A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
Fantasy meant to entertain.
Know your strengths, and use them. You are unique, and the world needs you. Keep the faith.
Positive Role Models
Main character Amari is a smart, brave, loyal African American girl, guided by a strong moral compass. She moves from feeling like an outsider to recognizing her unique gifts and value. Most adults, including a hardworking single mother, are portrayed as supportive, trustworthy. Young teens are portrayed as vulnerable and grow into self-acceptance, confidence.
Violence & Scariness
A couple of fights between people, with hitting and kicking. Weapons battles with supernatural creatures that result in death.
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Products & Purchases
Occasional mention of brands to set scenes, such as reference to YouTube. But use of brand names seems deliberately minimized: In a scene where a mother buys a special phone the daughter's been asking for, the narrator doesn't mention the name of the phone.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that B.B. Alston's Amari and the Night Brothers is about Amari, a 12-year-old African American girl who's recruited by a secret organization that maintains order in the supernatural world. The book is the first of a planned trilogy and has been optioned for a film adaptation by Universal Pictures. There are a couple of fights between people, with hitting and kicking, and weapons battles with supernatural creatures that result in death.
Is It Any Good?
This fun fantasy is masterfully crafted! Amari and the Night Brothers brings delicious tension to every chapter, and to almost every paragraph. The story world created by first-time author B.B. Dalton is complete on its own terms and offers obvious parallels to our real world, covering topics like privilege, grief, the search for identity, and the anxiety many teens experience about having to grow up at all. The first of a planned three-book series, this opener provides a satisfying resolution on its own and leaves enough threads to make readers want more of Amari and a few other characters.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.
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