95 books like The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek

By Kim Michele Richardson,

Here are 95 books that The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek fans have personally recommended if you like The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek. 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 The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America's Great Migration

Dannagal Goldthwaite Young Author Of Wrong: How Media, Politics, and Identity Drive Our Appetite for Misinformation

From my list on understanding identity-driven wrongness in the United States.

Who am I?

I’m a professor of communication and political science who’s been researching and publishing on the effects of political media on democratic health for 25 years. More recently, I’ve been trying to understand the roots of inter-party hostility, the drop in trust in institutions, and the rise in Americans’ belief in breathtakingly false information. My hope is that through this selection of books, you’ll start to understand the synergistic dynamics between America’s complicated history with race, changes in America’s parties, media, and culture, and various social psychological processes, and maybe even start to see a way out of this mess.

Dannagal's book list on understanding identity-driven wrongness in the United States

Dannagal Goldthwaite Young Why did Dannagal love this book?

I cannot count the number of times I let out an audible, “My god,” reading this richly detailed account of the lives of three complicated and infinitely brave Black Americans who dared leave the Jim Crow South for cities North and West in the early-mid 1900s.

In school (in New England, not the South), I didn’t get an intimate sense of how routine and oppressive the violence and injustice were against southern Blacks during Jim Crow. And I certainly didn’t learn how, even in the “free” Northern cities, the subjugation continued, just in quieter ways.

Since reading the book, when I see references to people celebrating “simpler times from a bygone era,” I increasingly wonder if part of that simplicity involves them not having to share cultural or political power. 

By Isabel Wilkerson,

Why should I read it?

12 authors picked The Warmth of Other Suns as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

NATIONAL BOOK CRITICS CIRCLE AWARD WINNER • NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • In this beautifully written masterwork, the Pulitzer Prize–winnner and bestselling author of Caste chronicles one of the great untold stories of American history: the decades-long migration of black citizens who fled the South for northern and western cities, in search of a better life.

From 1915 to 1970, this exodus of almost six million people changed the face of America. Wilkerson compares this epic migration to the migrations of other peoples in history. She interviewed more than a thousand people, and gained access to new data and official…


Book cover of Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents

Melinda Lewis Author Of Social Policy for Effective Practice: A Strengths Approach

From my list on igniting students’ passions about policy change.

Who am I?

I am a policy advocate, grassroots activist, university professor, and author committed to social change—at scale—to advance social work values of racial, economic, environmental, and social justice. Recognizing that most social workers are drawn to our profession because they want to make a difference in the lives of their clients, one by one, I invest my energies and skills to making policy study and practice accessible, relevant, and urgent. My students quickly get used to noting the book recommendations I sprinkle throughout class discussions and in assignment feedback, because when you see the world through a social policy frame, everything has a policy implication! 

Melinda's book list on igniting students’ passions about policy change

Melinda Lewis Why did Melinda love this book?

Wilkerson’s scholarship on race and injustice is certainly not a secret, but I still find some colleagues who have not yet read this book.

To convince people to pick it up, I promise that its language is poetic and imminently accessible, and I share the two pieces that have remained top of mind for years: first, Wilkerson’s research about the lessons Nazi Germany took from the racial caste system of Jim Crow United States, and second, the way she crafts an analogy of a crumbling house to make the case for reparations for racist harm, which—like cracks in the foundation of a house you just bought—may not be your fault but are still your problem.

I am forever grateful to Wilkerson for gifting us her insights and rhetorical tools, conveyed so skillfully in this tremendous contribution.

By Isabel Wilkerson,

Why should I read it?

15 authors picked Caste as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

THE TIME NONFICTION BOOK OF THE YEAR | #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

"Powerful and timely ... I cannot recommend it strongly enough" - Barack Obama

From one of America's most celebrated and insightful writers, the moving, eye-opening bestseller about what lies hidden under the surface of ordinary lives

In this brilliant book, Isabel Wilkerson gives us a masterful portrait of an unseen phenomenon in America as she explores, through an immersive, deeply researched narrative and stories about real people, how America today and throughout its history has been shaped by a hidden caste system, a rigid hierarchy of human…


Book cover of A Shot in the Moonlight: How a Freed Slave and a Confederate Soldier Fought for Justice in the Jim Crow South

Diane Fanning Author Of Written in Blood

From my list on racism in the USA.

