#LPReads: An American Marriage

Emily picks An American Marriage by Tayari Jones as her summer read because of the exquisite writing and beautiful foreshadowing.


Emily Harting, Director of Development and Communications
An American Marriage by Tayari Jones

Why did you pick this book?
It came very highly recommended from a friend in publishing.

What is your favorite quote from this book? Why?
Not sure if it is my favorite but the writing is exquisite – here’s one bit that got me:

“How would my mother, the dreamy romantic, interpret this ring on my finger, deep red like an autumn leaf? According to the ruby, Andre is my fiance, but Roy’s diamond, so white that it’s blue, insists this is impossible. But who listens to the wisdom of jewelry? Only our bodies know the truth. Bones don’t lie. What else hides in my jewelry box? A small tooth, ivory like antique lace, with a serrated edge like a steak knife.”  

At this point you have no idea why she has a tooth in her jewelry box – that is only revealed later – but it makes you curious. It’s beautiful foreshadowing.

What is your favorite memory of summer reading growing up – do you have an anecdote to share?
I remember one summer – after I was old enough to read on my own – my mom decided that she wanted to read me The Princess Bride – her favorite book. I can remember sitting on the deck while she read it to me, cackling crazily at the hilarious parts (of which there are many). It’s one of my favorite memories  – she loved the book too much to not want to share the experience of me experiencing it for the first time without her.

What does literacy mean to you – why is it important?
Books are my personal salvation at all times, but especially in these challenging times – they are the only way that I can actually ESCAPE reality and the day-to-day news. However, literacy – words, writing, storytelling – is how I make my living and how I support Literacy Partners and our students. I share their stories of overcoming challenges, their personal triumphs, and the progress they make with our supporters.


As the summer heats up, we’ve been busy reading – check out our staff picks:

Arifa – Milk and Honey
Gohar- The Hundred Year Walk
Shellyn – Little Gold Book of Yes!
Luan – The Autobiography of Malcolm X
David- Happy Dreams
Aarushi – The Handmaid’s Tale


Through Books of Their Own, Literacy Partners provides brand new books to our students and their families. Share in the joy of providing home libraries – give the gift of reading, and donate to Literacy Partners today. 

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