The story takes place in Suffolk, Virginia; New York City; Louisville, Kentucky; Oberlin, Ohio; and then finally Wilmington, Delaware. When james was growing up they didn't live in a nice house and didn't have much money. He had to wear hand-me-down clothes.
The main characters in the book were James and Ruth. The secondary characters in the book were Dennis, Mameh,
The point of view alternates between James and his mom Ruth.
A water droplet signified race. It first came up when James was learning about racial divide and he wondering was color god was. This is evident on page 51
The theme of this book was coming of age. It first started with James as a kid asking about his race. He then grows up and starts to do his own. Then in the end he is grown up and has a job.