Concrete Rose

The Hate U Give #0

Angie Thomas

fiction contemporary young adult
emotional fast-paced

320 pages | first published 2021

International phenomenon Angie Thomas revisits Garden Heights seventeen years before the events of The Hate U Give in this searing and poignant exploration of Black boyhood and manhood.

If there’s one thing seventeen-year-old Maverick Carter knows, it’s that a real man takes care of his family. As the son of a former gang legend, Mav does that the only way he knows how: dealing for the King Lords. With this money he can help his mom, who works two jobs while his dad’s in prison.

Life’s not perfect, but with a fly girlfriend and a cousin who always has his back, Mav’s got everything under control.

Until, that is, Maverick finds out he’s a father.

Suddenly he has a baby, Seven, who depends on him for everything. But it’s not so easy to sling dope, finish school, and raise a child. So when he’s offered the chance to go straight, he takes it. In a world where he’s expected to amount to nothing, maybe Mav can prove he’s different.

When King Lord blood runs through your veins, though, you can't just walk away. Loyalty, revenge, and responsibility threaten to tear Mav apart, especially after the brutal murder of a loved one. He’ll have to figure out for himself what it really means to be a man.

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emotional 90%
hopeful 60%
inspiring 48%
reflective 43%
challenging 31%
sad 28%
tense 27%
funny 24%
dark 15%
informative 6%
adventurous 2%
lighthearted 2%
mysterious 0%
relaxing 0%


fast 56%
medium 40%
slow 2%

Plot- or character-driven?

Character: 64% | A mix: 31% | Plot: 3%

Strong character development?

Yes: 97% | It's complicated: 1% | No: 0%

Loveable characters?

Yes: 90% | It's complicated: 8% | No: 1% | N/A: 0%

Diverse cast of characters?

Yes: 92% | It's complicated: 3% | No: 3% | N/A: 0%

Flaws of characters a main focus?

Yes: 89% | It's complicated: 6% | No: 3% | N/A: 0%

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