Thank you so much to the publishers and Netgalley for sending me an eARC of this book in exchange for an honest review! (I later purchased my own copy of this book.)
When fourteen-year-old Shaq is stabbed outside of a busy shopping centre in Manchester, three teenagers from very different walks of life are unexpectedly brought together. What follows flips their worlds upside down and makes Chantelle, Jackson, and Marc question the deep-rooted prejudice and racism that exists within the police, the media, and the rest of society.
Once I found out that Danielle Jawando was releasing a new book, I instantly added it to my TBR. I read And the Stars were Burning Brightly back in 2020 and it completely blew me away with its beautiful and emotional writing. So, of course I had high hopes going into When Our Worlds Collided and let me tell you, it exceeded all of them!
This book had me laughing one minute, crying the next and a minute after that I was filled with rage! It is an emotional book and it needs to be put in the hands of so many people. It opened my eyes to what so many people are facing on a daily basis and I’m sure it will do that with so many other people too.
The book starts out at the Manchester Arndale where I’ve spent so many hours of my life, so I was instantly sucked into the world. I could vividly imagine where each section of the book took place and it really helped to bring the story to life for me.
inWhen Our Worlds Collided is told from three perspectives. These are the perspectives of Chantelle, Jackson and Marc. Each of them are from very different walks of life but are pulled together by a single violent event. The three perspectives allow for some nuanced conversations about the events they face and how it impacts them all in different ways. I loved all three characters and rooted for them all. They are all facing their own battles but are also similar in more ways than they realise. The three of them are incredibly inspirational.
I can’t disguise from the fact that this story is extremely heavy with the themes it discusses. It makes it far from easy to read at times but that is what makes it incredibly important. This book tackles themes such as racism, gang violence, stabbing, bullying and much more. None of these themes are sugar-coated in any way and are told in an open and honest way.
I feel like this book needs to be read in schools. I don’t just mean by the students either. It needs to be in the hands of teachers as well. I think it would really give people an insight into how what they say can have such a huge impact on those around them. It would also open peoples eyes to the biased perceptions that we can have of people due to how the media writes about those from particular background or ethnicities. This book is incredibly important.
Danielle Jawando has written yet another heart-breaking, honest, emotional and immense story that I feel will effect so many people. I cannot wait to see what Danielle Jawando writes in the future and I will definitely be picking it up right away!
Overall, When Our Worlds Collided is a book I would highly recommend and I will be talking about it for years to come. It is a book you do not want to miss!