Cover Image: Grown


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Member Reviews


Tiffany D. Jackson’s (@writeinbk ) novel Grown is so powerful, so timely, and a must read for every young adult (and above!). Drawing inspiration from the horrendous R. Kelly nightmare, Jackson portrays how a teenager falls victim to a manipulative grown man.

Enchanted is a 17-year-old Black girl in a sea of white. She yearns to sing on a big stage and find a place where she truly can be herself and be seen for who she is. Due to a chance occurrence, Enchanted is intertwined in the life of singer and producer Korey Fields, a 28-year-old man. This relationship will lead to devastating consequences for Enchanted.

Enchanted awakes on the floor, covered in blood in Korey’s penthouse where she later finds him dead. The rest of the novel flashes back to Enchanted’s journey to this moment and forth to the investigation of the crime. Who killed Korey Fields? Why would a teenager fall victim to a grown man? Jackson covers these topics tactfully and maintains the terrible reality that many girls face in our society today.

Trigger warning: drug usage, sexual abuse, child trafficking, child predator

Thank you @netgalley and Edelweiss for the digital ARC of this book.

#bookreview #bookrecommendation #bookrecommendations #bookreviewer #fivestarread #fivestarbook #ireadya #yalit #blackauthors #ownvoice #ownvoices #teachersofinstagram #bookstagram #booklove #readthisbook #spiveys📚club #grown
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Thank you to NetGalley and the publishers for the eARC I received in exchange for a fair and honest review.

This book was perfect. I requested it because I’m a huge fan of Monday’s Not Here and wanted to see what else the author had going on and I have to say that this book is one of the most timely, relevant books I can imagine having teens (especially teen girls) read. The steps of grooming are shown in such a meticulous way that it really outlines what young girls need to look out for when an older man gives them attention. I will definitely be using it as a summer reading list book next summer and, depending on what happens with student reaction, potentially in the future, as well.
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Jackson pulls her subject matter for "Grown" straight from the headlines of R. Kelly's nightmarish case. She does a really good job and it is a good read, but in this reader's opinion, the author tried to do too much with a difficult subject for a delicate audience. Real life was too horrific to go into detail for a YA book (and this book seemed like it was trying to appeal to the younger YA set which is good - the message needs to get out.) Unfortunately, making the book a murder mystery may have been unnecessary and confusing to the actual issues being discussed.
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Tiffany D. Jackson has done it again!!! I was hooked from the first sentence. I honestly couldn't put this book down. This ripped from the headlines page-turner is so important. This tragic story brings awareness to the world of black female victims who are often forgotten, overlooked and not taken seriously. I had so many emotions while reading this and definitely has it's trigger moments. I absolutely LOVED this book and can't wait to sing its praises.
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GROWN is a ripped-from-the-headlines thriller that is also so much more. Enchanted Jones is a 17 year old who dreams of being a singer. She feels trapped by her family’s move to a city, and the resulting need for her to spend a lot of time caring for her younger siblings. When she gets the opportunity to travel with superstar singer Korey Fields, she wants it more than anything. GROWN takes us down the path as Enchanted is groomed, abused, and twisted up into Korey Fields’s life. 

Tiffany Jackson never disappoints with her twist endings, and GROWN is no different. At the same time, the strong theme of the way Black women are treated by the people and institutions who are supposed to protect is clear and gutting. Various secondary characters show the ways that even “good” people can turn victim blaming and cruel, and how others may surprise you. 

Enchanted’s story is at turns heartbreaking and horrifying, and I felt the ending was very satisfying. If you enjoyed ALLEGEDLY and MONDAY’S NOT COMING, GROWN is a must-read.
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This was a very interesting story and a representation of how quickly a relationship can take a bad turn.  Youth, desire, hope , love and the will to survive all play an important role in how we perceive our actions and our future.
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brb, I am *running* to pick up every book that Tiffany D. Jackson has ever written. Because Grown was 🔥🔥🔥 I think it was my favorite book of 2020 so far. If you’ve read her other novels, which should I read next?!

Thank you to @harpercollins @katherinetegenbooks @netgalley for the digital ARC! Mark your calendars, GROWN comes out Sept 15 🗓

📖 Summary: Enchanted Jones has dreams of making it as a singer, so when the legendary Korey Fields takes an interest in helping her find stardom, she’s excited for her life to change. Cut to: Korey Fields is lying dead covered in blood, and all signs point to Enchanted. This book tells the story of a teenage girl’s loss of innocence at the hands of a man with fame and power. Grown is unforgettable.

💬Themes: power, #me too, mental health, abuse

⚠️Content Warning: sexual abuse, rape, assault, child abuse, kidnapping, drug addiction

📑 My favorite quote is actually just the chapter “Jellyfish” so I won’t spoil it and will leave it at that for those who have read it!

