Reviews

My Government Means to Kill Me by Rasheed Newson

colleen_bean_reads's review

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emotional funny hopeful informative relaxing fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

4.25

skoppelkam's review against another edition

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dark emotional informative inspiring reflective sad fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

3.75

I enjoyed this and so glad it exists. "My Government Means to Kill Me" is historical fiction, centering Trey, a gay Black teenager who finds himself in NYC during the later years of the AIDs epidemic. As others have mentioned, it felt "Forrest Gump-esque" as Trey seems to find himself interacting with some of the biggest changemakers and moments in queer history at this time. I loved Newson's educational footnotes which help to make this book a lesson on some underrepresented parts of American history. What made it between a 3-4 star read for me was that it felt pedantic at times, and there was something a bit too abrupt about Trey's evolution from clueless teen to mature activist leader. 

arrivingstill's review

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informative medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

4.0

gasrat's review

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adventurous emotional hopeful informative inspiring reflective fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

4.0

cmchugh's review against another edition

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challenging dark emotional funny hopeful informative inspiring mysterious reflective sad tense medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

4.5

coleycole's review

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5.0

This book is the best thing I've read in awhile. The writing is just so good - it feels urgent and also thoughtful and reflective.

hanandcheese's review

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adventurous dark emotional funny hopeful informative inspiring reflective fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.75

brynalexa's review against another edition

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emotional informative inspiring reflective tense fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

3.75

I think I would have engaged more with this book in print. The story is great and it’s well researched but it came off a bit textbook-like at times. It didn’t quite feel wrapped up at the end, although the main character came into his own wonderfully. 

Expand filter menu Content Warnings

sophiejohn's review

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fast-paced

3.0

zamreads's review

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informative tense fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
Learned a lot through the footnotes throughout explaining references to key LGBTQIA+ and Civil Rights Movement historical context while following the plotline about Earl Singleton, a gay Black teen who fled family fortune to become himself and a revolutionary in NYC in the 80s. (At first the footnotes felt a little "straight white gaze" but as the plot continued on, foot otes grew more common, and the acknowledgements referenced Newson's own lifelong study of the history of these movements in his own communities, it felt more like trying to share key pieces of common history with audiences that might know one part but not another of the intersectional experiences he writes about.) 

(Reminder to self: a great read but not one for the classroom library since there are so many sexual scenes.)