The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas is an incredible book. In many ways, it is a fairly typical YA novel about a teenage girl and has more modern pop culture references than any other book I’ve read, making it feel as though it were truly written by a teenager. However, the book is also unordinary in many ways. The main character, Starr, is an African American teenager living in a black neighborhood but goes to school out of district to attend a better school and deals with an internal conflict similar to Junior from The Absolutely True Diary of a Part Time Indian in which she feels like she betrayed her community, deals with microaggressions from her friends at school, and feels as though she has to be two different people. However, the main topic of the book is following Starr’s story after she watches her closest childhood friend get shot in the back by the police. As Starr watches as, just as she’s seen many times before, Khalil’s name becomes a hashtag and people march in the streets while the police have no intention of punishing the guilty officer. This raises the point that police brutality is something which is talked about a lot on news and social media, but only in the shallowest, most impersonal ways and justice is rarely delivered. Angie Thomas delivers a strong message about police brutality in America by making it personal for the reader and showcasing the multiple issues with how justice is handled both by police officers and by society. She also brings up the relevance of microaggressions with how Starr’s non-black friends are well meaning but are ignorant about many of the issues Starr deals with and may say things that we, the reader, know are insensitive or offensive without knowing it. Thomas shows how these microaggressions hurt Starr and the different ways she and her friends respond to them. Usually, Starr calls them out on it, and they take personal offense. In one scenario, her friend asks, shocked, if Starr thinks she’s racist after everything they had been through together, to which Starr responds you don’t have to be racist to say racist things. I thought this was a very important statement as often people say things they do not realize are racist due to the society we live in where many things are internalized, and not realizing some things may be offensive is only human. However, once someone has been informed of the issue with their actions, it is their responsibility to own up to it and re-educate themself, because ultimately they are hurting other people. Thomas demonstrates this well as one of Starr’s friends does this well and one does not.

Overall, fantastic, fascinating book so far and I cannot wait to continue reading and find out what happens next.

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13 responses to “The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

  1. Natalie Lloyd

    The Hate U Give is an absolutely amazing book. This is definitely going to go on my list of “Books I think that everyone should read”. I agree with Jamie that this book offers a lot of important messages and reminders, especially in the scene where Starr’s friend refuses to admit to the racist things she is saying. Angie Thomas shows really well that even when someone has good intentions or thinks that they have good intentions, things one says can still be extremely hurtful and the fact that you had good intentions doesn’t make that less hurtful. As shown by Hailey’s refusal to own up to her racist remarks, continuing to insist that you didn’t hurt someone even when you did is extremely invalidating, minimizing, and can be even more hurtful. This scene is a really important reminder that if you mess up and say something offensive, it’s important to own up to your mistake, listen, and educate yourself so that you can grow for the future. One of the things that really stood out to me so far about Starr’s internal conflict between who she is at home and who she is at school is the difference in atmosphere between her home and her school. At home, Starr is surrounded with a vibrant and loving family who really understand her, because they deal with the same situations that she does. At school, her friends are so far removed that they can hardly even comprehend the realities that Starr faces. The first day Starr goes back after Khalil is murdered, her friends have absolutely no idea what she is going through. I can only imagine how alienating and isolating that must feel to be surrounded by people who just don’t get it.
    This has been an emotional and brilliantly honest first 1/3 of the book and I am interested to see how the story progress.
    Just so that we are all on the same page ( no pun intended,) I read up to chapter 10 or pg 165.

  2. amypark0815

    The Hate U Give is a phenomenal novel, at least from what I’ve read so far. It explores the police brutality crisis in a light that has never been explored before. Firstly, it humanizes the victims of police brutality; not just the lives taken by police, but those affected by that life taken. If this story were to happen in real life, (and it could, it is a completely realistic situation) all the mass media would hear about Khalil would be the fact that he was an alleged drug dealer and gang member. We would not know about the fact that he was a caring friend, loved by many, a worried son, and a beloved grandson. As the main character, Starr, brilliantly puts when she realizes the mistreatment Khalil’s name received, “‘Does it matter though? He didn’t deserve to die.’”

