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When It All Syncs Up

Interest Age: 14+
Grade: 9+
Reading Level: Common Core Correlations
CCSS.ELA-Literacy Strand-Reading literature: RL.9.1,2,3,4,5,6,9  
W.9.1,1a,1b,1c,1d,1e,2,2a,2b,2c,2d,2e,2f,4,5,6,7,8,9,9b,10  
SL.9.1,1a,1b,1c,1d,2,3,4,5,6  
L.9,1a,1b,1c,1d,2,2a,2b,2c,3,3a,4,4a,4b,4c,4d,5,5a,5b,5c,6

Reading Level: Lexile HL720L
Hardcover : 9781773217819, 304 pages, June 2023 , 9.0" x 6.0"
Paperback : 9781773217826, 304 pages, September 2024 , 9.0" x 6.0"
Audiobook : 9781773217857, 304 pages, July 2023

Description

“A stunning read [. . .] simmering with tension and gripping to the final word.” —Debbie Rigaud, New York Times bestselling author of Simone Breaks All the Rules and A Girl’s Guide to Love & Magic

Now in paperback! A Black teen dancer with dreams of landing a spot in a prestigious ballet company must learn to dance on her own terms in this explosive debut about the healing power of art and friendship, perfect for fans of Heartstopper and Tiny Pretty Things.

Ballet is Aisha’s life. But when discrimination at her elite academy pushes her to her breaking point, she decides to pivot. At her new public arts school, Aisha scores more dance opportunities than she’s ever had before. And it doesn’t hurt that she gets to take classes with her bestie . . . and with Ollie, an adorably shy musician who keeps throwing off her usually impeccable balance.

Yet even as Aisha navigates friendships, family conflict, and first love, questions about her dance career open up new and old wounds. Aisha must find strength in herself and place her trust in others to make her next move.

"At times hopeful and beautiful but also heartbreakingly devastating, When It All Syncs Up is a story of love in so many forms. But maybe most important of all, it is about the love we give ourselves, and allow ourselves to be given, even at our most broken."—Jonny Garza Villa, author of the Pura Belpré Honor Book Fifteen Hundred Miles from the Sun

Awards

  • Joint winner, Best Books for Kids & Teens, Canadian Children’s Book Centre 2023
  • Joint winner, Kirkus Best of 2023 List 2023

Reviews

“A hopeful, realistic exploration of mental health among teens invested in the world of the arts.”

- Kirkus Reviews, *starred review, 03/29/23

“[A] tightly plotted and smoothly written novel that tackles issues of racism in classical ballet alongside mental health and body image conflicts.”

- Publishers Weekly, 04/27/23

“Ameyaw adeptly creates visceral responses to the characters’ situations, while treating their issues of mental health, eating disorders, and traumas from assault and alcoholism with sensitivity. A needed addition to all collections that serve young adults.”

—School Library Journal, *starred review, 08/23

- School Library Journal, *starred review, 08/23

“WHEN IT ALL SYNCS UP is a thoughtful, delicate illustration of the pivotal stage in which a teenager steps off the blueprint of childhood into the unknown.”

- Quill & Quire, 06/26/23

“Aisha is a realistic and well-developed character, and the challenges and mental health issues she and her friends struggle with are realistic and genuine.”

- Canadian Children’s Book News, Fall/23