"Unsparing, remarkably unsentimental" Kirkus Reviews
"'Mama say I’m grown now because I got Imani. She say Imani all mine.' So begins Porter’s latest novel, the story of 15-year-old Tasha, who is trying to grow up in a bleak housing project in Buffalo, New York, get good grades in school, and take care of her daughter without the participation or emotional support of her mother. Tasha won’t tell her mother that she had been raped, so she must endure her mother’s angry refusal to have anything to do with the infant. Furthermore, Tasha sees the boy who raped her every day in school, and his presence sickens her. She wishes him dead.
Imani’s name means "faith" in the Swahili language, and Tasha needs faith--in herself and in her friends, but mostly in herself--to survive. Despite her youth, she is a good mother, but when she briefly shakes her baby in anger and frustration, she is consumed with guilt. As the well-cared-for Imani approaches her first birthday, she becomes a joy that even her grandmother cannot resist. The tragedy at the end of the book takes that joy away, but it also begins the reconciliation between mother and daughter, as those around her acknowledge that Tasha cannot go it alone.
Written in dialect from Tasha’s first-person point of view, Porter’s novel flows lyrically. In spite of the hardships in her life, Tasha maintains a sense of humor and balance. Porter goes beyond the teenage mother stereotype to present a heroine full of courage and love for her child and ready to face the difficulties and responsibilities of her life." Multicultural Review
"Connie Porter's beautifully realized novel, IMANI ALL MINE, told in Tasha's voice, is the story of great promise shining through monstrous obstacles...The devastation of that promise is expertly depicted by Porter...[a] captivating novel." The New York Times
"Elegant, moving . . . a triumph of spirit." Pittsburg Post Gazette