Thank you to the publisher for gifting me an eARC copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Shortly after teenager Quan enters a not guilty plea for the shooting death of a police officer, he is placed in a holding cell to await trail. Through a series of flashbacks and letters to Justyce, Quan’s story unravels.
This is a heartbreaking and incredibly powerful book. Nic Stone has yet again written a book you just cannot put down. It wasn’t too long ago that I read Dear Martin so the events of that novel were fresh in my mind whilst reading Dear Justyce. This book takes place not long after the events of Dear Martin. I love the mix in this book between flashbacks, letters to Justyce and the present situation Quan is in. It kept me so engaged with the book all the way through.
Dear Justyce shows us as readers that even whilst being in the same environment, being a person of colour automatically can have you being treated differently. This book was incredibly eye-opening for me as a cis white straight woman. It helped me in my journey to be more understanding and have more knowledge of the things that so many many black people face on a day-to-day basis.
Unlike Dear Martin, Dear Justyce isn’t filled with any of the lightness or luck that breaks through the pages of the first novel. In fact Quan lives the complete opposite life to Justyce. I felt as though this book is a more accurate representation of what a larger volume of the black community in the US experience or at least are at higher risk of experiencing. This book is incredibly important and opened my eyes a lot to the injustices people like Quan face daily. Dear Justyce tackles important topics such as how domestic abuse, gang affiliation and poor support systems can really affect young people, especially those young people of colour. It also covers the systemic racism and prejudice that a large portion of the black community face. Dear Justyce heavily focuses on the judicial system and really helped to open my eyes.
Although in page length this book is quite short, it leaves a lasting impact and you fly through the pages. I just couldn’t put this book down, it is beyond captivating. Nic Stone is such an incredibly talented author and makes you hang on every single world. The writing of this book grips you and never lets you go.
I love the characters in this book all of which are well rounded and well written. You instantly bond with them and want to protect them all. You feel all the feeling that the characters do and this book makes you think, not only whilst reading but for a long time afterwards as well.
Overall, this book is powerful, raw and real and shows the reality of what it is like to be a black man in the US. It takes on a different and well needed angle as oppose to the lightness of Dear Martin. It is incredible and I cannot recommend it and the first novel in the series enough!