Author Angie Thomas has started with a bang as her debut novel has reached number one on the New York Times best-selling list for Young Adult Fiction. It has received some of the best critical acclaim and has even been transcribed into a script with a film that is due to release very soon (on various dates inn October and November 2018). The cast of the film includes huge stars such as Regina Hall, Issa Rae, Common and the lead actress Amandla Stenberg, who will be playing the main character, Starr Carter.
The Hate U Give is about a young black girl, who begins to explore activism after witnessing the police shooting of her childhood friend, Khalil. She becomes entangled in hood politics whilst still maintaining a social life in the suburban area she attends school in. The story offers insight into the different lifestyle led in the suburbs versus the hood and serves as a strong commentary on the Black Lives Matter movement.
It is written from the perspective of this young girl, with lingo and references that are very current and relevant to the young black community, making it an easy read for a young audience and interesting read for an older audience as it gives authentic insight into the lifestyle of the younger generation.
The transitions feel like those of a film and the descriptions are captivating. It is very easy to disappear into the world of this story. The struggle reads true as it echoes real life stories of police brutality and unjust police shootings that we hear in the news. We can feel removed from these stories as told by news broadcasters because of the distant way in which they are reported but this novel draws us into the emotions of the people involved in these stories. The grief of the characters translate quite vividly as we’re taken through the memories of Khalil’s life and how his death affects his family, friends and community.
With the impact and effect it had on me, I imagine this must be an almost impossible read for someone who has actually experienced a similar tragedy.
This read brought me to tears several times. It’s a read that can make one laugh out loud and feel outraged all in one page. I believe it’s impact will stay with me for a long time.
by Zani Tsabedze
Girl Boss Rating: 9/10