Who am I?

I don’t know when I became aware of and bothered by racial inequality but looking back, I see touchstones that lighted my path even before Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech stiffened my spine in middle school. I participated in sit-ins at lunch counters and sat in the back of buses. Even though I was a white kid in a predominately white school, it became personal to me. The injustice and unfairness of prejudice and discrimination was the antithesis of what I believed was the promise of America. In recent years, the quiet background noise of racial inequity has amplified to an ugly level. I recommend these books as a start to understanding and rectifying the current unacceptable situation.

Diane's book list on racism in the USA

Diane Fanning Why did Diane love this book?

A riveting true story about a freed slave and a confederate soldier who fought for justice in the Jim Crow South. The freed slave became the first man to beat a lynch mob in court. His small blow to racism made him a hero but one few know. I cried at his setbacks and cheered for every small victory along the way. Once I started reading, I could not put it down.

By Ben Montgomery,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Shot in the Moonlight as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

After moonrise on the cold night of January 21, 1897, a mob of twenty five white men gathered in a patch of woods near Big Road in southwestern Simpson County, Kentucky. Half carried rifles and shotguns, and a few tucked pistols in their pants. Their target? George Dinning, a freed slave who'd farmed peacefully in the area for 14 years, and had been wrongfully accused of stealing livestock from a neighboring farm. When the mob began firing through the doors and windows of Dinning's house, he fired back in self-defense, shooting and killing the son of a wealthy Kentucky family.…


These Tangled Threads: A Novel of Biltmore

By Sarah Loudin Thomas,

Book cover of These Tangled Threads: A Novel of Biltmore

Sarah Loudin Thomas Author Of These Tangled Threads: A Novel of Biltmore

New book alert!

Who am I?

Author Appalachian West virginian Dog lover Hiker

Sarah's 3 favorite reads in 2023

What is my book about?

Seven years ago, a hidden betrayal scattered three friends living in the shadow of Biltmore Estate. Now, when Biltmore Industries master weaver Lorna Blankenship is commissioned to create an original design for Cornelia Vanderbilt's 1924 wedding, she panics knowing she doesn't have the creativity needed. But there's an elusive artisan in the Blue Ridge Mountains who could save her--if only she can find her.

To track the mysterious weaver down, Lorna must seek out the relationships she abandoned in shame. As she pulls at each tangled thread from her old life, Lorna is forced to confront the wounds of long ago. She'll have to risk the job that shapes her identity as well as the hope of friendship--and love--restored.

These Tangled Threads: A Novel of Biltmore

By Sarah Loudin Thomas,

What is this book about?

Seven years ago, a hidden betrayal scattered three young friends living in the shadow of Biltmore Estate. Now, when Biltmore Industries master weaver Lorna Blankenship is commissioned to create an original design for Cornelia Vanderbilt's 1924 wedding, she panics knowing she doesn't have the creativity needed. But there's an elusive artisan in the Blue Ridge Mountains who could save her--if only she can find her.

To track the mysterious weaver down, Lorna sees no other way but to seek out the relationships she abandoned in shame. As she pulls at each tangled thread from her old life, Lorna is forced…


Book cover of His Truth Is Marching on: John Lewis and the Power of Hope

Diane Fanning Author Of Written in Blood

From my list on racism in the USA.

Who am I?

I don’t know when I became aware of and bothered by racial inequality but looking back, I see touchstones that lighted my path even before Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech stiffened my spine in middle school. I participated in sit-ins at lunch counters and sat in the back of buses. Even though I was a white kid in a predominately white school, it became personal to me. The injustice and unfairness of prejudice and discrimination was the antithesis of what I believed was the promise of America. In recent years, the quiet background noise of racial inequity has amplified to an ugly level. I recommend these books as a start to understanding and rectifying the current unacceptable situation.

