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At the heart of Pulitzer Prize finalist Laila Lalami’s The Other Americans, published in 2019, is a death that reveals the true cost of difference and shakes a small town to its core. When Driss, a business owner and Moroccan immigrant, is unexpectedly killed by a speeding car in the Mojave desert, his death brings together an unlikely crew who search for answers in the wake of tragedy. From Driss’ musician daughter, Nora, to his grieving widow, Maryam, to Efrain, an undocumented individual and witness to the killing, each character has secrets of their own to confront as they grapple with the aftermath of his mysterious death. The novel, which was a 2019 National Book Award finalist, is more than just a suspenseful tale or a testament to Lalami’s dextrous, intricate storytelling, but a razor-sharp critique of an unjust social system. —Cady Lang

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