Diversity Spotlight Thursday is a weekly meme hosted by Bookshelves and Paperbacks. Each week, you feature a diverse book you have read and enjoyed, a diverse book on your TBR and a diverse book that has not yet been released.
Since diversity is quite a broad term that covers many different aspects, to ensure I’m reading across the whole spectrum I will choose an area to focus on each week. This week I will be talking about books with biracial characters.
A B O O K I H A V E R E A D
WING JONES BY KATHERINE WEBBER
With a grandmother from China and another from Ghana, fifteen-year-old Wing Jones is often caught between worlds. But when tragedy strikes, Wing discovers a talent for running she never knew she had. Wing’s speed could bring her family everything it needs. It could also stop Wing getting the one thing she wants.
As the synopsis mentions, this book is about a biracial and American teen who finds solace in running after her brother is involved in a drunk-driving accident that puts him in a coma. I loved the way in which her mixed heritage was touched upon through the presence of her grandmothers, as well as her imaginary dragon and lioness. You can read my full review here.
A B O O K O N M Y T B R
DON’T FAIL ME NOW BY UNA LAMARCHE
Michelle and her little siblings Cass and Denny are African-American and living on the poverty line in urban Baltimore, struggling to keep it together with their mom in jail and only Michelle’s part-time job at the Taco Bell to sustain them.
Leah and her stepbrother Tim are white and middle class from suburban Maryland, with few worries beyond winning lacrosse games and getting college applications in on time.
Michelle and Leah only have one thing in common: Buck Devereaux, the biological father who abandoned them when they were little.
After news trickles back to them that Buck is dying, they make the uneasy decision to drive across country to his hospice in California. Leah hopes for closure; Michelle just wants to give him a piece of her mind.
Five people in a failing, old station wagon, living off free samples at food courts across America, and the most pressing question on Michelle’s mind is: Who will break down first–herself or the car? All the signs tell her they won’t make it. But Michelle has heard that her whole life, and it’s never stopped her before…
I haven’t heard much about this novel, but I came across it a while back and I was intrigued by the synopsis. Not to mention, the cover is gorgeous. Also, I know it’s probably one of the most overused tropes ever but I honestly love stories featuring road trips!
A B O O K R E L E A S I N G S O O N
STARFISH BY AKEMI DAWN BOWMAN
Kiko Himura has always had a hard time saying exactly what she’s thinking. With a mother who makes her feel unremarkable and a half-Japanese heritage she doesn’t quite understand, Kiko prefers to keep her head down, certain that once she makes it into her dream art school, Prism, her real life will begin.
But then Kiko doesn’t get into Prism, at the same time her abusive uncle moves back in with her family. So when she receives an invitation from her childhood friend to leave her small town and tour art schools on the west coast, Kiko jumps at the opportunity in spite of the anxieties and fears that attempt to hold her back. And now that she is finally free to be her own person outside the constricting walls of her home life, Kiko learns life-changing truths about herself, her past, and how to be brave.
This one doesn’t release until September but I’m going to talk about it anyway. Not only does it feature a biracial main character (although I’m totally side-eyeing the Goodreads ‘half-Japanese’ description) but she also has anxiety. A further ten points to Gryffindor for the beautiful cover!