    The writing by Angie Thomas is incredibly impactful. Almost every other paragraph has a quotable line that burns itself into your heart. Just some that I have bookmarked include: “‘Yes, ma’am, he pulled him out.’ ‘because Khalil was hesitant, right?’” (100) “That’s not Khalil, I tell myself. Like it wasn’t Natasha.” (125)

    Another thing about this novel is that it forced me to reflect on my own life and how easy I have it. In the beginning part of the book, there’s a flashback scene where Starr thinks about the lessons her father gave her, when she was twelve, about dealing with police, how she should not resist, do everything they tell her to do, don’t make any sudden moves, and keep your hands visible. the first lines of the chapter state, “When I was twelve, my parents had two talks with me. One was the other birds and the bees…the other talk was about what to do if a cop stopped me.” (20) That really hit me. I learned, after a little research, that in many predominately black communities, how to deal with a cop is one of the lessons taught at SCHOOLS. My only experience with police officers were when one would come to school and talk to us about the importance of internet safety, or safety when trick-or-treating. I have never once, felt intimidated by a police officer that I spoke to. I realize now that the idea that I don’t feel that my life is being threatened when talking to police is a privilege that I have. I cannot imagine how it feels to know that the group of people that are supposed to protect you are the ones threatening your LIVES.

    This book also deals a lot with microaggressions in such an honest manner. The friends at Starr’s predominately white school are completely oblivious to the magnitude of the situation. Angie Thomas shows examples of little microaggressions that occur far too commonly in LO halls. When Starr ‘reblogged’ a picture of Emmet Till in memory of his tragic death because of racism, her friend, Hailey, got mad at her. I know first hand that this type of small acts of discrimination happen on a weekly if not daily basis in LO. Although these actions are small, they affect marginalized groups in big ways. When your friend, someone you’re supposed to be able to trust and be yourself with, makes jokes regarding stereotypes about your race, (like the fried chicken scene where Hailey made a joke about fried chicken to Starr then acted like SHE was the victim) it puts one in an incredibly vulnerable situation. It was interesting to see the connections between our school and Starr’s.

    I have so much more to say about this book, but I feel like I should save it for the next post. Overall, this book made me cry several times, and is just incredible. I can only imagine where the next 2/3 of the book is headed!

  3. The Hate U Give has to be, by far, one of the best books I have read yet. Already, after reading only a third of the book, I’ve cried several times, and I have to say that never in my life have I cried in the beginning of the novel. There are so many aspects about this book that makes it the phenomenal novel it is. Like all three of you have mentioned in your posts, the important messages and topics that this book addresses to the reader is impactful and powerful, really making a statement to the readers.

    Another point that makes this novel so much more powerful is the way Angie Thomas conveys her messages and ideas. The craftsmanship of this novel is astounding and actually quite beautiful in its own way. Like Jamie had mentioned before, the writing style makes it feel as if it is truly written by a teenager. Right off the bat, Angie Thomas connects with her audience purely through her writing style. This reminded me of “A True Diary of a Part Time Indian.” Both Thomas and Alexie captures the audience’s attention just by expressing the voice and persona of the character. The death of her childhood friend Khalil occurs near the beginning of the novel, and Thomas did a phenomenal job of building and connecting the reader’s emotions to the characters so quickly. In many books, it sometimes takes up to almost half the novel to fully create that connection between the audience. Thomas’ ability to immediately attach the reader’s emotions to a newly introduced character is amazing. I think that’s what makes this novel so much more real, passionate, and powerful. For instance, when Khalil is first introduced, the first few sentences brings his character to life, and Thomas writes in a way that makes the reader feel as if that you could’ve known him in real life. For example, when Starr states, “The sea of people parts for him like he’s a brown-skinned Moses. Guys give him daps, and girls crane their necks to look at him. He smiles at me, and his dimples ruin any G persona he has” (Thomas 11). Through these first few lines that mention/describe Khalil, you can already start to get a feel for who he is. Additionally, Thomas interjects just the right amount of the history between the two characters. In other words, Thomas sets the scene perfectly.

    When reading this novel, like Amy said, it kind of causes you (the reader) to reflect back on your life and the people of our community. This novel opens minds and broadens the audience’s horizon on their understanding of racism, microagression, etc. I, like Natalie said, would definitely add this to my “everyone must read” list. With its ability to open minds and also tell a great story it creates an amazing book.

    I’m so excited to read more! 🙂

  4. To give everyone a reference as to where I am in the novel, I read up to page 306 or chapter eighteen.

    Gosh, where do I start. Every aspect about this book is amazing. A lot like what I mentioned in my last post, this novel gives such a heartfelt, meaningful message.

