Cover Image: Grown

Grown

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Member Reviews

🚨This book is A. PAGE. TURNER. 

Author Tiffany D. Jackson masterfully crafts the story of Enchanted, a 17-year-old aspiring singer looking to follow her dreams. An unexpected encounter with a famous star slowly turns into a gripping tale of predatory behavior, abuse, classism, and racism.

I devoured this book in one day, finishing in the wee hours of the morning. Do yourself a favor and preorder Grown - it’s powerful and smart and so, so important. #heknewbetter

👩🏽‍🦱 Author: Tiffany D. Jackson @writeinbk
🔪 Genre: YA/Thriller
📚 Publisher: HarperCollins @harpercollins		

🗓 Publishing Date: September 15, 2020

I received this book from the publisher and NetGalley @netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Yours in Literacy,
Sheila 😊
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I have been waiting for access to this book. I am happy to report how this book 100% meets the hype. I met Tiffany Jackson a few years ago when I lived in Greenville, SC- she was a speaker at a local YA conference called Read Up Greenville. I was one of the moderators and escorted both her and other authors to the different panels. I remember she was promoting Monday's Not Coming and talking to the panel and guests about how thrillers play out when the main character is black (in particular a girl). The level of distrust between the main character and the police- the police never willing to listen. 

This thriller will be a killer in the YA business. It is both heartbreaking and important. I both devoured the book and continuously had to put it down and take breaks so that I would not throw my phone across the room. The situations the main character, Enchanted, gets put in is truly appalling and horribly realistic. 

This book will set the precedent for other thrillers like this one. It draws not on outlandish twists and turns that could never happen in real life that you sometimes see in thrillers. This book instead draws on terrifyingly realistic situations- the ones every girl has worried about at some point, but hopes to never fall into involving abuse. This book burrows deep into your soul and the ending is perfect! I don't want to give away much of this book, because I think it will be important for so many to read. 

Grown by Tiffany Jackson comes out September 15th, 2020- no doubt I will be buying multiple copies for my library. http://kaitlynrcarpenter.weebly.com/blog/grown-by-tiffany-jackson
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A story relevant to our times and will beg to be read from cover to cover because you won’t want to put it down! 
The topic is engaging and the characters make you feel as if you personally know them. You will feel hope, shock, despair, frustration, worry, relief and joy among many other emotions as Enchanted’s story unfolds.
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😱 this book! Tiffany Jackson has done it again! She has left me with my jaw on the floor. I am still processing everything that happened.  

At first I thought “I want all  teens to read this to help them learn to identify abusive relationships!” And then I was like “Wow this is about the Harvey Weinstein and the men’s club culture.”  And THEN Tiffany Jackson masterfully intertwines the #metoo movement, the psychological effects of mental and physical abuse. And how our society, law enforcement and legal system casts doubt on victims, especially BIPOC women. This is an intense read... I highly recommend for YA readers.
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At the beginning of this book, Enchanted Jones wakes up covered in blood, which she insists on calling beet juice because there just couldn't be THAT much blood, could there?

So begins the story of teenage Enchanted Jones, a girl who wants to be a singer, but who needs to focus on swimming and taking care of her younger siblings, which she resents.  When she meets hip hop star Korey Fields, it seems like she has met someone who can take her to the top of the charts.

A good read that goes back and forth between then and now, you'll see every aspect of Enchanted's life and choices for a few months,  And in true Tiffany Jackson style,, there is an ending that you might not see coming.
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“Your voice ain’t just for singing, you know? You gotta speak up. If not for you, then for the next you…” – Tiffany Jackson, Grown

Grown by Tiffany Jackson was both utterly page-turning and extremely difficult to read. In this YA novel, we learn the story of Enchanted Jones, a 17-year-old aspiring singer who is seduced by the legendary Korey Fields. The novel begins in the present-day (“now”) with Enchanted in the room with Korey’s dead body. The novel flashes back to the beginning (“then”), and we learn how Enchanted became star-struck and manipulated by the famous R&B singer and exactly how he ended up dead. Grown deals with issues of race, classism, sexual abuse, grooming, rape, and drug-abuse, all of which are heavy but also important for students. Highly recommended for high school and up; for fans of Jason Reynolds, Nic Stone, and Laurie Halse Anderson.
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This book was a page turning, can't put it down, experience. All of Tiffany D. Jackson's books have a way of keeping the reader glued to the pages in anticipation of what is happens next.  Grown is a cautionary tale for all those who seek to enter the entertainment industry.  Enchanted is a talented singer who is lured into the path of achieving her dreams.  She is convinced that her journey is a give and take arrangement until she realizes she is not in control.  The sacrifices that she made in order to "make it", turned her into a victim of those who were supposed to be helping her realize her dream.  As a mom, an important book for all parents who have kids interested in the "business" to read.
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This book was amazing but difficult to read at times. The author did amazing job painting a picture of the events without being too graphic. It has been a long time since a book made me uncomfortable but I couldn’t sit it down.  I felt like I was in the room at times just being an observer. It felt that real and intense. I would highly recommended this book to high school students.
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Enchanted Jones was born to be a singer. After meeting star Korey Fields, she is convinced that he is her ticket to fulfilling her dreams. Korey not only loves her singing; it seems like he may be the guy of her dreams, too. But Korey is definitely not what he seems, and when he ends up dead, Enchanted is the main suspect. Will she be able to convince the world of who he really was? 

