I’m excited to share today’s blog post, a book review, on the YA novel The Hate U Give. I feel like it’s been a little while since I’ve done a book review, and to be honest I thought I would have read more during quarantine, but mentally I just couldn’t get there. All the books I tried to get into just weren’t doing it for me.
It’s not crazy to say that the world has been utter chaos this year so far. When the BLM protests broke out in Seattle, and more and more so across the country- even the world, I decided to take it upon myself to find a book that would help me understand the protesting better, if that makes any sense, I’m not quite sure how to phrase that correctly.
So after seeing dozens of social media posts about which books to read right now written by black authors, I decided to pick up a copy of The Hate U Give. And let me tell you now, this book was fantastic. I couldn’t put it down. It constantly left me in one of the stereotypical book nerd states where I would always tell myself “just one more chapter.”
The book also smelled like a library book, despite buying it from the store, which I absolutely loved, but that’s a minor superficial detail about this book.
The novel follows 16 year old Starr, who struggles to cope with the murder of her friend Khalil, who was killed by the hands of white cops. I found it very interesting and also very sad to see how often issues like this happen in someone like Starr’s community. It reminds the reader that police brutality and racial injustice are still very much a thing, and the best weapon we have to fight against it is our voices.
I became so immersed in this story, that it made me feel a part of the struggle that Starr was dealing with. The contrast between Garden Heights, where Starr lives, and the private school Starr and her brother attend, Williamson Prep is like night and day.
Starr feels she can’t be her real self at Williamson because she doesn’t want to be cast as any stereotypical black girl, when only one other student at the school is black as well. Seeing the difference between her two worlds, you realize that even if you might know what’s going on in black communities, that it’s very likely impossible to understand.
The Hate U Give is a wake up call; it is an in depth, personal look at issues that are happening every day for POC. This book urges us to make a difference and use our voices to demand justice for innocent lives lost.
I would highly, highly recommend this book. It is a great book that perfectly describes the struggles of being a person of color in this world.
Click here to read: The Hate U Give