    As the story progresses, Thomas does an excellent job developing the character relationships. While I did focus on the overall development of each character in the last blog post, the interaction and the progression that is illustrated between the relationships adds depth to the story. There’s one relationship in particular that I want to concentrate on which is between Starr and her boyfriend Chris as their relationship develops along with the overall lesson/message to the story. In the beginning third of the novel, shortly after “The Incident” (When Khalil is murdered), Starr begins to notice that the cop that shot Khalil was “as white as Chris” and distances herself from her boyfriend in confusion and frustration with her emotions. However, as the story progresses Starr slowly begins to grow as a person and begins to accept herself for who she is, and her relationship between Chris exemplifies/represents her acceptance of herself. In the beginning she appeared to be more uncomfortable in her skin and not really all that confident in her voice. In fact, she was taught to hide from her voice. But after she voiced her opinion on television and held confidence in who she was, her relationship with Chris progressed. On the night of their prom, Starr accused Chris to being so cold and robotic to her. After she confronted him, Chris told Starr that he was upset that she hadn’t told him about how she knew Khalil, and that she really wasn’t being her “true” self with him, and that’s really all he wanted. This novel focuses on the acceptance of ourselves no matter our race, religion, or what we identify as because no matter what, we should stand proud with our voice and stand up for who we really are.

    I’m really enjoying this novel, and look forward to finishing it!

  5. This is my second blog post by the way, just to clarify^^

  6. Natalie Lloyd

    I entirely agree that Starr and Chris relationship progresses a lot during the second third. In the first third, there was mainly a lot of conflict in their relationship, and in the second third, they seem to be working towards resolution and come closer together, especially because Starr finally stops hiding that she id dating Chris from her father, and after she tells Chris about Natasha. A theme I thought was very prominent in the 2/3 of the book was the importance of speaking up versus staying silent. Starr has a major internal conflict over whether to speak up about the truth of Khalil’s murder, or whether to stay silent to protect herself and her own life. On one hand, speaking up and telling the truth about how Khalil was unarmed and the reasons behind his drug dealing(although it shouldn’t have mattered whether he was a drug dealer or not), could lead to intense danger for Starr, both from King and the King lords and from the police. Starr and members of her family get pulled over at least 2 times in about 1 week alone, and are targeted because the police know that Starr is the witness. Yet when she doesn’t speak up, the media creates a disgustingly false and offensive portrayal of Khalil, going so far as to interview the father of the officer who murdered him in order to almost humanize the officer all while demonizing Khalil. There is no right answer to the question of whether to speak up or not, because it is insensitive and hurtful to tell someone that it’s their responsibility to speak up when their literal life is in question. (Which is why it is important for those who can speak up without so much fear and negative consequences to do so, but I digress.) In act of incredible bravery, Starr decides to do an interview on live TV, talking about the real Khalil and what really happened on the night he was murdered. The thing that overall convinced Starr to speak up was something that Ms. Ofrah, her attorney, said. “But Ms. Ofrah says this interview is the way I fight. When you fight, you put yourself out there, not caring who you hurt of if you’ll get hurt” (Thomas 290). Starr’s words in her interview are powerful, moving, and really are important and necessary to fight back against the racism and prejudice shown by the media, police, and other officals. It does come at a cost to her, however: There are some people online who say they want her dead. Overall, there really isn’t a good answer to the question of if speaking up is always the right thing to do, but this section really shows the importance of speaking up in situations of injustice if you have the security to do so.
    This first two-thirds have been an amazing emotionally charged read, and i have so many more things I want to discuss, but there just isn’t room in this blog post.

