Entries by Discover Identity

Piecing Me Together by Renee Watson

Writing about social justice issues can be difficult when the audience is composed of middle school students because of the complexity inherent in such discussions. RENEE WATSON’s “PIECING ME TOGETHER” addresses issues of race and social justice deftly and accurately while maintaining authenticity of character. The main character, Jade, is a poor, black teenager who […]

Betty Before X by Ilyasah Shabazz with Renee Watson

Before Betty Shabazz became an activist, educator, mother and wife to Malcolm X, she was Betty Dean, a young and ambitious girl growing up in Detroit. For the first seven years of her life, Betty lived in Georgia, where she was raised by her aunt, Fannie Mae. “BETTY BEFORE X” follows a young Betty as […]

Picture Books to Introduce Black History Month to Children

Reviewed by Tammie Benham February is Black History Month.  Introducing the accomplishments of some of our descendants to children when they are very young is a good way to honor these extraordinary Americans.  I took a look at offerings from the Children’s Department at Joplin Public Library and chose some old and new favorites to […]

Manhattan Beach by Jennifer Egan

Jennifer Egan began the research for her latest book years ago. It was 2004 when she first learned of the significance of New York’s waterfront and the Brooklyn Naval Yard. The result of her years of research and interviews is a very compelling read titled Manhattan Beach. The novel is in a way three different […]

The Radium Girls: The Dark Story of America’s Shining Women by Kate Moore

When perusing the library’s new book offerings, Kate Moore’s The Radium Girls shone from the shelf. Particularly, the subtitle—The Dark Story of America’s Shining Women. Intrigued and unfamiliar with these shining women and their dark story, I trusted Moore to shed light on the matter. She begins by introducing us to a list of key […]

Turtles All the Way Down by John Green

Aza Holmes is a little bit insufferable, but don’t we all have quirks that are frustrating to the people we love most? JOHN GREEN’S newest protagonist, a 17-year-old self-proclaimed obsessive depressive, is just as complex as you or I. In his latest best-selling young adult novel, “TURTLES ALL THE WAY DOWN,” Green introduces the reader […]