I finished this book a few weeks ago but needed time to write a full review due to pandemic fatigue lol. This is the third book I've read by Tiffany D. Jackson, and can officially say that I'm sold on her work as an author. From the cover art to the captivating stories and well-written, realistic Black characters that pull you in. Grown was another five-star read. A story about a 17-year-old girl named Enchanted, who has dreams of becoming a singer and gets involved with a famous 28-year-old singer, Korey Fields. Korey ends up murdered at the beginning of the story, with Enchanted being the suspect. If you're familiar with the R Kelly case and the #metoo movement, then you can see where this book is going in terms of touching on a tough subject of grooming, statutory rape, and kidnapping/abuse. The author issues a trigger warning at the beginning, which is so necessary for books like this.
This book will piss you off. Not because Enchanted makes some bad choices, not because of her parents who go along with it, but because of the emotional manipulation that Korey and those around him put these people through. It's so easy to be on the outside looking in, asking women like Enchanted why they never said no or asked for help. Or why the parents and friends never intervened. Then you read books like this and find out exactly why these situations are so messy and difficult. Why it's so important that you believe victims every time because their abusers will go through great lengths to keep their reputations intact and silence those they hurt.
I also loved the touching author's note at the end of This book where Tiffany explains a similar situation she went through as a teenager being involved with an older man. I highly recommend this book to anyone who loves YA, especially Black YA. She has a few new upcoming reads that I can't wait for, and I'm currently reading another book by her, Let Me Hear a Rhyme, a YA set in Brooklyn, 1998.
You can find it here on Amazon or at your local library!
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