For as long as they can remember, Moss Jeffries and his other high school peers have had to deal with budget cuts and a crummy school system. When the school somehow seems to have money for more security, police officers, and even metal detectors, the students feel more like prisoners than students. There are new, violent incidents occurring that no adult mentions. This situation hits Moss harder, as his dad was killed by a police officer. Now that students are being blamed for problems that police started, Moss has to decide whether he wants to give in to fear or use his anger and put it in the right place.
BTSYA / Teen Reader (16):
I have mixed emotions about this book. Anger is a Gift is not my cup of tea, but that is not to say that this is not a good book. I prefer books with a happy ending. So while this was an interesting book, it did not give me that happy ending I was looking for. I would recommend this book for teenagers and older, as it contains scenes of violence, language, and character death. Because the story also deals with police brutality, some readers may not be comfortable with the book.
Readers who enjoy books that push and pull on their emotions will find themselves quickly immersed in Moss' world. It is an opportunity to walk in the footsteps of a teen who is experiencing what readers "see" on the news.
This is not a book for upper elementary or middle school students, despite the 5th-grade reading level. It is about high school students. Characters use foul language and there are violent scenes.
Borrow. This is a powerful book well worth reading.
This could be a ripped-from-the-headlines story that can engage teens - and their parents - in talking about race, relationships, honesty/integrity, assumptions, and, last but not least, anxiety and grief.
15 and Up
15 and Up
Teen STAR Review Team, Be the Star You Are!™ . Reviewer age: 16