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Break On Through-- Illustration by Siloette
Break On Through
Amazon.com Amazon.com
Powell's Books Powell's Books

Jill gives an overview of the book:

Just when Nadine “Lady Six Sky” Durant’s crew finally has a shot at the Hogtown Showdown, the T-Dot’s biggest b-boy battle, her parents drop the bomb: they’re moving from Parkdale, downtown, to cheesy Rivercrest, a million miles away in the middle of nowhere. Is this a conspiracy to keep her from breakdancing? Are they trying to force a break up with her boyfriend, Ruckus? And how’s she going to get respect in Rivercrest, when everywhere she turns another hater is waiting to smack her down? But b-girling is hers and nothing is going to stop Nadine from dancing.
Read full overview »

Just when Nadine “Lady Six Sky” Durant’s crew finally has a shot at the Hogtown Showdown, the T-Dot’s biggest b-boy battle, her parents drop the bomb: they’re moving from Parkdale, downtown, to cheesy Rivercrest, a million miles away in the middle of nowhere.

Is this a conspiracy to keep her from breakdancing? Are they trying to force a break up with her boyfriend, Ruckus? And how’s she going to get respect in Rivercrest, when everywhere she turns another hater is waiting to smack her down?

But b-girling is hers and nothing is going to stop Nadine from dancing.

Read an excerpt »

Chapter 1

 

I can see myself winning when I close my eyes.

It’s March. I’m at the final round of the Hogtown Showdown, the most important b-boy battle of the year in all of Toronto. My crew, Rackit Klub, is up against the legendary Infinite Jest. Some of them have been breaking since before I could walk. Not only did they start this battle, they’ve won it eight times, not to mention all the titles they hold in New York, LA and every far flung cipher and circle around the planet. They’ve been in the newspaper. They’ve been on TV. Their videos have made the top ten of almost every b-boy website there is. Sponsors give them free clothes. When local MCs want b-boys in their videos, Infinite Jest gets called up first. All that’s left is for someone to name a shoe after them.

Meanwhile, me and the boys of tha Rackit Klub have trouble getting practice space at school. We can’t even get an invitation to the sessions that Infinite leads. So far, nothing we do grabs their attention or anyone else’s.

Until today.

You can feel it in the air. Something amazing is going to happen. The crowd knows it too. As we’re called to the floor, everyone–b-boys, fans, photographers–they all rush to the side of the circle. Some use their elbows to get to the front.

Infinite jokes around with fans and makes fun of the DJ–a personal friend. By now, anyone who’s anyone in this scene and not jealous is a personal friend of Infinite Jest.

I’m terrified, but my nerves are helping me focus. That’s one thing about me. I like pressure. The cash prize is close to $5,000 but more than that, I’m driven by the chance to show what I can do next to the best of the best.

I’m wearing my lucky pants today. (The grey cargoes my mother hates– too faded.) I am also wearing my lucky shoes (too expensive), lucky shirt (too tight) and lucky hoop earrings. (”How do you dance in those?”) My hair is twisted up under my lucky bandana from my Mexican grandmother (too ratty), beneath my lucky hat with the patch from my Jamaican grandfather (makes me look like a boy). Even my bra feels lucky today. (Don’t even get me started.) It’s a silver bikini bathing suit top but you can only tell if you’re looking harder than you should be. I am hot. I am tough. I am a superhero in camo-print sneakers. I can melt you with my eyes. I can shoot lasers from my hands. I don’t just have my game face on; I am the game.

The rest of my crew is bugging out nervous. Encore and Recoil are pacing back and forth, bumping fists and reviewing strategies. I listen to the music and force my brain to quiet down; no easy feat with Sean, a.k.a. Ruckus, a.k.a. my boyfriend, hopping around beside me, cracking his knuckles and muttering under his breath. If we can beat Infinite Jest, the money won’t even matter. A victory here is like an automatic upgrade. If we beat them, we’ll become the crew to beat.

Read the rest of Chapter one at JillMurray.com

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Note from the author coming soon...

About Jill

Writer and perpetually injured wanna-b-girl, Jill “2-left” Murray, dances when no one is watching. A web designer and theatre school graduate, she goes back and forth between Toronto and Montreal with her partner in crime, emcee More or Les, and their b-gle, Frances....

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Published Reviews

Nov.12.2008

"From its original plot, centred on the world of breakdancing, to its determined, complex heroine, Break on Through is an engaging slice-of-life read for teens interested in something beyond the usual boys-...

Nov.12.2008

"Murray's female characters are strong and talented young women who have chosen breakdancing, a typically male domain, as their musical pursuit. Whether young female readers are interested or not in b-girls...