Journal of a Cymbal Player: Freshman Year
Jackie Roberts (nickname Jacks) is 5’4”, weighs 115 pounds, fourteen and just entered high school. She’s still flat chested and feels like an alien when compared to other girls on campus. To avoid a regular physical education class she decides to join the marching band under the advice of her cousin.
Her English teacher, Mrs. Lovegood, assigns everyone in her class to begin keeping a journal on a daily basis. She doesn’t like the idea of writing everyday even if it is only eight minutes out of a day. Jackie feels tortured trying to come up with five sentences per day as well.
As an introvert, Jackie has a hard time fitting in but it seems even harder as a cymbal player. She questions where she belongs with the band. She must maintain a “C” average to stay in the band, which is something she is struggling with. Her cousin comes back to visit during Christmas break to challenge her even more. She is in search of a voice to shout her desire to control more of what happens in her life, her body, her friends… she wants to be heard and understood.
She soon realizes her journal is her voice.
In this day and age, one would believe that skin color would not matter, but in this coming of age novel, Sandra Ray learns that it still matters in a painful way. Although she is twenty three, attends college full time and works as a sales associate, she has a little growing up to do. She realizes she can’t live with her sister and brother-in-law forever and is angry and bitter from feeling a lack of control of what happens in her life. When her sister and brother-in-law try to set her up with a successful Pediatrician she resists with all her might. It’s the one thing she believes she can control… or can she?