Delta Legend - Kelan O'Connell

Actual score 4.75

Okay so the past few months I had been searching endlessly for YA fantasy inspired books that featured more African American boys or teens.I was introduced to one however it wasn't exactly what I was looking for in terms of connecting with the character. I thought the character lacked weaknesses and that just made me disconnect with the character. Delta Legend however gave me my faith back in regards to searching for young black males in books!




Her character reminded me of a cousin or a classmate of mine. Let me start by saying that there is no correct way to portray a black teenage boy.Details in creating characters especially Poc characters, should really be based on the back story, environment and upbringing of the character in question. This story(in my opinion)portrayed an African American teenager that just happened to be from the inner city. What's interesting enough is that the book has a similar formula to most YA books. The main character moves from some big city to some hole in the wall city with a small population, the only difference is that the character is African American, which really makes him stand out.(He moves to a place where really little black people live)



The story follows Calvin Pierce, a teenager from Oakland. When his best friend gets him into some legal trouble, his mom thinks it's best that she send him away for the summer. For a city boy moving to the Delta is a complete nightmare, but as a son who respects his mother, he goes along. He thinks moving to the "Delta" is going to be uneventful and a pain all summer, but people begin dropping like hot cakes and it's got him questioning whether or not he would have been better off in Oakland all summer.



Before you start questioning the genre, I'll confess that's pretty much Urban Fantasy. My description of the plot makes it seem like just some other story, but it mixes a lot of Chinese Lore and features a fantastical creature/beast. You have to read it to find out what it is, but I kid you not, it is fantasy.



I think what I most liked about this book were the characters and the slight humor.Calvin and Mei-Li were my favorite characters. I thought their little relationship was cute.It's rare when I read a black male as a lead character in YA and even rarer to see him as the love interest of a cute girl. Mei-Li's little brother was hilarious! But i think the thing I liked most about this story is that it's rare to read a book with this set up not told from a white character. Maybe i'm putting race too much in it, but I can count on one hand the amount of books I read featuring a black main character in a YA Fantasy novel.



I would recommend this book to fans of books featuring mythical creatures, humor and characters who work as a team to right wrongs.Because their community is very small, all the characters had to work together to get a hold on things, and let me tell you, it wasn't exactly easy.



The main character reminded me of the main character in Attack the block(a British movie)named Moses. He was really selfless and courageous. I wish I can say I've read more books featuring characters like this!