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July/August 2021 Kids Indie Next List
— Kim Brock, Joseph-Beth Booksellers, Cincinnati, OH
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A debut YA novel-in-verse by Amber McBride, Me (Moth) is about a teen girl who is grieving the deaths of her family, and a teen boy who crosses her path.
Moth has lost her family in an accident. Though she lives with her aunt, she feels alone and uprooted.
Until she meets Sani, a boy who is also searching for his roots. If he knows more about where he comes from, maybe he’ll be able to understand his ongoing depression. And if Moth can help him feel grounded, then perhaps she too will discover the history she carries in her bones.
Moth and Sani take a road trip that has them chasing ghosts and searching for ancestors. The way each moves forward is surprising, powerful, and unforgettable.
Here is an exquisite and uplifting novel about identity, first love, and the ways that our memories and our roots steer us through the universe.
Praise For Me (Moth)…
"McBride artfully weaves Black Southern Hoodoo traditions with those of the Navajo/Diné people, creating a beautiful and cross-cultural reverence for the earth, its inhabitants, and our ancestors. Readers will be consumed with the weight of McBride’s intentionality from road trip stops to the nuance of everything that goes unsaid. Written in verse, this novel is hauntingly romantic, refusing to be rushed or put down without deep contemplation of what it means to accept the tragedies of our lives and to reckon with the ways we metamorphosize as a result of them." —Booklist, starred review
"With unmatched lyrical writing and a powerful plot, McBride is an absolute must-read author."—Buzzfeed
"Two years after a devastating car accident killed her family as they drove from New York to northern Virginia, aspiring dancer Moth, the Black granddaughter of a Hoodoo root worker, is still navigating the accident’s fallout, which includes a mark on her face “as crisp as the tip of a whip from jaw to eye.” Poignant free verse details her resignation to a “bland” existence in the suburbs....When a new student—talented Navajo musician Sani—shows up in her junior homeroom class, Moth finds a kindred spirit whose similarly painful past and physically abusive stepfather compound his depression. Desperate for a change, Moth and Sani embark on a road trip out west to the Navajo Nation, where Sani’s biological father lives." —Publishers Weekly
"Recommended. McBride writes Moth’s narration in spare, wistful free verse that reads like Francesca Lia Block in poetry or a fragile, emotional E. E. Cummings; Moth’s pain at being “the guilty girl who lived” is keen and haunting, and the frequent evocation of her grandfather, a spiritual rootworker, adds a supernatural flavor. ... Readers may not see the poignant final twist coming, but it’s a satisfying climactic development that will leave them dabbing their eyes and turning to their own art in hope and gratitude." —Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (BCCB)
Feiwel & Friends, 9781250780362, 256pp.
Publication Date: August 17, 2021