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Forward Me Back to You



by
Mitali Perkins

Edition
Hardcover edition
Publisher
Macmillan
Imprint
Farrar, Straus & Giroux
ISBN
9780374304928

Awards and Honors
SLJ Best Books - 2019
Rise: A Feminist Book Project 2020 Top 10 List
POTENTIALLY SENSITIVE AREAS
Violence: Child Abuse, Violence: Sexual Assault/Rape Reference/Discussion
$7.20   $6.00
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JLG Category

City High School

Katina King is the reigning teen jujitsu champion of Northern California, but she’s having trouble fighting off the secrets in her past.
Robin Thornton was adopted from an orphanage in India and is reluctant to take on his future. If he can’t find his roots, how can he possibly plan ahead?
Robin and Kat meet in the most unlikely of places—a summer service trip to Kolkata to work with survivors of human trafficking. As bonds build between the travelmates, Robin and Kat discover that justice and healing are tangled, like the pain of their pasts and the hope for their futures. You can’t rewind life; sometimes you just have to push play.

Author’s note.

POTENTIALLY SENSITIVE AREAS
Violence: Child Abuse, Violence: Sexual Assault/Rape Reference/Discussion

Details

Format

Print

Page Count

432

Trim Size

8 1/4" x 5 1/3"

Dewey

F

AR

4.5: points 12

Lexile

HL690L

Genre

Fiction

Scholastic Reading Counts

20

JLG Release

Aug 2019

Book Genres


Topics

Friendship. Voluntarism. Volunteering. Human trafficking. Adoption. Boston, Massachusetts. Kolkata, India. Church missions.

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Praise & Reviews

Starred or favorable reviews have been received from these periodicals:

The Horn Book Magazine, Booklist*, Publishers Weekly*, School Library Journal*, Kirkus Reviews, Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books

Horn Book

Perkins’s story starts with Kat, a biracial scholarship student who lives with her single mother in Oakland and is a Brazilian jiu-jitsu champ—and who has recently fought off a classmate’s sexual assault. The first brief chapter ends with Kat deciding to report the assault, despite her attacker’s privileged status as a rich white jock. The next chapter begins in the Boston suburbs with Robin—himself a rich boy but with a very different backstory. Robin was born in Kolkata and adopted at age three by a wealthy white couple. His family is warm and loving; but, having just turned eighteen, Robin is restless to discover more about his origins, which motivates him to join his church youth group’s summer service trip to India to help survivors of human trafficking. Kat, temporarily living with a family friend in Boston following her ordeal, goes too. Alternating chapters explore Robin’s—now going by his birth name Ravi—journey to learn more about his birth parents (and his somewhat delusional attempt to single-handedly bring down traffickers) and Kat’s quest to heal by helping other victims of sexual brutality. The issues are heavy, and the macro- and microaggressions are many, but the narrative tone is not leaden. The protagonists’ love of comics and movies sup¬plies running jokes (i.e., Ravi resembles a Bollywood star), and Perkins provides cinematic information about setting (“INT. KOLKATA AIRPORT—DAY”). Well-rounded secondary characters, including sweet-natured Gracie from Boston and eager would-be teen tour guide Bontu from Kolkata, deliver moments of levity and emotional support for the protagonists.

Praise & Reviews

Horn Book

Perkins’s story starts with Kat, a biracial scholarship student who lives with her single mother in Oakland and is a Brazilian jiu-jitsu champ—and who has recently fought off a classmate’s sexual assault. The first brief chapter ends with Kat deciding to report the assault, despite her attacker’s privileged status as a rich white jock. The next chapter begins in the Boston suburbs with Robin—himself a rich boy but with a very different backstory. Robin was born in Kolkata and adopted at age three by a wealthy white couple. His family is warm and loving; but, having just turned eighteen, Robin is restless to discover more about his origins, which motivates him to join his church youth group’s summer service trip to India to help survivors of human trafficking. Kat, temporarily living with a family friend in Boston following her ordeal, goes too. Alternating chapters explore Robin’s—now going by his birth name Ravi—journey to learn more about his birth parents (and his somewhat delusional attempt to single-handedly bring down traffickers) and Kat’s quest to heal by helping other victims of sexual brutality. The issues are heavy, and the macro- and microaggressions are many, but the narrative tone is not leaden. The protagonists’ love of comics and movies sup¬plies running jokes (i.e., Ravi resembles a Bollywood star), and Perkins provides cinematic information about setting (“INT. KOLKATA AIRPORT—DAY”). Well-rounded secondary characters, including sweet-natured Gracie from Boston and eager would-be teen tour guide Bontu from Kolkata, deliver moments of levity and emotional support for the protagonists.

Grades 10 & Up
City High School
For Grades 10 & Up

Teen readers looking for realistic city settings and urban themes will enjoy these often-gritty titles that deal with contemporary situations and feature ethnically and culturally diverse characters. These titles will have special appeal for urban teens who want to see their own lives reflected in the books they read. Readers interested in the excitement and challenges of a city setting will also be drawn to the 12 books that comprise this category.

12 books per Year
$214.20 per Year
Interests
Diversity,Fiction,Mature Readers,LGBTQ+,Novels,Realistic Fiction
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Grades 10 & Up
City High School
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