Calling My Name
Taja Brown lives with her parents and older brother and younger sister, in Houston, Texas. Taja has always known what the expectations of her conservative and tightly-knit African American family are—do well in school, go to church every Sunday, no intimacy before marriage. But Taja is trying to keep up with friends as they get their first kisses, first boyfriends, first everythings. And she’s tired of cheering for her athletic younger sister and an older brother who has more freedom just because he’s a boy. Taja dreams of going to college and forging her own relationship with the world and with God, but when she falls in love for the first time, those dreams are suddenly in danger of evaporating.

Calling My Name Details

TitleCalling My Name
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseOct 24th, 2017
PublisherGreenwillow Books
ISBN-139780062656865
Rating
GenreYoung Adult, Contemporary, Fiction

Calling My Name Review

  • Lola Reviewer
    January 1, 1970
    Such an elegant book.The cover is elegant, the writing is elegant, the atmosphere is whimsical and contemplative, the heroine is lovely, almost angelically so. Reading the whole story is just a pleasurable experience you won’t soon forget. Liara Tamani has written here a very beautiful story about growing up amongst family members that do not always understand you. Although religion is important to Taja, unlike her parents, she feels the need to question some of her beliefs and explore things al Such an elegant book.The cover is elegant, the writing is elegant, the atmosphere is whimsical and contemplative, the heroine is lovely, almost angelically so. Reading the whole story is just a pleasurable experience you won’t soon forget. Liara Tamani has written here a very beautiful story about growing up amongst family members that do not always understand you. Although religion is important to Taja, unlike her parents, she feels the need to question some of her beliefs and explore things all teenagers do… dating, kissing, having sex.I loved that we could see Taja grow from a middle grader to a high school student, but we never explicitly know how old she is, and sometimes the chapters jump past months of her life, not explaining everything.So that takes getting used to, but when you do, it’s easy to fall in love with Taja and root for her to gain strength and find within herself the courage to stand up for what her heart tells her is right. Unfortunately she can’t talk to her parents, because they’d give her a sermon. That’s something I actually didn’t like. I thought she should have had someone to talk with in all seriousness, not just to joke around. Her friends weren’t much help to ease her mind. It’s a journey she had to take upon herself practically alone. But it made her stronger and wiser. Taja’s is an authentic teenage voice. Before I realized the book started with her as a middle grader, I found her voice too young, but as she gains life experience and discovers the joys of adolescence (yeah, right), she becomes more and more mature. Not only is this a book with a diverse heroine readers can easily connect with, it’s also a book with diverse themes that matter in the life of a teenage girl. Quite recommended. Blog | Youtube | Twitter | Instagram | Google+ | Bloglovin’
    more
  • Nikki S
    January 1, 1970
    02/15/2017:African American girl. Growing up IN Houston, Texas?! GIMMIE.
  • Candace
    January 1, 1970
    This is a quietly beautiful book. It's lyrical, soft and easy. It's a story that spans time with only light theme within it. There's no urgency and what kept me reading was the beautiful writing. While not in verse it had a similar feel to it. It has a theme of the MC being in a religious family and feeling those pressures to always be good. If I were to complain it would be that I wish it had expanded on this more. But that is largely because of my own beliefs and way I was raised. I do not bel This is a quietly beautiful book. It's lyrical, soft and easy. It's a story that spans time with only light theme within it. There's no urgency and what kept me reading was the beautiful writing. While not in verse it had a similar feel to it. It has a theme of the MC being in a religious family and feeling those pressures to always be good. If I were to complain it would be that I wish it had expanded on this more. But that is largely because of my own beliefs and way I was raised. I do not believe in organized religion but I am spiritual. Nature is my church. ;) The book also takes place in the 90's and early 2000's (I believe). I was a 90's kid so I connected with some of that. While it's very different than my life was, I still really connected with it. And that really speaks loudly that this is a really good story. The debate was whether I'll pass this to my 12 year old and I've decided to wait. The suggested age is 14+ and that sounds right. I WILL be saving it for her though as I think it's a great story to see in the life of a family different from ours and reading other people's stories, who are different, is important to have a wider view of the world.
    more
  • Morelia (Strandedinbooks)
    January 1, 1970
    Set in Houston, TX? Where I was born and raised? YES PLEASE!
  • Kelly
    January 1, 1970
    This book, set in a recognizable past (my guess is the 90s based on the name checks on things), follows Taja Brown from her middle school through the end of her high school days. It's told through vignettes, in a way that is really unique and engaging, with gorgeous prose to accompany the story. Readers looking for stories about religious teens, coming of age as a black girl, and/or the tensions and challenges that can exist between teens and their parents will enjoy this a lot. Totally appropri This book, set in a recognizable past (my guess is the 90s based on the name checks on things), follows Taja Brown from her middle school through the end of her high school days. It's told through vignettes, in a way that is really unique and engaging, with gorgeous prose to accompany the story. Readers looking for stories about religious teens, coming of age as a black girl, and/or the tensions and challenges that can exist between teens and their parents will enjoy this a lot. Totally appropriate for younger through older teen readers. Would definitely appeal to fans of brown girl dreaming and would be a great book to pair up with The House on Mango Street.
    more
  • Ms. Yingling
    January 1, 1970
