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 story is necessary. This story is important." —Kirkus (starred review)
"Heartbreakingly topical." —Publishers Weekly (starred review)
"A marvel of verisimilitude." —Booklist (starred review)
"A powerful, in-your-face novel." —Horn Book (starred review)
Martha Brackeen-Harris is a retired public and independent school educator who served for over 40 years in Philadelphia and Hartford area schools. She has worked diligently to make schools places where all children are valued and learn to embrace similarities and differences. She has conducted diversity workshops both locally and nationally and has spoken about her life growing up in the Civil Rights era to a variety of audiences. She serves on the Library Board in Bloomfield.
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