Cover Image: Grown

Grown

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Member Reviews

Enchanted Jones is an aspiring seventeen year old singer who is one of the few Black girls at her suburban school. She finds herself struggling to fit in since her family’s recent move. She joins the swim team and has one close friend, Gab. As she watches her sister acclimate faster and enjoy her new surroundings, Chanty longs for more - she longs for a singing career.

One night, she fibs to her mom, asking her to drive her to a swim meet. Conveniently,  they end up in the same location as auditions to be on a popular singing show. Chanty auditions and is rejected from the show, but someone special was watching her from the crowd.

Enter Korey Fields. He’s a famous singer/rapper who got started when he was 14. Now 28, he knows the scene, he knows true talent when he sees it. He offers private lessons to Enchanted to help launch her career. He eventually brings her on tour, much to her parents’ chagrin, and a wild ride of drugs, partying, jealousy, abuse, and even murder ensues.

The story is supposedly not based on R. Kelly’s history in the music industry and the allegations made against him, but the similarities are uncanny. It’s up and down constantly, riding the waves of the power within the music industry. Jackson’s writing is incredibly relatable - I flew through this book in 6 hours. And if you know Jackson, you know you’re in store for a heck of a plot twist.
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Tiffany Jackson has done it again. This is the second book I have read by this author and she just has a way of building suspense and making the reader become truly invested her characters. At the beginning, I had a rough time getting into the story, but like her other book "Monday's Not Coming", I was eventually drawn in and couldn't put the book down. Literally read it in a day!

The story centers around Enchanted, a high school student, who wants to grow up to be a singer. When she gets noticed by a famous singer, he promises to make her famous. Unfortunately his help, comes at a price and Enchanted's life begins to spiral.

There is some explicit content in the book, therefore I would recommend for high school readers. The book deals with themes around sexual assault and the Me Too Movement.
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Fresh from the oven your meal is in front of you and it looks so good you have to take a bite right now fully knowing the steam coming off it means you should wait or at least blow on it, but you don’t and you burn the roof of your mouth. Soon the plate is clean but you’ll continue to feel the burn. 

Grown by TDJ burned me but didn’t stop me from needing more. Jackson’s writing engulfed me in the world of Chanty’s hopes and dreams, and subsequently her worst nightmares. 

I think it’s important that an educator considering this book in a classroom library heed the content warnings and know potential triggers it has before a student picks it up to read. I also think it’s a book that, at some point, every student should read. 

Grown is told through the eyes of 17 year old Enchanted “Chanty” Jones: oldest of the Jones siblings, Disney enthusiast, fish out of water, and an aspiring singer/songwriter. Chanty’s parents work tirelessly to put her and sister Shea in private school, but Chanty knows that a lot of sacrifices are being made, and she feels them too. So when Chanty gets her “shot” to work with superstar Korey Fields, she believes she’s doing it for not just herself, but so everyone in her family can live a better life. From the get go, Korey says all the right things and appeals to Enchanted’s wildest dreams, until he doesn’t. Going back and forth between “Now” and “Then” TDJ gives readers the thrills and chills as we navigate what happened to Korey Fields and why Enchanted’s words fall on deaf ears when her voice is so loud. 

Though a work of fiction, not one bit of it is fake, and TDJ’s word craft will leave you simultaneously reading at the speed of light to find out what happens next and just wanting to turn the page because you need what you’re reading to stop. 

As a teacher, there’s a lot of lessons to be taken from this book. As a human, there’s a lot of lessons to be taken from this book. Power, greed, advantage, and oppression smother the pages of this book, smothered me, and I came out begging for a breath. Powerful is an understatement. 

4.5 ⭐
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4 stars

This is a solid YA novel that covers issues ripped straight from the headlines: particularly those including R Kelly and other like trash heaps masquerading as people. 

Enchanted is 17, on the swim team, a great big sister and daughter, a talented singer, and the central figure of this work. Unfortunately, she also becomes easy prey for Korey, a well known musician and predator. 

This is a quick read in spite of its challenging subject matter, and Jackson does a tremendous job of framing Enchanted's path: how she gets here, how and why she stays, and what the aftermath looks like for her and for others who have had similar experiences. I really like how some of the potentially unreliable narration forces readers to participate in the same crappy behavior that's highlighted here: questioning the facts and - most significantly - who presents them. Also, the ties to _The Little Mermaid_ add nicely to the theme and parallel the character development without being heavy handed or detracting. 

