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Angie Thomas Books In Order

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

The Hate U Give (2017) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
On the Come Up (2018) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Angie Thomas is a bestselling American author of Young Adult & Children books. She was born and raised in Jackson, Mississippi in the United States. She is a former rapper who biggest accomplishment was a piece of writing about her Right-On Magazine. She is a graduate of Belhaven University with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Creative Writing and also holds an unofficial Hip Hop degree. She is the winner of Walter Meyers Dean Grant 2015 which was awarded to her by We Need Diverse Books.

Thomas debut novel, The Hate U Give Me was published in 2017. The book was inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement and mainly focuses on the brutal police shooting of unarmed Oscar Grant, in Oakland California in 2009. The book, The HateU Give garnered significant buzz and praise and also sparked a bidding war between thirteen publishing houses.

The author, Angie Thomas, who lives in Jackson, Mississippi, began writing her debut novel while as a senior at Belhaven University. During an interview, the author mentioned that the title of the book came from the definition that the late and famous rapper Tupac Shakur gave “Thug Life” which was not only the tattoo he had on his stomach but also code the rapper developed for the poor neighborhoods. In other words “THUG LIFE” is the short form of The Hate U Give Little Infants F**ks Everybody. She chose to ignore the LIFE part of the acronym simply because it was impossible to include the “F” word in a Young Adult (YA) book title plus adding the section would provide one long title which is not appealing.

Being a diehard fan for Tupac and that is why the artist was such an influence for Angie Thomas debut novel title. Apart from Tupac, the author loved Biggie, even though the two artists were different rappers each with his unique style.

Film Adaptation

The film adaptation of the novel The Hate U Give, a Young Adult novel authored by Angie Thomas and inspired by the Black Lives Matter have sold to Temple Hill, Fox 2000 and State Streets in a competitive manner.

Amanda Stenberg, the famous Hunger Games actress, will star in the film while George Tillman Jr. is set to direct the movie adaptation from a script prepared by Audrey Wells.

A bidding war erupted between publishers as the book started making rounds. Multiple producers and studios showed interests in film rights acquisition as well. Eventually, the publishing rights war was won by HarperCollins Balzer and Bray while film adaptation was won by FOX 2000.

The Hate U Give follows the story Starr, a 16-year-old girl who is raised in an impoverished slum but now attending a suburban school. After, she witnesses a police officer brutally shoot her unarmed friend; she is torn between two different worlds as she tries, to tell the truth.

Thomas began working on the novel in 2011 and even sought out her agent Brooks Sherman through Twitter requesting whether a book based on the Black Lives Matter movement would get any particular traction.

The Hate U Give (2017)

The Hate You Give is the debut novel written by Angie Thomas, the Young Adult writer. It describes the story of a sixteen-year girl named Starr who moves in between two different worlds: the suburban prep school that she attends and the poor neighborhood slums where she lives

The edgy balance between these two different worlds is collapsed when she witnesses the brutal shooting of her childhood best friend named Khalil at the hands of law enforcers. Khalil was unarmed.

Later, Khalil death hits national news headlines, some people calling him a thug, others gangbanger and maybe even a drug dealer. The protesters take to the streets in Khalil’s name while the local drug lord and some cops try to intimidate Starr and her family as well. What everyone wants to know is: what exactly went down on the night of the fatal shooting? Moreover, the one and the only person who can answer that question right is Starr.

However, what Starr does not or does say could flip her community and also threaten her life as well.

There are books that timely and relevant, worth reading because of the political/social message they deliver. These books fill the gap in the market; make waves and need to exist. Furthermore, there are other books, well written & emotionally charged, and fill the gap in the market and this novel is one of them.

The book is more about how Starr, the protagonist deals with the aftermath of seeing Khalil being shot by police for doing absolutely nothing. Her greatest fear is noticeable as she challenges the system that she knows is working against her. She is afraid to “shout” but yet angry that Khalil killer cop could escape the long arms of justice.

As you read, you will notice how media presents the blacks as guilty people until proven innocent. She understands that when you are poor and black, it is virtually impossible to be “considered innocent” or even to get justice.

Even though at its core, the book captures the viewpoint of a scared girl with complicated relationships, loving family, with a white boyfriend and white teenagers at her school. The relationship dynamics run parallel with the fight for justice and are no less gripping.

The author vividly portrays the complex, shady relationships between all the characters in the book taking into consideration of the divide that exists between the lead character and her classmates but never allowing any of the characters become one-dimensional or cliché.

Although The Hate U Gave is full of critical moments related to the contemporary state of the trivialized populations, it is primarily themed about using your voice as a tool. The book gives oneself a realization of how much your words matter and how powerful they can impact. Starr Carter is a good example who thinks that their voices as “blacks” don’t matter, but through risk taking, courage and ultimate strength she finally realizes how important it is to speak up for who and what you are no matter how horrifying the aftermath may seem.

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