As it so happens, our favorite fiction of the month involves many a fractured family, but also a fascinating biographical novel that tells the story behind The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (and the famous film that followed).
Golden Child by Claire Adam
The second book in Sarah Jessica Parker's imprint, SJP for Hogarth, Golden Child is a heart-wrenching debut set in Trinidad, about a hardworking father from a struggling family who must make an impossible choice when one of his sons goes missing.
The End of Loneliness by Benedict Wells
Three siblings are gutted by the unexpected loss of their parents, an event that fractures this once close-knit family. Fifteen years later, fate intervenes yet again in this moving portrait of love, lost and found.
Lost Children Archive by Valeria Luiselli
Valeria Luiselli does a deft job of blending the personal and the political in this unusual and illuminating road trip read that finds a naive New York family bound for the U.S.-Mexico border. When the family's children go missing, the ills of a broken immigration system are felt first-hand.
The Last Romantics by Tara Conklin
In The Last Romantics, a 102-year-old poet reminisces about a time in her childhood that she refers to as "the Pause," when her mother succumbed to depression and she and her siblings were left to fend for themselves. What follows is a clever character study, and a moving portrait of a fragile but loving family.
Finding Dorothy by Elizabeth Letts
In this fascinating novel, inspired by real events, L. Frank Baum's widowed wife, Maud, is determined to ensure that MGM does The Wonderful Wizard of Oz justice; this involves shielding its ingénue, Judy Garland, from bullying studio bosses and an overbearing stage mom.