I'd have liked to get even a bit more in to Enchanted's head in the early stages of the work, and I do think aspects toward the end are a bit conveniently tied up and/or could use further exploration (I'll avoid specifics so as to maintain that spoiler-free life). 

Those minor wishes noted, this is a worthwhile and important read, and I'll be recommending it to students.
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To no ones surprise I am sure Tiffany Jackson has done it again! I read this book in a half a day because I was hooked from word one! A great book about women’s voices and how they are often not heard when they are being used against men with power, social clout or systems of oppression. Enchantment Jones has always identified with Ariel, she is a mermaid and she has a beautiful voice. All Enchantment wants is to be a singer so when one of the most famous singers takes her under his wing she jumps at the chance, and when he says he loves her she can’t believe her luck! The huge age difference doesn’t seem to matter in the face of love. Resembling one of the biggest headline stories this book makes a huge impact!
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4.5 stars
Jackson does a wonderful job of sharing a story that has been so polarizing in real life. Enchanted is given an opportunity to create the music career of her dreams, but things aren’t as they seem. It was difficult to read at points (because of the content, not the writing) but so very compelling. This book provides an interesting exploration of who is “to blame” for what happens to Enchanted while also highlighting how young black women are often ignored or simply not believed when sharing their experiences. Wealth and power are critically examined and I wanted to know what was going to happen so much that I could not stop reading.
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Tiffany D. Jackson continues to SHOCK her readers with twisty, timely novels. This book is not only thrilling and page-turning, it's SO IMPORTANT. All teen girls need to read this book to learn about the warning signs of abusive relationships and how older men should NOT be attempting to date teen girls. Too often do we see that is how the story of human trafficking begins - this book lays out exactly how those types of relationships form and what the abusers do to keep girls from their families and friends. 
Jackson has a very specific writing style that makes you feel like 100 pages of reading took you 10 seconds. Her pace, descriptions, and character development are EFFORTLESS and perfect. She's known for a twisty ending and this one... IS GOOD! I gasped! Just when you think she's revealed all the secrets, she hits you with the last one then ends the book a few lines later. MIND BLOWN.
YOU MUST PICK IT UP WHEN IT COMES OUT IN SEPTEMBER!
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Tiffany D. Jackson's, Grown, is a continuation of her genius. Filled with captivating twists and turns that left me no choice but to devour the book in one sitting.  Enchanted Jones wakes up in a room covered in blood and R & B superstar, Korey Fields, is dead. 

When 17 yo Enchanted makes her singing debut at her high school, Fields is there. He quickly inserts himself into her space and begins the grooming process of luring her into his twisted world.  She is quickly all in as she dreams of becoming a star and being able to provide financial support to her family.  He sweetens the pot when he offers to mentor her. Enchanted has no idea of his past, and his sick infatuation with younger girls. She finds herself in a heartbreaking, deeply disturbing situation where she learns of his darkly hidden, sadistic rage. She quickly becomes a victim of psychological, physical, and emotional abuse.  Now, Fields is dead, and all eyes are on her.  

Written with the same gutwrenching style as Monday's Not Coming and Allegedly.  Jackson continues to be a must-read author.
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This realistic depiction of a teens desire for fame and wealth, bought by talent, reveals the underpinnings of our country’s foundational truths....sans 21st century style.  Grown introduces  us to  Enchanted Jones , whose life is filled with opportunities to be grown and less likely to be Enchanted.  Perhaps, a twist of fate could bring a chilling end to this situation, as only Tiffany does all too well in her books.  Get a copy of Grown, and find out for yourself!
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I have wanted to read this book since I saw Tiffany D. Jackson last year at the LCPS Secondary English Kickoff meeting.  She spoke briefly about what she was currently working on, and I have wanted to read it ever since.  I was thrilled when I was able to get an ARC from @netgalley, the release date for Grown is September 15th.

Grown did not disappoint. This book was fast-paced and kept me wanting more, all while making me cringe, both as a parent and as a female.  In true Jackson fashion, the twists and turns will keep you guessing.  The novel opens with a note from Jackson stating that "This book is about the abuse of power.  It's about the pattern of excusing men for their behavior while faulting young girls for theirs."  There is also a content warning for sexual abuse, rape, assault, child abuse, kidnapping, and addiction to opioids.  I couldn't put it down.  I HAD to know what was going to happen. I can't remember the last time I read a book that fast.

The main character Enchanted, Chanty,  is seventeen and is an aspiring singer.  The timeline does shift from past to present, but it is evident when you are in NOW vs. THEN. 

