It’s Friday Linkup time! Last week, I read Piecing Me Together by Renée Watson. This one isn’t on recommendation, but because I read This Side of Home, loved it, and decided that reading anything else by Reneé Watson was absolutely necessary. So when I found out that Piecing Me Together was “in transit” at my local library (which I found out is code for “it’s upstairs being catalogued”), I put it on hold right away.
Piecing Me Together in six words:
Opportunity taker questions motives behind opportunities.
For a more complete summary, click here.
Book Beginnings, wherein we share the beginning of a story and comment on it, is hosted by Rose City Reader. Here’s the beginning of Piecing Me Together.
I am learning to speak.
To give myself a way out. A way in.
The Friday 56 is hosted by Freda at Freda’s Voice. For the Friday 56, you turn to p. 56 in your physical book or 56% on an eReader and write a spoiler-free enticing quote. Here’s what is on p. 56 of Piecing Me Together.
“So, tell me, how do you survive at St. Francis?” Misty fidgets in Sam’s arms, so Sam lets her down. “Everyone is so—I don’t know, not stuck-up. People are actually mostly nice there, but there’s this, this…I don’t know. I mean, my other school barely had any electives. St. Francis has a cooking class, a computer game design class, and a club for ballroom dancing. It’s kind of, I don’t know, weird. I’m not used to—”
“Having so many options?” I ask.
When I opened to the first chapter and saw Spanish, I was a little confused. I recognize this confusion as a result of the assumptions I made based upon what I think I know about the author from her previous work, and on the cover. This is me checking myself.
The opening makes me think about the non-fiction text I read last month, Pushout: The Criminalization of Black Girls in Schools. The author offers narrative evidence that black girls, when they speak out in school in an attempt to get their needs met, are shut down. While Jade doesn’t seem to have this problem, I wonder about her ability to speak out in attempt to get her needs met. She says she’s learning how, which suggests to me that she’s the kind of person who may be more reticent to stand up for herself and her needs.
What I know from the summary is that Jade leaves her neighborhood to go to a private school that provides her with more opportunities. When she’s talking to Misty about the choices they have at St. Francis, it makes me think about my own high school experiences, and the opportunities I was afforded because I went to what I feel like was (and still is) a good school. Sometimes I think that if my students had more choices, more of them would be involved.
Did you find it easy or difficult to speak up and get your needs met in school? Why?