“A girl named Mister” Nikki Grimes

Zondervan Books, 2010. 223 pp.

A Girl named MisterIn poetic verse, Nikki Grimes tells the story of Mister, a young girl who gets pregnant shortly before her 14th birthday. Despite her promise to keep pure until marriage, she falls for Trey. Their one time together leaves her pregnant and afraid, especially when Trey refuses to acknowledge it as his own. Terrified to tell her mother, Mister tries to hide her growing belly and finds comfort in the story of Mary, the mother of Jesus.

Using Biblical accounts and poetic license Grimes tells Mary’s story. Fearful of retribution from her family and neighbors since she and Joseph are not married, she hides her pregnancy believing no one would understand she’d been visited by an angel and told she would become miraculously pregnant with the Son of God.

These two stories of young, unwed, teenage mothers in vastly different circumstances and worlds are interwoven to create “A girl named Mister.” Mister wonders how her unborn child will change her life, while Mary does the same. Faith, hope and love combine to give both young women strength to deal with their situations. “A girl named Mister” is a good read for those 12 and older.

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