September Book of the Month – “Heartwood” by Nikky Finney

When Trina Sims and Jenny Bryan first meet, they don’t relate well to each other. Jenny is troubled, struggling to escape personal demons, and somewhat closed-minded, the result of growing up in a racist town. Trina is a proud Black woman—ambitious, strong-willed, and unafraid to speak her mind. But after the pair spend a few days together, they soon realize that they’re both yearning for understanding and a fresh start and are, at heart, more alike than different.

This “tiny little book about the human heart and what it can do” by National Book Award-winning author Nikky Finney was first released 25 years ago as part of New Books for New Readers, a series designed for adult literacy students. In this expanded anniversary edition, with a new preface by Finney, all readers will find lessons about life and understanding, and the encouragement to live audaciously while acknowledging the goodness that is all around us—if we only strive to recognize and embrace it.

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