By Charles R. Smith

In his first novel, the Coretta Scott King Author Honor-winner evokes the bittersweet summer of transition for an LA teen.

Shooting the breeze with his boys. Tightening his D on the court. Doing a colour check – making sure nobody's wearing blue or red, which some Crip or Piru carrying a cut-down golf club could see as disrespect. Then back to Auntie's, hoping she isn't passed out from whiskey at the end of the day. Now that Shawn is headed for high school, he wonders if he'd be better off at the school in Mama's neighbourhood, where he'd be free of Compton's hassles. But then he wouldn't be with his fellas – cracking jokes, covering each other's backs – or the fine Marisol, who's been making star appearances in his dreams. Dad says he needs to make his own decision, but what does Shawn want, freedom or friendship? With teasing, spot-on dialogue and an eye to the realities of inner-city life, Chameleon takes on the shifting moods of a teenager coming of age.

Categories: Fiction

For readers aged: 12+

  • Publication details:
  • Format: Paperback
  • ISBN: 9781406322989
  • Published: 05 Oct 2009
  • Price: £6.99
  • Size: 198 x 129 mm
  • Pages: 464

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Customer reviews


'Successfully mines the mind of many a teenager.' Kirkus Reviews

'Kids will grab this for the immediacy in the contemporary scenes, the brutal standoffs, the fast talk at the ball court and at the barbershop, and, especially, the elemental conflicts of coming-of-age.' Booklist

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