Sixteen-year-old Starr Carter moves between two worlds: the poor neighborhood where she lives and the fancy suburban prep school she attends. The uneasy balance between these worlds is shattered when Starr witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend Khalil at the hands of a police officer. Khalil was unarmed.
Soon afterward, his death is a national headline. Some are calling him a thug, maybe even a drug dealer and a gangbanger. Protesters are taking to the streets in Khalil’s name. Some cops and the local drug lord try to intimidate Starr and her family. What everyone wants to know is: what really went down that night? And the only person alive who can answer that is Starr.
But what Starr does—or does not—say could upend her community. It could also endanger her life.
I decided to pick up this contemporary based off the hype (which tends to backfire, at least for me) and found another 5 star contemporary that left an emotional impact on me.
The novel deals with issues that we are facing today but do not talk about enough. Angie Thomas did a great job of awakening the readers to the negatives of racism and prejudice. It would be a good idea to have young kids read this book or even make it required reading in school.
The writing was amazing, the author made the characters come alive and I was able to emotionally connect with them. The sign of an amazing author/contemporary is when they are able to create meaningful and diverse side-characters. Starr's friends and family (most of all her family) were such great well-rounded characters that it was hard to let them go at the end of the novel. I hope that Thomas revisits Starr or even writes from a different characters point of view like Seven in the future,
It was also refreshing that the narration is old solely from Starr's point of view because the trend of multiple or duel povs has started to get on my nerves.
Plus, contemporary now tend to be solely focused on romance and it was great that Thomas did not do that instead the novel focuses more on friendship and family.
I recommend reading this, however, I suggest not reading it in public because it may bring the waterworks like it did for me.
5 Stars Out of 5 Stars