Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Hannah Just Read: Hate List by Jennifer Brown

Before I say anything substantial about Hate List by Jennifer Brown, I am just going to say that it is not an easy book to read. It is kind of scary and definitely sad and frustrating, too. That being said, Hate List is absolutely worth reading. It is primarily Valerie's story, who, after a lot of therapy and laying in bed, has decided to go back to her high school for her senior year, even though her boyfriend Nick open fired in the school's cafeteria at the end of the previous school year. Valerie and Nick, feeling like outsiders, had spent a lot of their time together venting their frustrations through a hate list that included not only people they knew but also things like "people who say 'sorry' after everything" and "fast-food commercials," and it was this list that Nick used to target his victims. Valerie didn't know anything about the shooting and, in fact, was responsible for stopping it while simultaneously saving the life of one of her classmates, but the people in her town, the kids in her school, and even her parents are having a hard time realizing that Valerie was not the one who pulled the trigger.
Like I said, Hate List is wonderfully written and well told, and I would recommend it very highly to upper high-schoolers. It kind of reminded me of the movie Elephant, which was directed by Gus Van Saint, which I saw and really liked, but it is very slow moving. Here's a trailer for the book and then a trailer for Elephant.

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