fp May 2012
The Good Braider: a novel
from the book...
The fresh smell of dirt on the banks of the Nile. Her mother’s fingers on her head, twisting her hair into braids. Her grandmother’s stories of elephants' songs.
But there are other memories of war and loss Viola would like to forget: The twirl of a tall boy’s body when he is shot. The mind-numbing shudder of exploding shells. And the brutal soldier who said, “Now you belong to me.”
In spare free verse laced with unforgettable images, Viola’s strikingly original voice sings out the story of her family’s journey from war-torn Sudan to Portland, Maine. Here, with the support of new friends, Sudanese-4-life Poni, matchmaker Jackie, and Miss America Abby, she dreams of South Sudan while she tries to navigates the strange world of America - a world where a girl can wear a short skirt, get a tattoo - or even date a boy. And a world that puts her into sharp conflict with her traditional mother who, like Viola, is struggling to braid together the strands of a displaced life.
Terry Farish's haunting novel is not only a riveting story of escape and survival, but the universal tale of a young immigrant’s struggle to build a life on the cusp of two cultures.
If you have read this verse novel and would like to share your opinion of it with other readers please send your review or comments to YARR-A