Piecing Me Together by Renée Watson
Jade believes she must get out of her neighborhood if she’s ever going to succeed. Her mother says she has to take every opportunity. She has. She accepted a scholarship to a mostly-white private school and even Saturday morning test prep opportunities. But some opportunities feel more demeaning than helpful. Like an invitation to join Women to Women, a mentorship program for “at-risk” girls. Except really, it’s for black girls. From “bad” neighborhoods.
But Jade doesn’t need support. And just because her mentor is black doesn’t mean she understands Jade. And maybe there are some things Jade could show these successful women about the real world and finding ways to make a real difference.
Friendships, race, privilege, identity—this compelling and thoughtful story explores the issues young women face.
I don’t even know where to begin with this one. With a big pull for diverse books recently in the book community I decided to put this on hold at my local library. I read it in 4 parts mostly because I wanted to savor each word and that requires going slow. Jade is a powerful character and her story will impact everyone who picks up this book. The book is written in short chapters in this arresting and graceful style. Like I could quote this book forever and you would just fall into each line because it’s beautiful. But not in a lyrical over describing way. Just in a very real and upfront about life way. I thought Jade and her mentor Maxine were both very well developed and she was an authentic character. While I’m not a black woman and cannot speak to representation. I can say that Jade’s story wrecked me and moved me. I won’t look at the kids I teach the same way. My perspective is now a little different. This book is realistic, raw, and heartbreaking in turns. I couldn’t give it less than a 5.
Please pick this up when you get the chance. You don’t regret it. I urge you to look into this perspective that might be different from you own but has something to teach you and grow you.
“Maxine is right and wrong. Those girls are not opposite of me. We are perpendicular. We may be on different paths, yes. But there’s a place where we touch, where we connect and are just the same.”
Be (your) Best”
“And this makes me wonder if a black girl’s life is only about being stitched together and coming undone, being stitched together and coming undone.
I wonder if there’s ever a way for a girl like me to feel whole.”
Hope y’all are having a great day! Let me know if this book sounds interesting to you.