Excerpt from The Hate U Give

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Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme. Read the rules and more teasers at The Purple Booker. Anyone can play along.

The Hate U Give, by Angie Thomas. I knew this book was popular as a window into the world of young POC, but I skimmed past it a number of times without picking it up. Why? Honestly, it was the cover. It looks to me like high school chick lit. Relationships, putting on a public face, figuring out who you are.

But that is a gross misjudgment of what The Hate U Give is. If you are looking for a book that will help you to understand what #blacklivesmatter is all about, the poverty, violence, and racism faced by those living in the ghetto (to use the word that Starr, the protagonist employs,) then this is a great place to start.

I am nearly finished, and while I wasn’t sure when I started it that this would be a “real” book—one that dug deep to really expose the emotions and cultural underpinnings that is the reality for so many people—rather than a drama about high school cliques, I was not disappointed. I’m glad that I picked it up.

The Hate U Give covers a lot of the issues that have been in the media the past few weeks: police on black killings, black lives matter, protests and riots, and the spectrum of racism in everything from not smiling at black children to outright prejudice/judgement against people of colour. Thank you, Angie Thomas, for a great story.

“People like us in situations like this become hashtags, but they rarely get justice. I think we all wait for that one time though, that one time when it ends right.”

― Angie Thomas, The Hate U Give

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.

Tell me what you think!

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