Your Corner Dark

Atheneum/Caitlyn Dlouhy. Jan. 2021. 384p. Tr $19.99. ISBN 9781534460713.
Gr 8 Up–Jamaican teen Frankie Green has been working hard at his school to earn a scholarship that would allow him to move to the United States to attend college and pursue his dream of being an engineer. He wants to earn his degree and then return to Jamaica to help improve the infrastructural gaps he sees all around him. He lives with his strict dad but is torn between what his dad wants and the Rastafarian posse life of his uncle, Joe. He does not see this life as one he aspires to, but when his dad is shot in the crossfire at an event hosted by Joe, Frankie needs to make hard decisions and sacrifices. In order to secure the medical treatment his father needs, he agrees to join Joe’s posse and give up his scholarship. With each successive difficult choice, his limited options become less and less appealing. This all eventually reaches a crisis of gang violence followed by an opportunity for a happy-ish ending with Frankie’s love interest, Leah. Gritty and full of detail about life in Jamaica, this eye-opening novel will allow readers to identify with a teen doing his best in a difficult situation.
VERDICT This novel will appeal to readers of Ibi Zoboi’s American Street and Jason Reynolds’s Long Way Down.

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