The Hate U Give is absolutely an incredible read.
It’s probably one of the most hyped books in the book blogosphere of…ever!??? Even right back when it was announced!! Because it had so many publishers auctioning for it, plus it was a six figure deal, plus I believe it even got moved forward in publishing date because everyone was so excited about it, plus it already is in works to become a movie and it’s been out for a hot month. And it’s so worthy of the hype! I recommend getting your little eyeballs towards a copy and reading it ASAP.
It perfectly combines talking about the really important topic of the #BlackLivesMatter movement with excellent storytelling, writing, and characters. It’s just JUST A DEBUT. Hopefully Angie Thomas becomes one of the top contemporary voices in YA!
I think the characters made it incredibly special too.
Starr was so winning and relatable and complex…I just rooted for her the whole time. She’s got personality, dreams, and fears — and will also refuse to watch Harry Potter with her dad because he mocks it too much. Which brings me to one of the best things of ever: this book focuses on family!! Be still my beating heart. Positive !! loving !! family !! representation!! Starr’s parents are loving and supportive and respectful and they bring up their kids to think for themselves. Yes please and thank you for their existence.
(Also Starr frequently said her parents were her OTP. Excuse me but that’s so ridiculously adorable.)
I also enjoyed reading about teens who actually respected their parents. Suuuuuure they did dumb stuff BECAUSE IT’S IN THE CONTRACT OF BEING A TEENAGER, but they loved their parents fiercely and also would rather relocate to Antartica to live amongst the penguins instead of getting caught doing evil because #SoDead.
“So she unfollowed your Tumblr thingy,” Momma says, proving why she can never have one.
I also adored all the secondary characters!
Every single of one of them was so real and complex. I was just…floored??!?? It wasn’t like “oh hear I am reading a piece of paper” it was actually “oh here I am being with humans who are totally alive right now“. And that’s what I wish every book would do. That’s the truest sign of excellent writing. Starr’s older brother Seven was like THE BEST and her little bro, Sekani, was a complete annoying squidge. As all little siblings are. Starr has an epic Asian friend too! DeVante, a boy they end up helping who gets on the wrong side of his gang, was just adorable and I love how his story line went.
OH OH YOU SEE THAT: all the characters had their own storylines. Starr’s obviously was prevalent, but no one was just existing for Starr. Hence it made the book so real.
OTHER SMOL LIST OF THINGS I LOVED
- Starr has friends who are WOMEN, like bless THIS. It shouldn’t be irregular to read about epic and diverse women in books but…it is.
- There is so much FOOD. I was so hungry thanks for nothing, book.
- Starr has a super sweet relationship with her uncle as well.
- It features good people who mess up.
- It’s funny!! It’s such a serious story line but there are still quips and TONS of time where I was grinning like a dork.
- It’s #ownvoices.
- It talks about the brutal unfairness of racism but it also shines a light into the world. I felt sad in so many places, but it sent an excellent powerful message in a hopeful way.
“Sometimes you can do everything right and things will still go wrong. The key is to never stop doing right.”
There were only two tiny things that weren’t my favourite.
And they’re, of course, subjective! As is every and anything in my reviews!
- (1) It’s very long…I loved reading it, obviously, looooooved it. But I’ve yet to read a 500-page contemporary that doesn’t feel like it waffled a bit.
- (2) I didn’t really ship the romance between Starr and her white boyfriend, Chris. They’re already together when the book starts, so it was nice having a couple and not the “falling in love” stuff that could’ve taken over the important part of the story. So YAY for that. But Starr kept returning to the point that because Chris was white he’d never truly understand her. And I think that’s fair, obviously, but I don’t understand why they were together?? I like how Starr educated Chris when he said something ignorant/dumb and it wasn’t about attacking — instead lovingly correction. But possibly think the romance wasn’t adding to the story much. But well, you know YA…must have thee a romance…
I think this definitely qualifies as a “must read” for anyone and everyone!
It’s a powerful voice about racism and #BlackLivesMatter and is about speaking up even when you’re scared. It’s not a “comfortable” book to read, and it shouldn’t be! It made me think! No one should ever witness their friend die in front of them and the way the book progresses and Starr finds her voice is just amazing. It’s a sad but hopeful book!
Plus I love Starr and her family SO MUCH and the nerd levels were A+ and please I need a snack now because the foodie fiction element was everything.
(And mate, I’m a fantasy reader addict, so look at me go, loving a contemporary so much. Who am I.)
THANK YOU TO WALKER BOOKS AUSTRALIA FOR THE REVIEW-COPY. The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas was published March, 2017.
Sixteen-year-old Starr lives in two worlds: the poor neighbourhood where she was born and raised and her posh high school in the suburbs. The uneasy balance between them is shattered when Starr is the only witness to the fatal shooting of her unarmed best friend, Khalil, by a police officer. Now what Starr says could destroy her community. It could also get her killed.
Inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement, this is a powerful and gripping YA novel about one girl’s struggle for justice.