On February 28, 2017, The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas was published.  Since then, it has already been signed a movie deal, became a New York Times bestseller and has been the reason of many 5-star reviews.  The novel follows Starr Carter, a sixteen-year-old black girl who is living in two worlds: her poor neighborhood and her fancy, predominantly “white” prep school.  Her worlds begin to collapse after she witnesses a police officer murder her friend, Khalil, who happened to be unarmed.   When the news comes out that Khalil was unarmed, protests begin.  Though news channels choose to only broadcast that he has a history of selling drugs.   Starr then realizes that her voice is the most important in this situation.  Because she knew who Khalil really was and she witnessed his death.  Starr begins to question whether she should speak out about a dark moment in her life.  She also tries to navigate life at school as she chooses to not tell anyone about the recent events in fear of being seen as a stereotype at her prep school: the ‘angry black girl’.

Sometimes you can do everything right and things will still go wrong. The key is to never stop doing right.”
Angie ThomasThe Hate U Give

The events of this novel are inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement, a response to the police brutality towards black people in the United States.  The movement has become a fight to primarily spread awareness about the people in positions of authority, specifically police officers, abusing their power often in a racially based way.  The Black Lives Matter movement has also been used to gain justice, since many times the police officer is let free without charges.  The novel has done an amazing job to help educate many people, no matter their race.  Although The Hate U Give is a work of fiction, it showcases the reality of many living in rough neighborhoods.

Angie Thomas wrote Starr Carter’s character in an authentic sense.  She doesn’t have everything figured out and she has fears, just like every other teenage girl.  That’s something that I’m sure a lot of people can connect to, whether they’ve gone through a situation like Starr’s or not.

The Hate U Give is a book meant to educate, and to help understand.  It deserves all the recognition that it is getting, not only for the amazing writing, but for the message throughout the story.

Photo courtesy of theatlantic.com