📝 Final Thoughts: This page-turner is truthful, powerful and impossible to put down. Pre-order this book so it’s in your hands on Sept 15!

6 ⭐️ out of 5 (Can I do that?!)
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Grown By: Tiffany D. Jackson 

The cover of this book is absolutely BLACK GIRL MAGIC. This cover made me feel okay with rocking a low fade. Simple covers always attract me, and this cover was a statement in itself… 
Enchanted is a 17-year-old girl blinded by the Stardom of her favorite singer. Enchanted entered a secret relationship with said singer and she is unable to think for herself; she was secluded from her family and was abused at the hands of the man that she thought was supposed to love her. 
I felt a lot of different emotions while reading this book with some being anger for what Enchanted went through at the hands of a GROWN Man, sadness for her parents who were seemingly helpless against the stardom of a predator, and disgust for the predatory himself from the very beginning. The character situations were semi- relatable (Enchanted dating an older man). The plot twist at the end of the book was worth it!!
 Tiffany Jackson did an incredible job of mixing reality with fiction. I love the fact that she shined the light directly at the doubters of black women who say they have been abused. This book really showcased the sorrow that women of color go through when no one believes them. Tiffany also showed the mental trauma that abuse victims deal with long after the torture has stop. 

This book is absolutely one that belongs on everyone’s reading list. This book was written for young adults but can absolutely be enjoyed by adults. 

5 Stars!!!!
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Tiffany D. Jackson is known for writing about stories that are "ripped from the headlines" and this one is no different. If you know the story of R. Kelly then you already have a pretty good understanding of what the book is about. There are multiple twists at the end while the truth is being revealed which makes this story unique and engaging. As an educator I would not want to use this book as part of my literature circles just due to the very graphic nature behind the story. However that does not mean I would stock it in my class library or recommend it to my students. I think the story needs to be heard but I can't justify imbedding it into the curriculum.
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Blown away by how good this book was. ⁣
Mark your calendars for September 15 because you do not want to miss GROWN by Tiffany D. Jackson. Part thriller, part coming of age, and 10000000% relevant, I couldn’t put it down. ⁣
The opening pages grab you instantly: the protagonist, Enchanted Jones, wakes up covered in blood to find superstar musician Korey Fields dead on his floor. The majority of the novel is then spent flashing back to how Enchanted, a Black teen hoping to be a singer, gets ensnared in Korey’s web of lies and sexual predation under the false promise of making her own album. ⁣
Although I don’t know if it’s meant to be a direct allusion, GROWN definitely felt like it was inspired by the atrocious R. Kelly. Somehow, this novel examined the adultification of Black girls, #MeToo, mental health, racism, and trauma, all while remaining accessible for younger readers and completely enthralling. ⁣
Thank you to NetGalley and HarperCollins for providing an eARC in exchange for this review. ⁣
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Grown is a tremendously effective story about how girls can be preyed on and groomed by older men. It follows Enchanted, a 17-year-old black girl who wants to make a career as a singer. It felt very realistic, but was incredibly hard to read. I appreciated how complex and fully-realized a character Enchanted is. Although there is a clear message Tiffany Jackson is tackling (she was inspired by the R. Kelly case), she feels like more than a symbol, but a character who you root for because of who she is as an individual.

Even the side characters who didn't get much to do managed to be surprising. There were many minor characters who practiced victim blaming, or violated consent in some way, but in the end clearly drew a moral line, while others said all the right things, but in the end put their own selfish wants before doing the right thing. This felt very true to life.

I did feel that the mystery element could have been incorporated better. As much as I like a good framing device, it felt a little rushed when that element kicked in towards the end of the story. Enchanted's friend, Gabriela, plays an important and interesting part, and I also thought there was something missing there. A few reveals felt a little too convenient. While many of the characters other than Enchanted were clearly there to serve a purpose in pushing forward the message of the novel, and it didn't bother me, Gabriela didn't quite fit.

This book emphasizes the racism and colorism that Enchanted experiences (along with many of Korey's victims), and the ways in which Black women specifically are unprotected. Korey gets away with so much because many of his victims are Black girls and women. The microaggressions that Enchanted faces at the beginning of the novel at a majority-white school come from the same systems in power that later have the entire country mourning hating her because they don't believe she was a victim. An immensely powerful yet fast-paced book.

Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for this ARC in exchange for an honest review!
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What makes this book different from all others? And why should anyone care?
Give enough info about the plot of a novel or the facts in a nonfiction book that they have a context for your opinions. Don’t give so much that your post turns into a book report instead of a review. And no spoilers! Be fair to your fellow readers.
Whenever possible, put the good things about a book or author up front.

