Surviving Chadwick: A Novel
by Phillip Wilhite
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California, 1973. After being awarded a scholarship to attend an elite boarding school in Ojai, California, fifteen-year-old Isaiah Issacson is plucked from his inner-city Oakland neighborhood and thrust into a new—and frightening—atmosphere.
But Isaiah doesn't embrace this new life. Most of the students at Chadwick are rich, spoiled, and white. Unfortunately, his parents, Southern-born and part of the 1950s exodus by African-Americans to the west coast, view Isaiah's scholarship as an opportunity to fulfill Martin Luther King's dreams of racial and educational equality. Too bad Isaiah doesn't see it that way.
Coming from a drastically different background, Isaiah has a difficult time relating to any of the students, and he soon clashes with instructors and fellow classmates. The search for his identity and how he fits in with this elite group soon begins to wear on him. After he meets the beautiful and intelligent Jenaye Gardner and begins a promising love affair, things begin to spiral more out of control. Now, Isaiah has only one goal in mind: to get kicked out of the most elite boarding school in California.
A brilliant coming-of-age novel, Surviving Chadwick reveals one teenager's inner struggle to forge his identity in a new and challenging world.