Jacqueline Pitts has proven herself a folklorist and griot with her debut work. Just like Zora Neale Hurston explored the African-American culture with archeology and storytelling, so has Mrs. Pitts.
The Children of Wasafa: A Message to Gang Bangers is an in-depth story that follows the descendents of Wasafa, an African from the Chokwe tribe. It starts in modern- contemporary time with the stories of gang members Thomas “Big T” Ellis, Samuel “Izzie” Allen, Javier Moreno, Tony Daniels, and Carl Beckels from three different gangs that inhabits Rockaway, New York and Lucy Barito, a young activist from Brazil. Then it travels back to colonial times and the Transatlantic Passage that begins the Wasafa family saga.
Mrs. Pitts does a good job weaving the intricate stories together and taking care of the reader by reinforcing information.
There are several themes that are established in the story but the one theme that is consistently throughout the story is “family bond.”
The Children of Wasafa: A Message to Gang Bangers is story that should not only benefit gang members but the whole African-American community.