Babb is the one of the greatest American writers you’ve never heard of, and her novel, Whose Names Are Unknown, is (until recently) an unsung masterpiece. Babb turned in this manuscript to her publisher at the same time John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath hit the shelves, and as a result, it went unpublished until 2004, the year before her death. Set during the dust bowl of the ’30s, her characters head west to California and encounter brutal hardship. The warmth and heart with which Babb treats her characters is telling; this is a necessary, empathetic book, especially considering the plight of our city’s own unhoused population.
—-Erin Malone, Queen Anne Book Company, Seattle, WA