T.H.U.G L.I.F.E. The Hate U Give Little Infants Fucks Everybody. A Tupac lyric that inspired Angie Thomas’ novel as well as something THUG readers are forced to think about.
Starr Carter lives a dual life. Williamson Starr, from her private school an hour’s drive from home where she avoids getting angry or using slang so she isn’t dubbed the Angry Black Girl or Ghetto Starr. Then there’s Garden Heights Starr, who people barely know as anything but Big Mav’s daughter who works in the corner shop, or accuse her of preferring her white friends to them.
This all changes when her best friend Khalil is shot in the back three times in front of her by a policeman, while Khalil is unarmed. Then Starr’s two worlds must collide and elements of her facades must shatter if she is to achieve the justice Khalil deserves.
Though I wasn’t expecting the novel to be quite-so-young-adult, it wasn’t a problem either. I think, for any parents of young adult readers, this is a great balance between consumable and provoking and will do wonders for the way your child thinks about the world and its injustices. And for adults, we can all learn something from kids.