One of my favorite authors ever is Jason Reynolds. Some may describe him as the Walter Dean Myers of a new generation, and while I definitely see similarities between the two authors and I love both of their books, I would be hesitant to compare them because Mr. Reynolds has a style all his own.
With wit and humor, Jason Reynolds writes books for reluctant readers because he was one himself. It wasn’t until the age of 17 that he completed a book, but that book eventually led him to become a writer. Mr. Reynolds is one of those authors who churns out amazing books like a machine, which I love, because he has such an extensive repertoire however, I haven’t read all of them.
I have read: Ghost, When I Was the Greatest, and The Boy in the Black Suit thus far. The Boy in the Black Suit impacted me the most. It tells the story of Matt who grapples with the recent death of his mom and his strange new obsession with funerals. It’s a funny story that tackles grief in a sensitive yet light way. With a touch of romance, tragedy, and friendship it’s a story that will stay with you forever.
In a similar way, his book When I Was the Greatest shows the duality of humanity, specifically compassion and aggression. The depth that the characters of Needles and Noodles and the others in their neighborhood have is refreshing. Not only does Mr. Reynolds show people of color, he shows them not just as people of color but as humans. Rather than saying: “hey you should read this because diversity is important and you have to.” his books say: “hey you should read this because you can connect with these characters’ humanity and have your eyes opened to a culture, lifestyle, and struggle you might not have known before.”
Jason Reynolds is an author that I think everyone should read, no matter who you are, and he is one that I look forward to reading more from.