Deadlocked and Loaded: Reading Suggestions

February 11, 2021 to April 18, 2021

A Book of American Martyrs by Joyce Carol Oates
This moving, insightful portrait fully inhabits the perspectives of two interwoven families whose destinies are defined by their warring convictions and squarely-but with great empathy-confronts an intractable, abiding rift in American society.

We Need to Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver
This 2003 novel by Lionel Shriver, is about a fictional school massacre. It is written from the first person perspective of the teenage killer’s mother, Eva Khatchadourian, and documents her attempt to come to terms with her son Kevin and the murders he committed, as told in a series of letters from Eva to her husband. The novel, Shriver’s 7th, won the 2005 Orange Prize, a U.K.-based prize for female authors of any country writing in English. In 2011 the novel was adapted into a film.

Enough: Our Fight To Keep America Safe from Gun Violence by Gabrielle Giffords & Mark Edward Kelley
As the book follows the authors from the halls of Congress to communities across the country, it provides a window into Gabby’s recovery from an assassination attempt and reveals how she and Mark became advocates for one of the defining issues of our time.

Fierce Kingdom by Gin Phillips
A masterful thrill ride and an exploration of motherhood itself—from its tender moments of grace to its savage power–this book asks where the boundary is between our animal instinct to survive and our human duty to protect one another.

Gun Love by Jennifer Clement
Told from the perspective of a tough but optimistic young woman, this hypnotic story of family, community and violence exposes America’s love affair with firearms and its painful consequences.

If We Had Known by Elise Juska
Engrossing and provocative, this book is an unforgettable mother-daughter journey, an exquisite portrait of a community in turmoil, and a harrowing examination of ethical and moral responsibility in a dangerously interconnected digital world.

Long Way Down by Jason Reynolds
Told in short, fierce staccato narrative verse, this young adult novel takes place in sixty potent seconds—the time it takes a kid to decide whether or not he’s going to murder the guy who killed his brother.

Only Child by Rhiannon Navin
Squeezed into a coat closet with his classmates and teacher, first grader Zach Taylor can hear gunshots ringing through the halls of his school. Narrated by a 6-year-old boy, this is a book about healing, family, and the exquisite wisdom of children.