The Shield

The Student News Site of Richwoods High School

The Shield

The Shield

Blackout: Book Review

Blackout is a short novel curated by six different black authors; Dhonielle Clayton, Tiffany D. Jackson, Nic Stone, Angie Thomas, Ashley Woodfolk, and Nicola Yoon. In this story a blackout takes place throughout New York and 13 teenagers are trying to make it to the same block party sparking different journeys of love, realization, and growth along the way. Each author writes a short story about a different duo of teenagers providing different perspectives on love.

The novel starts off with The Long Walk by Tiffany D. Jackson, the love interests being Tammi and Kareem. Once being a couple who broke up four months before the blackout, are brought back together due to a competition for an internship. As the story unravels, they uncover the faults in their previous relationship which results in the making of a better one for their future.

Next, we have Mask Off by Nic Stone, the story of JJ and Tremaine (Tammi’s brother). This story is about the exploration of sexuality and coming to terms with being you and not letting the judgments of others depict who you truly are.

Made to Fit by Ashley Woodfolk is the story of Nella and Joss. Nella is going through heartbreak from a misunderstanding of a friendship, but then she meets somebody new. Nella and Joss are sent on a wild goose chase through a nursing home which leads them to finding what they are looking for, each other.

Next, we have All the Great Love Stories … and Dust by Dhonielle Clayton. Lana and Tristán are in a competition, searching for the greatest book ever written. Taking place in a library in which Tristán is searching for what he thinks is just another one of their bets they have been hosting since they were children. But it’s actually a scheme by Lana to express her hidden feelings for him that she can’t seem to express in words.

No Sleep Until Brooklyn by Angie Thomas is a story different from all the others because they are from a town in Mississippi on a school trip visiting a college. The story is about a love triangle between Kayla, Treshawn, and Micah. Kayla and Treshawn have been together since they were children, being each other’s first everything. Everybody, including them, has expectations of them being together for life. Why wouldn’t they? It’s always been them, until Micah transfers to their high school and pops the love bubble Kayla and Treshawn have been floating in for years. Now, questioning everything she thought she knew about herself, she comes to new revelations on the bus ride through the pitch black of New York causing her to make a decision that works out the best for her.

Finishing up the novel we have the story by Nicola Yoon, Seymour and Grace, the love interests being displayed in the title. The philosophical question, “What makes you you?” steers this short story as two people from different walks of life come together in an unlikely time. Grace is trying to make it to her ex who broke up with her due to disinterest and change his perception of her. Seymour is in despair over crushed dreams, having to settle with new views on life. Together they help each other get to where they need to go but finding out what they needed was in front of them the whole time.

The novel does a great job of including the problems that everyday teenagers face; like discovering sexuality, racism, and poverty. Each author brings their own voices and perspectives, causing more diverse themes to be displayed throughout the book. If you’re looking for a book that could help with discovering self-identity, or just a good book that covers heavy topics, this would be a great pick-up for you.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

All The Shield Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *