As summer winds down, we hope you are finding a lot of great books to read. We found two more to watch for this week.
All it took was one night and one bad decision for fifteen-year-old Violetta Chen-Samuels’ life to go off the rails. After driving drunk and causing the accident that kills her little sister, Violetta is incarcerated. As a juvenile offender, her fate is in the hands of those she’s wronged—her family. With their forgiveness, she could go home. But without it? Well…
Denied their forgiveness, Violetta is now left with two options, neither good—remain in juvenile detention for an uncertain sentence or participate in the Trials, potentially regaining her freedom and what she wants most of all, her family’s love. But the Trials are no easy feat and in the quest to prove her remorse, Violetta is forced to confront not only her family’s pain, but her own—and the question of whether their forgiveness is more important than forgiving herself. — Cover image and summary via Goodreads
A NASA astrophysicist narrates his improbable journey from an impoverished childhood and an adolescence mired in drugs and crime to the nation’s top physics PhD program at Stanford in this inspiring coming-of-age memoir.
Born into extreme poverty and emotional deprivation, James Edward Plummer was blessed with a genius I.Q. and a love of science. But in his community, a young bookworm quickly becomes a target for violence and abuse. As he struggles to survive his childhood in some of the toughest cities in the country, and his teenage years in the equally poor backwoods of Mississippi, James adopts the hybrid persona of a “gangsta nerd”–dealing weed in juke joints while winning state science fairs with computer programs that untangle the mysteries of Einstein’s relativity theory.
When his prodigious intellect gains him admission to the elite Physics PhD program at Stanford University, James finds himself torn between his love of science and a dangerous crack cocaine habit he developed in college. With the encouragement of his mentor Art Walker, the lone Black faculty member in the physics department, James finally seizes his dream of a life in science and becomes his true adult self, changing his name to Hakeem Muata Oluseyi in honor–and celebration–of his African heritage.
In the tradition of The Autobiography of Malcolm X and The Other Wes Moore, A Quantum Life is an uplifting journey to the stars fueled by hope, hustle, and a hungry mind. As he charts his development as a young scientist, Oluseyi also plumbs the mysteries of the universe where potential personal outcomes are as infinite as the stars in the sky. — Cover image and summary via Goodreads