Read with Aesop’s

September Selection: Mercy Street by Jennifer Haigh

Mercy Street by Jennifer Haigh centers around a women’s clinic in Boston. It is a social commentary on the happenings of the people who come and go… employees, patients and protesters. This is a character-driven story and Haigh expertly puts us in the minds of each of her well developed and complex characters. I love a book that forces us to walk in the shoes of characters who think or act very differently from us and this book hits the mark. I found myself intrigued most by the points of view that were furthest from my own. Right now, more than ever, our country needs more empathy and conversation around differences so that we can find common ground in order to tackle the hard issues… and no issue is tougher to discuss right now than female health rights.   

Haigh is highly ambitious in this novel, also taking a close look at poverty, education, race and religion and the role they all play in forming a person’s perceptions. One of the common threads that ran through each storyline was how important the “maternal” relationship was in shaping each of the character’s lives and belief system. I loved how Haigh subtly highlighted the impact of a strong, positive female role model against the backdrop of a place where women are mistreated, vilified and undervalued.  

Mercy Street is a novel for right now, a story of the polarized American present. Jennifer Haigh, “an expert natural storyteller with a keen sense of her characters’ humanity” (New York Times), has written a groundbreaking novel, a fearless examination of one of the most divisive issues of our time.

Mercy Street is also our Book Club pick this month.  Pick up your copy and read with us and then join us for a lively discussion at the end of the month!  Mercy Street will be 10% off at Aesop’s Fable during the month of September.

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Leah and Andrew Yerre

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