In Search of Good Books: Me Moth by Amber McBride


I recommend the award-winning Me Moth by Amber McBride.


Me Moth--a beautiful story told poetically. The printed page format of Me Moth immediately drew me in. Author Amber McBride describes the book as a novel in verse. I loved that style.


McBride wrote the book for the young adult market. Well, I must be young at heart.


There’s a love story in Me Moth. Love and love stories are for all ages, I say.


No spoiler here, but a brief word about the story line: Moth is in a tragic car crash with family. Her grief is matched by the agony of a young man she meets. They journey to heal themselves and each other. The ending took me totally by surprise. Actually, shocking…


I also think of Me Moth as a “memoir” of ancestors’ stories, cultural practices and customs passed down through generations….


I am intrigued by Ms. McBride as I read more about her. She reveals varied interests in her 2018/2019 blog.


You can find her active now on Instagram: @ambsmcbride and Twitter: @ambsmcbride.


I purchased Me Moth at a JMU bookstore while I was on campus for my sorority’s 50th Anniversary chapter celebration. I did not realize when I selected the book that McBride is a fellow alumnus. (The exquisite cover design led to me pulling the book off the shelf). I am elated to be in her company, so to speak. McBride is now a professor at the University of Virginia. According to Ms. McBride’s website she taught previously at James Madison University and worked for two years at JMU’s Furious Flower Poetry Center.


The Furious Flower Poetry Center is the “nation’s first academic center for Black poetry.” Furious Flower is the brainchild of Dr. Joanne V. Gabbin, now Professor Emerita for JMU.


Another nudge to consider reading Me Moth is the several book awards that have been bestowed:

  • Finalist for the 2021 National Book Award for Young People’s Literature

  • 2022 Coretta Scott King John Steptoe Award for New Talent Winner

  • 2022 William C. Morris YA Debut Award Finalist BookPage

  • Best Book of 2021

  • Best Book of 2021, Shelf Awareness

  • NPR Best Book of the Year,

  • 2021 School Library Journal Best Book of 2021

  • Time Magazine Best Children's Book of 2021

  • People Magazine's Best Children's Books of 2021

McBride’s next book will release in January 2023.


© Deborah Tompkins Johnson

August 2022


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