As part of this inspiring project, I had the privilege to review one of the many books on the MCCBD reading list. Kelie Charles is launching an exciting series called The Double Dutch Dolls. I hope you enjoy my review of the first book in the series, Double Dare.
K. Charles is adept at capturing the roller coaster emotions unique to middle schoolers in the new Double Dutch Dolls volume #1, Double Dare. Twin sisters Kaila and Zaria Bradley go on an exciting exploration as they trade places. There have been stories of look-a-likes switching roles, however in Double Dare Zaria and Kaila aren’t just fooling their parents and friends, they grow to appreciate their distinctive talents, but not without first jeopardizing their relationship.
Fashion rival Trinity has thrown down the gauntlet by declaring “Kaila’s only good for looks and Zaria’s only good for books.” The twins overhear the statement and discover through conversation with friends that the sentiment seems to be how most people perceive the girls. And so the fun begins. Kaila and Zaria feel the need to prove to themselves that the remark is untrue.
Kaila’s matchless talent for fashion and design takes on a completely different light as tomboy Zaria now must step up her game to become a fashionista, complete with makeup. Kaila on the other hand learns just how talented and focused her sister is as she stifles her innate desire to be Miss Thang and takes up soccer and science. And just to spice things up a bit, a boy gets added to the mix.
K. Charles manages to craft a believable picture of middle school life in this first book of the Double Dutch Dolls Series. Young readers will identify with the angst of the popularity issue as the sisters begin to realize that switching places may not be such a good idea. The book depicts sisters coming to terms with their differences as they navigate the trials and tribulations of middle school. Double Dare is a great addition to Multicultural Children’s Book Day.
About the author:
Kelie Charles is the writer and creator of the multicultural Double Dutch Dolls book series. As a young girl, she loved to read. Her favorites included Sweet Valley High and anything Judy Blume because they were fun stories about girls her age with similar experiences. She always wished there were books like those that reflected multicultural characters that looked like her. So, when she grew up she created a tween book series that speaks to today’s multicultural girl.
Kelie is passionate about encouraging a love of reading in children from a very young age. “If you reach children when they are young and find a way to instill a joy and passion for reading, they will carry that with them for a lifetime.” Her inspiration comes from all the young girls she has met along the way. The characters are not perfect because neither are we but each one of them is smart, beautiful, spunky, and brave and positively reflects all of the wonderful things in our children every day.
The first three books in the series, Double Dare, Double Trouble and Double Time, are available in paperback and ebook. An adapted version of the first book in the series for young girls age 6-8 will be available early 2015.
Kelie resides in the suburbs of Atlanta, Georgia with her husband and two sons and despite her busy schedule maintains her passion for reading and enjoys books from every genre. Currently, she is reading “The Dinner” by Henry Koch.