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Face Relations: 11 Stories About Seeing Beyond Color

Review

Face Relations: 11 Stories About Seeing Beyond Color

edited by

Mixed race people are the fastest growing population in this country, further blending heritage in our melting pot. Teens who are exploring their identities and finding their roles know that learning about different cultures is essential. This collection of stories looks at race in teen reality --- how it plays at school, in the cafeteria, on teams, and at home. FACE RELATIONS lives up to its title and gives readers of every race enjoyable stories with lasting impressions.

"The characters in these stories tear down the barriers that separate us," editor Marilyn Singer describes in her introduction. The stories cover many different ethnicities, including African, Indian, Mexican and Asian-Americans, and often combinations of them. "Skins" by Joseph Bruchac shows how three teens of color at a predominately white high school hide or flaunt their perceived ethnicities. One dyes his hair black to look more Native-American, one remains ambiguous about his ancestry, and one becomes defiant. When their paths converge in this short but powerful story, surprising revelations change perspectives for characters and likely for readers as well.

Different races have been shunned in this country at various times, and this theme is profoundly explored in Naomi Shihab Nye's "Hum," the story of Palestinian Sami's family and their experiences in this country after September 11, 2001.

Another story, "Epiphany" by Ellen Wittlinger, explores subtle racial prejudice by finding out what happens when a Caucasian girl decides to sit at an all-African-American table at lunch everyday.

In "Mr. Ruben," students try to decide what race their teacher is, because nothing about his appearance can tell them for certain. Why is this important? These questions come up among teens of every race in today's diverse society. Readers of every ethnicity will find themselves in the stories from this wonderful collection.

Reviewed by Amy Alessio on May 25, 2004

Face Relations: 11 Stories About Seeing Beyond Color
edited by

  • Publication Date: May 25, 2004
  • Genres: Short Stories
  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers
  • ISBN-10: 0689856377
  • ISBN-13: 9780689856372