Friday, February 8, 2019

Buddy Read Update No. 4/Wrap Up: The Hate U Give, by Angie Thomas

The Hate U Give
Angie Thomas
Hardcover, 444 pages
Balzer + Bray
February 28, 2017
African-American Fiction,Coming-of-Age, Contemporary Fiction, Diverse Reads,
Social Justice, Young Adult Fiction

A three-time winner of Goodreads Choice Awards

Sixteen-year-old Starr Carter moves between two worlds: the poor neighborhood where she lives and the fancy suburban prep school she attends. The uneasy balance between these worlds is shattered when Starr witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend Khalil at the hands of a police officer. Khalil was unarmed.

Soon afterward, his death is a national headline. Some are calling him a thug, maybe even a drug dealer and a gangbanger. Protesters are taking to the streets in Khalil’s name. Some cops and the local drug lord try to intimidate Starr and her family. What everyone wants to know is: what really went down that night? And the only person alive who can answer that is Starr.

But what Starr does—or does not—say could upend her community. It could also endanger her life.


This buddy read is presented by 
Maria @ A Night's Dream of Books
Barb @ Booker T's Farm!!

For this week's post, 
we both read Chapters 22 to 26,
which brought us to the end of the book.

Be sure to visit Barb's blog to read
her half of our "chat"! 
You can access her post HERE!!

This post, as well as that of my fellow
buddy reader, may contain spoilers!
Read at your own risk!!

This is our last buddy read post..... Yep, this is our fourth and final week! I can't BELIEVE how FAST the time went by! 

I have felt a little sad each time I've come to the end of a buddy read, too, although I haven't done that many of them.

I feel especially sad about coming to the end of this particular book. The characters were SO vividly drawn, the plot SO intense, I actually felt as if I were watching the movie already! I wanted to get into the book and give Starr a BIG HUG, as well as dap! I wanted to stay with her family and share their lives for some time. Heck, I wanted to IMMERSE myself in their world! 

Of course, I will also miss this back-and-forth question format with Barb! But not for long, as we're already planning our next buddy read!! We will reveal our plans when we firm everything up, and then we'll share with all of you, our readers and visitors!

Our very last posts will be our individual reviews of this book. The dates are tentative at this point, but we'll have these reviews published as soon as we're able to. Please refer to my Launch Post for the weekly schedule. You can find that post HERE.

And now for the last week's questions....

Barb: What are your feelings on Starr and basically the rest of her family hiding the fact that she was dating Chris from Mav?

Maria: I wasn't very comfortable with it. However, Mav was very protective of Starr. I got the impression he didn't think she should have been dating ANYONE, since she was sixteen, and that's too young for a girl to be dating, in his opinion. He wasn't too happy, either,  when he found out that his daughter was dating 'a white boy', especially in light of the Khalil case.

The irony here is that Starr herself was somewhat conflicted about dating Chris, although thankfully, she resolved this by the end of the book.

While I didn't like it much, I can see why the family acted this way. They figured that Mav would get all bent out of shape if he ever found out. And he did find out! Lol. 

Barb: In the end, DeVante decides to turn evidence in against King. Do you think doing so will make much of a difference? A lot of times, even when arrested, gang leaders manage to keep a stranglehold on the community. Do you think DeVante will ever be safe?

Maria: I was totally surprised by this, considering the fact that King had been looking for DeVante, and his goons finally found him and beat him up. I don't think he will ever really be safe, unless he moves to another city, maybe. 

And you're right, gangs do have a way of keeping control of the communities they're in. They do this even from jail! In this case, too, there are other gangs in Garden Heights that work with the King Lords. So I really don't think that DeVante's decision to turn witness will do much good, in the long run. 

Barb: And speaking of DeVante, I watched the movie Saturday and he doesn't factor into it at all. Do you think they left an important piece of the puzzle out and can you imagine this story without him in it?

Maria: Oh, you've already watched the movie? I haven't, but I did look it up on Wikipedia. That's where I found out that DeVante was not included in the plot. I even searched the list of actors included in the article, looking for the one who had played this character. Of course, I didn't find him.....

I was very disappointed to see that the makers of the movie had eliminated DeVante. I love this character. He's a good guy who, like Khalil, did what he did in order to look out for his family. 

I really enjoyed the relationship that developted between DeVante and Starr's family. Her dad and uncle became surrogate fathers and friends to him, helping him as much as possible. I'm going to miss that in the movie, if I do decide to watch it.

I also totally enjoyed the friendship between DeVante and Chris! I loved it when they gave each other dap, and played video games together. That, too, I will miss in the film....

Last but not least, I also liked that DeVante was a good friend to Starr. At first, I thought he was a bit condescending to her, but later, I saw that I had been wrong. He actually became another Khalil for her. I felt this was a very nice touch on the part of the author. 

Well, you know how it is -- most of the time, the book is better than the movie! 

Barb: Starr, Seven and Chris didn't hesitate to jump into the protests which placed them right in the middle of the riots going on. Do you feel they were right in doing so? 

Maria: Well, they didn't really want to do anything violent, and they didn't. Starr, Seven and DeVante (SO sad he's not in the movie....I have to say it again), wanted to show their solidarity with their fellow African-Americans, so I think they felt they had a duty to be present, even if they didn't participate in the violence and the looting that went on. And it ended up that Starr became the one who actively participated -- not in violence, but in speaking out in front of everyone. I thought she was GREAT! Gone was her fear. It was replaced by outrage that justice had not been done.

