The following article originally appeared in Juniata High School's newspaper The Arrowhead.
Angela Thomas’s first novel The Hate U Give features Starr Carter, an African American, as she witnesses her friend Khalil get shot by a white police officer after being pulled over. After Khalil’s death becomes national news, Starr must be careful how much she reveals about the incident. She even hides her identity as the only witness from her teachers and friends at the predominantly white private school. This story line contains almost anything you can imagine, from close friendships to family bonds, and even a bit of romance and action. Honestly, this is an incredible, well-rounded book.
While it can be graphic in terms of imagery and language, I believe that The Hate U Give needs to be read by every young adult in today’s time. Unfortunately, people judge other people and even place blame on others based on race, and African Americans typically draw the short straw. The Hate U Give provides insight to readers by seeing through the eyes of an African-American girl who experiences a tragedy. This novel puts many things into perspective, such as how black is not a race so much as an entire culture. It also gives readers insight to local gangs in cities and how serious they can become. Most importantly, it proves how one person can do something that leaves countless lives flipped upside down.
By: Haylee Yocum