By Marilyn Nelson
This riveting novel in verse, excellent for lovers of Jacqueline Woodson and Toni Morrison, explores American heritage and race during the eyes of a teenage boy embracing his newfound identity
Connor's grandmother leaves his dad a letter while she dies, and the letter's confession shakes their tight-knit Italian-American kin: the guy who raised Dad isn't his start father.
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Additional resources for American Ace
She looked up at Caitlyn. “Destiny is at work in your life. That which seems random chance is not. You are at the edge of the wheel right now, lost in the chaos of a world that turns at maddening speed, but if you fulfill your destiny, you will journey to the heart of the wheel, where all is motionless and clear. You will journey to the heart. The heart. ” Her eyes widened, and she stared at Caitlyn. ” Caitlyn struggled to make sense of what she was saying. “What is the heart in darkness? And why did you put this card under my pillow right before you died in that car crash?
Her mother flipped over the next card. ” It was the Knight of Cups. An armored knight sitting astride a horse held up a golden goblet, a smile touching his lips. There were wings atop his helmet and on the heels of his feet, and his surcoat was patterned with water and fish. ” Caitlyn asked hopefully. Her mother gave her a mischievous, knowing look. “A guy. ” Caitlyn grinned. ” Her mother smiled, then pointed to the next three cards. ” She turned them all over: the Three of Swords showed a red heart pierced by three swords, with storming rain in the background; the Fool depicted a young man with his eyes on the sky, about to step off the edge of a cliff and into an abyss; and finally, a skeleton in black armor rode a white horse, with the body of a king beneath the horse’s hooves: Death.
She shuddered and turned the page. After several months she’d realized that drawing the Screechers wasn’t making them go away, and to save her own sanity she’d turned her pens and pencils to recording images from her more benign dreams. She thumbed through those pages now, seeing her gradually increasing drawing skill more than the images themselves: hunters chased a dear; a pioneer girl rode a horse; teenagers loafed on a couch. On one page, a man stabbed his friend in a bar; on the facing page, a woman dressed for her wedding.