Tuesday, November 13, 2018

*Review* The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

Genre: YA Contemporary Fiction
Published: February 28, 2017
Pages: 447

Sixteen-year-old Starr Carter moves between two worlds: the poor neighborhood where she lives and the fancy suburban prep school she attends. The uneasy balance between these worlds is shattered when Starr witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend Khalil at the hands of a police officer. Khalil was unarmed.

Soon afterward, his death is a national headline. Some are calling him a thug, maybe even a drug dealer and a gangbanger. Protesters are taking to the streets in Khalil’s name. Some cops and the local drug lord try to intimidate Starr and her family. What everyone wants to know is: what really went down that night? And the only person alive who can answer that is Starr.

But what Starr does—or does not—say could upend her community. It could also endanger her life.

I have been wanting to read this book ever since Joood - Hooligan, my arch-nemesis, told me I couldn't, and I finally managed to carve out the time to do it because my old book club in Germany was reading it for their most recent meeting (and I'm supposed to maybe meet up with the few members that now live near me to talk about it too). I wish I hadn't waited so long to read it, but it's no less relevant now than when it was released a year and a half ago. 

I had a harder time putting myself in Starr's shoes than I typically have, but I think that's mostly because Starr's life experiences differed so greatly from my own, and I don't want to believe that people in America actually have very similar experiences to Starr's. Ultimately, this book hurt my heart and I find it kind of amazing that minorities don't spend their entire lives just raging at the world. I don't know that I could deal with even a fraction of the bullshit they clearly deal with from society in general on a regular basis. 

With all of that in mind, I truly believe that this book should be required reading in every high school, either in English class or a social sciences class. Based on posts I've seen on the internet, I believe it would be relatable for minorities, which is something I understand is very much missing from most of the required reading in public schools at the moment. And I think it could go a long way towards teaching white kids more empathy, so that maybe in the future when a black kid is killed, they won't automatically be blamed for their murder as if they somehow deserved it. 

Overall I give The Hate U Give 5.4287 stars. - Katie 

Angie Thomas was born, raised, and still resides in Jackson, Mississippi as indicated by her accent. She is a former teen rapper whose greatest accomplishment was an article about her in Right-On Magazine with a picture included. She holds a BFA in Creative Writing from Belhaven University and an unofficial degree in Hip Hop. She can also still rap if needed. She is an inaugural winner of the Walter Dean Myers Grant 2015, awarded by We Need Diverse Books. Her debut novel, The Hate U Give, was acquired by Balzer + Bray/HarperCollins in a 13-house auction. Film rights have been optioned by Fox 2000 with George Tillman attached to direct and Hunger Games actress Amandla Stenberg set to star.

For more info or to sign up, click here.

No comments:

Post a Comment