Diane's book list on racism in the USA

Diane Fanning Why did Diane love this book?

An intimate and historically accurate portrait of an extraordinary civil rights icon. Meachem carefully recreates the struggles for equality in the life of John Lewis. The passing of Lewis to the close proximity of our loss of Elijah Cummings left a deep hole in my heart that was soothed by this masterful portrayal of a real American hero. An uplifting book that shines a bright light of hope for future improvement.

By John Meacham,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked His Truth Is Marching on as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • An intimate and revealing portrait of civil rights icon and longtime U.S. congressman John Lewis, linking his life to the painful quest for justice in America from the 1950s to the present—from the Pulitzer Prize–winning author of The Soul of America 

NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY THE WASHINGTON POST AND COSMOPOLITAN 

John Lewis, who at age twenty-five marched in Selma, Alabama, and was beaten on the Edmund Pettus Bridge, was a visionary and a man of faith. Drawing on decades of wide-ranging interviews with Lewis, Jon Meacham writes of…


Book cover of Where the Crawdads Sing

Rosemary Kubli Author Of Gullible

From my list on crime novels about good people who do bad things.

Who am I?

Mystery and crime novels have always been my favorite genre. I love the suspense and intrigue, the intricate storylines, and the clever plot twists. In middle school, while my friends were reading more age-appropriate books, I was reading The Godfather and The Spy Who Came In from the Cold. Is it any wonder then that Siena Ricci, the main character of my debut novel Gullible, is a shrewd and cunning female con artist? I had so much fun developing Siena’s story arc and creating the criminal world she inhabits that I decided to continue her narrative in a sequel, with plans for a third novel to round out the trilogy. 

Rosemary's book list on crime novels about good people who do bad things

Rosemary Kubli Why did Rosemary love this book?

At first, the story of an impoverished young girl growing up in the North Carolina marshes did not appeal to me, regardless of how much my friends raved about the author’s captivating style of writing. I shelved the book at the bottom of my TBR list and moved on. What a mistake!

Two years later, when I finally cracked this book open, I discovered a story told with such incomparable eloquence and compassion that I immediately began touting it as one of the best books I’ve ever read. And the best part is that this beautifully told story revolves around a murder mystery. Now we’re talking! 

I love this novel for its mesmerizing narrative, its memorable characters, and the jaw-dropping twist in the final pages.

By Delia Owens,

Why should I read it?

41 authors picked Where the Crawdads Sing as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

OVER 12 MILLION COPIES SOLD WORLDWIDE
NOW A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE
A NUMBER ONE NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

For years, rumours of the 'Marsh Girl' have haunted Barkley Cove, a quiet town on the North Carolina coast. So in late 1969, when handsome Chase Andrews is found dead, the locals immediately suspect Kya Clark, the so-called Marsh Girl. But Kya is not what they say. Sensitive and intelligent, she has survived for years alone in the marsh that she calls home, finding friends in the gulls and lessons in the sand. Then the time comes when she yearns to be…


Book cover of The Agony and the Ecstasy: A Biographical Novel of Michelangelo

Anna M. Lewis Author Of Women of Steel and Stone: 22 Inspirational Architects, Engineers, and Landscape Designers

From my list on inspiring your inner artist.

Who am I?

I’m an award-winning toy inventor and author/illustrator, with a lifelong love of art, learning, and creativity. I strive to inspire the future builders and creators of our world in my books, articles, and blog musings. Some of my favorite reads inspired my creative side.

Anna's book list on inspiring your inner artist

Anna M. Lewis Why did Anna love this book?

My most formative reading experience was during the summer of my sixteenth birthday.

On vacation visiting my Oma in Germany, The Agony and The Ecstasy by Irving Stone was the only book in English in my uncle’s library.

Through Michelangelo’s eyes, I felt his artistic passion as he sculpted a block of marble or put paint on canvas. I spent the rest of the summer sketching the castle above Oma’s house and the German countryside.

