Jamaican-American writer Fiona Zedde Lewis has authored best-selling novels and collections of short stories for adults. Dreaming in Color” marks her debut writing for young adultsand a compelling debut it is.
Carlene (Cee-Cee) has come to the U.S. from Jamaica to join her mother, who has been working for two years to bring her daughter to join her. But excited as Carlene is to be reunited with her beloved mother, she finds life in her new country daunting. She misses her island home and the father she left behind.
High school is a difficult territory to navigate for many teensbullying, mean girls, jock/thug boys, and just the normal daily stresses of trying to succeed in classes can present awesome challenges. When a group of mean girls led by one of the most popular girls in the school targets Carlene, taunting her for her accent and her skin color, she turns to art as a refuge. Problems with her mother, who reveals a secret Cee-Cee is not prepared for, just adds to her feelings of isolation.
Then Carlene meets Greg, another teen from Jamaica. They bond over their shared feelings of dislocation and their inability to fit in. But a big party where the popular kids get extreme, plus a series of conflicts lead to tragic consequences. Carlene must decide what to do next.
This beautifully written and provocative novel is sure to be one of the most talked about books for teens this year.