Sunday, October 29, 2017

Long Way Down by Jason Reynolds - ESSENTIAL

Reynolds, Jason Long Way Down, 306 pgs. Atheneum, 2017. $17.99. Language: PG13 (15 swears, 1 “f”); Mature Content: PG; Violence: PG13.  

Will’s older brother has been shot dead right outside their apartment building. This isn’t the first time he’s lost someone to gun violence and he's only 15 years old, so Will has some rules about dealing with death. Don’t cry, Don’t snitch, Get Revenge. So the morning after the murder, Will has decided who the killer is, takes his brother’s loaded gun from the dresser drawer, and starts down the elevator. But, at each floor down, someone gets on - someone from Will’s past. It’s time to break the cycle.  

This poignant novel in verse is gripping and tragic.  Reynolds brings the reader right in, starting the story on the very first page, and keeps you there - in the elevator with Will to the very last words.  I couldn’t put it down.  This is an important novel on a very difficult topic.  A must read.  

MS, HS - Essential  Lisa Librarian

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