Title: Pause: The Hate U Give
Author: Angie Thomas
Page Count: 444
Starr Carter is a sixteen-year-old who lives in a poor neighborhood but attends a fancy private school in the suburbs. And when Starr’s childhood friend Khalil is shot by a police officer she must learn to be brave and speak out for Khalil since he was unarmed. But she was the only witness and every time she thinks about it or talks about, she feels sick and very emotional. She doesn’t feel like she can be brave for Khalil. But when someone mentions that Khalil would do the same for her, if their roles were reversed, Starr knows she must speak up. Not just for Khalil but for all those who have lost their lives.
I went into this book with HIGH expectations. I don’t have one friend on Goodreads that rated it lower than a 3-star and that is pretty impressive. In fact, I’m in the minority giving it a 4-star. I think it was an amazing book but I didn’t love everything about it. For one, there is a lot of language in it. Now I know most don’t mind the language and that’s fine but I’m not fan of it. I figured there would be some, since most YA books these days do, but The Hate U Give has it on about every single page.
Starr is a great character. She is quiet and she’s kind but also a little hypocritical. But that’s what makes her great because she’s not perfect. She goes to a private school that is mostly white. She has two close friends named Hailey and Maya who play basketball with her for the school team. Maya is Asian American and when Starr and Hailey have a confrontation, Maya is trying to keep the three of them together. But when Maya and Starr talk alone about some racial remarks that Hailey made, they start thinking that Hailey might not be the great friend they thought. I had a little bit of an issue with the conversation between Starr and Hailey. I think it got totally blown out of proportion and the things she said, I’ve never heard or witnessed anyone saying in my life. They were very cruel words and it seemed unrealistic with how ridiculous it was.
Starr also has two brothers, one older and one younger and they are all very close. I think they Carter family is so cute when they are all together. Even with their little bantering, I found myself smiling at how great their family is.
This story is so important and it gives you great insight on police brutality against the black community. I will be honest, when I started seeing the Black Lives Matter movement, I didn’t understand. I just kept thinking, “Well… don’t all lives matter?” But that’s not the point of the movement. I understand that now and that matters because a lot of people need to read this book so they are not confused or questioning what it really is. So thank you Angie Thomas for writing this book so that someone like me can understand. And now I get to tell my friends and family about it and I’m so excited to pass it on.