Today I am going to be reviewing ‘The Hate U Give’ by Angie Thomas. I am sure you have all heard of this book buy now from all of the hype around it earlier this year, but I will explain the summary anyway: This is a book about black girl called Starr, who sees one of her best friends get wrongly shot and killed by a police officer. The rest of the story deals from the fall out from that. This is going to be a spoiler-free review, so you don’t have to have read the book to read this. So now you know what the book is about, let’s get into what I thought about it…
So, Spoiler-Alert – I loved this book! I gave it 5/5 stars and now I will get into why. The first thing is the characters. There were so many different characters, but at no point did I feel confused as to who was who because it was explained and written well. Something that I really loved is that every character had a solid purpose in the story. This is something that not every story has or even if it does some characters additions to the story are kind of weak, but that was not the case in this book. Each character we were introduced to progressed the story in some way or was used to raise important questions about race, which were then later answered (I’ll come back to this point later). I also really loved the family dynamic. Starr’s family were so realistic and while I was reading I really felt as if I was a part of the family and I was there with them, which added to my reading experience ten-fold. We also got to see at least four other family dynamics, which were all completely different, which I really loved because it highlighted that not every family is the same (and not all are good), but they can still mostly get along with each other despite their differences.
“Sometimes you can do everything right and things will still go wrong. The key is to never stop doing right”
Let’s talk about Starr. Starr is the main character and I loved her. I loved her from the beginning and I only loved her more as I read on. She is snarky and sarcastic, which caused for a lot of moments where I laughed out loud while reading, she is tough and can hold her own in a fight and she still holds her head high after everything she has been through. What I really loved though was that we got to see the venerability she felt because we often only see the strong side of activists, but Starr’s character showed that she was still a human being, who was grieving. Strong female characters also generally are only strong and aren’t allowed the feel and kind of weakness, but that wasn’t the case with Starr and I loved that because it was very realistic and, even though we are in very different situations, I could really relate to that aspect of her character. My favourite part about Starr and her character arc though was that we got to see her grow in confidence both in who she was and what she stood for and I adored that. It was amazing to see her grow and I was rooting for her the whole time.
I can’t really talk too much about the plot without giving away spoilers, but I will tell you that it was amazing and there was never a dull moment, so I am going to replace the plot section with a section to talk about how important this book is and what I learnt from it as a white, English teenager. This book is based around the #blacklivesmatter movement and focuses on police brutality as well as many other stereotypes that come with being black. I obviously can’t speak for the representation, but I have heard from people who can that it is pretty amazing. I can say that I learnt a whole lot. I have always been a supporter of the movement and I always will be, but I did lack some understanding as to what the people who need it actually experience, but this book really cleared everything up for me and helped me to understand so much more, which I will be forever grateful for.
“Brave doesn’t mean you’re not scared. It means you go on even though you’re scared.”
That is really all I have to say on this book without giving away spoilers, so I will end this review here. I am sure a lot of you have read this book at this point, but if you haven’t, then I highly encourage you too because not only is a just a phenomenally written story, but it is also an incredibly important one. Have you read ‘The Hate U Give’ by Angie Thomas? If you have, what did you think of it?
Goodbye for now!
Over and Out