Concrete Rose

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Modern Age

Concrete Rose
Author: Thomas, Angie
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Time Period: Modern Age
Time Frame: 1998-1999
Geographic Area: North America
Country: United States
Topics: Modern Age
Genre: Fiction
Reading Age: Young Adult, Adult
Format: Novel
Published: 2021

Content Warning
drugs and teen pregnancy

American History > Modern Age > African American History

If there’s one thing seventeen-year-old Maverick Carter knows, it’s that a real man takes care of his family. As the son of a former gang legend, Mav does that the only way he knows how: dealing for the King Lords. With this money he can help his mom, who works two jobs while his dad’s in prison.

Life’s not perfect, but with a fly girlfriend and a cousin who always has his back, Mav’s got everything under control.

Until, that is, Maverick finds out he’s a father.

Suddenly he has a baby, Seven, who depends on him for everything. But it’s not so easy to sling dope, finish school, and raise a child. So when he’s offered the chance to go straight, he takes it. In a world where he’s expected to amount to nothing, maybe Mav can prove he’s different.

When King Lord blood runs through your veins, though, you can't just walk away. Loyalty, revenge, and responsibility threaten to tear Mav apart, especially after the brutal murder of a loved one. He’ll have to figure out for himself what it really means to be a man.

Sarah's Review

One of Angie Thomas’ greatest strengths is her ability to create full, rich, complex characters. Concrete Rose offers a new glimpse into the life of Maverick, Starr’s father from The Hate U Give, and this was a wonderful perspective to explore. This novel is much quieter in tone, but no less powerful. Concrete Rose is the story of a Black teenage boy in the late 90s and the mistakes he makes, but also the resilience he has to pave his way towards a brighter future for himself and his growing family. It’s not particularly common in YA for stories about teen dads, which is yet another reason why this novel is so unique and important. This is a novel you won’t want to miss out on.

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