Review: The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

 Series: Standalone

Genre: YA, contemporary, drama

Diversity: POC, Asian American character

Rating: 4.5/5 Stars

Cover: I love how powerful the pink cover is.

Links: goodreads

Trigger warnings: drugs, violence, racism

Description: 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: Very thought-provoking YA.

I had some slight troubles getting into this book, but the reason for this is not the story. I’m just not used to the used language, since most books – or most books I read – aren’t using slang. It didn’t hinder my enjoyment of The Hate U Give though. Okay, enjoyment is not the right word…

This book enraged me, frightened me, gave me goosebumps and made me teary-eyed. And that’s exactly what I think should happen. Not only when reading THUG but hearing the news of or being present when racist police officers misuse their job.

I had to look at the book’s information while reading because I kept thinking to myself ‘This book has been published in the US?!’ Well, it didn’t. Or at least the version I’ve read didn’t.

You see, it just seems so real and since it’s #ownvoices I believe that it is real. Honestly, here in Germany we don’t get a lot of information about US racist cops, but we see enough. Put this together with the things I see with Social Media? It’s been fucking time for a book like THUG to be published! And I’m hoping for way more.

Just because it’s YA doesn’t mean a book can’t have a powerful message. Not only adults experience racism, so why shouldn’t it be written about in YA?

I feel like I’m going down a political route… not that that’s bad but I want to talk about The Hate U Give.

And I really love this book but for one thing.

Remember how I just talked about it being real? There is one thing that doesn’t feel realistic at all. It’s a small thing but kinda spoiler-y so if you want to stop reading my review here, that’s alright. You won’t miss anything important.

Starr doesn’t talk to her boyfriend about the things she has experienced. And I don’t know why. Of course she’s being like “he’s white!” but… he’s your boyfriend. Talk to him before going on television and having him find out that way?! You like him, maybe even love him… why shouldn’t he be a comfort to you in this time? And if you think he can’t or maybe even react racist… why be with him?


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