  7. jamiekoj

    Moving to the next third of the book, the story continues to be amazing and I continued to cry. To me, two themes of this section are Starr finding her voice and the development of character relationships, both of which Sera talked about. For my post, I’m going to be focusing on Starr finding her voice in ways that are safe for her and learning who her true friends are.
    From the moment Khalil is murdered, Starr is afraid of speaking out for both her emotional and physical safety and feels guilty for her fear. Her parents dealt with this in a way which I thought was very admirable. Unfortunately, I don’t have any direct quotes marked, however, they reassure her that she is doing the right thing in prioritising her safety while supporting her when she makes the decision to speak with the detective, a tv interviewer, etc. They told her that so long as it was her speaking out and not her being guilted into speaking by her peers, it was the right thing to do. I thought it was a very important message. Starr often felt guilty or like she was betraying Khalil and that he would be angry at her, however, I believe he would want her to be safe and do the best she can at her own pace. With the support of her parents, Starr prioritized her mental and physical health and took the time she needed to mourn and recover before taking her stand. Starr spoke out in small ways at first, making a tumblr called ‘The Khalil that I knew’ making sure the public was aware of who Khalil was as a person. When she felt the time was right, she had the support of her parents and a local attorney to help her speak more publicly while still staying anonymous.
    Moving to the second theme: finding who her true friends are. Starr has always felt isolated from her friends at Williamson as they can never understand her struggles, and Hailey especially, as mentioned earlier, has been the worst committer of microaggressions. When Hailey and Starr have another confrontation, this one about Hailey using a protest to get out of class, Starr demands an apology and Hailey refuses to give one. As a result, the two are no longer talking, and Starr and Maya have both agreed to not let her get away with anymore microaggressions. In disconnecting with Hailey, Starr forms a stronger bond with Maya, who opens up about experiencing microaggressions from Hailey for being Chinese. They deepen their connection with each other and find an ally in both being minorities and understanding the discomfort of facing microaggressions and the guilt for letting them go past unacknowledged. As Sera mentions, Starr also allows herself to open up to and form a deeper bond with Chris.
    An interesting point raised by Thomas is at what point a line is crossed in a relationship. When Starr wonders whether or not it is worth trying to salvage her relationship with Hailey, her mom offers her the advice to decide whether the good outweighs the bad. When the bad starts to outweigh the good, that’s when it’s time to let go. While it seems fairly obvious, I feel like it was an important message to remember and a good one for Starr to hear. Whether or not Starr decides it’s worth keeping Hailey is still up in the air. If Starr were to ask my opinion, I’d say at this point Hailey does not seem on track to take responsibility for her actions and will therefore continue to make racist comments and actions, so she should be let go. However, if she apologizes and seems willing to try and fix her errors, Starr has been friends with her for long enough that it’s worth a try to mend their friendship.

  8. amypark0815

    I think the biggest thing about this book that I would like to point out here are the even bigger parallels between Starr’s school and ours. Of course, the protest. I was just sitting there with my mouth wide open when they were talking about because of the similarities to our school. Of course, our school had the intentions of good, unlike Starr, but it’s no surprise that a lot of people used the walkout as an excuse to get out of class. Seeing how similar Starr’s school was to ours just drives the point of just how real her situation is. How it is happening every day all over the United States.

    Reading about the casual racism by Starr’s peers makes the reader think themselves about the small acts of racism they may have contributed towards. Thomas contrasts between the everyday life of Starr (going to school, dealing with friends, dealing with boyfriends) and her extremities (gang life, dealing with two of her friend’s murders, public attention). She contrasts these two beautifully, but they somehow compliment each other throughout the book. One life affects the other, even though Starr tries desperately to keep them separate from each other. For example, the death of Khalil affects her relationship with Chris, and Starr is forced to think about the significance of race in their relationship.

    The character, Chris, or Starr’s boyfriend really intrigues me as well. He seems to serve not only as a source of moral support for Starr, but also as an example of the difference between a good ally and a bad one. He listens to Starr and her frustrations, even though, being a white, male, rich guy that lives in a safe neighborhood, he is not able to relate. Chris tries his best to understand and to put himself into the shoes of the people he cares about.

    Oh, and I can’t even count how many times I cried during this part of the book as well. It seems to me that the same qualities of the book that make it true to life-Thomas’s honesty- are the qualities that make it all the more emotional. It doesn’t separate Starr’s world from ours because Starr’s world is our world. Starr’s experiences are fictional, but Thomas makes sure to let us know that things like this happen. To real people.

