by Chrystal D. Giles
Random House Books for Young Readers
This book made me want to step aside, hand over the mic, and listen to Wes. A must-read. --Mariama J. Lockington, author of For Black Girls Like Me
Brand-new kicks, ripped denim shorts, Supreme tee--
Wes Henderson has the best style in sixth grade. That--and hanging out with his crew (his best friends since little-kid days) and playing video games--is what he wants to be thinking about at the start of the school year, not the protests his parents are always dragging him to.
But when a real estate developer makes an offer to buy Kensington Oaks, the neighborhood Wes has lived his whole life, everything changes. The grownups are supposed to have all the answers, but all they're doing is arguing. Even Wes's best friends are fighting. And some of them may be moving. Wes isn't about to give up the only home he's ever known. Wes has always been good at puzzles, and he knows there has to be a missing piece that will solve this puzzle and save the Oaks. But can he find it . . . before it's too late?
Exploring community, gentrification, justice, and friendship, Take Back the Block introduces an irresistible 6th grader and asks what it means to belong--to a place and a movement--and to fight for what you believe in.
Target age: 8 to 12
Timely and penetrating. --Kelly Starling Lyons, author of Sing a Song: How Lift Every Voice and Sing Inspired Generations
Filled with hope, friendship, and grit--guaranteed to leave readers feeling inspired. --Stacy McAnulty, best-selling author of The Miscalculations of Lightning Girl
About the Author:
Chrystal Giles is an own voices writer, with a strong focus on creating stories that bring the hopes and hurdles of African American children to the mainstream children's book market. She is a member of SCBWI and was selected as a 2018 We Need Diverse Books Mentee. One of Chrystal's poems appears in the poetry anthology, THANKU: POEMS OF GRATITUDE (Lerner/Millbrook, September 2019). She lives with her family in Charlotte, North Carolina.