The Beautiful Things That Heaven Bears, by Dinaw Mengestu

This is a gorgeous little book about the struggles of immigration, poverty and gentrification. The main character flees Ethiopia, and seventeen years later runs a struggling grocery store in D.C. The characters and storyline are rather tragic, so don’t expect to finish this book with the warm fuzzies or even a feeling of satisfaction, but it is a moving and powerful story that is worth reading. It makes you think twice about rough neighborhoods while providing a view of what it is like to live in a country that isn’t “yours.”

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