I waited and waited for this book. I put it on hold, but there were already 50 people ahead of me. Being from a small system, we do not have many duplicate copies. I decided to just buy it. If it wasn’t something worth keeping for myself, I would donate it to the library, so we could have multiple copies. Needless to say, I kept it for myself.
This book is one of the most important books of our lifetime. It highlights so many issues, but it does a great job showing how all of these issues are connected. We continue to demonize the African American community (especially those that live in “the ghetto” or “the hood”), but we do little to understand and help those communities. I am not talking about being a white savior or satiating my white guilt. I am talking about truly helping this community by recognizing how the world needs to change in order to help those in need. We need to talk about social injustice, and we need to stop thinking this is a partisan issue to be talked about within the realm of politics. It is NOT. It is a bipartisan issue, but more importantly, it is a human issue.
This book was not just a book on a soapbox. It was actually far from. It was a book with a purpose and with poise. It is one of the rare books that was both topical and well written. I felt like I was part of Starr’s life. Her family felt real, and I felt like I could see what Angie Thomas wanted me to see. Her characters were vivid and alive, and her plot was twisted in all the right places. I cannot say many negatives about this book. It was a book of diversity, inclusion, social justice, and teenage angst. It did not shy away from any part of a black teen’s life.
For readers, DO IT! Read the damn thing.
For librarians, DO IT! Buy the damn thing. If you have money in your budget, buy the damn thing 3 or 4 times. It will get checked out.