Mary Coin by Marisa Silver
Recommended by Patricia Williams
Youth Services Librarian, Encinitas Branch
Inspired by the real-life “Migrant Mother” photograph by Dorothea Lange, this tale imagines the intersecting lives of three people: a struggling young Depression-era mother, an ambitious photographer who captures what is destined to become one of the world’s most iconic images, and a present-day historian seeking clues to his family history. Silver’s writing style is unadorned yet compelling and resonates with emotional honesty, much like the title character herself. In fact, Silver’s observations about human nature are so spot-on that they seem at once revelatory yet obvious. This is a rare book that delivers on its interesting premise with intrigue, poignancy and depth.