Title: Our Friendship Matters
Author: Kimberley B. Jones
Genre: YA Coming of Age, Social Justice
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Our Friendship Matters is one of those coming of age books that should be in every school library.
Sasha is a black girl from a middle-class St Louis suburb. Her dad is a lawyer, her mom is a doctor, and they send her to the hoighty-toighty Chester Christian Academy. Sasha’s best friend is filthy rich, Leah is a stuck-up white girl with a mean streak a mile wide, but Sasha adores her and puts up with her because that’s what you do until the shark turns on you.
Some of the sly statements in this book:
Money is opportunity.
Money is resources.
Money gives you the ability to look the other way.
Money allows you the option to remain ignorant.
Money means you can celebrate frivolity during a revolution.
Money means you can drive away from a nightmare–but it might follow you in your dreams.
Protesting is hopeless.
A statement John Lewis would firmly disagree with and argue with the young to make good trouble, which I could see Sasha being able to organize and rally a world’s worth.
But at the end of the day, this book is about the Pandora’s Box that is our lives in our young and new adult years and how easy it is to light all the evils when we wake them up. It’s good to challenge our curiosities and important to follow our hearts. Doing what is right is essential, but making good decisions is the most important thing to do to benefit the world around us. Our Friendship Matters underlines this with two bold marks. Making good decisions is what makes us good friends and family.
I definitely recommend this book. I think it should be on reading lists. It’s timely. I don’t necessarily agree with the politics as an adult, but this isn’t speaking to adults–it’s speaking to young adults, and the message is the best message to be sent to them right now. Just make good decisions.
I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary advance copy of this book.
Our Friendship Matters Excerpt:
As we pulled out of the driveway, Dad waved goodbye. I could picture the smile on his face once he walked into the house and noticed Mom was cooking lasagna.
“So, how is the public-school life at Eastview High?” I asked Ricardo. “Other than Chester beating your guys in sports.”
“Ya’ll just have better resources than us,” Ricardo said.
“How come we couldn’t just be good at what we do?”
“What! Anyway . . . Eastview is great, I guess, but we are dealing with some issues. It’s our senior year and I am just thinking about leaving this place.”
“Why would you want to leave?”
“Because I feel trapped in a box. Everywhere I go, I feel like a suspect.”
“A suspect, what makes you think that? You shouldn’t feel like that,” I said as my brow lifted from his response.
“Yeah, I know you wouldn’t understand because you go to this perfect private school and stay in this big, beautiful house.”
“What’s that supposed to mean?”
“I’m sorry. Just drop me off at the next block. I got it from there.” I pulled to the curb and, as Ricardo got out of the car, he leaned against the closed door—with half his body leaning over the window—and said, “Wake up and find out who you really are.”
I squinted my eyes, “Okay.” I drove off. Why would he say such a thing to me?
About Kimberley B. Jones:
Kimberley is a professional early childhood educator. She was born in the small town of Saint George, South Carolina, on September 12, 1982. Graduated from Woodland High School in 2000, Benedict College in 2004 with B.S., Child & Family Development, and from Ashford University in 2013 with a Masters in Early Childhood Education.
After receiving her education and being a military spouse, she held several jobs as a preschool teacher and a preschool director, but she wanted her education to be used by writing children’s books. She wrote her first book in college for my children’s literature course. She has self-published several children books located on Amazon.
Currently, she branched off into writing fiction YA, NA, and A novels on issues in society. Kimberley loves writing and would not change it for nothing in this world. It’s how she expresses herself as an individual and to people who can’t share their words in a book. She is now representing Rhet Askew Publishing, a great and supportive publishing company. Kimberley is the author of “Our Friendship Matters,” soon to be released and so much more coming soon early July.
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