Monday 8 May 2017

Review: The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

Sixteen-year-old Starr lives in two worlds: the poor neighbourhood where she was born and raised and her posh high school in the suburbs. The uneasy balance between them is shattered when Starr is the only witness to the fatal shooting of her unarmed best friend, Khalil, by a police officer. Now what Starr says could destroy her community. It could also get her killed. Inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement, this is a powerful and gripping YA novel about one girl's struggle for justice.

Review: Wow! This was such a powerful, intense read. I have to admit that I couldn't read too much of this book at a time because it was so intense and made me question things going on around me. I loved this book though. There is so much hype surrounding it, I wasn't sure if I would or not but I really did find it an eye-opening page turner. One of the great things about this writer is that, similarly to John Green, she is honest with her audience. This book features racism, police brutality and gang culture and at no point does she sugar-coat this or pretend that it isn't happening. 

Starr is a great main character to tell this story though, and part of the narrative of this book is how Starr grows and changes as she realises the impact that she can have depending on what she does and doesn't say to the police and to the media. She has so much stuff thrown at her in this novel and yet she deals with it with integrity and really grows as a person because of it. One of the things I found difficult to read was the way she was treated at school because she was one of the only black students. Most of my teaching experience has been at a school with a complete mix of pupils and so there was no one person who wasn't represented elsewhere, but it was a real eye opener for me. 

Another thing that I think this writer does really well is the feeling within the community after the killing of Starr's friend and the protests that follow. She is able to show the fear through the other characters in the novel and their thoughts and actions. This is something I have never been through and yet I felt sympathy and empathy for the families that we follow in this novel. Although there is violence and drugs in this book, I definitely think that she has written this for the young adult novel and nothing is ever graphic or scary for the sake of being graphic or scary. I would definitely recommend this read, ignore the hype and make your own opinion by picking this novel up now. I can't wait to hear more from this brilliant writer!

To order your copy now, click here!

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