.This book was absolutely incredible, just like how I knew it would be!  There were so many instances where alarm bells were ringing in my head.  Enchanted's experience mirrors so many women.  Parts were dramatized  I am sure, but this happens to women, especially women of color all the time.  This book is an incredible story of dreams, nightmares, personal growth and finding strength you never knew you had.  Some parts were hard to read and I needed to take a break.  I often found myself getting mad at the main character, even though those thoughts are exactly what I would think had I been in the same situation.  This novel is absolutely fantastic.  There were so many twists and turns that kept me surprised until the very end.  This book is important for mature teenagers and adults to read as it tackles so many issues that are prevalent in our society and very clearly evident when thinking of a certain defamed celebrity.  That you so much for the ARC.
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Another exciting read from Tiffany D. Jackson. I finished this in one sitting as I could not put it down. Once again we are taken along for the ride in a story ripped from the headlines, this one similar to R. Kelly and the violence, abuse, and torment he has inflicted on young Black women and girls throughout his career. Grown is certainly inspired by this and it feels so real that when reading, I had to keep going to see how it ends. After I finished, this book and its characters stayed with me and I found myself thinking about them for weeks. Tiffany D. Jackson is incredible as always!!
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I was so happy to receive  this book from Netgalley. From the moment, I saw this cover I knew I was gonna read this. Enchanted Jones has wanted to be a singer for a very long time. so bad that she was willing to lie her way to an audition. Once there she meets superstar Korey Fields. Her dreams then become her biggest wish come true.  But no one  knows what goes on behind the scenes. The alienation from her family, the lies, the drugs. But then the unthinkable happens Korey is dound dead and the number one suspect is Enchanted. This will be a great book for preteen and teen girls because it shows that being Grown sometimes can cost you more than you will ever know.
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this book is SO IMPORTANT. It was probably one of the most harrowing and hard-to-swallow books that I've ever read and I am so grateful for that. The author created extremely authentic characters that will open readers' eyes to all of the injustice in the world. This story deals with fame and the toxicity of relationships with manipulation and abuse. I is so important to educate teens to recognize red flags and not feel less than because someone has made them out to be such. It stuck such a chord with me and I really hope that many people will have the opportunity to read this book if you can handle the subject matter. Victim blaming is an ever-present issue in today's society and we need to step up and recognize other people's pain. trigger warning for emotional abuse, sexual assault, sexual abuse, assault, child abuse, kidnapping, addiction
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As always, I hate giving such a low rating to a Black author but this book didn't know what it wanted to be.

Issues I Had With This Book:
* Is this a murder mystery, is it a thriller, is it a social commentary about abused and neglected Black girls? One could argue that it could be all those things and technically a book could do that (Sadie by Courtney Summers-sans Black girls) but it came across as if Jackson didn't know what she wanted this book to be. It was kinda all over the place for me. There are barely any books that focus on the overlooked exploited and abused Black girls and this was an opportunity but all the other things going on drew attention away from that.

* Chanty was under developed-At one point, Chanty says that her mother tells her she's mature for her age but I BEG to differ. From the very beginning, she acted like she was 15 and not 17 going on 18. She constantly squealed about Korey and talked about Disney movies. She should have been more mature considering she was the oldest of five with working parents but she wasn't written that way. I'm a teen librarian in a low-income working class community and many of my teens have to babysit their younger siblings and have jobs to help pay the bills. These teens talk about issues in their community; the inequality of school; gender and sexuality issues; not Disney. I'm not saying that Disney is immature as a lot of adults love Disney but if you are trying to convince me that she's mature enough for her parents to allow her to go by herself with a grown ass man,

-This book hinges on her maturity; it's called Grown. There were many occasions where I was asking why she was so naive. Did she seriously not realize what Crieghton was doing? Why did she think she could just finish her album and then leave? Rico from Jackpot was a better written Black girl with similar circumstances.

