When I heard there was a prequel to ‘The Hate U Give‘, I knew I had to read it (bye, bye, book-buying ban).
This is the story of Starr’s father, Maverick: a character so many if us loved from the original story. We are with Maverick in his late teen years. He is navigating the challenges of growing up in a town where being a young black man more or less guarantees you will be a member of a gang, and all that entails. As well as finding out he has become a teenage dad – and that is something that is about to happen again.
In this book, young Maverick has a lot to deal with. Yet, he realises that this is not how his life has to be – in fact, he can break the mould. He realises that he can carve out his own destiny and become a better man.
This is a book ful of lessons for all of us about taking responsibility for our actions. And that we should not let anyone tell us what we should be, because that does not always lead to change.
You can read this book without having read ‘The Hate U Give’, but I highly recommend both. Especially as it is great to see contrasting perspectives over time – Starr and her father.
This was certainly a book that makes breaking the book buying ban worth it.
When I was growing up, I do not really remember YA fiction being much of a thing. In fact, I remember my mum actively encouraging me to avoid what was around for YA and move onto classic works by the likes of Agatha Christie.
However, now YA is a wonderful genre in its own right and, in fact, is read by so many people of all ages. I have probably read more YA now than I ever read at the ‘correct’ age.
Angie Thomas is one of the authors who has taken the YA world by storm. Her bestselling novel, ‘THUG‘, was a brilliant book which won her a huge following. Tackling some tough issues, it was educational and emotional. ‘On the Come Up’ is no different, it is an equally wonderful read.
Bri has ambitions of being a world-class rapper, just like the path her father started on. Using her music to raise awareness of the issues that matter. However, she ends up on a journey of self-discovery, realising that the past does not need to define you, and nor do the views other people may have formed of you. In fact, maybe it is time to break the mould and Bri should take the chance to shine on her own and move out of the shadow of others.
This novel is a great read. You find yourself really engaging with the characters. You feel all the emotions the characters feel, you will laugh with them, feel the frustration with them and cry with them, always wishing them the best. A novel like this also makes you reflect on the life you are leading and the world we live in – You get to the end wanting to make the world a better place for all those living in it.
I hope Angie Thomas brings us more fabulous characters because these are the novels that the YA world needs.
So, I am a little late at picking up a copy of this novel but this is certainly a case of better late than never. Recently the winner of ‘Waterstones Children’s Book Prize’, and it really is a deserving winner.
I am not sure I can do this title justice in a blog post. There is so much in this novel that deserves praise and recognition that I honestly do not think I have the skill to comment on it all. However, I am going to do my best to share my thoughts on ‘THUG’.
However, first it is another novel with a fantastic female lead in Starr. She may not have an easy ride for a whole load of different reasons but she is someone that you can imagine wanting to be friends with. You root for her from the word go; even if you don’t always agree with some of her actions, you can certainly understand them.
In fact, this whole novel is probably an important lesson for us all. Angie Thomas was inspired to write this because of the #Blacklivesmatter campaign and really shows us why we should use the voice we have been given to speak out for what we believe in. After all, our voice is our most powerful weapon. This is an incredibly thought-provoking book and is essential reading for all of us.
I really do not want to spoil this novel for anyone who has not read it, because it is such a powerful book. However, I will say that it is an emotional page-turner which will probably make you take a long, hard look at the world we live in and some of the actions we witness on a day-to-day basis.
So, whenever I am asked for a book recommendation this will be top of the list. If you haven’t read it, go out and find a copy and dedicate some time to Starr and her friends and family. They might all teach you thing or two.