While I find it difficult to read urban literature, because all the incorrect grammar makes me want to twitch, I just discovered that I find *listening* to urban lit much more palatable. Perhaps it’s because my brain is already used to listening to urban slang and grammar from TV and movies? Either way, I was happy I gave this audiobook a shot!
I’ve known plenty of kids like Cole — born with lots of potential but failing in school and getting into trouble because they feel like it’s just too hard to live up to a higher standard. It’s tough to rise above the negative influences when you’re growing up without a dad in the inner city, and Cole was sick of trying. When things started to get completely out of hand, Cole’s mom did something a little crazy — she packed up her son’s things, got him in the car, and drove through the night from Chicago to Philadelphia. When they got there, she explained that she needed a break and Cole would be staying with his dad. A dad he had never known. A dad who, apparently, cared more about the horses he raised than the son he brought into the world. The horse thing really freaked Cole out at first. I mean, who’s ever heard of horses living in the city? [I hadn't until I read this story, but there's more about that on Greg Neri's website!] Through his work with the horses, though, Cole learns responsibility, self-worth, and trust. My gut reaction upon finishing this story: I sincerely hope this book gets turned into a movie so this message can reach more people.
Happy Teen Read Week!