98 books like Never Come Morning

By Nelson Algren,

Here are 98 books that Never Come Morning fans have personally recommended if you like Never Come Morning. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Their Eyes Were Watching God

Kai Storm Author Of That One Voice

From my list on fiction novels that will make you believe they’re real.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m Kai Storm, author of reality-based urban fiction and erotica, erotica blogger, YouTuber, and Podcaster. I love reading books that feel real, that make you feel, and that teach you something as they entertain you.

Kai's book list on fiction novels that will make you believe they’re real

Kai Storm Why did Kai love this book?

This book scared the hell out of me when I was a teenager because its vivid descriptions stayed in my dreams yet it never stopped me from reading and loving the entire book.

It taught me a lot about following your intuition and/or gut feelings. Although it has been a long time since I read it, the main thing I remember is that your intuition is your protector, and listening to that inner voice helps a lot along the way.

By Zora Neale Hurston,

Why should I read it?

17 authors picked Their Eyes Were Watching God as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Cover design by Harlem renaissance artist Lois Mailou Jones

When Janie, at sixteen, is caught kissing shiftless Johnny Taylor, her grandmother swiftly marries her off to an old man with sixty acres. Janie endures two stifling marriages before meeting the man of her dreams, who offers not diamonds, but a packet of flowering seeds ...

'For me, THEIR EYES WERE WATCHING GOD is one of the very greatest American novels of the 20th century. It is so lyrical it should be sentimental; it is so passionate it should be overwrought, but it is instead a rigorous, convincing and dazzling piece…


Book cover of Republic of Detours: How the New Deal Paid Broke Writers to Rediscover America

Colin Asher Author Of Never a Lovely so Real: The Life and Work of Nelson Algren

From my list on Works Progress Administration or by WPA authors.

Why am I passionate about this?

While writing Never a Lovely so Real, I fell into many traps. The Federal Writers Project was one of the deepest. Nelson Algren’s time at the project in Chicago saved him from personal and professional ruin. And I became a bit obsessed with the idea that, during the Great Depression, there had been a government program that hired writers by the hundreds and brought them together to work toward a common goal; one that helped shape a literary generation. As I say though, it was a pitfall. Most of what I learned wouldn’t fit in my book, but I’m grateful for all of the writing my research introduced me to.      

Colin's book list on Works Progress Administration or by WPA authors

Colin Asher Why did Colin love this book?

Several books focused on the Works Progress Administration (WPA), or discreet parts of it, had been published before Borchert’s was released but this is the best of them. I doubt that any other book will ever tell the story of the Federal Writers’ Project (FWP) quite so well. On one level, it lays out the project’s scope and walks readers through the politics involved with its creation and continued operation. And on another, it explains what the project meant for the writers it employed and how it influenced their work. Every other book on this list was written by an author employed by the project or another part of the WPA; this book will help you understand them as part of a coherent literary moment in American history.     

By Scott Borchert,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Republic of Detours as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A New York Times Book Review Editors' Choice | Winner of the New Deal Book Award

An immersive account of the New Deal project that created state-by-state guidebooks to America, in the midst of the Great Depression—and employed some of the biggest names in American letters

The plan was as idealistic as it was audacious—and utterly unprecedented. Take thousands of hard-up writers and put them to work charting a country on the brink of social and economic collapse, with the aim of producing a series of guidebooks to the then forty-eight states—along with hundreds of other publications dedicated to cities,…


Book cover of Native Son

Kia Corthron Author Of The Castle Cross the Magnet Carter

From my list on the intersection of race, class, and justice in America.

Why am I passionate about this?

I grew up as an African American in the Maryland Appalachian valley, a town that was ninety-five percent white. My father worked for the paper mill and would bring home reams of paper, pens, pencils. I began playing with the stuff—making up stories and stapling them into books, the raw beginnings of a future novelist. Separately, I created dialogue, using clothespins as people: a burgeoning playwright. (We were not destitute—my sister and I had toys! But those makeshift playthings worked best for my purposes.) So, given my working-class racial minority origins, it was rather inevitable that I would be drawn to stories addressing class and race. 

Kia's book list on the intersection of race, class, and justice in America

Kia Corthron Why did Kia love this book?

Unless your first reading has been spoiled by a movie or CliffsNotes, I don’t believe you can fail to be stunned by Wright’s 1940 eons-ahead-of-its-time pièce de résistance. While much has been written addressing racial bias in the courtroom (that is, if the defendant survives the initial encounter with police), the author took the outlandish step of providing head-spinning complexity: presenting a culpable protagonist, albeit one whose crime against an affluent young white woman came about unwittingly, having everything to do with his knowledge that he, a Black man, would invariably be perceived as guilty. Wright never lets us off the hook, forcing readers of all hues to consider the entanglements of race, class, and jurisprudence, beginning the day those of us who are not white and/or privileged are born.

