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Concrete Rose by [Angie Thomas]

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Concrete Rose Kindle Edition

4.7 out of 5 stars 288 ratings

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Review

Angie Thomas returns to the world of her award-winning debut The Hate U Give in one of the most awaited books of 2021. […] Thomas smashes stereotypes at every turn in the lives of her raw, complex and unforgettable characters, her writing underpinned by immense humanity. A powerful and important novel. ― The Observer

This is searing, moving, but never sentimental. ― The Irish Examiner

A blistering, unputdownable look at black boyhood in the US, and what it means to be a man. It can be read as a standalone, but knowledge of The Hate U Give will make for a richer reading experience. ― The Bookseller

Thomas’s prequel to the award-winning The Hate U Give investigates the pride and pain of being a black boy on the brink of man hood with humour, clarity and pathos. ― The Guardian

Like Thomas’s other work, this is a book that will stay with you. -- Claire Hennessy ― The Irish Times --This text refers to the paperback edition.

About the Author

Angie Thomas was born, raised and still resides in Mississippi. She is a former teen rapper, holds a BFA in Creative Writing from Belhaven University and an unofficial degree in Hip Hop. She can also still rap if needed. She is an inaugural winner of the Walter Dean Myers Grant 2015, awarded by We Need Diverse Books. Film rights for her debut novel, The Hate U Give, have been optioned by Fox 2000 with George Tillman attached to direct and Hunger Games actress Amandla Stenberg set to star. --This text refers to the paperback edition.

Product details

  • ASIN : B08KFZDGPT
  • Publisher : Walker Books; 1st edition (12 January 2021)
  • Language : English
  • File size : 3366 KB
  • Text-to-Speech : Enabled
  • Screen Reader : Supported
  • Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
  • X-Ray : Not Enabled
  • Word Wise : Enabled
  • Print length : 256 pages
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.7 out of 5 stars 288 ratings

Customer reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5
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Top reviews from India

Reviewed in India on 8 February 2021
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5.0 out of 5 stars Angie Thomas- YA author with an unique voice
By Kalyan on 8 February 2021
I ended up with mixed opinions about this one. As a stand-alone YA, it works just fine- In fact it's possibly one of the best free-flowing YA novels with a good message. But the comparison to a Starr in THUG with a strong theme of Black lives Matter Movement or a Bri in "On the Come Up" with a Hip Hop undercurrent is a tough one to follow- even for Starr's father Maverick! While T.H.U.G. was a journey of Starr trying to find her voice, "On the Come Up" was about Bri using hip hop as a means to voice her feelings, Maverick is torn between responsibilities of being an unplanned 18-year father of 2 and living his teenage life. On one end he wants to be still called a "Kid" and yet he wants to be a "man" in the social terms- not Junior Don anymore. His relationship with his father- the love-hate relationship with Lisa and his growth from a kid to a man are what forms the crux of this book.

“Did you hear about the rose that grew from a crack in the concrete? Proving nature's laws wrong, it learned to walk without having feet. Funny, it seems to by keeping it's dreams; it learned to breathe fresh air. Long live the rose that grew from concrete when no one else even cared.”
― Tupac Shakur, The Rose That Grew from Concrete

If you have read T.H.U.G., you will find it endearing to go back to the characters in the 1998s Garden Heights and see how they linked up. Interesting fact, while Carlos as the uncle was a beloved character, here from the eyes of Mav, he is the one splitting Lisa and him here. Different Perspectives same guy! On a side note, the references to Fresh Prince of Bel-Air are here as well and still fun. The rise and character change of King is interesting though not explored fully.

While Maverick Carter, despite his flaws, would make you root for him, Lisa with her headstrong determination and even making Maverick realise his dreams, steals the show. The relationship between Mr Wyatt and Maverick is another highlight. In fact, his impact on Mav's life in T.H.U.G. is pretty evident. Another one is the Maverick's bond with Dre. The moment's after Dre's loss is truely heartbreaking.

"Grief hit you in waves. Sometimes it pull me out to sea and take me under. No wonder it’s hard to breathe as I cry."

If you haven't read T.H.U.G, you will still like this book and it works fine as a stand-alone as mentioned earlier. Although this might pale a bit in comparison to Angie Thomas's earlier 2 works. Those were powerhouses- but this one is all about hope. Hope that a young black kid from a black neighbourhood growing up to be a fine Black man in spite of all the adversities facing him. We, as readers, could possibly judge him on his decisions but I for one, couldn't put myself in his shoes.

