I have just finished reading If You Come Softly by Jacqueline Woodson. I checked it out a while ago, but have just gotten to it last night. I read till at least two in the morning.
About and Thoughts on Book:
Jeremiah is confident about who he is -- that is, when he's in his own Brooklyn neighborhood. But when he starts attending a fancy prep school in Manhattan, he realizes that black teenage boys don't exactly fit in there. So it's a surprise when, during his first week of school, he feels an immediate connection with a white girl named Ellie. In one frozen moment their eyes lock, and after that they know they belong together -- despite the fact that she's Jewish and he's black. Their worlds are so different, but to them that's not what matters. Too bad the rest of the world feels differently.
I feel I can relate to the characters in this book, at least in some aspects. I am biracial, just like Jeremiah's best friend Carlton. My mother is white and my father is black. I've grown up in a predominantly white, small town. I don't really know the other side of me. I like to think there is no difference, but I know there is. I tend to take people as the they are as a person, like Jeremiah and Ellie want to, and not judge them by their skin tone. I've been viewed differently for mine for years, I don't want to do the same to other people. I strayed away from the book, and I didn't mean to, I just wanted to show how I relate too it.
This book is a love story, but also so much more. It's not just about first love between a boy and girl. It's about facing fears and going against the norm for, well, love. It's also about acceptance. It's very moving. I wanted Ellie and Jeremiah to work out. I wanted others to except them, especially their families. I didn't want to cry but I did. I want give away why, I don't want to spoil it for people who have yet to read this great book. Overall, it's one of the best books I've read.