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Begging for Change (Bccb Blue Ribbon Fiction Books (Awards)) Hardcover – June 2, 2003


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Product Details

  • Series: Bccb Blue Ribbon Fiction Books (Awards)
  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Jump At The Sun (June 2, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 078680601X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0786806010
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,764,766 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 5-8-This sequel to Money Hungry (Hyperion, 2001) offers a compelling slice of urban life for a contemporary African-American teen. When Raspberry Hill's mother is hit in the head with a metal pipe and hospitalized, the 14-year-old steals money from her wealthy best friend's purse. She does odd jobs to earn additional money, only to have it stolen by her homeless, drug-addicted father more than once. Readers come to know Raspberry, her friends, and the people around her. While some are dangerous, a sense of community caring comes through, and she finds help among supportive adults. She is a survivor with a good heart, although she questions herself along the way, always worrying that she will end up like her father. With good friends and a truly loving mother to help her through, it's clear that Raspberry will make it, even if she gets a little bruised in the process. A story with an inspiring but not preachy message.
Sunny Shore, Chestnut Ridge Middle School, NY
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist

*Starred Review* Gr. 7-12. "Would you be all right if your mother got hit in the head with a pipe and your father was high as a kite?" In this sequel to Money Hungry (2001) Raspberry Hill's mother is in the hospital after being attacked by a neighborhood teenage girl, and Raspberry's father, homeless and addicted to drugs, resurfaces. Terrified that she and her mother may land back on the streets, Raspberry steals money from a friend. Is she turning into her father? Flake's charged, infectious dialogue will sweep readers through the first-person story as Raspberry describes her fears and moral quandaries; her new romance; her fierce love for her mother; and her powerful, conflicted feelings about her dad. Although vivid images of urban poverty, violence, and drug addiction clearly illustrate why Raspberry is so afraid, Flake never sensationalizes. The identity struggles of some of Raspberry's biracial friends threaten, at times, to distract from the main story, but Flake manages ultimately to balance her many plots and blend them into a hopeful novel that encourages readers to share Raspberry's questions: Can money buy security? How do you forgive those who have hurt you? Does violence ever stop rippling through a community once it begins? Gillian Engberg
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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I would recommend this book to young adults readers.
Mima
I give it five stars..... really awesome to read and the first one named money hungry.
Isis Oglesby
SO much happens in the book that you can't put it down.
Tajah

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Shamontiel L. Vaughn on December 18, 2005
Format: Paperback
I debate with folks all the time about the route that BET is taking. Some say that BET is only selling sex, while I say they are only giving what's sent to them. Publishers are doing the same thing. When all they're getting is fiction writers who seem to love erotica more than a storyline, that's what's put out. But then there's the writers who stick to a good script to sell their story. Whether this book was for young adults or not, I believe the writer has a strong enough talent of telling a story so we don't have to read a porno book. In this book, I find myself grinning at the "love" scenes and I haven't done that in a very long time with fiction. Simple blushing, first kisses, and shyness with dancing are perfect fun and bring back old memories of my childhood.

I love scripts about black young people growing up and dealing with their maturing emotions. A young girl named Raspberry has a thieving crackhead as a father, a dreamer as a mother, and enough male role models to give her beliefs in the sanctity of love. Her friends/associates/enemies have their own set of baggage: dealing with being a bi-racial child, unemployment, and friendships being torn by mistrust.