Chanty is approached by Korey Field's, a mega superstar, after an audition.  She quickly becomes entangled by his gentlemanly approach and desire to help her become the star she is destined to be.  The character development of Chanty is fantastic.  Jackson took me back to my seventeen-year-old self and all my hopes and dreams and managed to roll them into the character Chanty. Her character is believable, and yes, naive, but she is fully developed. There were times I wanted to scream at both her and her parents for their childish behavior and trusting demeanor, but I could also understand the desire to achieve your dreams. Having read other TDJ books, I knew I was in for a ride, and I was so right on that.
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Grown is a YA mystery novel by Tiffany D. Jackson that focuses on a young black girl named Enchanted who gets the opportunity of a lifetime to pursue her dream of singing when famous musician Korey Fields takes an interest in her. Dreams aren’t always what you think, though, and when Korey is found dead, all signs point to Enchanted.

I am not going to lie, I didn’t start out liking this book. I felt that we got to know Enchanted’s circumstances and things about her life better than we got to know her. Some scenes felt like they stopped rather than ended. However, it grew on me as I progressed through it, finding myself wanting to see how it all was resolved.

Something I think it does really well is outline red flags for young girls to look out for. I also think it shows the internal narrative of a young girl who wants to feel seen and special in a situation where an older man offers her that feeling. The knowledge that something is a off but the naive dismissal as she sees him through rose colored glasses is relatable to anyone who has been young and in love, whether it went well or not. I believe that this book is valuable for the way that it exposes the exploitation of young girls by networks of abusive people in power and the way society is quick to blame a black woman or black girl. This book is aptly timed, connecting to the Me Too movement, the trial of R. Kelly, and the news surrounding Jeffrey Epstein and Ghiaine Maxwell.

Still, it felt so close to the R. Kelly case that it felt inauthentic. Beyond that similarity, I had problems with one of the more major plot twists; it felt far fetched. Additionally, one of the main conflict resolutions felt glazed over rather than clearly resolved. That may be a stylistic choice but I felt it is one that took away from the power of the narrative. All in all, I would give this book a 3.75/5  if that was possible on NetGalley.
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Grown by Tiffany D. Jackson is about a 17 yo girl, Enchanted, who aspires to become a singer.  After a disappointing audition for a TV singing competition, Enchanted is approached by a famous musical artist, Korey Fields, who is impressed by her abilities.  A secret relationship develops between Enchanted and the much older Korey that quickly turns controlling, inappropriate, and manipulative.

I was so excited to grab this ARC because Monday's Not Coming by Jackson was a favorite of mine.  I'm not normally into intense mysteries, but that one did it for me and this one did not disappoint.  It was a quick page-turner with a similar level of intensity.  I especially liked the time jumps that had Enchanted disillusioned in a room filled with blood.  They were sparse enough to almost make the reader forget about them in between, but often enough to build curiosity of how the main character got to that point.  The only disappointment was that the main character read as a little immature for her age.  I can understand the choice because her naiveté was integral in her story and manipulation, but it was still frustrating to read.

I would definitely recommend this book.  It was an intense look into the #metoo movement and the advantages older men take on younger girls.  It is definitely for an older teen/adult audience.  Jackson's writing style is evident and felt throughout and is a must-read for fans of this author.
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A great read! I'd recommend this for students in grade 10 and beyond, as it does have mature themes and content. Still, Jackson's writing style will have the reader turning pages as the twists and turns are revealed.
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The book has all of the markers of a Tiffany D. Jackson classic, and in the greatest way possible. This book caught hold of my soul and did not let go. From the first page, I was hooked. 

Jackson handles topics of rape culture, celebrity, and victim blaming with such sensitivity, while also exposing the traumatic and horrific ways that our society continues to belittle the word of black women. The adults in our lives need to do better to advocate for the safety of the children.
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Every time I read a Tiffany D. Jackson book, I swear I’m going to figure it out before the end..... I never do. Jackson writes twists and turns and flashbacks and forwards like a master, keeping everyone on their toes before finally letting us know at the end. Grown is the same level of amazing. I never knew what I thought I knew, and once I finally had it all figured out, I was bowled over with another reveal. 

Grown tells the story of Enchanted, a seventeen-year-old girl with musical aspirations. When she catches the eye of a much older musical star, she thinks she has finally gotten a big break. But as Korey Fields interest in Enchanted is revealed to be less in her talent and more in the teen herself, the secrets begin to pile up. As Korey begins his predatory plan for Enchanted, she finds herself isolated from her friends and family, physically, emotionally, and sexually abused, and her dream of actually recording her album slipping away in a drug induced haze. Through flashbacks, it becomes clear that Enchanted eventually finds herself waking in a room, covered in blood, with Korey’s dead body. But did she do it? What actually happened in that room? And what will become of Enchanted? 

