Book Review: The Harlem Charade by Natasha Anastasia Tarpley
The hometown you grew up in. Currently filled with secrets that only you can solve. In the book, The Harlem Charade by Natasha Tarpley, Elvin, Alex and Jin work together to reveal the mysteries buried beneath Harlem. Throughout the book, the three develop an everlasting bond. They assist one another to discover further information about Harlem, all while growing a friendship in which they’re grateful to have.
The group of friends are appreciative for their friendship and how easy it is for them to make each other's day. “Yes, and maybe I’ll be the next Queen of England…” Alex Chimed.” (Tarpley, 79). During this scene Elvin, Jin and Alex were about to introduce themselves to a lady named “Verta Mae Sneed”. The group of friends were weary and quite anxious to approach the lady. This shows how strong the bond between the friends is. Even during certain situations they always seem to be able to crack a joke and make one another laugh. In the reading, Alex got caught saying “What’s taking you slowpokes so long?” (Tarpley, 116). This refers to when both Jin, Elvin, and Alex were about to explore some of Harlem. Jin and Elvin were both on the same page about not being too excited. They can be heard saying “I’m still not sure this is a good idea” (Tarpley, 115). This confirms Alex is trying to lighten up the tension and console them. In doing this it shows how good of a friend they are to one another.
Jin, Alex, and Elvin were not only grateful for the extraordinary friendship they possess, but for how well they work together and help one another. “It’s an abandoned church now, and way back in the day, it used to be a carriage house and stable for the owners of the brownstones in the area”. (Tarpley, 192). The friends care for one another and this is a prime example of that. It portrays a bigger picture of the friendship. It demonstrates how they exchange information and work together harmoniously. Another example of this is when one of the friends says “This is one of the best research libraries in the city. Oh, and the ashes of the poet Langston Hughes are also buried here.” (Tarpley, 193). The friend group always appreciates one another and the information they provide. Even though no benefits were given directly to the friends, they always make sure to inform each other all they know.
The well-kept secrets were revealed. Jin, Elvin, and Alex succeeded at exposing the heart wrenching mystery of Harlem. In just a brief amount of time, the three friends were best friends. Throughout the story they learned to work together and cooperate with one another. In doing so they established a friendship they would never give up in a million years. Without each other they would have never been able to get as much done as they have. The value of friendship is not to be overlooked, as it may produce something magnificent. You may never know.