I think everyone in the bookish world has struggled to actually sit and write a review of this book. I’ve personally been procrastinating it for weeks now. Every so often a book comes around that has the potential to change the world, The Hate U Give is one of those books.
So what’s all the hype about? Well, Angie Thomas wrote Starr’s story as a response to the Black Lives Matter movement. Starr is a sixteen year old girl from a poor neighborhood, surrouned by her loving family and a mostly white “posh” school full of other teenagers who, simply do not (or will not) understand her. When Starr witnesses her best friend, Khalil getting shot bya white policeman she is forced into a cmplete whirlwind. Khalil was unarmed. It’s a story we see all too often in the news, even over here in the UK. The Hate U Give comes from a place of hurt and pain but rises from those ashes to make a clear statement about how something needs to change.
Starr is such a phenomenal character. She’s a really strong lady and a really likeable character. One thing I really enjoyed about THUG, without getting too spoliery, is Starr’s support network. Her family. In so many YA books, the family is just not really acknowledged or are give some seriously bad rep. Starr has a great family unit behid her. She needed her mum and dad. This was the worst thing to ever happen to her and it was so refreshing to see that tight knit family behind her, supporting her and loving her unconditionally.
I’m not going to go into the narrative much more because it really is something you should experience for yourself. What I will say, though, that as a white British 22 year old, I wondered if this book was really for me. This book is for everyone. At an event at Bristol Watershed Angie said that her book created “windows and mirrors” meaning that, yes , her book was written for teens directly effected by these issues but also, she wanted to bring it to the forefront of everyone’s minds. And boy, did it do that. It’s something I, and many others, could never imagine, especially in countries like the UK. But it’s time to start thinking.
One thing struck me about Angie when I met her in Bristol, and again a few days later at Waterstones Piccadilly is that she is such a lovely woman. She’s so humble talking about how she couldn’t even have dreamed how much success THUG has had. She’s a great, lovely woman…but she had a fire in her belly and she wants things to change. For this reason I cannot wait to see what she does next, and she’s already working on book two!
THUG is also getting a film! As in..it already has a cast! (well, part of one) and this is great because it will bring Starr’s story to the eyes of those who don’t/can’t read.
I really don’t think I’ve articulated how amazing this book is in this post, you just HAVE to read it. It’s not even a book that needs a rating, it’s above that. Just read it. Please. You will not regret it.
Thank you lovelies and happy reading! ox