The Hate U Give

The Hate U Give

Marissa Johnson, Reporter

The recent release of motion picture and publishing of book, The Hate U Give, on February 28, 2017, has become widely popular in recent months. Author, Angie Thomas’s book is based around female protagonist 16-year-old Starr Carter, who left many speechless and crying for various reasons.

The Black Lives Matter movement inspires this novel and film, but The Hate U Give isn’t so much revolved around a movement. It’s about black lives living, loving, pursuing a sense of happiness and a chance at freedom—just like everyone else.

Starr’s life is very different from the ones her friends at school live. Starr is the only black girl in her junior class, she lives in a gang violent, poverty-stricken neighborhood. Starr is also the daughter of an ex-gang member and saw one of her two best friends killed in a drive-by when she was ten years old. When the movie and book first start out, events escalate very quickly. A planned night of reconnection with Starr’s best friend, Khalil, ends in a fatal scene. Starr finds herself in the middle of the fatal aftermath from the shooting, while still trying to manage grieving Khalil’s death.


Many readers of this novel and viewers of this movie tend to not consider the Black Lives Matter movement. Some might have seen or heard the news, and might have felt injustice in it, but the motion picture and book release brought the weight of the truth into perspective. Whether it’s living in a constant fear of police officers or the small things that close friends say that are meant to be jokes but could definitely fall in the category of being racist. “That’s the problem. We let people say stuff, and they say it so much that it becomes okay to them and normal for us. What’s the point in having a voice if you’re gonna be silent in those moments you shouldn’t be?” said Starr Carter in The Hate U Give.

The Hate U Give definitely challenges it’s viewers and readers, to see that the lives behind the news headlines are so much more complicated than what we are often lead to believe. Angie Thomas is encouraging readers to see that there are two sides to every story, and for most of us, we have only heard one of them. 

In January, well-known author, John Green, tweeted the The Hate U Give would become a classic. Angie Thomas did an excellent job of creating the living, breathing characters and thought-provoking text. She layered this book with every feeling and emotion.