Summary: 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
Can I just say “READ IT!!” over and over again and call that a review? There are a lot of reviews out there that do a better job than I ever could of exploring the place of this book at this moment in society, but all I can say is how it impacted me as a reader. When a book gets as much buzz as this one has, and wins so many awards, I always go into reading it a little suspiciously, like, “Can it really be THAT good?” The answer, in this case, is “OMG absolutely!” Even all the accolades didn’t prepare me for what a gut punch of a book this would be, for how immersed I would become in the world of the story -and for how much, despite the heavy subject matter, I would truly enjoy spending time with Starr and the other characters. It’s an incredibly timely book, but its message and its story and the depth of its characters situate it as a classic for the ages. I full expect to see it on required reading lists for years to come.
THE HATE U GIVE is out now.