A Girl Named Mister by Nikki Grimes
Published by Zondervan
Mary Rudine, called Mister, is a good Christian girl who goes to church and obeys her mother and God. But when she meets Trey, everything she thought she knew about herself evaporates as she is drawn in by his gorgeous face and charming personality. One mistake leads to a huge secret, and as Mister struggles with this huge decision she must make, she turns to Mary, a teen in a similar situation, for comfort.
A Girl Named Mister is a novel written in verse, a format I’ve come to realize is kind of polarizing. Most people either love these kinds of books or can’t stand them. Fortunately, I’m in the love it camp so from the beginning, I knew this book was going to work for me.
I felt intense compassion for Mister as soon as I began reading her story. She had made a mistake, yes, but this mistake was about to change the entire course of her life. What’s worse, she didn’t know how her mother would react so she didn’t feel that she could share her secret with anyone, leaving her feeling incredibly lonely and isolated. The juxtaposition of Mary’s story with Mister’s was an interesting choice on the part of Grimes, I think, but it worked well. Both girls were struggling with a huge secret, one that they could only take to God, and both girls ended up with a deeper understanding of God’s love because of it. While their stories were hugely different, I could see how Grimes made the connection between the two and it helped me see Mary’s story in a whole new way.
A Girl Named Mister is a quick read but it does pack quite a punch. There’s a lot of heart in this story and in Mister herself. I actually loved this book and for those of you who enjoy novels in verse and either enjoy or don’t mind a Christian theme, I would highly recommend it.