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Striving for goodness when the world has you down as bad
May 2018 Debut of the Month | One of our 2018 Books of the Year
Picture this. You’re an honors student with a top university in your sights. You work hard, and you follow your mother’s advice to always put your best foot forward. So how come, when you help a friend in need, you’re man-handled by the police and arrested? How come the cops tell you that they “know your kind...Just couldn’t resist the pretty white girl who’s locked her keys in her car, could ya?” As Yale-bound African American Justyce knows only too well, “things aren’t as equal as folks say they are”. At every turn he’s caught between worlds: a white classmate attributes his success to positive discrimination, while he’s accused of being a race traitor by some of his black peers. He airs this elemental conundrum with SJ, his debate partner: “white people hold most positions of authority in this country. How do I deal with the fact that I DO need them to get ahead without feeling like I’m turning my back on my own people?” And what’s he supposed to do when he falls for SJ and his mama’s dead against him dating a white girl?
As the compelling, gut-wrenching story unfolds, Justyce writes a journal to Dr Martin Luther King Jr. to work through his thoughts, vent his frustrations and to ask what Dr King would do in his situation. Then a tragedy strikes that threatens to disarm Justyce’s pledge to do as Martin would do.
Important, timely and unforgettable, this powerful exposé of racism, injustice and the injuriousness of profiling articulates the persistent everyday battles faced by thousands of kids in Justyce’s shoes with scorching lucidity. Quite simply, everyone must read this poignant punch-packer of a debut.
Raw, captivating, and undeniably real, Nic Stone boldly tackles American race relations in this stunning debut. Justyce McAllister is top of his class and set for the Ivy League - but none of that matters to the police officer who just put him in handcuffs. And despite leaving his rough neighbourhood behind, he can't escape the scorn of his former peers or the ridicule of his new classmates. Justyce looks to the teachings of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. for answers. But do they hold up anymore? He starts a journal to Dr. King to find out.
Then comes the day Justyce goes driving with his best friend, Manny, windows rolled down, music turned up - way up, sparking the fury of a white off-duty police officer beside them. Words fly. Shots are fired. Justyce and Manny are caught in the crosshairs. In the media fallout, it's Justyce who is under attack?
In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion some of our LoveReading Teen/YA Reader Review Panel members were also lucky enough to read and review this title. You can read their full reviews by clicking here.
'A powerful, wrenching, and compulsively readable story that lays bare the history, and the present, of racism in America' John Green, bestselling author of Turtles All the Way Down
'Absolutely incredible, honest, gut-wrenching! A must-read!' Angie Thomas, bestselling author of The Hate U Give
Painfully timely and deeply moving, this is the novel the next generation should be reading' bestselling author Jodi Picoult
`Justyce's story is earnest, funny, achingly human, and unshakably hopeful. I am forever changed.' Becky Albertalli, author of Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda
'Raw and gripping' Jason Reynolds, bestselling co-author of All American Boys
|Publication date:||3rd May 2018|
|Publisher:||Simon & Schuster Childrens Books an imprint of Simon & Schuster Ltd|
|Suitable for:||13+ readers, YA readers|
|Genres:||General Fiction, Gritty Reads, Romance / Relationship Stories|
|Recommendations:||Debuts of the Month, eBooks, Reviewed by Children|
Nic Stone is the author of the New York Times bestselling Dear Martin, Odd One Out and Jackpot. She was born in Atlanta and has lived and in Israel, working extensively in teen mentoring. Growing up with a wide range of cultures, religions, and backgrounds, Stone strives to bring these diverse voices and stories to her work.More About Nic Stone