Tight (paperback)

by Torrey Maldonado


Tight is about a boy named Bryan who lives in the projects in Brooklyn, New York.  His dad is in and out of jail for fighting and teaches Bryan it is better to be feared than liked.  His mom and dad introduce him to a boy named Mike who seems great at first, but soon pressures Bryan into doing things he doesn’t want to do, but Bryan doesn’t want to be “soft” in front of Mike, so he does them.  Bryan just wants to live drama-free where he can draw and read comics, but Mike wants to go subway surfing and skip school.  Bryan finds himself in a tough position and has to make some tough choices for himself.

What I liked about this book is that I was picturing who I was going to hand it to in my class first.  It has everything that many of my sixth grade boys need- drama, not wanting to look soft or like a snitch, bulling, peer pressure, etc.  What I really appreciated was that there was no talk of drugs, alcohol, sex, or violence with weapons, elements that could push this into more of a YA or mature book.  This was just about a sixth grade boy and common pressures on him, things my own students are dealing with.  Plus, it’s easy reading, and short.  I already have a student to hand this to.

What I didn’t like about this book was that I really wanted Mike to get busted.  I know this had more of a lesson at the end, which was really, really awesome, but the teacher in me wanted Mike to get caught and disciplined.

Book 6 of 2019