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The Hate U Give

Cover: 'The Hate U Give'

Staff Review: "The Hate U Give" by Angie Thomas


Sixteen-year-old Starr has become adept at navigating life in two distinct worlds. One is her black urban neighborhood of Garden Heights, where her father operates a small grocery store. The other is her suburban prep school in which she is one of a handful of black students, which lends her a certain cachet that overrides the income disparity between her and her classmates. When a neighborhood party erupts in violence, she flees the scene with an estranged childhood friend, Khalil. They are stopped by the police on the drive home. Khalil is not playing it “smart” as Starr’s parents had instructed her to do during encounters with the police, but Starr is stunned after the unarmed Khalil is shot and killed by the officer. Traumatized and terrified, Starr is confronted with the realities of being a witness to an officer-involved shooting and struggles to find her voice and the right course of action to pursue in the wake of this incident. This first-person narration is a thoughtful and compelling exploration of the issues that have fueled the Black Lives Matter movement as well as issues of racial identity and class. It is an intensely personal perspective provided in an authentically teen voice as Starr struggles to cope with her trauma and increasingly conflicted emotions. This book is recommended for readers of Jason Reynolds and/or those who have an interest in matters of race in 21st century America. The audiobook, which is available on OverDrive and through MCPL on CD is highly recommended.

Audience: teens | Genre: fiction

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