I don’t think I could find much more love for that book than I have at this very moment. It was powerful. It was gripping. And it was damn well emotional. If I ever write a novel, Jennifer Brown I can only wish it could be even half as good as Hate List. I am in awe.
Valerie didn’t shoot but she wrote the list. That makes her just as bad, right? Five months previously, Valerie’s boyfriend Nick opened fire in their cafeteria, killing several people and wounding numerous others. Including Valerie herself. She has spent the summer in isolation, and not really spoken to anyone. It was Valerie’s list in the first place. But she did not know that this was Nick’s plan, even if everyone believes that she did. Starting back for senior year, she doesn’t know how she is going to cope.
As soon as I read the premise for this book, I knew I had to buy it. I was fascinated from the start. And the beginning. Boy, oh boy was it enthrilling and I knew I had made the right decision to read this magnificent book.
The dynamics of all the characters was intricate and not very straight forward, which I loved. The depth and magnitude in which Brown explores them is absolutely fascinating and there never really any one dimensional characters, they all had conflicting sides. Even Nick was given a human side that wasn’t completely biased by Valerie and I commend Brown for that!
The way Jennifer Brown handled the school shooting was delicate, yet riddled in detail at the same time. I liked that it was constructed through newspaper articles and Valerie’s personal experience at the beginning. Because of this format I really like how it became a book about Valerie and not Nick’s deed. The focus on Valerie’s struggles was a good route to go down.
The ups and downs that are emcompassed within this novel are explored in depth and not just brushed over. I also appreciate the different ways in which these emotions were dealt with, through the means of various characters.
And the ending got me emotional, which is always a feat in itself.
This book was raw, full of emotion and completely breathtaking. I must say, one of my favourite ever reads.