Softback: 304 pages
| When one thinks of violent urban gangs, the image conjured is usually not one of a mob of females beating up a victim. Gini Sikes’ portrait of female gangs in America, which she spent almost two years researching, will shock and move you. She delves far beyond the usual clichés and shows a depth to her subjects that is rarely seen. These girls carry razor blades in their mouths and get into fights just like their male counterparts, but many of them overcome tremendous adversity to get out of their gangs and change their lives. Sikes reports on these girl gangsters with compassion and honesty, compellingly raising the issue of our troubled urban youth without posturing or preaching.
In this issue of Bold Type, Gini Sikes reads from her book and offers an excerpt that details her first encounter with a girl gang in New York’s Lower East Side. An interview with the author expands upon how the experience of researching and writing 8 Ball Chicks has changed her.