This Pulitzer-prize winning novel shares the reflections of Congregationalist minister John Ames as he writes the story of his life for his young son. Images of baptism and Holy Communion are richly and beautifully described alongside the contentious relationships of multiple generations of fathers and sons. The story is a powerful piece on grace and forgiveness, but its reflections on racism in America – gently percolating in the background of the story – are what make it a must-read for today. (Part of the power of this novel is that you don’t know it’s about racism until the end, but I’ll try not to give anything else away.) Set in Iowa in the 1950s, Robinson reaches back into American history to give narrative life to one hundred years of stories of slavery and abolitionists, segregation and racism, and the shape they took in the Midwest. The narrator’s own ignorance of the continuing practices of racism in his midst makes a fantastic springboard for conversation about our own continuing complicity in American’s systemic sin of racism.