I have been looking forward to this one since it was announced, and IT DID NOT DISAPPOINT. This novel parallels the R. Kelly story A LOT, so some parts will sound familiar. In all of her novels, Tiffany switches between timelines, which can be confusing but it definitely worked for this one. She also loves an unreliable narrator, and there were definitely points when I was worried about Enchanted and her truthfulness. I really don't have the words to describe how much I enjoyed it, so I'm just going to tell you to pick it up. The real message: Protect Black girls. BELIEVE Black girls.
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"Why are we blaming/shaming little black girls/women for being "fast" when they're simply being themselves?  For just being?"  

"Why don't people EVER believe women?"

Grown tells the story of Enchanted Jones, a 17-year-old aspiring singer who comes under the influence of 28-year-old superstar Korey Fields.  Enchanted is young and naive, and believes that Korey truly wants to help her make her dream come true.  But what initially seems like a dream or a fairy tale, quickly turns into a nightmare as Korey becomes abusive, controlling, and violent.  The novel shifts back and forth between the present and the discovery of Korey's body, to the past where we see just how all of these events came to pass.  

This was a really hard novel to read, mostly because it was so real.  Major TW/CW for rape, abuse (physical/emotional), drug use, sexual assault, and suicide.  The slow build and progression of abuse and gaslighting depicted here are very real, and there were so many moments when I just wanted to call out to Enchanted and to tell her to run.  There were many moments when I was afraid of how the novel would end and whether certain characters would get what was coming to them.  This novel is important, critically important, in the wake of #MeToo and other movements.  As a society, we still look at teenagers and girls as young women, often treating them as adults and not children.  Jackson calls out the culture of pretending that young women are adults and not girls, and the exceptions that so many are willing to make for men with power.  Especially when the girls in question are young Black girls, so often the story is ignored.  Jackson's writing is bold and striking; she does not flinch away from telling this story but faces it head-on.  The characters here feel like real people and Jackson uses those characters to illustrate just how dangerous it is to treat teenagers as "grown".  This book is an absolute must-read for EVERYONE.
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Oof this was hard to read (in an important way). A story about a predatory man grooming a young woman and abusing her. Some of the twists felt a little implausible but all-in-all a harrowing, tense read. Important as well for children who are also caught in Enchanted's situation (albeit maybe not as intense but still abusive/inappropriate). This shows that Tiffany D. Jackson is still at the top of her game in YA hard-hitting fiction.

(trigger warnings for: rape, abuse, grooming)
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Plot-
Enchanted is a seventeen-year-old girl whose dream is to become a famous singer. She has a beautiful singing voice, but often her wants are pushed to the side so that she can watch her younger siblings. Enchanted meets the well-known R&B artist Korey Fields backstage at a singing competition. Korey and Enchanted start having a relationship that she keeps secret from her parents, and it only continues to get more and more dangerous. 

The story starts with Enchanted waking up in a room full of blood, but having no recollection of what happened. This novel is told through alternating timelines and much like many other Tiffany D. Jackson books, readers are taken on a journey full of unexpected twists and turns. 

Personal opinion-

Tiffany D. Jackson does an amazing job at bringing to light how men in power groom and manipulate young women. While this novel does compel the reader to turn page after page, it creates a pit in your stomach that doesn’t go away. This novel will stick with readers much past closing the back cover. I personally loved it but it often feels wrong to say that I loved a book that discusses child abuse, grooming, abuse of power, etc. I would recommend this book to mature middle school readers and high school students.
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This was such an interesting concept and I loved it. It is a one of a kind book where it's part mystery and part romance. I loved every second of it from getting to know Enchanted and her siblings, her parents, Korey, his lifestyle, and all of the people that help her discover what's really going on. You can tell that Tiffany Jackson really put so much time and effort into this and it shows. I can't recommend this book enough.
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While Enchanted Jones dreams of a singing and songwriting career, her help is needed with the littles - her four siblings, in order for her parents to fulfill the dream of owning their own home and putting their kids in good schools. Between singing and swimming, she has always related to Ariel from The Little Mermaid and longs for her childhood home on the beach with her grandmother. 

When the opportunity of a lifetime comes in the form of an audition for a reality music show, Enchanted doesn’t win a spot, but she does catch the eye of a major music legend. The power that comes with fame and fortune proves to be more than she can handle as she is caught up in a web of deception that makes her doubt her sanity and the love of her parents. 

