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What to read this week: Books by Vanessa Siddle Walker, Ingrid Rojas Contreras and Miriam Parker

"Fruit of the Drunken Tree," by Ingrid Rojas Contreras. Photo Credit: Doubleday

THE LOST EDUCATION OF HORACE TATE: Uncovering the Hidden Heroes Who Fought for Justice in Schools, by Vanessa Siddle Walker. An Emory University professor tells the story of Horace Tate — a Georgia teacher, principal and state senator — and other black educators whose clandestine organizing helped pave the way for the Brown vs. Board of Ed Supreme Court decision desegregating schools. (The New Press, $32.99)

FRUIT OF THE DRUNKEN TREE, by Ingrid Rojas Contreras. This debut novel recalls the bad old days in Bogota, Colombia, when drug lord Pablo Escobar was all-powerful and paramilitary groups terrorized the country. Contreras draws on her own childhood in telling the story of Chula, a 7-year-old middle-class girl, and Petrona, a young woman from the slums hired as the family maid. (Doubleday, $26.95)

THE SHORTEST WAY HOME, by Miriam Parker. Does giving up a high-pressure job in Manhattan finance — and a mismatched fiance — to live and work at a Sonoma County winery, while romancing the owner's son, sound like a fantasy? Well, this first good-hearted novel suggests that such fantasies can (and should) come true, as they do for protagonist Hannah Greene. (Dutton, $26)

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