As a biracial teen, Nina is accustomed to a life of varied hues—mocha-colored skin, ringed brown hair streaked with red, a black father, a white mother. When her parents decide to divorce, the rainbow of Nina’s existence is reduced to a much starker reality. Shifting definitions and relationships are playing out all around her, and new boxes and lines seem to be drawn every day.
Between the fractures within her family and the racial tensions splintering her hometown, Nina feels caught in perpetual battle. Stranded in a nowhere land of ethnic boundaries, and struggling for personal independence and identity, Nina turns to the story of her great-great-grandmother’s escape from slavery in hopes of finding her own compass to help navigate the challenges before her.
"Lester conjures a credible plot and complications; divorce is a fact of life and racially mixed heritage is conspicuously becoming one. The simple contrapuntal narrative of Sarah Armstrong's escaping slavery distinguishes the book emotionally and psychologically, raising it above other issue-oriented Young Adult novels. Lester writes with social sensitivity and an ear for teen language and concerns. This is engaging treatment of a challenging subject that comes with little precedent." * -- Starred Publishers Weekly Review
"The tenderness and truth of your book moved my heart. As well as the enormous love you have." -- Alice Walker
"Teens will be caught by the alternating stories, and yes, by the messages about...prejudice, then and now, which will make for great group discussion." -- Booklist
|Contributor(s)||Joan Steinau Lester|
|About the Contributor(s)||Joan Steinau Lester
Joan Steinau Lester, Ed.D., is the author of three previous books, the most recent Mama’s Child, as well as Fire in My Soul, a civil rights biography of Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton. Her first YA novel, Black, White, Other, was a finalist for the Bellwether Prize. The former Executive Director of the Equity Institute, a national diversity consulting firm, she is also a frequent NPR commentator and print columnist.
|Publish Date||Jan 3, 2017|
- Review by Jalynn
Being a young girl, I never understood. That is until I got older that she was right. Mixed kids have it especially hard because they are out into a category and no one gives any thought to how they may be hurting. Such is Nina's plight. She wants so hard to fit in but with all the racial tension coupled with the divorce of her parents--she feels overwelmingly slighted in the fair shake category--these days.
Black, White, Other pushes the racial boundaries and causes you to think about someone else other than yourself, if only for a moment.
**Disclosure** This book was sent to me free of charge for my honest review from the author. All opinions are my own. (Posted on 1/31/2017)