In Small in Size: LeDroit Park: A History & A Guide, Canden Schwantes’ (now Arciniega) demonstrates her ability as a storyteller, honed through years of leading historical tours, lends an engaging stylistic to this new history of what was once the premier neighborhood for DC’s Black elite. Famed for its narrow tree-lined streets, and Victorian mansions, LeDroit Park began as a
gated community for whites-only. Over the past century, it has been home to luminaries, thinkers, and leaders, both black and white. The volume shares the re-development of the neighborhood from gated and exclusive to the neighborhood that housed Black notables, such as Duke Ellington, poet and writer Paul Lawrence Dunbar, and civil right leader the Rev. Jesse Jackson, and many others. Schwantes is the author of three other DC histories, including Wicked Georgetown (2013), Georgetown (2014) and Wild Women of Washington DC (2014).
What are We Reading this Month?
East City Bookshop reports that their top five sales of the new year have been 1) The Light We Carry: Overcoming in Uncertain Times, Michelle Obama; 2) Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow: A Novel, Gabrielle Zevin; 3) Demon Copperhead: A Novel, Barbara Kingsolver; 4) Spare, Prince Harry, The Duke of Sussex; 4) Lessons in Chemistry, Bonnie Garmus.
Solid State reports their top five sales as: 1) Spare, Prince Harry, The Dule of Sussex; 2) Tomorrow & Tomorrow & Tomorrow: A Novel, Gabrielle Zevin; 3) Littlest Yak, Lu Fraser, Author and Kate Hindley, Illustrator; 4) Demon Copperhead, Barbara Kingsolver, and 5) Crying in H Mart, Michelle Zauner.
Michelle LaFrance is Associate Professor of English at George Mason University. She teaches writing workshops via the Hill Center and other regional community centers. In her free time, she can be found reading, writing, and hiking the region’s forests with two mischievous four-leggeds.