. Whether you’re a dire-hard fantasy fan who is sick of the same old “What to read if you like Game of Thrones” book recommendations or you’re a non-fantasy fan looking to gently ease into the genre, this list contains something for everyone.  If You Like Game of Thrones’ Political Conflict and Dynastic Wars… One of the undeniable attractions to the Game of Thrones...

Greetings Fellow Reader!

Welcome to Broke By Books, a blog by Sarah S. Davis, where the guiding mission is to spread a contagious love for reading through helpful, thought provoking, and enjoyable writing about books. Please join me in growing an inspired, engaged, and fearless reading life.

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