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Publisher's Summary

The Number One Kids' Indie Next Pick

A heartbreaking and powerful story about a black boy killed by a police officer, drawing connections through history, from award-winning author Jewell Parker Rhodes.

Only the living can make the world better. Live and make it better.

Twelve-year-old Jerome is shot by a police officer who mistakes his toy gun for a real threat. As a ghost, he observes the devastation that's been unleashed on his family and community in the wake of what they see as an unjust and brutal killing.

Soon Jerome meets another ghost: Emmett Till, a boy from a very different time but similar circumstances. Emmett helps Jerome process what has happened, on a journey toward recognizing how historical racism may have led to the events that ended his life. Jerome also meets Sarah, the daughter of the police officer, who grapples with her father's actions.

Once again Jewell Parker Rhodes deftly weaves historical and sociopolitical layers into a gripping and poignant story about how children and families face the complexities of today's world and how one boy grows to understand American blackness in the aftermath of his own death.

©2018 Jewell Parker Rhodes (P)2018 Hachette Audio

Critic Reviews

"Rhodes captures the all-too-real pain of racial injustice and provides an important window for readers who are just beginning to explore the ideas of privilege and implicit bias." (School Library Journal)

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What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • YBA
  • South East
  • 06-14-18

This was a sad tale and hard for me to read.

Even though the story was sad, it was well told and necessary in today's times.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Amazingly done!

This is a wonderful depiction of the emotions of a tragic situation from both sides. A must read!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

it is a must-read for adults and children.

the narrator with really good. he brought the character to life. I enjoy listening to him portray the different characters and their different demeanors.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

This is not a Black Boy's story

Until the lion learns how to write every story will glorify the hunter. I struggle with the empathy shown to the officer's daughter by the victim. I shuttered when Jerome looked to the officer's daughter for assistance in justice. Stories about Black bodies do not need another white savior!

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

An Important Read

If you're looking for a book that addresses some of the most recent social justice issues in a way that feel appropriate for younger readers, this book is a WIN!

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    5 out of 5 stars
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powerful

good blend of past and present events to tell a covert and overt story. good book

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Much needed story

Loved it and an very important stort that need to be told. RIP Emmett Till.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Great Story Telling

I found this book to be thought provoking and inspirational. I would recommend it to my book club as it will open up great discussion and is so appropriate for what’s going on in the world today.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Good book

This is good. I think it would cater to the younger generation more though. It also give some insight on Emmett Till. I really enjoyed it.

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powerful and necessary.

we are all connected and must keep that front and center in our lives. this book shows both the tragedy when that's ignored and the potential when compassion and justice drive us.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful