Edited by Adi Alsaid, Come On In is a collection of fifteen short stories that prove the immigration story is not a single story but one as varied as those who cross borders seeking survival or searching for a better life. The anthologized stories will spark some interesting discussion about the challenges posed for immigrants who lose a part of themselves when they choose life—a miracle made possible by migration. The stories also ask important questions about how to be both an immigrant and an American. Clearly, those who emigrate are not from families of “sitters or stay-putters” (246) but from pioneers of risk-takers—those whoRead More →

Although Leah Johnson is a writer and editor, You Should See Me in a Crown is her first novel. Set in Indiana, the story features seventeen-year-old Liz Lighty whose life has been derailed by her mother’s death to complications with sickle cell disease (SCD).  Living with her grandparents where money is tight and taking care of her brother Robbie who has Acute Chest Syndrome, an inherited form of SCD, keeps Liz on edge. Because she feels like everything about her makes her stand out, Liz has mastered the art of being a wallflower.  On the fringes and out of the spotlight, Liz hopes to hideRead More →

Having been abandoned by a mother who can’t love like a normal mom, fifteen-year-old Sarah-Mary and her eleven-year-old brother Caleb live with their Aunt Jenny in Hannibal, Missouri.  And even though Sarah-Mary is normally a rule-abiding, responsible girl, her best friend Tess Villalobos convinces her to exchange school for a road trip to St. Louis to see the Gateway Arch.  While there, a mild case of claustrophobia and acrophobia overwhelms Sarah-Mary.  Because she passes out, she is found out, so her aunt tightens the rules and sends Sarah-Mary to Berean Baptist, a strict private school, not only to teach her the value of discipline but toRead More →