  9. amypark0815

    How many times did I cry while reading the last pages of this book?
    Too many.
    The last page especially. It tied this story to the real-life victims of police brutality. Throughout the book, we, the audience, are aware of the fact that even though similar things happen in real life, the book is fictional. Therefore, there is a suspension of disbelief in which we see Starr’s world from a fictional lens. But those last few words bring us back into reality.
    “It would be easy to quit if it was just about me, Khalil, that night, and that cop. It’s about more than that though. It’s about Seven. Sekani. Kenya. DeVante.
    Aiyana.
    Trayvon.
    Reika.
    Michael.
    Eric.
    Tamir.
    John.
    Ezell.
    Sandra.
    Freddie.
    Alton.
    Philando.
    It’s even about that little boy who nobody recognized at first-Emmett” (Thomas 443).
    Those names that we’ve seen and heard so many times through the hashtags, the news reports, the viral videos, the activists, the riots, the bigots. The existence of the reader’s knowledge of the current world makes all the difference. Each name, each syllable, each letter, is another painful reminder of the lives that didn’t deserve to be lost.
    No one deserves to go like this. Angie Thomas makes sure to tell us that. She also follows the mindset of all activists trying to make a difference: “Yet I think it’ll change one day. How? I don’t know. When? I definitely don’t know. Why? Because there will always be someone ready to fight. Maybe it’s my turn” (Thomas 443).

    I don’t think I’m alone when I say I screamed when the cops’ sentence was revealed. The reasoning they had for giving him such a light sentence made me want to throw up. The fact of the matter is, in real life, you rarely have this visceral reaction, mostly because how victims are portrayed by the majority of people. That doesn’t mean that these tragedies are any less disgusting and horrible. I think one of the main messages of this story is to think complexly. Even one only one side of someone is presented to you, learn the ability to look for the other side. It may be a matter of saving that person’s honor.

    I couldn’t recommend this book for anyone MORE. Please, please read this book!

  10. Natalie Lloyd

    I couldn’t agree with your response more, Amy. When I finished the last page of this book, I knew that this wasn’t going to be a book that I was going to forget anytime soon. The last page especially, was really powerful and impactful. It really did remind you that this is not just a fictional book. These are real life events that are happening now. This isn’t historical fiction or fantasy, this is a book about the things that are happening in our country right now, at this moment.
    When I read the sentence (Or rather, lack thereof) of the cop who murdered Khalil, my heart sank. That too, is a disgusting miscarriage of justice and the fact that this kind of light sentencing for cops who murder unarmed black men keeps happening over and over is a sickening tragedy that cannot be ignored.
    For me, one of the things that stood out most about the final scenes was this line: ” ‘I wanna do something,’ I say. ‘Protest, riot, I don’t care-‘
    ‘Riot?’ Chris echoes………. ‘Starr, think about this,’ Chris says.’That won’t solve anything’
    ‘And neither did talking!’ I snap. ‘I did everything right, and it didn’t make a f**king difference.”(Thomas 389).
    This collection of dialogue between Starr and Chris to me, shows a lot about a majority of people’s perceptions of violent protests in the United States. A lot of people’s reactions, to seeing violent protests in teh news or in real life, are quick to judge and condemn people who act in those violent protests, saying that that type of violent protesting “isn’t going to actually accomplish anything ” or that it is unfair or wrong in some way. That judgmental and insensitive reaction really shows an unwillingness to really step out of ones shoes and even think for a second about why violent protests and riots can be necessary, have a purpose, and should not be so readily attacked in the media and in everyday life. I think that Starr really explains the reasons behind violent protesting the best: they tried talking, and they did everything right and it should have worked. What use is talking or trying to negotiate peacefully in a system that refuses to carry out justice and refuses to even acknowledge the problem? What is one supposed to do when a system that is supposed to keep them safe is violent towards them? Telling someone that they should just protest peacefully seems extremely patronizing. Although riots do have some negative consequences for the business and stores surrounded by the riot, rioting sometimes is really the only option that makes sense at the time.
    Anyway, to wrap up my thoughts on this absolute amazing book; I think that this book is extremely relevant and has a lot of important lessons and reminders. Really, the things I took away the most from this book is that this is now. This is happening now. Right now is the time to stand up, the time to push for change, the time to end the disgusting miscarriages of justices happening right now in our legal system. And like Starr shows us through her journey, it’s going to take a lot of hard work, and sometimes things are still going to go wrong, but that now is the time to stand with and for the black community and the Black Lives Matter movement. I’m not sure how coherent this was, as I had so many thoughts crossing my head that I wanted to write about, and I will probably be thinking about this book for a while longer. This is one of those rare books that I would give 10/10 stars, and I honestly recommend that everyone reads this book. I’m going to end by quoting a line that really stuck with me.
    “Once upon a time there was a hazel-eyed boy with dimples. I called him Khalil. The world called him a thug………..Khalil, I’ll never forget. I’ll never give up. I’ll never be quiet. I promise.”(Thomas 442-444).

