Sins of the Father

It’s funny, I just read a comment the other day, that someone needed to write a story about people getting unwanted super powers, and not knowing what to do with them. Then, I came across a request for book bloggers to join the Diverse Book Tour for Thelonious Legend’s first book:  Sins of the Father, and that is exactly what his book is about.

Displaying sotf announcement banner.png

Aside from being the granddaughters of a very famous, very rich civil rights leader, the Parker sisters are three pretty average teenagers. They are athletic, smart, and have all the same sibling rivalries that I had with my sisters. Except suddenly, they don’t feel like themselves. Things start to happen…weird things. Eva gets faster, Gwen gets stronger, and Ana suddenly knows EVERYTHING. There’s a catch though, as most things do, and they have to figure out how to deal with their new powers, and stop the timebomb that is ticking away.

Displaying sins-karatepunch.jpg

Ok. Here’s where I have to level with you.

I wasn’t a huge fan of the super hero stuff in this book. I felt it was a little implausible, and so it was a little distracting from the rest of the girls’ lives.

HOWEVER! And this is a big HOWEVER, guys!

Thelonious Legend does not need to grasp at sci-fi to make his voice heard. Without the awkward superhero, but not superhero stuff going on, Sins of the Father is a fantastically written teen story, AND it is written from a black family’s perspective, which you see exactly NEVER in mainstream young adult fiction. The characters, the teen ones especially, are extremely well developed, and have very independent personalities. I loved Ana–I think she was my favorite–but her friend Stacy, with her speedy run on hyperactive commentary made me laugh hysterically.

I think the author definitely has the capability to do amazing, excuse me…LEGENDARY…things with his fiction, if he were to focus on his strong POC characters and their individuality, rather than forcing the sci-fi aspect. The strength of this book were the challenges the girls faced with their friends and those they interacted with on a daily basis, not so much the evil janitors.

Like I said…A big however! I loved the Parker family. They reminded me of myself and my two sisters. I think a lot of kids (and plenty of adults like me) are going to relate to this book, and are going to be begging for sequels.

Thelonious, I wish you luck, and I hope to see more from you.

 

Disclaimer:  I received this book for free as part of the Diverse Book Tour.

 

 

This checks off #36 on my PopSugar list:  A book set in high school.

The Undertaker’s Daughter

Guess I should have waited a bit, and added one more to my year end total! I didn’t think I’d finish this by the end of the day, but I made it!

21412276

The Undertaker’s Daughter will be published January 13and it’s a lovely memoir about a daughter of a Kentucky mortician in the 1960s-70s.

Kate Mayfield had a very close relationship with her father. As one of the youngest in her family, she was the first sibling to be raised strictly in the funeral home, and so she had a natural curiosity about the family business, as well as everything else around her. Her memoir tells the story of the small town she grew up in during the Civil Rights years, just south of the Ohio River.

While I enjoyed this book, whenever I read an ARC I always think about the reception it is going to get upon publishing. This is kind of a rocky time for a memoir from a white southern woman raised in the 60s to come out. While the racial issues are not quite as prominent in the story as in, say, The Help, they are definitely there–desegregation of the schools, interracial relationships, class differences. The movement is more a setting, part of the background of her story, and Kate is fighting against the racist beliefs that surround her. Still, I wonder if the release of the book will be hindered at all, because of the environment we are in currently. I hope not, but this has been a very tough year for a lot of people, unfortunately.

 

Here’s hoping for a better 2015. Happy New Year, everyone!