We Are All Good People Here

Atria. Aug. 2019. 304p. ISBN 9781451608915. $27; ebk. ISBN 9781451608953. F
Two women forge a friendship at a Southern college in the tumultuous 1960s as they face social issues including sexism, the Vietnam War, and the fight for civil rights. Wealthy Atlanta debutante Eve Whalen wants to join a sorority. Her new roommate is Daniella Gold, daughter of a college professor from Washington, DC. Daniella discovers the African American maids who live in the basement of the dorm and are allowed only Sundays off. Eve begins to question the status quo when Daniella is denied admission to the sororities because her father is Jewish. The girls transfer to college in New York, where Eve is drawn into radicalism, and Daniella spends a summer registering voters in Mississippi. Their paths diverge as Eve becomes more involved in violent protests while Daniella marries and strives to make partner at her law firm. Yet when Eve ends up in serious trouble, she calls on Daniella. Years later, their daughters discover the secrets their mothers held for decades.
VERDICT This latest from White (A Place at the Table) is highly recommended for its absorbing characterization and engrossing plot that perfectly capture the zeitgeist of the 1960s. For readers who enjoyed Emma Cline’s The Girls or Caroline Leavitt’s Cruel Beautiful World. [See Prepub Alert, 12/3/18.]
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