Friday, September 3, 2010

Hate List by Jennifer Brown

Is Valerie a hero or a murderer? Hate List centers on teenager Valerie Leftman, a recent victim of a school shooting. Valerie's "victimhood" is complicated by the fact that the shooter was her boyfriend Nick, and some of those targeted were named on a hate list that she helped Nick to create. Although, Valerie helps to stop the shooting, inadvertently saving a social rival's life, she definitely isn't seen as a hero when she returns to school, not even by her own family. While the setting and characters may be distant for our students, the story brings up issues of culpability and community that should lead to an interesting book club discussion.

Brown, Jennifer. Hate List. New York: Little, Brown and Company, 2009.

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