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Renee Watson Books In Order

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

What Momma Left Me (2010) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
This Side of Home (2015) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Piecing Me Together (2017) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Watch Us Rise (with Ellen Hagan) (2019) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Renee Watson is a renowned writer from the United States, who is popular for her written works based on young adult, children’s books, contemporary, romance, and realistic fiction genres. She has written several mind blowing standalone books in her career. A particular novel of hers that helped her establish herself as a noteworthy author is called A Place Where Hurricanes Happen. This novel was released by the Random House in June, 2010 and was featured on the Nightly News on the NBC news channel. In addition to this famous novel, Renee has also written a middle grade book called What Mumma Left Me. It went on to feature a middle-grade fiction’s New Voice in 2010 by the Booksellers Association of Independent Children.

Author Renee has penned a one-woman show known as Roses are Red Women are Blue. This fantastic show debuted at the Lincoln Center in New York City during the event of the emerging artists’ showcase. There are also a few articles and poetry of author Renee published in some of the prominent literary magazines such as the With Hearts Ablaze, Theater of Mind, and the Rethinking Schools. Whenever author Renee is not involved in writing novels or performing shows, she likes to indulge herself in teaching. She has volunteered in a number of community organizations and public schools. Renee has also been an artist-in-residence for a few years in NY City and Oregon, Louisiana. Her teaching subjects include poetry, theater, and fiction. Author Renee also organizes workshops of professional development for artists and teachers. She believes to have many passions in life and wishes to explore much more about herself and her life.

One of her deepest passions is making use of her artistic ability for helping the troubled youths in coping with their trauma. Renee has facilitated theater and poetry workshops along with teenage girls coping with physical and sexual abuse, as well as children who have experienced violence. Author Renee has also worked towards helping children traumatized by Hurricane Katrina and the ones who moved to the NY City following the 2010 Haiti earthquake. Renee finished her graduation from in Creative Writing from New York. She has also obtained a Drama Therapy certificate. As of today, author Renee resides in New York City. She hopes to keep writing exciting novels and performing meaningful art shows, which could help the people in need. Also, Renee wishes to have a tremendous increase in the number of her fans, so that she could become much more famous and successful as a performer and as a writer.

A very popular book written by author Renee Watson in her writing career is entitled ‘Piecing Me Together’. It was released by the Bloomsbury publication in the year 2017. This book’s story describes a powerful and timely tale based on the life of a teenage girl. She comes from a poor background and strives for success in her life. Author Renee has mentioned the lead characters in this book in the form of Jade and Maxine. She has set the book’s plot in Portland. The story revolves around Jade’s life and introduces her as an African-American teenager student, who feels her life is caught between two different worlds. She faces discrimination at every walk of life and feels let down by the attitude of the society towards her black background.

At the start of the book’s story, it is shown that Jade is about to begin junior year in high school. Most of the students at the school are white and wealthy, and she got admission amongst them on the basis of a scholarship. Jade tries to learn Spanish and hopes to pass junior year with flying colors so as to get selected for the study-abroad program during the spring break. Just when the year starts, all the black students are given mentors. The school authority thinks such students are always at risk and need someone they can talk to about their problems or the behavior of other students towards them. Jade feels she doesn’t need any mentor as she is strong enough to face any situation all by herself and also has the support of her best friends, her uncle, and her divorced parents. She does not show any willingness to get involved in the mentorship program, but thinking that it will assist her in ensuring the scholarship for her abroad studies she agrees to take Maxine as her mentor. As the story proceeds further, it explores the whole year of Jade’s life at school, describing the challenges she faces with her mentor, friends, and others. The story also sheds light on some important topics like racial discrimination, school politics, etc. This story is beautifully written and makes the readers see the world through different angles. It was nominated for a few prestigious awards, including the Newbery Medal, L.A. Times Book Prize, and the Coretta Scott-King Award.

Another successful young adult book that author Renee has written is called ‘This Side of Home’. It was also published by Bloomsbury publishers in 2015. The central characters of this novel include Maya and Nikki, who are depicted as identical twins of the Afro-American race. The story begins when Maya joins the senior year at her high school. The year starts for her with a huge change. Maya learns that her closest friend has been evicted from her house across and has now moved to the neighboring town. A new white family comes to live in vacant house. Maya sees highly passionate about the town she lives in, particularly her black neighborhood. She feels proud about its history and the people living there. So, because of the recent gentrification, Maya seems very angered. She feels that some business owners are being benefited and black people are denied the opportunities that they deserve.

And when Maya’s school authorities ask the student council to take out the blackness issue and present the situation in a multicultural way, Maya becomes even more angered. She does not like the idea that the school tries to ensure that the white background student do not get the feeling of being left out. Maya seems very much confused. Along with Nikki and a close friend named Essence, Maya had always thought of getting admission into a black college with historical heritage. But, it makes her sad when she comes to know that her sister is planning to go to a different school, one in which there are plenty of white students. And when she begins to fall for the white boy living across the street instead of the one she has been dating for several years, it aches her heart even more. The book takes up the important issue gentrification. It has been presented by the writer in a very understandable way. Renee has depicted a number of voices with different perceptions. On the whole, it turns out to be a great story with meaningful characters and an excellent storyline. There is a message for all kinds of readers in it.

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