Long Way Down by Jason Reynolds

Long Way Down, by Jason Reynolds


My daughter is currently reading Long Way Down in her honors English class. I like to essentially join her in reading, allowing us to have a dialogue, especially with books as thought provoking as this one.

This short novel, written in verse, is written in Will’s perspective. Will is a young boy who see his older brother murdered and determined to follow the “rules.” You don’t cry, you don’t snitch, and you get revenge.

The book is a powerful exploration of loss and grief as Will tries to deal with the death of his brother. The whole range of emotions are displayed, from anger and guilt, to numbness, healing, and acceptable.

Striking imagery evokes a vivid depiction of Will’s emotional state while the absence of quotation marks in the dialogue creates a sense of immediacy, drawing you into the unfiltered conversations between Will and the seven people he meets while on the elevator.

It is a thought-provoking and emotionally charged novel that offers an exploration of grief, loss, and the quest for justice.

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