Amari and the Night Brothers – B.B. Alston
Supernatural, magic, missing persons, African Americans, fantasy, adventure, POC representation, children’s literature, fiction.
Amari is trying to fit in and not feel much like an outcast. Also, she wonders what had happened to her brother and wants answers. She gets mystery mail that reveals that he nominated her to join the Night Brothers. She ventures to get accepted into this magical society but before she has to go through training and tests. Ultimately she will try to fit in and be accepted into this society while trying to find her brother. Some strange and unusual things occur at the Night Brother academy and she has to obtain the stolen items to return as well as find the traitor of the Beauro.
I had seen a TikToker read and review this book. I instantly knew I was going to love this book. This takes parts that I enjoyed about Harry Potter and parts of Percy Jackson, combined into this beautiful and stunning children’s book. I love a good female heroine and Amari was that for sure. I finished this in one sitting and I am still stunned by the magicalness of this novel. This had POC representation and a lot of lore but not too much that it would be overwhelming. I have to say that I am sort of mad that there are no sequels to this novel, but when the moment that Alston produces another book I will be instantly buying. The writing is amazing and adventure packed. This novel is good for all ages really because I think this is really fun to read. I highly suggest to not only get this book for one’s self, but as a gift for a middle grade, high school, or a gift to anyone. All ages can enjoy this phenomenal novel.
The Girl With The Louding Voice – Abi Dare
Contemporary, POC Representation, Fiction.
Adunni dreams of obtaining an education and not having to stay in her village. Her mother, before she died, asked her father to promise to let Adunni go to school and get an education. Her father began to face financial trouble and needed to marry off Adunni. She begs and his words are the law of the house. Adunni does not give up and doesn’t want to give up from obtaining her dream of being educated and go to school. She will have the loudest voice.
I saw this at my local bookstore and I loved the synopsis thus making me want to read this novel. Adunni’s passion for learning is very inspiring and fighting to get an education is empowering. There are regions all around the globe where education is not easy nor cheap to obtain. Adunni’s story speaks that message in huge volumes. Having an education is very important and Adunni sees that. I loved the storytelling and the use of language that was present. I felt very submerged into the narrative and felt a lot of emotions through the main character. I was hoping for more to see Adunni continue her education. In other words I was heavily invested in this story that the author created. This book needs to have more hype and more people going and buying this book.
On The Come Up – Angie Thomas
POC Representation, rapping competitions, young adult, Fiction.
Bri is going through some rough times and it shows in her school grades. She knows for sure she wants to be the greatest rapper of all time and go through her first rap battle successfully. In hopes of gaining attention for a record label so that she can provide a better living. She fights to get her voice heard and in the positive light and not be labeled as a hoodlum. Her first battle she kills the competition but roadblocks are thrown in her way and she must overcome them.
I had read one of Angie Thomas’s books before and I loved her unique style of writing. The dialogue is natural and doesn’t feel forced. I felt that this was really believable as it is believable in real life. Not only that but the characters she creates as well. I don’t typically listen to rap music but I really loved Bri’s rhyme and the rap songs she has made. There were some that absolutely felt like a burn to whomever she directed her anger at. Angie Thomas’s books always point out the inequality and the inadequate treatment of the African American community. She also points out that this doesn’t just affect the adult population but the younger population. The realities presented to them and the type of lives the parents want their children to have. I felt that Bri was losing that hope and desire, but rapping battles and competitions can bring more opportunities. School and education also can bring just as many opportunities. I felt mad at her but she does have points about the way the faculty treated her. I really enjoyed this novel and I saw that Concrete Rose is on the shelf and I look forward to reading that one as well in my near future. I highly recommend this novel and all of Angie Thomas’s books.