Skip to Main Content

One Book One Community 2021: The Yellow House: Keep Reading

2021 Community-Wide Reading Program

Hurricane Katrina

Recommended Reads

The Turner House by Angela Flournoy 

Published: 2015

Learning after a half-century of family life that their house on Detroit's East Side is worth only a fraction of its mortgage, the members of the Turner family gather to reckon with their pasts and decide the house's fate

"Both books explore generational cycles of family and identity set against the changing fortunes of America's urban landscapes. Rich in detail, these moving stories explore complex and often flawed people who shape their lives and the lives of others." -- Michael Jenkins, NoveList Plus

coverZeitoun by Dave Eggers

Published: 2009

In the wake of Hurricane Katrina, longtime New Orleans residents Abdulrahman and Kathy Zeitoun are cast into an unthinkable struggle with forces beyond wind and water. In the days after the storm, Abdulrahman traveled the flooded streets in a secondhand canoe, passing on supplies and helping those he could. A week later, on September 6, 2005, Zeitoun abruptly disappeared -- arrested and accused of being an agent of al Qaeda.

"Survivors of Hurricane Katrina share their life stories in moving and lyrical books. Both reveal hardships involving racial injustices. Zeitoun is about a Muslim man from Syria. Yellow House is about an African American family." -- Alicia Cavitt, NoveList Plus

coverWhere the Line Bleeds by Jesmyn Ward 

Published: 2008

A tale set on the post-Katrina Gulf Coast finds the bond between twins Joshua and Christophe strained by the latter's decision to sell drugs, a situation that is further complicated by the returns of the mother who had abandoned them and predatory addict father.

"While one is a memoir and the other a novel, both Yellow House and Where the Line Bleeds draw on their authors' Gulf Coast heritage in crafting moving and engaging stories of family, poverty, identity, and the search for opportunity." -- Michael Jenkins, NoveList Plus


Writing Memoirs & Family History

coverHandling the Truth: On the Writing of Memoir by Beth Kephart

Published: 2013

A memoir-writing guide offers writing lessons and examples for those interested in putting their memories down on paper, explains the difference between remembering and imagining, and describes the language of truth.

coverThe Art of Memoir by Mary Karr

Published: 2015

Karr breaks down the key elements of great literary memoir, opening our concepts of memory and identity, and illuminating the cathartic power of reflecting on the past; anybody with an inner life or complicated history, whether writer or reader, will relate.

coverGuide to Genealogical Writing: How to Write and Publish Your Family History by Penny Stratton & Henry B. Hoff

Published: 2014

Using examples from NEHGS's publications, this writing guide outlines how to write your family history clearly and accurately -- from building a genealogical sketch to adding images to indexing. An appendix on genealogical style covers alternate spellings of names, when and how to use lineage lines, how to include adopted children and stepchildren, aspects of double dating, and other issues faced by genealogical writer.