* I hate to say it but I don't think Jackson was the best author to tell this story.
- Jackson is trying to make the reader believe that Chanty was driven to Korey because her home life was not ideal but her home life wasn't bad. Okay, she went to a predominately White school. Okay, she had to take care of her siblings all the time. Okay, her parents we struggling with their money. Okay, her parents weren't supportive enough of her singing but the camel that broke the back was when they wouldn't get her a car?! Because Jackson was purposely using her home life to set her up as a girl that would think a 27 year old man would be seriously interested in a 17 year old high school student, I'm gonna focus on that. Often times young girls look for older men because they can provide something a teen boy can't-security; attention; money but Chanty got all of this at home. I could see her going with Korey because she was receiving no support from her family but that wasn't the case. WHY WOULD THIS GIRL THINK A 27 YEAR OLD MAN WOULD FALL IN LOVE WITH A 17 YEAR OLD HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT? WHAT IS GOING ON IN HER LIFE TO MAKE HER BELIVE HIM? Idk, because Jackson didn't write that girl. I can't get past that. This girl wouldn't have taken that path but I have read plenty of other girls in YA who would have.
- There are many books about girls who are sexually abused and assaulted but Jackson is not adding anything new to this issue. All of the justification by Chanty and victim blaming by other characters have all been said to death. Because this is about a Black girl, it automatically adds something new to this topic but Jackson does nothing with it. Black girls and women disappear all the time but law enforcement and the press do not care to take the time to talk about it. If you are White reading this review, ask yourself how many young Black girls do you know of that received nationwide coverage of their disappearance? But I bet you know Natalee Halloway and Jaycee Dugard and Elizabeth Smart. It's a real problem in the Black community but Jackson barely does anything with it. The whole issue with R. Kelly was also a missed opportunity because Kelly has been accused of rape of teen girls for YEARS and the Black community continued to listen to his music for YEARS-THAT IS NOT OKAY! Once again, missed opportunity. Jackson mentions it briefly but not enough. If you are going to write a book like this, you have to stand out; you have to say something different and give readers a new perspective; give readers a new voice; allow readers to learn about something different about a different race/culture. Don't regurgitate.
-If you are going to write a book about sexual assault and exploitation of teen girls, go for it. I felt like Jackson wasn't brave enough to write this book. Black Girl Unlimited went for it.

* I didn't like the pacing.
* Parents were underdeveloped
* The whole Gab thing was out of left field
* Chanty's whole justification thing for why she stayed-UGH! Once again, she wasn't set up well enough for me to believe that she would stay.

What I Liked:
* It started off well. I liked that Chanty wasn't Black enough for school and not bougie Black enough for the WW crew. I thought that was different and interesting.
* I liked the sister; I wish she was in it more

I was looking forward to this because I love the cover and the idea but I was so disappointed.

If you would like to see an interesting documentary about ignored Black women, check out the show, Unseen, on Amazon.
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Tiffany D. Jackson’s books are thought provoking and layered. Grown is an intense ride through Enchanted’s dream of becoming a singer which turns into a nightmare after getting involved with someone she felt she could trust. Getting to know Enchanted and seeing her changes throughout the book had me wondering where she would end up in the end. This book kept me engaged and I wanted to know what was around the next turn.
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I started this book and I COULD NOT STOP. This is a powerful story about a talented 17 year-old woman who ends up being groomed and manipulated by a much older musician who has the worst intentions. It is the story of a family desperate to find their daughter/sister and the helplessness felt by her loving parents. This would be an important book to read with females as important discussions must be had so they will not fall into the same sinister trap. Ms. Jackson has a way of sucking the reader into her gut-wrenching tales that leave you feeling changed and haunted. Amazing author and I highly recommend this book.
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I love me some Tiffany D. Jackson!! This one did not disappoint. It had the usual twists and turns that you've come to expect from her, but not quite at the level where you end up throwing your book across the room, like with some of her previous books. While this story was NOT based on R. Kelly, and Tiffany makes that very clear in the note at the beginning, there were a lot of similarities to what his victims went through, and I was glad to have watched the Surviving R. Kelly series so that this wouldn't be too newly shocking for me. Tiffany has said that this story was inspired by some of her own experiences, and I hope she'll share more of that as time goes on. This isn't a story that's been told before in YA literature as far as I know, and I'm really glad that it was, and by an author as skilled as Tiffany. This story brings up a lot of issues worth talking about - abuse of power, grooming, brainwashing, manipulation, mental, emotional and physical abuse, mental illness, the lack of belief in Black women's experiences... disrespect of Black women, and viewing them as adults when they're still only teenagers. And of course the fact that a white woman going through this experience would be heard and helped much more quickly by those in positions of power. An important read!

Thank you to NetGalley and HarperCollins for the ARC in exchange for an honest review!
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Grown is the story of Enchanted, a 17-year-old aspiring singer, and the dangerous relationship she gets into with an older, famous mentor in the business. This is loosely based upon the real-life story of R. Kelly and his pattern of abusing and manipulating young black girls. There are a lot of story elements that might be considered triggering: sexual abuse, rape, brainwashing, drug addiction, and the way police and adults respond when black women speak out. 

I was not a fan of Jackson's Monday is Not Coming because I felt the alternating timelines were quite hard to follow and certain plot elements were unbelievable. That has all been resolved in Grown. We open knowing that there has been a crime committed and then flash back. I found the timelines easy to understand. The pace flew, and Jackson does an incredible job of making readers see just how a young girl (and her parents) would find themselves in a situation like this. I think this is an important book for young adults to read to understand the plight of survivors who are not believed, black women in particular.
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