The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton || Book Review

“Stay gold, Ponyboy, stay gold.”

Synopsis: The Outsiders is about two weeks in the life of a 14-year-old boy. The novel tells the story of Ponyboy Curtis and his struggles with right and wrong in a society in which he believes that he is an outsider. According to Ponyboy, there are two kinds of people in the world: greasers and socs. A soc (short for “social”) has money, can get away with just about anything, and has an attitude longer than a limousine. A greaser, on the other hand, always lives on the outside and needs to watch his back. Ponyboy is a greaser, and he’s always been proud of it, even willing to rumble against a gang of socs for the sake of his fellow greasers–until one terrible night when his friend Johnny kills a soc. The murder gets under Ponyboy’s skin, causing his bifurcated world to crumble and teaching him that pain feels the same whether a soc or a greaser.

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On the Come Up by Angie Thomas || Book Review

“All these folks I’ve never met became gods over my life. Now I gotta take the power back.”

Synopsis: Sixteen-year-old Bri wants to be one of the greatest rappers of all time. Or at least make it out of her neighborhood one day. As the daughter of an underground rap legend who died before he hit big, Bri’s got big shoes to fill. But now that her mom has unexpectedly lost her job, food banks and shutoff notices are as much a part of Bri’s life as beats and rhymes. With bills piling up and homelessness staring her family down, Bri no longer just wants to make it—she has to make it.

On the Come Up is Angie Thomas’s homage to hip-hop, the art that sparked her passion for storytelling and continues to inspire her to this day. It is the story of fighting for your dreams, even as the odds are stacked against you; of the struggle to become who you are and not who everyone expects you to be; and of the desperate realities of poor and working-class black families.

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The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas || Book Review

“What’s the point of having a voice if you’re gonna be silent in those moments you shouldn’t be?”

Following the powerful and important #blacklivematter movement, Angie Thomas’ The Hate U Give is an inspirational story about fighting oppression and seeking equality for all. When Starr Carter witnesses a police officer commit a horrific act upon her childhood friend, her view on the world begins to crumble. This event becomes the catalyst towards Starr’s self-discovery journey, as she tries to find how she fits into this complex world where she has to hide her true self in order to not only be accepted but to survive. An authentic piece of literature, Thomas dares to show the world the TRUE nature of how the oppressed are treated and how to fight for justice in a corrupt society.

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