Turning Point by Paula Chase
Distance threatens to tear apart a friendship—if a secret doesn’t ruin it first.
Using dual perspectives, Paula Chase captures the struggle of staying friends in changing times. In a starred review, School Library Journal said “Chase writes the diverging, formative experiences of young Black girls beautifully.” Turning Point is a provocative and timely stand-alone companion to So Done and Dough Boys and will resonate with fans of Jason Reynolds, Rebecca Stead, and Renée Watson.
Best friends Rasheeda and Monique are both good girls. For Sheeda, that means keeping her friends close and following her deeply religious, Bible-quoting aunt’s every rule. For Mo, that means not making waves in the prestigious and mostly White ballet intensive she’s been accepted to. But what happens when Sheeda catches the eye of Mo’s older brother, and the invisible racial barriers to success as a ballerina turn out to be not so invisible?
Paula Chase continues to explore the lives of African American middle school characters from the Cove, a low-income housing project, in this stand-alone companion to So Done and Dough Boys. Both universal and specific, Turning Point is rich with thematic threads such as racism, body image, poverty, creativity, religion, Me Too, friendship, and family running through it. A rewarding and thought-provoking read for the older middle grade audience.