Tiffany D. Jackson’s masterful suspense writing keeps readers guessing until the very end, while exploring another important topic - the victimization of teenage girls by grown men, This book will be a must have for high school classroom.
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I loved Tiffany D. Jackson's book, Allegedly, and was very excited to read her new release, Grown. Although the book definitely has merit, I was largely disappointed.

Grown's protagonist, Enchanted Jones, is one of the only Black students at a predominantly white high school in Westchester County. Her family left Queens for the suburbs and struggle to raise their 5 children in this new environment. Enchanted is also a star on her swim team, a member of W and W (a fictional Jack and Jill) and an aspiring singer. She attends an audition where she meets Korey Fields, an internationally famous singer, who although 12 years older than she, falls for her and takes her under his wing, promising to make her a star.  What ensues from this point is a replica of the R. Kelly story. Anyone who has seen the TV series about R. Kelly and the many women who he kidnapped, sexually abused, drugged and controlled will recognize these identical events. Fields does the same thing to Enchanted, locking her in a room in his different  homes, forcing her to use a bucket instead of providing her with a bathroom, and does not allow her to communicate with the outside world. He also addicts her to codeine and sexually, emotionally and physically abuses her. Her family is unable to make contact with her, just as was the case with the many families who were affected by R. Kelly.

The book touches on many aspects that are important -- especially that Black women in our society are assumed  guilty rather than innocent, and deserve any mistreatment that come their way. It is important for the reader to understand that this is a common plight of Black women and the book asks the reader to think about this. The book has many triggers -- (listed above), and also touches upon mental illness. At one point, due to the fact that Enchanted's grandmother is presumably mentally ill, the reader wonders if Enchanted is too, because she becomes so paranoid and develops such a state of PTSD that it is hard for her to know what is real and what is not. 

Grown offers a quick and engaging read, but the fact that the book is so much of a copy of the R. Kelly story (even to the point of Fields having a wife that Enchanted knew nothing about), that it is inauthentic. The difference between the R. Kelly story and Grown is that Grown has a relatively happy ending.
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First of all, ANYTHING by Tiffany D. Jackson is amazing! This book didn’t disappoint as well! Her novels are constant reminders of the issues that are hidden, and how Black women are unprotected by society. This novel relates to issues and topics that are currently being discussed in society, with a twist that only Tiffany D. Jackson can do!
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This book is totally engrossing and very uncomfortable. It’s a necessary story in the post Me Too / R Kelly era. 
     “Grown” follows a young black girl pursuing a music career who falls victim to the abuse of an older man with connections, fame, and power in the industry. The book shifts back and forth between two timelines - Enchanted’s developing relationship with the music mogul, and the eventual search for his murderer. 
     The concept is unique for a YA book, but the red flags are unfortunately familiar.. The writing style is definitely YA friendly and feels slightly juvenile at times, however the content is dark and very mature. My only complaint is the end felt a bit rushed, and there were a few plot holes in the “twists” - I would have rather explored the emotional impact of Enchanted’s abuse than divert into subplots for shock value. Overall, I found this book very compelling and un-put-downable.  3.75
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Tiffany Jackson impresses again with her powerful words, thrilling plot line, and relatable characters. Enchanted strives to become a singer despite having a successful swimming and academic career ahead of her. She gets her big break, but the man in power over her musical career traps her.
This book depicts the abuse and injustices many women, specifically Black women face. It shares the theme of using your voice to stand up against those in power.
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Do not pick this up if you have any tasks to accomplish other than reading. I found myself sneaking seconds of reading time at all of the taboo times: stopping at traffic lights, taking bathroom breaks (don’t judge), and cooking dinner. 

The book took a story we’re all familiar with (hopefully only tangentially), and sliced it open to reveal the seediest of underbellies. It’s shocking, horrifying, and altogether too realistic. Girls don’t choose to date evil men because they’re flawed. Evil people (men or women) do evil things. 

This book helped me to consider the importance of perspective, of listening—especially to victims, and of the power of promised fame. Although not based on the real stories of R. Kelly’s victims, this captivating novel helps the reader to understand how the many, many girls were trapped in his web. 

There are many trigger warnings in this book. It’s definitely one that I would encourage students to discuss with parents prior to reading.
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