Because Grown, like all of Tiffany D. Jackson’s thrillers, is inspired by a true story, it is all the more terrifying to consider the insidious nature of power that comes with wealth.
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I read this book in one night, staying up very late, and could not put it down!!! Another super engaging read from Ms, Jackson! 

The carefully crafted suspense gives me butterflies and slight anxiety, which is why I loved the book so much! Enchanted is a likable character who does make some bad decisions, but I believe those decisions are also relatable to the reader. 

I did feel like there was some awkwardness toward the end of the novel, with familial mental health issues that were not made clear earlier; however, I did feel like some of the lack of clarity was actually evidence of the effects of “the purple drink.” The ending seemed a little abrupt, but maybe that’s just because I wanted more.
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At the beginning of the book, we know that Korey Fields ends up dead. What we don't know is why and who killed him. 

Enchanted Jones, a 17 year old high school student is an aspiring singer, swimmer, and big sister. When she catches Korey's eye at an open audition, she thinks all her dreams are about to come true. He's going to make her a star. Instead she finds herself trapped in an unthinkable situation and when he turns up dead, she becomes suspect number 1. 

I'd really rate this a 3.75 if it were possible. I think that Tiffany Jackson did a good job with Chanty, for the most part. I know teen girls like her who think they are more mature than they really are. Girls who would absolutely believe the lines that Korey is feeding her as their relationship develops throughout the story. Although, I think that she reads as much younger than 17 for vast portions of the book. But this could be purposeful by Jackson. 

I also think that Jackson tries to incorporate too much into the storyline. We have a YA appropriate version of the R. Kelly case which turns into a murder mystery which also involves a psychological thriller sub plot. 

I liked the book and will recommend the book, but I didn't love the book.
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It was gripping from the beginning, and I loved the dual narratives between the present and the past. I know some readers struggle with dual narratives, but it was done well so the story was still easy to follow. That said, the topics in this book were emotionally heavy as the story is loosely based on the R. Kelly case. This book shows how adults can prey on/ groom youth as well as how this abuse can have long-lasting effects on youth. It also reminds us that the children are not at fault for these actions. 

In many ways, Enchanted Jones seems to be a typical high school student. She's on the swim team, participates in community groups, and helps care for her younger siblings. Her family has financial difficulties and her parents are making huge sacrifices to send her to an expensive private school. When a famous musician, Korey Fields, takes interest in Enchanted at an audition, Enchanted loves the attention and praise, but the relationship quickly turns abusive and she finds herself cut off from family and friends. When Korey is found dead, many people blame Enchanted for his death and the abusive relationship she endured.
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Grown tells the story of seventeen-year-old Enchanted, who dreams of making it as a singer. Chanty begins to actualize those dreams when she meets R&B superstar Korey Fields. But those dreams soon turn to nightmares as Chanty learns and experiences who Korey Fields really is. 

This book sparks a necessary and powerful conversation about many prevalent issues: power, control, abuse, and how systems can question and fail those who need them the most. Readers should be aware of the trigger warnings before reading (sexual assault, abuse (mental & physical), mental health, drugs, etc.). While the content can be difficult at times, Grown is an important read.

I loved Jackson's writing style and her use of imagery and similes/metaphors. Seeing her carry certain imagery throughout the novel was one of its most powerful aspects for me. The pacing was quick, and this was a read I could not put down. While I would have liked to see more development in some characters (Chanty's father, grandmother, and Gab), overall, the book was great!
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Received an arc via Netgalley.

DO NOT READ THE SYNOPSIS.  It gives too much away.  This book was absolutely phenomenal.  My favorite Tiffany D. Jackson book yet.  Follow Enchanted's story as she gets sucked into a relationship with a music superstar and all that unfolds.  AMAZING 5 stars!!!
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If you’ve read Allegedly and/or Monday’s Not Coming and loved them... you will be not be let down with this title. Jackson seems to have really solidified her writing with such a distinct style and cadence. The pacing of her texts always seem to grab you, but Grown grabbed me right away and never let go. Chanty, the main character, is an aspiring singer and self-proclaimed outsider at her predominantly white school. Her friend, Gab, encourages her to try out for a singing competition in which she meets the super star Korey. He is rich, famous, and is going to make all of her dreams of being a singer come true... except her dreams become a nightmare when Korey’s abuse starts.

Jackson uniquely portrays the perspective of rape culture through the eyes of the victim, but particularly how black victims of sexual violence are treated. A piece of art is referenced in the text called “Waterbearer” by Lorna Simpson. The art is picture of a black woman with her back to the camera while pouring water out of two pitchers she is holding in each hand with the words, “She saw him disappear by the river. They asked her to tell what happened, only to discount her memory.” This piece articulates a topic at the heart of the text: black women are often undermined and ignored. Chanty may question her memory and sanity, but Jackson does a great job of building a complex, multifaceted character that is a survivor refusing to have her voice silenced.
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