    • amypark0815

      I couldn’t agree with you more. I wish I wrote more on my blog post about that, too. I wanted to talk more about the relationship between Chris and Starr. That moment when Chris said something like, if that’s what you’re going through, then I want to do it. Man, did that make me think. Anyway, ANYONE feel free to like, come up to me and talk to me about this book at any moment. Honestly. I just wanna talk and talk about this book.

  11. I completely agree with all of you guys. This book was amazing, touching, and life changing. I totally agree with what Natalie pointed out in how this book reflects the majority of the people’s reactions in this world. This book has taught me many lessons and has really made an impact on my life.

    What I loved about Thomas’s writing was her ability to tie in so many emotions and lessons into one story and resolve them all, ending the novel with a statement that applies to all the lessons that were taught. Like Amy had mentioned in her post, in the last few paragraphs, Thomas not only involved the story itself, but also the world around us and all that we’ve had to face as a community. It not only brought this book to an unforgettable ending, but it also calls the reader to action in what has happened in our world currently today. I don’t think I’ve ever had a book pull in so many emotions, lessons, and at the end call the readers to action. It’s truly astonishing in how Thomas illustrates her messages. That’s what made me cry the most. Thomas made this novel so real and powerful. I remember talking to Amy about this book briefly in class and we discussed upon just how real Thomas had made this novel. The world of Starr is so realistic, and it brings so many of our current problems in our world today into the picture. Starr herself didn’t seem to be like this “fake” character that wouldn’t exist, if that makes sense. Everything was conveyed in a realistic way in which made this novel all the more relatable and real. It’s something that I will never forget. When you finish this novel, the lessons that it brings becomes a part of you and something that will never leave your mind. I think that this novel truly uses its “voice as a weapon” (as Thomas often mentions in her novel).

    More specifically, one of the major lessons that Thomas conveys was bravery. In the beginning, Starr is seen doubting herself in how “brave” she really is. She denied that she was brave as she viewed herself in a rather bad light. Later on in the novel when Starr mentions that she doesn’t feel brave, her mom states, “‘Brave doesn’t mean you’re not scared Starr…. It means you go on even though you’re scared. And you’re doing that'” (Thomas 331). This again goes back to the beauty in Thomas’s craftsmanship of this novel. Thomas conveys the emotions so well that these one phrase statements (like the one above) make such a large impact on the reader. This quote in itself reaches out to so many readers and really touches everyone’s heart.

    There are countless of other things that I would want to address about this book, and like Amy said, I would absolutely LOVE to talk to more people about this novel. Angie Thomas has done a phenomenal job in creating a book reaching out to all types of audiences as the lessons she conveys are all universal. It was truly an excellent and impactful read that I would recommend to EVERYONE. I’ve really enjoyed blogging about this book with all of you guys, and easily give this novel a 10/10 stars.

  12. jamiekoj

    I agree completely with everyone on this post: 10/10 stars. I absolutely cried at the end at the sight of the list of names, and Star’s words made me feel hopeful for the future. I found the part of the book in which Star and her friends begin to riot especially eye opening to me. You often here about peaceful protests being responded to with violence even though people did everything right, but what happens when people do things ‘wrong’ and are protesting violently, or even rioting? This is a topic which I’d never thought about before. Even though I didn’t realize it, I had this very negative view of violent protesting in my head and about the people who protest violently, as if they were thoughtless, reckless, or didn’t really care about the cause and/or were just looking for a fight. Looking back, I don’t know how I could think this and I’m grateful to Angie Thomas for calling me out on my view point. Thomas tackles the complexity of riots well, (at least in my admittedly not extremely well educated on the subject perspective). Starr talks from the heart about how doing everything right failed and her hopelessness and anger, and at the riot she yells her heart out for Khalil, but after watching the destruction, especially in fear of local, black owned businesses, when the police show up she knows it is time to leave the area. In the end, she finds that her voice is indeed her best weapon, and she stands among the rioters and uses it, amplified by the chaos around her.
    While I’m sure we were all aware of police brutality and its injustice (from the hashtags on social media and the likes) nothing compares to living it. We all have these small ideas, so deeply internalized that we don’t even realize them, about topics such as these, and nothing drags them out to the open like living in another life looking at things from another perspective. I would truly like to thank Thomas for writing such a magnificent novel, and hope that everyone who can get their hands on it gives it a read.

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