This story is told through the perspective of an 8th grader by the name of Rain. Rain just wanted to be accepted and loved like all of her friends. Rain’s story was heartbreaking, relatable, and realistic. Her self-esteem is at an all-time low. She’s always sad and doesn’t like herself and compares herself to others. Rain lives with her older brother Xander, and her mother. The family is struggling financially, emotionally, and physically.
. I highlighted so many statements that really made me think as an adult. I felt Rain’s pain. I felt her mother’s hurt, disappointments, failures, and regret. The themes of the story are mental health, sibling love, single mothers, absent fathers, community support, and a diverse community.
The storyline flowed smoothly and I love how the author wrote in verse even though this wasn’t poetry. The pacing of the story was great and on point. The twists and turns which you don’t see coming were brilliant. Xavier gets brutally attacked and it hinders the family further. The family really is struggling and the incident puts more strain on the family unit.
This book really takes you on an emotional rollercoaster. I went from smiling, laughing, and thinking to sad, crying, and upset. Some of the situations and problems the characters went through personally also. I could really relate on a whole different level.
“Healing can come from just being honest”.
I recommend this book to middle schoolers, avid readers of young adults, school libraries, and teen clubs and groups.
I give this book 4 stars.
An inspiring debut middle-grade novel-in-verse about Rain, who must overcome sadness after her all-star brother is badly beaten up at a frat party. Genesis Begins Again meets Brown Girl Dreaming in this powerful story of perseverance, family, and hope.
“A gorgeous debut: a necessary, cathartic, immersive healing experience.”—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
Rain is keeping a big secret from everyone around her: She’s sad. All the time. Rain struggles with her image and feels inferior to her best friend, Nara. Not even her all-star student-athlete big brother (and personal superhero), Xander, can help Rain with her dark thoughts and low self-esteem.
And when Xander becomes the victim of violence at a predominantly white university, Rain’s life and mind take a turn for the worse. But when her favorite teacher, Miss Walia, invites her to an after-school circle group, Rain finds the courage to help herself and her family heal.
Like the rain, she is both gentle and a force, finding the strength to rise again.
“You can’t help but fall in love with this book. Heartbreaking, emotional, and a ride well worth taking.” —Marie Arnold, author of The Year I Flew Away and I Rise
“Everyone who reads this will be inspired by Rain’s dedication to finding healing.” —Elisabet Velasquez, author of When We Make It