Coming of Age and The Goddess Twins

I think I was in junior high when I first heard the term ‘coming of age’ but I remember it hitting me hard in the gut. That was what I was obsessed with reading bout! That’s what described, en mass, the type of books I loved the most, especially when they involved magic in some way.

Growing up there was one type of story that could fulfill my own ‘coming of age’ soul. I craved a story about black girls being magical and fabulous! This craving sat inside me for decades, and I thought someone else was going to write this story, this book resting on my heart. It took me so long to take the emotional leap of confidence to believe I could write a book. But once I got there, I knew what type of novel I’d write.


I am proud that from conception, The Goddess Twins is a ‘coming of age’ novel. Yes, there are contemporary fantasy elements, but it’s at the core about these very different girls who decide, for themselves and their loved ones, to become the best version of who they can be. This is what I love so much about coming of age stories. This aim of achieving maturity, despite unbelievable circumstances. It’s about the power of the human spirit to evolve.

Classic ‘coming of age’ novels many times star teenage protagonists, and can be found marked to teenage readers, especially High School English classes. To Kill a Mockingbird, Lord of the Flies, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, Anne of Green Gables. But these books are evergreen because they don’t only resonate with teens, but also adult readers of any age. I love the term ‘crossover’ because it encompasses the extension of age to the market. I have found adulthood a cornucopia of consistent evolution and revelations. I find it easy to relate to a young soul’s first big transformation because I’m still on that ride myself.

Early reviews indicate The Goddess Twins connects with both the Young Adult and ‘crossover’ reader market, and this was definitely an aim from the beginning. This is the genre and tone and subject matter of book I was searching to read as a teen myself. I can’t wait for its release in just a week(!) and hope readers of all ages fall for Arden and Aurora’s ‘coming of age’ adventure.

 

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Yodassa Williams is a powerful conjurer of black girl magic (70% Jedi, 30% Sith). A Jamaican American writer, speaker, and award winning performing storyteller, alumna of the VONA/Voices Travel Writing program and creator of the podcast ‘The Black Girl Magic Files’, Yodassa (Yoda) launched ‘Writers Emerging' in 2019, a wilderness writing retreat for women of color and non-binary people of color. In 2020, Yodassa's debut YA Fantasy, The Goddess Twins, will be published by Spark Press. She grew up in Cincinnati, Ohio and currently resides in the Bay Area.

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