By Richard Wright,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Native Son as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Reissued to mark the 80th anniversary of Native Son's publication - discover Richard Wright's brutal and gripping masterpiece this black history month.

'[Native Son] possesses an artistry, penetration of thought, and sheer emotional power that places it into the front rank of American fiction' Ralph Ellison

Reckless, angry and adrift, Bigger Thomas has grown up trapped in a life of poverty in the slums of Chicago. But a job with the affluent Dalton family provides the setting for a catastrophic collision between his world and theirs. Hunted by citizen and police alike, and baited by prejudiced officials, Bigger finds himself…


Book cover of The Golden Apples

Melanie McGee Bianchi Author Of The Ballad of Cherrystoke

From my list on where a hot mess is presented as an empowering lifestyle.

Why am I passionate about this?

I spent my early childhood in a rural, isolated, multi-generational household. During summers we rarely saw anyone unrelated to us. My twin sister and I spent our days reading, hiding, and naming our menagerie of barn cats (final count: 36). In my career as a lifestyle journalist, I’ve gotten to interview famous eccentrics ranging from Loretta Lynn to David Sedaris. I live in the North Carolina mountains with my husband, our teenage son, and my aforementioned twin sister. This past summer, a black bear walked the 22 steps up to our front porch and stared in the window, raising his huge paws high in exasperation. 

Melanie's book list on where a hot mess is presented as an empowering lifestyle

Melanie McGee Bianchi Why did Melanie love this book?

Unlike Welty’s works featuring honorable or broadly comic characters, this dense story cycle was never excerpted in anthologies. It’s a trickier cast: consider Jinny Love Stark and Virgie Rainey, who cut through the languor of Depression-era Mississippi with stone-cold intention. Jinny Love plays croquet with her lover to enrage her volatile husband; she encourages her daughter to wear lizards as earrings to offend the propriety of her own controlling mother. Impoverished piano prodigy Virgie flouts her gift merely to watch her teacher go mad. Later, she trims her dead mother’s yard with sewing scissors while neighbors do the real work of laying out the body and receiving mourners. The heat presses forward. What day is it? What hour? This is weird, experimental Welty, and the payoff is sweet.

By Eudora Welty,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Golden Apples as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

First published in 1949, THE GOLDEN APPLES is an acutely observed, richly atmospheric portrayal of small town life in Morgana, Mississippi. There's Snowdie, who has to bring up her twin boys alone after her husband, King Maclain, disappears one day, discarding his hat on the banks of the Big Black. There's Loch Morrison, convalescing with malaria, who watches from his bedroom window as wayward Virgie Rainey meets a sailor in the vacant house opposite. Meanwhile, Miss Eckhart the piano teacher, grieving the loss of her most promising pupil, tries her hand at arson.

Eudora Welty has a fine ear for…


Book cover of A Song For Kresy

R. M. Mace Author Of Wolves of Russia

From my list on accounts of the Stalinist Siberian Deportations.

Why am I passionate about this?

I read modern history as an undergraduate and then trained as a primary school teacher. Unsurprisingly, our classroom topics were often historical. My interest in the experiences of people, especially children, in Europe during WWII stems from the fact that my own father grew up in Germany and had numerous tales to tell. My first book was a recount of his wartime childhood. My father gave a copy of his book to his friend and neighbor who happened to be a Polish wartime veteran with his own remarkable stories to tell and this led to three years’ intensive historical research for his book.

R. M.'s book list on accounts of the Stalinist Siberian Deportations

R. M. Mace Why did R. M. love this book?

The area of Poland that I had been researching for my own book was known as Kresy – the eastern borderlands.

The Polish family in this book had a long history of living in the region and I found the description of the life long before the Russian Revolution helpful in understanding the context and broadening my perspective on the region and its history.

The book is interspersed with photographs and illustrations that helped me to visualise the atmosphere of their privileged life that was later put into such stark contrast with the deportation to Siberia. The surviving members of the family were at the same Polish Resettlement Corps camp in Herefordshire as my own protagonist.