I am just crazy about this author and this book. I didn't remember reading another one of her books "Skin I'm In" but when I saw it was on my recommendation website, I see why. I'm going to read every last one of the books this writer writes!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By TheRAWKidzReview on June 22, 2003
Format: Hardcover
BEGGING FOR CHANGE is the highly anticipated sequel to Sharon G. Flake's Money Hungry. This book picks up the story of Raspberry Hill a girl who is obsessed with money, because of the security it brings her. Determined not to be homeless again, Raspberry is the budding entrepreneur, doing anything legal to obtain money. In this book, she finds that although money can bring about security, it cannot ensure happiness.
The book begins with Raspberry's mother being assaulted by a young girl because she is trying to keep peace in her neighborhood. Raspberry is distraught, feels threatened, and as a result she steals money from her best friend, Zora. This causes a rift between the girls. Raspberry also begins to develop feelings for Sato, a boy from her school. She is faced with the dilemma of being in love without losing her entrepreneurial spirit. The book also introduces Raspberry's father, a homeless, crack addict. Although Raspberry loves her father, she has difficulties in "liking" him, especially when he steals her hard-earned money. She also deals with an identity crisis, wondering if she has inherited any of her father's ways.
Sharon G. Flake has done it again. Her latest book ties up loose ends from Money Hungry, but introduces new problems and situations. The recurring theme of the identity crisis, shown through Raspberry and her biracial friend, Mai, is one that children who read this book will readily relate to. I highly recommend this book for fans of Flake, and for children who may have difficulties accepting themselves or their parents.
Reviewed by Latoya Carter-Qawiyy
The RAWSISTAZ Reviewers
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By 50 Cent on January 6, 2005
Format: Hardcover
Raspberry Hill, who was once homeless vowed never to be on the streets again. She thought that money was everything. But when a neighbor attacks her mom and nearly kills her, she starts to steal from her best friend and from her other neighbors. After her best friend finds out, she loses a very dear friend. Raspberry, who loves money so much, doesn't admit what she has done. At the same time she is struggling between two hard relationships, her blossoming one with a Sato, a boy from school, and her drug addicted father, who steals from Raspberry, lies, and is living by himself on the streets. After stealing from her best friend and good neighbor, she can't help but think that she has inherited her father's lying and stealing ways.

I would recommend this book because I think it was fun to read and I enjoyed it very much. It was very captivating because of the way it captured the characters' moods.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By BookRemarks on June 19, 2003
Format: Hardcover
I haven't read a juvenile fiction book in quite some time but the voice of the narrator is what made me want to read Begging for Change. It's the story of Raspberry, a young girl who is going through much adversity that involves her family and friends. I think Raspberry is a character that kids or grownups can understand. She is emotional - mad, happy, afraid, shy, indignant, jealous, and everything in between. She's not perfect, she's real and that's a wonderful attribute to find in fiction. If you enjoy reading about young people and want to understand how they think and where they are coming from in terms of friendships, family, loyalty, and justice, you might enjoy reading Begging for Change.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on March 30, 2007
Format: Paperback
Raspberry is certain...something's got to change. Raspberry Hill is a teenager who is going through some hardships in her life. Her mother was taken to the hospital after being attacked by a wisecracking teenage neighbor. As a result, Raspberry goes to stay with her friend Zora and her dad, Dr. Mitchell. While staying there, Raspberry steals from Zora's purse, while at a restaurant. Once her mom is well again, Raspberry moves back with her mom, but her crack-headed father returns and steals her money. With this, Raspberry apologizes to Zora and understands what it is like to have something be taken without permission. I recommend this book to all teenagers and their friends.

For one, it includes real life situations. Like when her father steals her money out of her room. Also the book shows how many parents are struggling and trying to pay the bills. In addition it describes what it is like to live in Section 8 or not have a caring father. Begging for change does an excellent job making the reader get emotionally feelings for the characters in the book.

Next, you could relate to the characters and their actions. For example, I could sense Zora's anger after Raspberry steals from her. In addition, I could experience Raspberry's joy once her mother comes home from the hospital. Also, I felt Raspberry's rue after stealing from Zora. While reading this book, I could put myself in their positions and see what I would have done.

Begging for Change has a wonderful moral for all people to understand. For instance, no matter how jealous you are, you should never steal from your friends like Raspberry did. In addition, when you steal from someone, it has an impact on your whole family and friends.
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