The Hate U Give Review

32075671The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Edelweiss
Publication Date: February 28th, 2017
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Point of View: 1st Person & Feminine
Recommended Age: 14+
Pacing: Slow
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Realistic Fiction, Social Issues, Race

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Sixteen-year-old Starr lives in two worlds: the poor neighbourhood where she was born and raised and her posh high school in the suburbs. The uneasy balance between them is shattered when Starr is the only witness to the fatal shooting of her unarmed best friend, Khalil, by a police officer. Now what Starr says could destroy her community. It could also get her killed. Inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement, this is a powerful and gripping YA novel about one girl’s struggle for justice. Movie rights have been sold to Fox, with Amandla Stenberg (The Hunger Games) to star.


‘‘A hairbrush is not a gun.’’

This doesn’t make any sense. And I hope that to you, too, it will not make any sense.

Starr may only be sixteen, but she has already witnessed two murders in her life: the first of a young black girl in a drive by and the second of a young black boy shot multiple times by a cop.

While she was in the car. Even though they didn’t do anything wrong. Even though he was unarmed.

‘‘A hairbrush is not a gun.’’

Does that make any sense to you? You can’t just kill someone because, to you, they look threatening. Are you a seer? Can you predict that they will reach for a gun and kill you with it?

No, you cannot. (Even then it wouldn’t be completely right.) You have no right to take an innocent life like that.

Inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement, this important novel tackles issues of race in society involving the black community of people and authority figures, more precisely, police officers.

Starr was never taught to fear cops, but she was taught to be smart around them. Do what they ask, even if what they ask for makes no sense.

But because of what has happened to her childhood friend Khalil, she becomes scared. Scared enough to speak up about what she witnessed, though? Will she gather her courage to do what is right?

‘‘A hairbrush is not a gun.’’

This story needed to be told. It has been told orally and on paper many times before, unfortunately, but it was time someone wrote a book dealing with social issues of race like the ones here for a young audience.

For young people are dying. Young black people. Black boys. Black girls.

This novel educates. It may be fictional in the sense that Angie Thomas created this story using fictional characters, but what happens in it is scary real.

It does feel like it was written for white folks, but it sure as hell didn’t need to be written for black ones specifically.

‘‘A hairbrush is not a gun.’’

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7 thoughts on “The Hate U Give Review

  1. This book sounds fantastic! Recently, at school, I watched the Netflix docummentary The 13th. Although it focuses more on the American prison system, it also shows a little bit of the Black Lives Matter movement. The entire docummentary is amazing and really worth watching. Overall, it made me more interested to watch and read things on the subject. I’m very happy to find a YA book dealing with this topic, because these are stories that just need to be told!


  2. I just got this book from the library! I’m excited to start reading it. I’m glad you liked it. 🙂


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