As for Chris, I LOVED that he went right along with the rest of them! He, too, was outraged about the outcome of the murder case, especially since it had an adverse impact on Starr. And then, too, he and DeVante had become friends. So, by the time this part of the novel came up, I was totally rooting for Chris being Starr's boyfriend! It really took guts for him to participate in this with Starr, her brother, and friend, as, being the only white person around, he could have gotten hurt. YAY for Chris!!!! 

Thanks for the GREAT, thought-provoking questions, Barb, not only this final week, but also during the three previous weeks! It's been so interesting and fun to have participated in my second buddy read with you! I can't wait for the next one to start!! (Hey, maybe we can move it up a little!) 

Blog visitors and regular readers, be sure to visit Barb's blog (see the link above) to see how she answered my questions for this last week! And.......stay tuned as well for our reviews!! 

What do you all think?
Have we piqued your curiosity
about this book?
Be sure to let us know!
Don't forget to visit Barb's blog
to get her side of this "chat"!!


  1. What a super series of posts that you have put up for the read along. The book sounds so good. From what you and Barb have written it sounds so complex and thoughtful. The characters sound well thought out. I also have not seen the film. I will likely start with that and I might move on to the book.

    1. Hi, Brian!

      Thank you so much for the compliment!! <3 <3

      Yes, this book is EXCELLENT. And, as you have written above, complex and thoughtful. The characters are very well drawn. Heck, I LOVE them!! (Except for Hailey the racist, and the cop that killed Khalil.) I feel like I know them all so well! I also feel that I have LIVED through this book. And I am amazed at that, because I encountered "the F bomb", as well as other colorful language, on just about every page. If a writer can actually compel me to keep reading, in spite profanity, well, then, their book must be a REAL powerhouse!! And this book DEFINITELY is!

      I would advise you to read the book first. I think that, in most cases, the book is indeed better than the movie based on it. In this particular case, the filmmakers did away with one of the characters -- DeVante. I'm so sad about that.....I felt that he was an integral part of the plot. I wonder what else they did to the novel.... Hopefully they haven't done that much else. Crossing my fingers, because I think I might watch the movie after all!

      Thanks for commenting!! <3 :)

  2. Maria, I've really enjoyed doing this as well and I think people have enjoyed the Q & A's we've been providing. I am probably still not over the fact that Devante isn't in the movie. My husband really liked the movie (and he didn't think he would) and couldn't understand why I kept saying something was missing. The ending is also pretty different. For example, they don't move at all and it's never even mentioned. Like you said, the book is always better :)

    I grew to really like Chris as well and yea, I don't think Mav is ever going to like anyone Starr dates. The movie is super cute because Seven and Starr start quizzing Chris on black culture on his way to meet Mav. It's a really adorable scene.

    So keep me posted on the next decision. I know we talked about May but pretty much, I can work it in earlier if you want to. I'll be looking for your review as well.

    1. Hi, Barb!

      I enjoyed this buddy read tremendously as well! It was so much fun to exchange impressions on the book with you! I think we were pretty much in sync with everything! :)

      I have yet to see the movie version, and I'm afraid I might not like it as much as the book. I'm now thinking that I will probably watch it. But I'm mad at the movie makers for removing DeVante!!!! I think he gave an extra dimension to the plot. He had some important functions in it, like giving Mav a chance to help someone who, like Mav himself at one point, was involved in a gang. I thought it was GREAT how Mav and Uncle Carlos helped DeVante transform his life. Also, I think of him as a sort of Khalil-type person. It seems that he became for Starr what Khalil had been for her before he died -- her best friend. Oh, well.....

      As for Chris, I sure began to agree with you the more I read about him! I especially liked that scene where he told Starr that they wouldn't make love because she was "not in a good place". Like you, I thought that was very sweet of him. Yes, he wanted their first time to be very special.

      That scene you're describing does sound super cute!! I'm gravitating more and more toward seeing the movie.

      I will definitely keep you posted on our next buddy read! And yes, I'm thinking that we could have another one before May!

      Thanks for the great comment!! HUGS TO YOU AND THE PUPS, AND "WOOF, WOOF" TO THEM!!! <3 <3 <3 :) :) :P

    2. P.S. I also loved Chris all the more for going into Glenvar Heights with Starr, DeVante, and Seven during the riots!!

  3. Thank you for this really entertaining double reaction to this interesting book:)). I thoroughly enjoyed reading your thoughts and reactions to it - though I don't think it's for me... So it was lovely to get an insight into the themes and ideas powering the narrative:)

    1. Hi, Sarah!

      Awwww....thank you SO much for complimenting our buddy read!! <3 <3

      We enjoyed this tremendously as well! It was great to compare our impressions of the book, and we were both pretty much in sync in our reactions to the events and characters depicted.

      I'm glad you enjoyed reading our posts! Yeah, this book is not for everyone. I was actually surprised I liked it as much as I did, seeing that there's a LOT of profanity in it. But it was the theme of social justice for African-Americans that captured my interest. Besides, the character were solidly drawn, and I felt that I was right in the middle of all the action with them!

      Now I think I'll be moving on to the film, which is available on DVD here in the States.

      Thanks for the lovely comment!! CHEERS!!! <3 <3 <3 :) :) :)


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