Review of The Braid Girls

The Braid Girls The Braid Girls
by Sherri Winston
Middle School    Little, Brown    272 pp.
6/23    9780316461610    $16.99
Paper ed.  9780316461597    $8.99
e-book. ed.  9780316461603    $7.99

It’s a big summer for middle schooler Maggie: she is starting a braiding business with her best friend, Daija, and she will be meeting her half-sister, Callie, who is from the Bahamas, for the first time. Callie’s mother recently passed away, and Callie will be moving in with Maggie’s family in Jacksonville, Florida. While Maggie is welcoming to Callie, Daija is not so happy about this new sister, as she and Maggie are practically sisters. Protective of her friendship and their new braiding enterprise, Daija is not interested in embracing Callie and is determined not to be replaced by a stranger. However, Callie soon becomes the least of their worries as nemesis Angela and her crew decide to open a competing braid business and start to steal their customers. Is it possible for the three girls to overcome their differences and insecurities and become sisters and friends? Drama between the Braid Girls and the Sistahs Who Braid heats up as the competition for business leads to a memorable climax. A summer crush for Maggie lends extra excitement. Told through the alternating points of view of the three girls, the story explores themes of friend and family relationships, grief, bullying, divorce, and parental absence, all handled with care and sensitivity.

From the July/August 2023 issue of The Horn Book Magazine.

Monique Harris

Monique Harris is a public educator, reading specialist and independent educational consultant. She holds a Master of Science degree in Education from Simmons University, and is enrolled in a PhD program at Florida State University.

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