    I was intrigued by the cover and didn't read the description. Definitely a Young Adult/New Adult book, with graphic sexual content. Lyrical writing made it somewhat challenging to follow plot. Just not a middle grade novel
  • Tiffany Nichols
    January 1, 1970
    Loved this book! Having 3 daughters, I find it especially important expose them to books with main characters with whom they can relate. Not only is it a beautiful story, but the author does such an amazing job of transporting you right into the main character's shoes. We need more positive books like this! Great read!
    more
  • Shenwei
    January 1, 1970
    a poetic coming of age story that portrays emotions in a viscerally engaging way. Taja's adolescent confusion, curiosity, and conflicted feelings about sex and her religion are captured very well.that all said, there were some really cringe-worthy microaggressions here and there that put me offTWs: body/fat-shaming, ableism, transmisia, slut-shaming/misogyny, racism-the most prevalent microaggressions were body/fat-shaming, and it was kind of hypocritical coming from someone who was insecure abo a poetic coming of age story that portrays emotions in a viscerally engaging way. Taja's adolescent confusion, curiosity, and conflicted feelings about sex and her religion are captured very well.that all said, there were some really cringe-worthy microaggressions here and there that put me offTWs: body/fat-shaming, ableism, transmisia, slut-shaming/misogyny, racism-the most prevalent microaggressions were body/fat-shaming, and it was kind of hypocritical coming from someone who was insecure about her own appearance and felt like everyone was probably judging her for it. the narrative tried to address oppressive ideologies of attractiveness and value through a teacher who challenged them to look at what ads and society tells us to value and messages that you feel lesser. but that was undermined when the narrative proceeded to describe a girl as manlike and gross for having leg hair on the next page with zero self-critical reflection.-the r-slur is used multiple times in this one paragraph and it made me super uncomfortable even though it was not directed at about person but rather the protagonist's inner anxiety going on a self hating rant.-then there was the use of "Chinese eyes" to describe a character. only once but that was a real WTF to me -_--the slut-shaming and gendered double standards surrounding sex are addressed in text, though.
    more
  • Jamie
    January 1, 1970
    I received an Advanced Reader Copy at Book Expo 2017. A beautifully written coming of age story. We follow Taja from middle grade up through high school graduation. We experience all her firsts. We follow her as she tries to figure out who she is and what she believes. I especially loved her spiritual journey as she discovers how she wants to experience God, not just in church but in and around her.Highly recommend.
    more
  • Luke Reynolds
    January 1, 1970
    ARC Review (9/21/17, received from Sarah Prineas)Couldn't get into this one at all. It just felt like it was taking all the pointers from Sandra Cisneros' The House on Mango Street, but lacked the emotional connection and an overarching plot to keep it together. I became uninterested really fast despite the pretty writing.Where I left off, Taja was licking perfume off her finger. I don't think I'll be missing much.
    more
  • Rachel Strolle
    January 1, 1970
    Quiet and beautiful. Reminiscent of Sandra Cisnero's HOUSE ON MANGO STREET
  • Jeanie Phillips
    January 1, 1970
    Sometimes you need a nice coming-of-age story about a girl figuring out who she is inside and out. This was just that and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Perfect for readers who loved Jacqueline Woodson's Brown Girl Dreaming.
  • Lydia
    January 1, 1970
    I was surprised at how many parts of this book I could relate to in my own childhood!
  • Rita H.
    January 1, 1970
    Loved this book! Gorgeous writing!
  • Teresa
    January 1, 1970
    * eArc provided by publisher via Edelweiss *
  • Amanda Zirn
    January 1, 1970
    I devoured this in one sitting! A strikingly unique and literary YA read. Older readers will be taken back to those emotional, frazzled, heartbroken, confusing adolescent memories (in the best way possible) while current YAs will definitely, definitely be able to relate.
    more
  • Cristin
    January 1, 1970
    Calling My Name is individual stories about Tara, a girl growing up in Houston from the time she was in middle school until she graduated from high school.The writing was phenomenal in this book. I enjoyed all of the imagery and descriptions. The characters were mostly developed and it had a good plot.I felt the story overall was a little bit disconnected. Most of the times, the story skipped a few months ahead and it was hard to understand when things were happening.Overall, I really liked the Calling My Name is individual stories about Tara, a girl growing up in Houston from the time she was in middle school until she graduated from high school.The writing was phenomenal in this book. I enjoyed all of the imagery and descriptions. The characters were mostly developed and it had a good plot.I felt the story overall was a little bit disconnected. Most of the times, the story skipped a few months ahead and it was hard to understand when things were happening.Overall, I really liked the book!
    more
  • Jenna Monaco
    January 1, 1970
    Five stars just doesn't seem like enough for this stunning debut. All I know is how I felt at the end; weightless. I was captivated from beginning to end, finishing the book in less than 24 hours. The words felt like lyrics to a song my soul had been yearning to hear for a very very long time. You are missing out if you don't read this. Incredible.
    more
  • Veronica
    January 1, 1970
    Beautifully written. Very honest and just open. I loved it!
  • Ellen
    January 1, 1970
    So good and so relatable, especially as an introverted black women who grew up in Houston in a religious household. I can't wait to see what else Liara Tamani writes!
  • Shana Powell
    January 1, 1970
    Beautifully written book. A loving and entertaining journey. Highly recommend! :))
  • Trin
    January 1, 1970
    Another adult novel disguised/mis-marketed as YA. The owner of my store likes to theorize that certain books get put in YA because they're not "good enough" to be adult; in general, I couldn't disagree with this more (and actually think it's a fairly offensive assumption on her part), but in this case...maybe. It reminds me of Another Brooklyn, except nowhere near as good.
    more
Write a review