Release Date: February 28, 2017
Publisher: Harper Audio
Length: 11 hours 40 minutes
Narrator: Bahni Turpin
Buy: Audible | Kindle | Paperback
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.
Review:This was an amazing book. Thomas is able to handle a tragic situation with delicacy. This isn't just about the shooting of an unarmed black teen, its also about fitting in, wanting to uplift the neighborhood you come from but also knowing when its time to leave. The struggle of being an inner city kid going to a suburban school, the difference in culture between white suburban teens and black inner city teens. Its about stereotypes, and the way in which the news often puts victims on violence on trial instead of their attacker. Thomas brings you into the story and guides you through the ups and downs, the decisions we make consciously or unconsciously about how we behave in certain situations.
I'm not even sure how else to review this book except to say that everyone should read it and it should be on a required reading list for every school. It should be used as a tool to discuss race and equality, to examine our own bias. This is not a cop bashing, white hating book. There is bias on both sides of the color line, but it brings it to the surface puts a face to it in a way that is non threatening. I loved it.
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