Piecing Me Together

Piecing Me Together

Book - 2017
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When Jade learns the Spanish word for succeed, she thinks it 's kind of ironic that the English word exit is embedded in it. Tener exito . To succeed. Jade believes she must get out of her poor neighborhood if she 's ever going to accomplish anything. Her mother tells her to take advantage of every opportunity that comes her way. And she has. She leaves her friends and neighborhood every day to attend a private school in a wealthy part of the city. She hopes that this year she'll be chosen for the opportunity to participate in the school's amazing Study Abroad program.

But there 's one "opportunity" that Jade doesn 't really welcome- joining Women to Women, a mentorship program for at-risk girls. She 's tired of being singled out at her mostly-white school as someone who needs support. And just because Maxine, her college-student mentor, is black and graduated from her high school doesn 't mean she understands where Jade is coming from. Maxine is eager to give back, but most of the "opportunities" she has to offer aren't really what Jade needs. Because Maxine doesn't really get it. And it seems like she has some issues of her own she needs to figure out. Maybe there are some things Jade could show these "successful" women about understanding the world and finding opportunities to be real, to make a difference.
Renee Watson once again delivers a thoughtful and relevant story about issues of race, privilege, and female relationships.
Publisher: New York : Bloomsbury, 2017.
ISBN: 9781681191058
Branch Call Number: YA WATSON R
Characteristics: 264 pages ; 22 cm


From Library Staff

"Tired of being singled out at her mostly-white private school as someone who needs support, high school junior Jade would rather participate in the school's amazing Study Abroad program than join Women to Women, a mentorship program for at-risk girls." -Novelist

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Barrie_Teen_Lists Mar 24, 2021

The author of the novel Piecing Me Together is Renee Watson. Renee Watson has received numerous awards including a Newberry Honour award for Piecing Me Together.

Piecing Me Together was written from the point of view of a young black girl, Jade. Jade is a very insightful, intelligent and artistic person who has a strong drive to become successful. Her mother has always pushed her to grab every opportunity that comes her way; from getting a scholarship to an almost all-white private school to tutoring to Saturday test prep. Though some “opportunities” seem to only try to undermine her like when she got an invitation to join a woman-to-woman mentorship program that is truly directed towards black girls living in “tough neighbourhoods”.

On the other hand, Jade also wishes to say “no thank you” to all the opportunities, that she's had enough of them but instead she says: “A girl like, coal skin and hula-hoop hips, whose mommas barely makes enough money to keep food in the house, have to take opportunities every chance we get”.

This book is about Jade and her journey through a life where your neighbourhood and the colour of your skin determine your chances of success. She also tries to question the mentality of our society. Like how many black women and men get gunned down and no one says anything about it but if it were a white person it would be all over the news.

Renee Watson cleverly wrote this book in such a way that provoked the reader to think by bringing up issues that go on in our society right now. I also loved the development of Jade's character and how she's such an optimistic person who can find the beauty in things that others may deem unworthy: “Lots of people can't find beauty in my neighbourhood, but I can...”.

From this book I have learned the importance of having these conversations about sexism, gun violence, racism and making assumptions about people based on their economic class.

I have also learned to try to see the beauty in everything even if the physical outlook may seem uninviting. To not overlook the little things because you never know what you're missing when you've built a forehand stigma that secludes everything but what you know of.

In my opinion this book deserves a rating of 5/5. I would most definitely recommend this book to anyone from grade 8 and up and to anyone who loves a casual and yet thought-provoking book.

Jun 21, 2020

Edmonds library display during June 2020

Apr 27, 2020

Loved this book! Opened my eyes to a new reality.

Jan 29, 2020

Piecing Me Together by Renee Watson is a YA novel about Jade, an African American high schooler who is poor and has received a merit scholarship to a local private (basically all white) high in Portland, Oregon. She is on journeys of self awareness as well as how to show up in the world other than her neighborhood. It is a well written story and I recommend it to all.

Jan 02, 2020

It was so refreshing to read a YA book without a romantic subplot. This was a quick and interesting read, and as someone trying (struggling) to learn Spanish, I really liked how at the start of chapters, there was a Spanish word to describe the chapter. I've recommended this book to almost all my friends!

Oct 17, 2019

Fantastic #ownvoices book. Set in Portland.

TSCPL_Sherry Jul 22, 2019

I was taken in by the true-to-life issues in the book Piecing Me Together. Renee Watson did a nice job in detailing Jade's journey.

VaughanPLKim Feb 28, 2019

An inspiring novel about a teenaged girl named Jade, who, with the help of her mentoring group Woman to Woman, manages to find her voice.

JCLChrisK Feb 04, 2019

A complex story of one teen finding her voice.

VaughanPLShelly Nov 08, 2018

Piecing Me Together is a beautifully well-written novel with a relatable character. I think readers of any age will find Jade's journey wonderful and engaging, despite it being a very personal one. I also recommend this to fans of The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas.

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