First introduced in Latasha and the Little Red Tornado (2011), the almost 10-year-old is still adoring her three-legged dog, Ella Fitzgerald, and taking on new challenges—including joining a group of other gifted and talented children in her Pittsburgh school to put on a show and trying to reconnect with her absent father. The latter proves to be challenging indeed, as Patrick Kidd turns out to be a charming but unreliable musician who stood up her mother when it mattered most and ultimately does the same to her. Along with mending a rift with her best friend, discovering the repercussions of mouthing off to a teacher, and other common experiences, Latasha begins to work her way toward the realization that her father’s not going to change. She also deals with complex reactions from her friends when they learn that he’s white. Both dogs and deep emotional issues occupy the center of this fetching sequel, and the occasional realistically modeled black-and-white illustrations capture several of its more intimate and wryly comical moments. Grades 4-6. --John Peters
About the Author
received his MFA in dramatic writing from Carnegie Mellon University, and today is the author of several novels for children and the Tales of Midlandia
picture book and iPad app series. In 2011, he was selected by Pittsburgh
magazine and Pump
as one of the "Pittsburgh 40 Under 40," a group of forty people under the age of forty who are helping to shape the Pittsburgh region. In his spare time, he enjoys cooking and photography. He lives in the city of Pittsburgh with his lovely wife and their crafty dog.