A great novel moves you. In my case, I literally had to go draw.

By Irving Stone,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked The Agony and the Ecstasy as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Irving Stone's classic biographical novel of Michelangelo-the #1 New York Times bestseller in which both the artist and the man are brought to vivid, captivating life.

His time-the turbulent Renaissance, the years of poisoning princes, warring Popes, and the all-powerful de'Medici family...

His loves-the frail and lovely daughter of Lorenzo de'Medici, the ardent mistress of Marco Aldovrandi, and his last love, his greatest love-the beautiful, unhappy Vittoria Colonna...

His genius-a God-driven fury from which he wrested brilliant work that made a grasp for heaven unmatched in half a millennium...

His name-Michelangelo Buonarroti. Creator of the David, painter of the ceiling…


Book cover of The Speckled Beauty: A Dog and His People

Rona Maynard Author Of Starter Dog: My Path to Joy, Belonging and Loving This World

From my list on the power of loving a dog.

Who am I?

For most of my life no one guessed I could fall for a dog, much less write a book about one. I associated dogs with drool on the floor and fur all over everything. One of those “just a dog” people, I thought the marriage bed should be strictly for humans. It crossed my mind that an eager dog would keep me from working into the night at the office where I ran Chatelaine, Canada’s premier magazine for women, but I chose a treadmill at the Y over rambles with a dog. At 65 I discovered my inner dog person. A ragged-eared mutt is now my joy and my muse.

Rona's book list on the power of loving a dog

Rona Maynard Why did Rona love this book?

When Rick Bragg shuffles home to his mother’s place in rural Alabama, spent from chemotherapy, depression, and years of hard living, he figures it’ll take a sweet old dog to lick the crankiness out of him.

There’s nothing sweet about the stray who shows up at the side of the road, “seventy-six pounds of wet hair and bad decisions.” In a willful Australian shepherd with a ruined eye and a lust for carrion, Bragg recognizes himself—his wounds, his tenacity, his devotion to family. Speck “would rather die than be clean” but he stands by his people when they need him, and Bragg is his number one human.

I loved the humor, pathos, and Southern character that elevate this story of redemption by a dog over more predictable versions.

By Rick Bragg,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked The Speckled Beauty as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

NEW YORK TIMES BEST SELLER • From the best-selling, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of All Over but the Shoutin', the warmhearted and hilarious story of how his life was transformed by his love for a poorly behaved, half-blind stray dog.

Speck is not a good boy. He is a terrible boy, a defiant, self-destructive, often malodorous boy, a grave robber and screen door moocher who spends his days playing chicken with the Fed Ex man, picking fights with thousand-pound livestock, and rolling in donkey manure, and his nights howling at the moon. He has been that way since the moment he…


Book cover of Sold on a Monday

Ruth Talbot Author Of The Raffle Baby

From my list on the human experience during the Great Depression.

Who am I?

I’m a research nerd at heart. I am happiest pouring over historic newspapers online (thank you Library of Congress) or digging into a non-fiction book. The research I do for a book can be more rewarding than writing the book itself. When I read a 1933 article about a baby that would be given away as a prize during a civic fundraiser, I was hooked. What desperation would lead a parent to give away a child? Who would buy such a raffle ticket? Who thought this would be a good idea? I never did find the answers to my questions, so I made up my own.

Ruth's book list on the human experience during the Great Depression

Ruth Talbot Why did Ruth love this book?

There are many historical novels about the Great Depression but Sold on a Monday moved me in particular. Perhaps I was drawn to it because it is a fictional account of actual circumstances. More likely, though, it is because, in one single story, Sold on a Monday is a lesson in the heart-wrenching decisions hundreds of thousands of people made to ensure their survival. As far-fetched as it sounds to us now, the notion of children being sold, or simply deposited on the front doorstep by their parents, was not uncommon during the Great Depression. The author was incredibly creative and thoughtful in the way she decided to tell the story, and that is perhaps the book’s greatest strength.

