*** Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance

Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis is written by a lawyer who grew up in a poor Scots-Irish family (he does not like to say Scotch-Irish), raised in great part by his grandmother when his addicted mother could not cope. His story has been seized upon to explain the malaise of white working class Americans, but I prefer to see it as a personal narrative of hope and also practical, if often severe ideas of how government programs often fail the very recipients they try to help.

The writing is rough around the edges, but the story will stay with you.

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