We Deserve Monuments
By Jas Hammonds
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What's more important: knowing the truth or keeping the peace? When her family moves to Bardell, Georgia, on the cusp of her senior year, Avery Anderson is uprooted from DC and thrust into the hostile home of her terminally ill grandmother, Mama Letty. The tension between Avery's mom and Mama Letty makes for a frosty arrival and reveals a decades-old conflict they refuse to talk about. Every time Avery tries to look deeper, she's turned away, leaving her desperate to unearth the secrets that divide her family. While tempers flare at home, Avery finds friendship in unexpected places: with Simone Cole, her captivating next-door neighbor, and Jade Oliver, a member of the town's most prominent family, whose mother's murder remains unsolved. As the three girls grow closer—and Avery and Simone's friendship blossoms into romance—the sharp-edged opinions of their small Southern town begin to hint at something insidious underneath. Avery soon discovers her family's roots are deeply entwined with Bardell's racist past. With Mama Letty's health dwindling every day, Avery must decide if digging for the truth is worth toppling the delicate relationships she's built—or if some things are better left buried.