By Kristina McMorris,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Sold on a Monday as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
A USA TODAY BESTSELLER
A WALL STREET JOURNAL BESTSELLER
A NATIONAL INDIEBOUND BESTSELLER
An unforgettable bestselling historical fiction novel by Kristina McMorris, inspired by a stunning piece of history from Depression-Era America.
2 CHILDREN FOR SALE
The sign is a last resort. It sits on a farmhouse porch in 1931, but could be found anywhere in an era of breadlines, bank runs and broken dreams. It could have been written by any mother facing impossible choices.
For struggling reporter Ellis Reed, the gut-wrenching scene evokes memories of his family's dark past. He snaps a photograph…


Book cover of Prodigal Summer

Emily Grandy Author Of Michikusa House

From my list on to help reconnect with the natural world.

Who am I?

I write well-researched literary fiction with an ecological focus. Before becoming a biomedical editor, I did clinical research for a leading academic medical center in Cleveland, OH. However, it was only by working at a research institution – and becoming a patient there – that I realized how much science overlooks; it’s only one way of knowing about something. Another way is by building relationships – including with non-human beings. It’s not just people who are complex. Every living thing exists within an intricate, nuanced ecosystem. This sort of knowing, built over long periods, is what facilitates understanding, compassion, and respect for other beings. These are the qualities I hope to share through my writing.

Emily's book list on to help reconnect with the natural world

Emily Grandy Why did Emily love this book?

Prodigal Summer is a poignant novel that interweaves three unforgettable stories of humans’ interdependency with nature.

A wildlife biologist and land steward excitedly sites coyotes on her forested turf; two neighbors feuding over the use of herbicides; and a former “bug expert” turned widowed farmer’s wife. I admire how these fictious tales offer keen-eyed examples of how stories centered around nature can be braided into everyday fiction.

Set in Appalachia, this novel also celebrates an underappreciated corner of our country (too many books are set in New York, in my opinion). As a novelist, Barbara Kingsolver’s books are among my greatest role models.

By Barbara Kingsolver,

Why should I read it?

6 authors picked Prodigal Summer as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

It is summer in the Appalachian mountains and love, desire and attraction are in the air. Nature, too, it seems, is not immune. From her outpost in an isolated mountain cabin, Deanna Wolfe, a reclusive wildlife biologist, watches a den of coyotes that have recently migrated into the region. She is caught off guard by a young hunter who invades her most private spaces and interrupts her self-assured, solitary life. On a farm several miles down the mountain, Lusa Maluf Landowski, a bookish city girl turned farmer's wife, finds herself marooned in a strange place where she must declare or…


Book cover of In the Valley

Leah Weiss Author Of All the Little Hopes

From my list on southern books that transport us.

Who am I?

I didn’t get the itch to write till my late fifties then I wrote about Mama’s humble life on a tobacco farm. I was a novice who leaned on critique groups to learn literary rules. Short story contests helped me segue into fiction. I sold a few of those early stories and wrote a practice novel that didn’t sell but I understood the best storytelling transports us to a time and place that feels so authentic your senses respond. That place for me is the South and I wanted to write books that took you there. I was seventy when my debut Appalachian novel, If the Creek Don’t Rise, was released and became a bestseller. 

Leah's book list on southern books that transport us

Leah Weiss Why did Leah love this book?

In the Valley by Ron Rash is a haunting collection of ten short stories told as lean and efficient as the author’s other works. Filled with surprise twists, I could hardly close the book at bedtime, so delicious were the varied plots. I particularly loved the stories that expanded our understanding of his captivating character, Serena, that was made into a movie in 2014. 

By Ron Rash,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked In the Valley as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From the New York Times bestselling, award-winning writer of Serena

"One of the great American authors at work today" (The New York Times) gives us a short story collection of haunting allegories about the times we live in—from the perils of capitalism to the extraordinary acts of decency and heroism that exist within them—and the return of the villainess who propelled Rash’s famed Serena to national acclaim.

Ron Rash has long been a revered presence in the landscape of American letters. A virtuosic novelist, poet, and story writer, he evokes the beauty and brutality of the land, the relentless tension…


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