cover image Light It Up

Light It Up

Kekla Magoon. Holt, $18.99 (368p) ISBN 978-1-250-12889-8

Coretta Scott King Honoree Magoon’s stand-alone follow-up to How It Went Down catches up with the residents of the Underhill neighborhood after another incident: a white police officer shoots a 13-year-old black girl, Shae Tatum, in the back as she is heading home. Multiple points of view follow the killing’s aftermath through the eyes of Shae’s devastated friends and family, the daughter of the officer who shot the girl, the shooting’s sole witness, the residents left grieving in the aftermath, and the black man whose PR job burdens him with ensuring the police department comes through the incident unscathed. When the grand jury verdict comes back, the residents of Underhill pull together, emerging stronger and more determined than ever. Not for the faint of heart, this fearless and realistic account of a police shooting challenges readers to think about these all-too-common events from every perspective. The novel doesn’t shy away from the ugly and foundational role racism plays in American life, policing, and media coverage, nor does it neglect to examine black America’s strength in the face of adversity. Like How It Went Down, this gritty, emotional tale will leave readers gutted and compelled to stand against flawed systems. Ages 14–up. [em]Agent: Ginger Knowlton, Curtis Brown Ltd. (Oct.) [/em]