By Helen Bitner-Glindzicz,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Song For Kresy as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This is the story of one of the thousands of Polish Families who were deported to Siberia and Kazakhstan by the Soviets in 1940. The Glindzicz family had their roots in the Eastern Borderlands of Poland known as Kresy. The family held their lands in this region since before the Polish Lithuanian Commonwealth (1569-1648). The Glindzicz men supported all the major Polish uprisings against Czarist Russia. Mieczyslaw Glindzicz was a local commander in the 1863 Uprising. Despite having fought loyally side by side with Britain throughout the Second World War, when it ended, the Poles of Kresy lost their homes…


Book cover of On Civilization's Edge: A Polish Borderland in the Interwar World

Patrice M. Dabrowski Author Of Poland: The First Thousand Years

From my list on the complexity of Poland and Polish history.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a Harvard-trained historian of Central and Eastern Europe who focuses primarily on Poland. Although I am of Polish descent, my interest in Polish history blossomed during my first visits to the country in the 1980s. My initial curiosity quickly turned into a passion for Poland’s rich and varied past. Poles, who put great stock in their history, seem to have liked my books: in 2014 I was awarded the Knight’s Cross of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland. The books on Poland listed below, all by outstanding female historians, only scratch the surface of what is truly a rich field. Enjoy!

Patrice's book list on the complexity of Poland and Polish history

Patrice M. Dabrowski Why did Patrice love this book?

From mud and muck to modernity? This elegant examination of the margins of interwar Poland sheds much light on the ins and outs of belonging as well as broader Polish ambitions of being considered part of the civilized world. While Kathryn Ciancia focuses on the push to modernize the ethnically complex eastern borderland that was the province of Volhynia, inhabited by Jews and Ukrainians as well as Poles, she also importantly situates Poland within a global framework.

By Kathryn Ciancia,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked On Civilization's Edge as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

As a resurgent Poland emerged at the end of World War I, an eclectic group of Polish border guards, state officials, military settlers, teachers, academics, urban planners, and health workers descended upon Volhynia, an eastern borderland province that was home to Ukrainians, Poles, and Jews. Its aim was not simply to shore up state power in a place where Poles constituted an ethnic minority, but also to launch an ambitious civilizing mission that would transform a
poor Russian imperial backwater into a region that was at once civilized, modern, and Polish. Over the next two decades, these men and women…


Book cover of The Eagle Unbowed: Poland and the Poles in the Second World War

Carly Schabowski Author Of All the Courage We Have Found

From my list on WWII that shed light on Polish history.

Why am I passionate about this?

My passion for writing historical fiction set mainly in Poland, or including Polish protagonists is born from my own familial history. My grandfather was forced into the Wehrmacht as a young man, who managed to escape to the UK and join the Polish Army in exile, eventually going back to fight against the Germans. His story set me on a course to become a historical fiction author; reimagining the past and bringing little-known stories to a wider audience. I find that the best way to gain a basic understanding of Polish life during WWII is to read widely – try historical accounts, memoirs, second-hand accounts, and of course, historical fiction. 

Carly's book list on WWII that shed light on Polish history

Carly Schabowski Why did Carly love this book?

This book is, I think, the cornerstone of understanding Polish history during WWII. Indeed, it is my ‘go-to' book before I even think about writing anything! It gives such a comprehensive view of all Poles – those forced into the Wehrmacht, those sent to camps, those sent out of their own country, and much, much more. When you have read this fact-based book, it gives you a greater understanding when you come to read historical fiction.

By Halik Kochanski,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Eagle Unbowed as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The Second World War gripped Poland as it did no other country in Europe. Invaded by both Germany and the Soviet Union, it remained under occupation by foreign armies from the first day of the war to the last. The conflict was brutal, as Polish armies battled the enemy on four different fronts. It was on Polish soil that the architects of the Final Solution assembled their most elaborate network of extermination camps, culminating in the deliberate destruction of millions of lives, including three million Polish Jews. In The Eagle Unbowed, Halik Kochanski tells, for the first time, the story…


Book cover of A Chip Shop in Poznan: My Unlikely Year in Poland

R.A. Dalkey Author Of The Road to Innamincka

From my list on crazy travel adventure you get to live vicariously.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a stubborn ox who won’t ever accept that something can’t be done. Tell me I can’t be a Formula 1 reporter for a particular magazine on the other side of the world, and I’ll embark on a journalism degree. Tell me I can’t be a professional golfer, and I’ll quit my job to get practicing. Tell me I can’t camp here, and up goes my hammock. Tell me to grow up and stop fantasising about driving road trains in Australia, and you’re basically insisting I get a truck licence. I like that being this way creates unique stories and that I have a little talent for writing them down.

R.A.'s book list on crazy travel adventure you get to live vicariously

R.A. Dalkey Why did R.A. love this book?

How could I not love a book written by a fellow ‘Brexit refugee’? Around the same time Ben Aitken moved to Poland in the wake of the momentous 2016 UK referendum, I fled to Austria. Although we had different motives and his time in Poznan was a temporary adventure, I had to know how it went! And I wasn’t disappointed. There’s dry humour, plenty of self-deprecation, and lots of interesting trivia, which I like. Best of all, it’s a unique premise: “Britain has just reacted to ‘Poles taking our low-paying jobs’. So let me be the first Brit to try going to Poland as a manual labourer, and see how that pans out.” To learn the answers, and have your thoughts provoked whilst being thoroughly entertained, I recommend joining Aitken in the chip shop!

