Fourth Grade Journey

A Fourth Grade Teacher's Journey Through the World of Books

Saturday, January 9, 2016

All American Boys by Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely...

How I Heard About It:  This is another one of those titles that has been on my radar for quite some time now.  I saw several "Tweets" about it, heard my "Twitter" friends chat about it, and saw it on many "Best of for 2015" lists.  I'm trying to use the public library more (my wife is very happy) to save money.  I put this novel on reserve over the holidays and read it this past week.  

What It Is About:  The story is told from two points of view.  The first one is told from Rashad a black high school student who has always done the right thing.  The second account is told from the viewpoint of Quinn who is a white high school basketball student.  Rashad and Quinn are heading to the same party.  Rashad stops by the local convenience store to pick up a few things.  After a couple of "logical" mishaps, he is accused of shop lifting and resisting arrest.  As a local police officer restrains him outside of the store, he beats up Rashad enough to put him  in the hospital.  Quinn is a witness to this assault and can't quite believe what he is seeing.  When he realizes that the officer is the brother of his best friend, he isn't sure what he should do.  While Rashad recovers in the hospital, Quinn struggles to find a solution to this situation.  The days pass and more and more of the high school students and townspeople begin to take sides of this "brutality" issue.  Quinn is in the hardest position of all since he must choose between doing the right thing and keeping his best friend by his side.  

What I Thought Of It:  This was such a powerful read.  Once I started I couldn't stop.  These two young men were strong and independent guys.  The story moved along quickly and each chapter ended with me as the reader wanting more.  The issues presented in the story were relevant and timely.  An aspect of the story that I appreciated was that each boy was presented in such a realistic and truthful way.  I could feel their pain, their dilemma, and the choices they had to make.  When the plot came to an end, I still wanted more and to find out where the two young men went after this incident in their lives.  

Who Should Read It:  As many other readers have stated, this novel should be read by all high school students.  There are so many important issues and questions that could be discussed and analyzed.  Not only should young adults read the book, but adults should as well.  I know they will find it a satisfying and thought-provoking story.  Happy Reading!  

Rating:  5 STARS out of 5 Stars

No comments:

Post a Comment