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Patina (Track #2)

By: Jason Reynolds
Recommended for grade(s): 5, 6

Ghost. Lu. Patina. Sunny. Four kids from wildly different backgrounds with personalities that are explosive when they clash. But they are also four kids chosen for an elite middle school track teamÑa team that could qualify them for the Junior Olympics if they can get their acts together. They all have a lot to lose, but they also have a lot to prove, not only to each other, but to themselves. Patina, or Patty, runs like a flash. She runs for many reasonsÑto escape the taunts from the kids at the fancy-schmancy new school sheÕs been sent to since she and her little sister had to stop living with their mom. She runs from the reason WHY sheÕs not able to live with her ÒrealÓ mom any more: her mom has The Sugar, and Patty is terrified that the disease that took her momÕs legs will one day take her away forever. So PattyÕs also running for her mom, who canÕt. But can you ever really run away from any of this? As the stress builds up, itÕs building up a pretty bad attitude as well. Coach wonÕt tolerate bad attitude. No day, no way. And now he wants Patty to run relayÉwhere you have to depend on other people? HowÕs she going to do THAT? –From the website at Simon & Schuster

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