Secondary genre: sociology
Format read: audiobook
Rep: POC, disability, extreme poverty
This book takes a deep look at extreme poverty in the US. People so poor that on average, each member of the household lives on only $2.00/day. If you’re doing the math, that means only about $62 a month, or less.
It was absolutely heartbreaking to read, and it hit so close to home. There have been many times in my life where I have been on the brink of eviction. When I haven’t been sure what I’ll eat for my next meal. When I’ve had to choose between feeding myself or my cat, or paying water or electric.
And yet none of that can touch what some of these people have to do to survive. The book highlights the way prejudice forces people down, and the way that one small setback–like a cold–can send everything else spiraling downward, and the enormous gaps in the social support network. The gaps between WIC and food stamps, between healthcare and discount prescriptions, between homeless shelters and employment.
Though it was a very stressful read and I had to break it up with other things for the sake of my mental health, I do highly recommend it, particularly for those who come from privileged backgrounds. If you think poor people “just need to try harder” or “aren’t working enough” or that they are all “welfare queens” then shut up, sit down, and read this book.