"One of the biggest lies ever told is that Black men don’t feel emotions. Guess it’s easier to not see us a human when you think we’re heartless. Fact of the matter is, we feel things. Hurt, pain, sadness, all of it. We got a right to show them feelings as much as anybody else."
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Reviewed in India on 19 February 2021
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4.0 out of 5 stars The queen does it again!
By Gayatri Saikia - PER_FICTIONIST on 19 February 2021
The queen does it again! Both 'The Hate U Give' and 'On The Come Up' have left such a deep impact on me that it was indeed obvious I had huge expectations going into Concrete Rose! And yes! THE QUEEN DELIVERED! As it usually is with Thomas' books, I couldn't stop once I started reading Concrete Rose and ended up devoured it in 4 hours straight.

Concrete Rose sketches the journey of seventeen year old Maverick Carter, Starr's father who is the main protagonist of 'THUG' as he struggles to maneuver his life as an accidental teen father and also figuring out for his place in the 'Garden Heights' gang and his relationship with the ones he holds dear to. Reading THUG was an experience of a lifetime and every character leaves an imprint on you and so did Maverick.

Reading Concrete Rose felt like being home, Maverick Carter isn't just a fictional character but so much more than that. The shades, the layers Angie paints her characters with is astounding and you get so emotionally attached it's hard to let them go.

Do I even need to say that YOU NEED TO PICK THIS BOOK UP ASAP? THIS BOOK! THIS BOOK IS GOING TO MAKE YOU FEEL VULNERABLE AND ABSOLUTELY AMAZING HAVING READ IT AND I WANT Y'ALL TO FEEL THAT!!!!
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Reviewed in India on 26 January 2021
Reviewed in India on 23 January 2021

Top reviews from other countries

Whispering Stories Book Blog
5.0 out of 5 stars This is a book that you must read if you read and loved the first.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 26 January 2021
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MD
5.0 out of 5 stars A MUST-READ!!!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 5 February 2021
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Anika May
5.0 out of 5 stars The perfect prequel: moving, important, and enjoyable in every way!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 2 April 2021
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5.0 out of 5 stars The perfect prequel: moving, important, and enjoyable in every way!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 2 April 2021
Concrete Rose, the prequel to The Hate U Give, is the story of seventeen-year-old Maverick Carter. Following in his father’s footsteps, he earns extra cash slinging drugs, wearing gang stripes, and making a name for himself in Garden Heights. But when Mav unexpectedly becomes a father, he realises what it really means to step up.

Maverick was a fascinating character in The Hate U Give, so I was excited to explore his story in Concrete Rose. As Starr’s father, he often acted like the grounded voice of reason, but subtle hints to his upbringing suggested he wasn’t always so level-headed. And in Concrete Rose, the reader gets a chance to learn about the trials, challenges, and lessons Mav faced as a young man. It’s also interesting to see appearances from other characters featured in The Hate U Give, including King and Carlos. Seeing where bonds and tensions began, only increases the nostalgia for the first book.

Angie Thomas’ remarkable voice is in full form in Concrete Rose. Like The Hate U Give and On the Come Up, this book is written in the first person narrative. But it never falls flat, never loses heart, and never waivers. Mav’s voice feels defined and independent, stirring up the same inspirational determination Starr and Bri’s did. Additionally, the dialogue flows beautifully, and the personalities feel authentically full.

I love the way emotion is explored in relation to Black boyhood. Mav has this nagging insecurity around appearing weak, especially as the son of a King Lord. It’s a very relevant and familiar stereotype, and the protagonist’s inner emotional outbursts and raw expressions give the book a strong sense of heart in the face of expectation. The concept of ‘manliness’ is written with sensitivity, as are the books other themes: racism, teen pregnancy, and grief.

Naturally, I’m comparing this book with The Hate U Give. Concrete Rose is not quite as eventful and the pace is slower, but it’s just as moving. Maverick’s story is well worth telling. And I’ll always be captivated by Angie Thomas’ tales of Garden Heights.
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Ritu
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 17 January 2021
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S
5.0 out of 5 stars If you liked THUG, you'd like this
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 29 January 2021
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