A Good Kind of Trouble
A Good Kind of Trouble

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Annotation: After attending a powerful protest, Shayla starts wearing an armband to school to support the Black Lives Matter movement, but when the school gives her an ultimatum, she is forced to choose between her education and her identity.
Catalog Number: #173253
Format: Perma-Bound Edition from Publisher's Hardcover
All Formats: Search
Special Formats: Hot Title Hot Title
Publisher: HarperCollins
Copyright Date: 2019
Edition Date: 2019
Pages: 358 pages
Availability: Available
ISBN: Publisher: 0-06-283668-4 Perma-Bound: 0-7804-3607-5
ISBN 13: Publisher: 978-0-06-283668-7 Perma-Bound: 978-0-7804-3607-7
Dewey: Fic
Dimensions: 21 cm.
Language: English
ALA Booklist
In her first novel, Ramée explores the concept that fear can stop you from doing the right thing. Shayla is a shy, bright middle-school student who deals with unwanted advances from boys, racial tensions, academic competition, and finding her own voice. Middle school is quite an adjustment for Shayla and her friends, a diverse trio dubbed "the United Nations," but she decides to stand up for the rights of African Americans after a ruling is made in a controversial court case involving the shooting of a black man by a white police officer. Encouraged by her sister and peers, she joins the Black Lives Matter movement and passes out black armbands at school, an act that puts her at odds with her friends, principal, and students of different races. As civil unrest spreads, Shayla must determine whether creating awareness by causing trouble is worth risking her academic standing. This is a solid story for middle-schoolers dealing with issues such as friendship across racial lines, being strong girls, M, Too, civil rights, diversity, and justice.
Publishers Weekly
Twelve-year-old Shay-s palms itch when she senses trouble coming, and this year, they seem to be itching more than ever. She and her elementary school besties had dubbed themselves -the United Nations--Isabella is Puerto Rican, Julia is Japanese-American, and Shay is African-American-but everyone begins moving in different directions as junior high begins. Julia is hanging out more with the Asian girls from her basketball team, and Isabella attracts Shay-s crush when she gets her braces off, leaving Shay jealous. In addition, Shay-s sister, Hana, critiques her for not having black friends, something that Shay isn-t sure matters. Meanwhile, in their city of Los Angeles, tensions are high over the trial of a police officer who shot an unarmed black man. When the officer is set free, and Shay goes with her family to a silent protest, she starts to see that some trouble is worth making. Ramée effectively portrays the importance of the Black Lives Matter movement and the difficulty of navigating complex social situations while conveying universal middle school questions about friendship, first crushes, and identity. Shay-s journey is an authentic and engaging political and personal awakening. Ages 8-12. (Mar.)
Starred Review for Kirkus Reviews
Twelve-year-old Shayla finds herself in trouble when she wears a Black Lives Matter armband, which violates her school's dress codeIn her first year of junior high, Shayla follows all the rules. And things are going well—though she'd be happy if the boy she has a crush on would notice her. She eats lunch in the same spot every day with her best friends, Isabella, who is Puerto Rican, and Julia, who is Japanese-American. Shayla is African-American, and she's content with their "United Nations" trio. But when some start to question whether she's black enough, Shayla's not sure what that even means. Sure, she's not involved in the Black Lives Matter movement like her older sister, Hana, and she doesn't sit with the black kids at lunch, but why does that matter? But then the United Nations is threatened when Isabella gets her braces off and catches the eye of Shayla's crush and Julia starts hanging out more with her Asian friends. Suddenly, everything is changing—including Shayla herself as concern mounts over cases of police brutality in the news. Realizing that race does matter and that sometimes you have to break the rules, Shayla wears a Black Lives Matter armband. Trouble follows, bringing with it important lessons about friendship and courage. Awkward, endearing, and memorable, Shayla navigates the world of middle school and the troubled world beyond with wit and endless heart.A timely, funny, and unforgettable debut about friendship, facing your fears, and standing up for what's right. (Fiction. 8-12)
Reading Level: 3.0
Interest Level: 4-7

From debut author Lisa Moore Ramée comes this funny and big-hearted debut middle grade novel about friendship, family, and standing up for what’s right, perfect for fans of Angie Thomas’s The Hate U Give and the novels of Renée Watson and Jason Reynolds.

Twelve-year-old Shayla is allergic to trouble. All she wants to do is to follow the rules. (Oh, and she’d also like to make it through seventh grade with her best friendships intact, learn to run track, and have a cute boy see past her giant forehead.)

But in junior high, it’s like all the rules have changed. Now she’s suddenly questioning who her best friends are and some people at school are saying she’s not black enough. Wait, what?

Shay’s sister, Hana, is involved in Black Lives Matter, but Shay doesn't think that's for her. After experiencing a powerful protest, though, Shay decides some rules are worth breaking. She starts wearing an armband to school in support of the Black Lives movement. Soon everyone is taking sides. And she is given an ultimatum.

Shay is scared to do the wrong thing (and even more scared to do the right thing), but if she doesn't face her fear, she'll be forever tripping over the next hurdle. Now that’s trouble, for real.

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