By Ben Aitken,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Chip Shop in Poznan as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A TIMES BESTSELLER

'One of the funniest books of the year' - Paul Ross, talkRADIO

WARNING: CONTAINS AN UNLIKELY IMMIGRANT, AN UNSUNG COUNTRY, A BUMPY ROMANCE, SEVERAL SHATTERED PRECONCEPTIONS, TRACES OF INSIGHT, A DOZEN NUNS AND A REFERENDUM.

Not many Brits move to Poland to work in a fish and chip shop.

Fewer still come back wanting to be a Member of the European Parliament.

In 2016 Ben Aitken moved to Poland while he still could. It wasn't love that took him but curiosity: he wanted to know what the Poles in the UK had left behind. He flew to…


Book cover of The Devil's Chain: Prostitution and Social Control in Partitioned Poland

Patrice M. Dabrowski Author Of Poland: The First Thousand Years

From my list on the complexity of Poland and Polish history.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a Harvard-trained historian of Central and Eastern Europe who focuses primarily on Poland. Although I am of Polish descent, my interest in Polish history blossomed during my first visits to the country in the 1980s. My initial curiosity quickly turned into a passion for Poland’s rich and varied past. Poles, who put great stock in their history, seem to have liked my books: in 2014 I was awarded the Knight’s Cross of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland. The books on Poland listed below, all by outstanding female historians, only scratch the surface of what is truly a rich field. Enjoy!

Patrice's book list on the complexity of Poland and Polish history

Patrice M. Dabrowski Why did Patrice love this book?

Who would have thought that late-nineteenth-century Poles’ preoccupation with the problem of prostitution could reveal so much about the Polish mindset? Concerns over the sex industry arose during a period of rapid change when there was no Polish state. Poles voiced their concerns about their nation’s future—and their womenfolk. A historian at the height of her powers, Keely Stauter-Halsted skillfully shows how debates on prostitution and an obsession with the bodies of impoverished women reflected a variety of visions of a future Poland.

By Keely Stauter-Halsted,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Devil's Chain as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In the half-century before Poland's long-awaited political independence in 1918, anxiety surrounding the country's burgeoning sex industry fueled nearly constant public debate. The Devil's Chain is the first book to examine the world of commercial sex throughout the partitioned Polish territories, uncovering a previously hidden conversation about sexuality, gender propriety, and social class. Keely Stauter-Halsted situates the preoccupation with prostitution in the context of Poland's struggle for political independence and its difficult transition to modernity. She traces the Poles' growing anxiety about white slavery, venereal disease, and eugenics by examining the regulation of the female body, the rise of medical…


Book cover of Heat Wave: A Social Autopsy of Disaster in Chicago

Todd Swanstrom Author Of The Changing American Neighborhood: The Meaning of Place in the Twenty-First Century

From my list on why neighborhoods still matter.

Why am I passionate about this?

I grew up in St. Paul, Minnesota, in a neighborhood that was stable, safe, and stimulating. After my freshman year in college, I signed up for an “urban experience” in Detroit. It turned out to be the summer of the Detroit riots. I woke up to U.S. Army vehicles rumbling into the park across from my apartment. Over the next month, I witnessed the looting and burning of whole neighborhoods. I remember thinking:  what a waste! Why are we throwing away neighborhoods like Kleenex? I have been trying to answer that question ever since.   

Todd's book list on why neighborhoods still matter

Todd Swanstrom Why did Todd love this book?

In an age of global warming, Klinenberg’s study of how Chicago did (and did not) cope with a horrible heat wave that hit the city in 1995, killing 739 residents, is more relevant than ever.

He shows how death rates varied hugely across neighborhoods, not so much based on socioeconomic status but on the cohesiveness of the community. In places where neighbors looked in on each other the death rate was lower.

Strong neighborhoods do not just enhance our lives, they can save lives.

By Eric Klinenberg,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Heat Wave as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

On Thursday, July 13, 1995, Chicagoans awoke to a blistering day on which the temperature would eventually climb to 106 degrees. It was the start of an unprecedented heat wave that would last a full week - and leave more than seven hundred people dead. Rather than view these deaths as the inevitable consequence of natural disaster, sociologist Eric Klinenberg decided to figure out why so many people - and, specifically, so many elderly, poor, and isolated people - died, and to identify the social and political failures that together made the heat wave so deadly. Published to coincide with…


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