Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Peas & Carrots--Tanita S. Davis

Title: Peas & Carrots
Author: Tanita S. Davis
Publisher: Knopf, 2016
Pages: 288 p.
Source: VOYA
Compensation: None
Read: November 2015
Tanita S. Davis's Peas & Carrots
Dess has never had a normal family life. She’s moved from place to place with her drug addict mother, living in fear of her criminal drug dealing father. When her mother has a child with another man, Dess knows she needs to intervene or her dangerous father will hurt them all. Four years later, Dess has settled into a predictable life in a group home while she waits for her mother to get out of prison and testify against her father, but then the unpredictable happens and Dess is placed in a foster home—the same one her little brother has grown up in. Dess is completely out of her element and immediately clashes with her brother’s loving African American family, especially his fifteen year old foster sister, Hope. When Dess’s life is thrown another curve ball, she realizes what family really means.

Written in chapters alternating Dess’s and Hope’s views, Davis manages to address racial stereotypes without being heavy-handed. Although Dess and Hope are very different on the outside, they both face the same insecurities. Peas and Carrots is a quick interesting read. There are some unanswered questions about Dess’s parents--will her mother actually testify against her father and will Dess ever be safe from him again--but ultimately this story is about Dess’s new family and new beginnings.

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