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The Nelson Beats the Odds: Compendium One gives readers a chance to experience Nelson Beats the Odds and Tameka’s New Dress in one thrilling graphic novel. The compendium presents real tips for real life situations and is a great addition to library shelves. Nelson Beats the Odds features Nelson, a young man who used to think school was all about playing and talking with his friends. When Nelson learns that he’s been diagnosed as having a learning disability and ADHD, he is placed in special education and separated from his friends. Out of fear of being ridiculed and teased by classmates, Nelson attempts to keep his disability and struggles with learning a secret. With the encouragement of his parents and assistance from Mrs. T., his special education teacher, Nelson succeeds academically and reaches his full potential. 

Tameka’s New Dress presents sensitive issues, including childhood trauma, parental substance abuse, kinship care, and bullying in a way that’s gentle and suitable for children of all ages. In Tameka’s New Dress, a gifted middle school student faces the challenges and fears of being the new kid at school while dealing with the harsh reality of living in an abusive home. Throughout the short story, Tameka receives the encouragement she needs from her caregiver and other adults in the community to fight off the school’s bully without using violence.

Autographed Paperback Copy

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Nelson Beats The odds blog

"Paired graphic novels explore learning disabilities and bullying—and touch on foster care—for middle-grade and YA readers.

In the eponymous and first of these two debut graphic novels, black middle schooler Nelson has a hard time
concentrating. There are just so many people to talk to. New glasses help, but he still fights to stay focused. Finally he is diagnosed with ADHD and placed in special education classes. While he detests his new label, Nelson excels and anticipates a reunion with his friends in high school. Disheartened when he is placed in special ed there, Nelson and his parents lodge a protest. He struggles in the regular classroom but manages to graduate. After a few years in community college, he transfers to a university and becomes a social worker. He is encouraged by some supportive teachers, but other instructors motivate him to prove them wrong in their negative predictions for his future. The second graphic novel, Tameka’s New Dress, focuses on Nelson’s black friend Tameka, introduced in the first work. Tameka transfers to Nelson’s school after she and her siblings are removed from their mother’s care and placed with their grandmother.


Despite her friendship with Nelson and others, Tameka is the target of bullying because of her light skin. When her grandmother sews her a beautiful dress, making Tameka look like an African queen, the bullying is exacerbated. Tameka confronts the troublemakers—with kindness—and resolves the problem. Both tales are interspersed with relevant facts and quotes from celebrities—ranging from Channing Tatum to Oprah Winfrey—who have experienced the same difficulties as Nelson and Tameka, which should stir readers. Therapist, speaker, and social worker Sidney addresses racial and socio-economic issues germane to the characters’ trajectories but primarily highlights the self-reliance of the protagonists and the crucial positive influences a few caring adults can exert. The author expertly creates characters young readers should relate to and conveys his message and lessons without being heavy-handed. Van Wagoner’s (Cody and Grandpa’s Christmas Tradition, 2016, etc.) simple, colorful illustrations meld seamlessly with the text.


Engaging and inspirational tales for students coping with common problems." — Kirkus Reviews 



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Order 15 or more copies of Nelson Beats The Odds or Tameka's New Dress the cost per copy is reduced to $8.34 per copy. Order 15 or more copies of Nelson Beats the Odds: Compendium One, the cost per copy is reduced to $11 per copy. Please send inquiries to Ronnie@creative-medicine.com. Shipping rates and taxes will be applied based on your location and tax statusThank you for your support.

Nelson Beats The Odds: Compendium One

Combines Nelson Beats The Odds and Tameka's New Dress into one Amazing Graphic Novel