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cover of Friday I'm in Love book

Friday I’m In Love

Mahalia couldn’t afford a big Sweet Sixteen like her best friend, Naomi, so works to throw herself a coming-out party instead.
cover of Friday I'm in Love book

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In Friday I’m In Love Mahalia spends a lot of time imagining and planning her party to celebrate how gay she is. Talk with students about Mahalia’s party plans and how the party she gets gives her way to celebrate herself. Then ask students to think about what kind of party they would have to celebrate who they are–as readers!

Have students develop a plan for their party. Start by asking them to think about their reading identities, including what kinds of books they like to read, where they like to read, and who they like to talk about books with. Their party plans should include a party theme, location, invitation list, menu, decorations, budget, playlist, and attire. Once plans are complete, have students write a social media thread that describes their party and how they felt about it.

Questions for Discussion or Reflective Writing

  1. What does Mahalia’s desire to have a coming out party–and her dedication to working to save up the money for it–tell you about who she is? Why is the party so important to her?
  2. What is Mahalia’s relationship with her mother like? How do their financial struggles impact their relationship? How does her mother’s religion impact their relationship? How does their relationship change over the course of the book?
  3. What do you make of Naomi and Mahalia’s friendship? What effects do external pressures have on their relationship? How is Naomi’s life different from Mahalia’s? How does Naomi’s privilege affect their friendship? Why is it so difficult for both of them to talk about Mahalia’s economic realities and Naomi’s privileged life?
  4. How does Mahalia feel about music? Why is it important to her to share a playlist with Siobhan?  What role does music play in your life? What songs would you play at a party celebrating your true self?

Related Resources

Discussion Guide from Random House
A Playlist for Siobhan (with input from Naomi)

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