Saturday, June 18, 2011

"Take charge. Listen to your heart, what guides you. Only you can.": Joan Lester

"Black, White, Other" (Amazon) by Joan Lester is the story of a biracial teen, Nina Armstrong, dealing with all sorts of issues. She is learning that kids (and the world) can be cruel to those who don't "fit in." If that weren't hard enough, she has to deal with her parents separation and the feeling that they're not the people she thought they were. She ends up finding solace in the story about her great-great-grandmother's escape from slavery. It aids her in her journey of self discovery.

I enjoyed this book. Joan Lester did a very good job of portraying a typical confused teenager. I will admit, I found all of the characters irritating at times, but I think that that is actually a good thing. The story was about people trying to find their place in the world-emphasis on the "people." By exposing their weaknesses, Joan Lester created a realistic story, about people who didn't know the answers-and were also aware that finding them wasn't going to be easy.

I actually found contact information for Joan Lester! Here's what I wrote:
"I just read Black, White, Other (through and I wanted to let you know that I really enjoyed it. You did an excellent job of crafting believable characters. Even if I didn't agree with a lot of Nina's decisions, I could understand why she would do the things she did. Reading about her not being able to talk to her parents was frustrating-but at the same time I know exactly what that feels like. Once again, excellent job with this book."

Black, White, Other is due to be released on September 1st, so keep an eye out for it! I probably won't be posting later today-but we'll see! (Also, yes I know, this wasn't any of the books I said I'd read-I'm probably going to give up on the idea of accurately predicting my next review.)

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