Posted in So Many Good Books, YA Novels

How It Went Down

HowItWentDown5-206x300How It Went Down is such a perfect title for this book (Henry Holt and Company, 2014) by Kekla Magoon. This story of a teen’s shooting shows so many things. Such as, how we sometimes see what we expect to see. How we jump to conclusions. That what we read in the news is not as simple as we think.
Instead of being told from one viewpoint, this story is told from multiple viewpoints–teens and adults. We see how a number of the characters change because of the shooting of 16-year-old Tariq.
It’s a tough book to read as it is so emotional–not that the author went over the top by any means–but that the circumstances of the people and the decisions they have to make create emotion. And that the injustices create emotion. I found myself putting the book down for some distance and then returning when I could handle it again.
How It Went Down is a Junior Library Guild Selection. I think it should be required reading for teens.
You may want to read the FAQ on the author’s website. Kekla Magoon has written four other YA books and is also a nonfiction author. On her website there are links to interviews with her that make interesting reading and also some videos.