PATINA by Jason Reynolds
Kirkus Star

PATINA

From the "Track" series, volume 2
Age Range: 8 - 12
BUY NOW FROM
Email this review

KIRKUS REVIEW

African-American track phenom Patina Jones takes the baton from Ghost (2016) in the second volume of Reynolds’ Track series for middle graders.

Reynolds tells readers almost all they need to know about Patty in two opening, contrasting scenes. In the first, Patty misjudges her competitors in an 800-meter race she’s certain she should have won. Running well but second is not enough for the ferociously competitive Patty. In the other, she braids her little sister’s hair before church, finishing off each of Maddy’s 30 braids with three beads. She does this every Sunday because their white adoptive mother can’t (“there ain’t no rule book for white people to know how to work with black hair”) and because their birth mother insists they look their best for church. Their father dead and their birth mother’s legs lost to diabetes, the two girls live with their father’s brother and his wife, seeing their mother once a week in an arrangement that’s as imperfect as it is loving and necessary. Writing in Patty’s voice, Reynolds creates a fully dimensional, conflicted character whose hard-earned pragmatism helps her bring her relay team together, negotiate the social dynamics of the all-girls, mostly white private school she attends, and make the best of her unusual family lot. When this last is threatened, readers will ache right alongside her.

Another stellar lap—readers will be eager to see who’s next. (Fiction. 8-12)

Pub Date: Aug. 29th, 2017
ISBN: 978-1-4814-5018-8
Page count: 240pp
Publisher: Caitlyn Dlouhy/Atheneum
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15th, 2017




OUR CRITICS' TAKES ON MORE BESTSELLERS

See full list >
Cover art for SECRETS IN DEATH
VERDICT:
SKIP IT
Cover art for MY ABSOLUTE DARLING
VERDICT:
BUY IT
Cover art for SAM, THE MOST SCAREDY-CAT KID IN THE WHOLE WORLD
VERDICT:
SKIP IT
Cover art for WONDER WOMAN
VERDICT:
BUY IT
Kirkus Interview
Jason Reynolds
February 10, 2015

In Jason Reynolds’ new YA novel The Boy in the Black Suit, 17-year-old Matt thinks he can’t handle one more piece of terrible news, until he meets a girl who’s dealt with a lot more—and who just might be able to clue him in on how to rise up when life keeps knocking him down—in this wry novel from the author of When I Was the Greatest. Matt wears a black suit every day. No, not because his mom died—although she did, and it sucks. But he wears the suit for his gig at the local funeral home, which pays way better than the Cluck Bucket, and he needs the income since his dad can’t handle the bills (or anything, really) on his own. “Reynolds writes with a gritty realism that beautifully captures the challenges—and rewards—of growing up in the inner city,” our reviewer writes. “A vivid, satisfying and ultimately upbeat tale of grief, redemption and grace.” View video >

MORE BY JASON REYNOLDS

ChildrenLONG WAY DOWN by Jason Reynolds
by Jason Reynolds
ChildrenMILES MORALES   by Jason Reynolds
by Jason Reynolds
ChildrenALL AMERICAN BOYS by Jason Reynolds
by Jason Reynolds

SIMILAR BOOKS SUGGESTED BY OUR CRITICS:

ChildrenTHE BRILLIANT FALL OF GIANNA Z.  by Kate Messner
by Kate Messner
ChildrenTHE HARLEM CHARADE by Natasha Tarpley
by Natasha Tarpley
ChildrenHEARTBEAT by Sharon Creech
by Sharon Creech