Genesis Begins Again - Book Review



There are ninety-six reasons why thirteen-year-old Genesis dislikes herself. She knows the exact number because she keeps a list:
-Because her family is always being put out of their house.
-Because her dad has a gambling problem. And maybe a drinking problem too.
-Because Genesis knows this is all her fault.
-Because she wasn’t born looking like Mama.
-Because she is too black.

Genesis is determined to fix her family, and she’s willing to try anything to do so…even if it means harming herself in the process. But when Genesis starts to find a thing or two she actually likes about herself, she discovers that changing her own attitude is the first step in helping change others.


13-year-old Genesis is dealing with so much – her father’s alcoholism, her family’s financial mess, and her deep resentment for her dark skin. She wishes she had lighter skin like her mother had, and she knows her father and grandmother wished that too.

At the beginning of the novel, we see Genesis at a low point where she does everything within her power to turn her skin a little paler and hair straighter, feel accepted among her peers, capture her father’s love, and cover up their financial struggles.

By the end of the book, and with the help of good friends and a really nice teacher who takes her under her wings, Genesis discovers the true meaning of self-acceptance and becomes confident in who she is, in her skin tone, and in her talents.

The book deals with heavy and rarely-mentioned topics like internalized racism, resulting in ongoing skin-tone bias within the same race, trickling down generation after generation and affecting both young and old. An enlightening and heartfelt read that leads to a journey of discovery for the reader, and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

The book's title is quite befitting as it speaks on Genesis’ new-found self-love and acceptance. Indeed, she begins again!

Rating: 5 / 5
GENRE: Literary fiction/YA-Pre-teen Fiction
MATERIAL CONNECTION: Bought for reading pleasure

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