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Hate list by Jennifer Brown

Hate list

by Jennifer Brown

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Showing 1-5 of 77 (next | show all)
This was a sad book. Bullying always bothers me, especially the bullying found in public schools with kids and teenagers. People can be very cruel, and I suppose I feel it’s worse when kids do it because they don’t even realize the trauma they are putting another person through. That’s not quite it because a lot of adults do the same thing, but I’m not sure how to put in other words my disgust for high school bullying. That’s such a fragile time for anyone in the first place and to add on the cruelty is just an equation for trauma: whether it be eating disorders, self-mutilation, school shooting, etc. Anyways, the book was written well in my opinion, with a good solid story behind it. There were a few parts I would have liked to have happened differently but it was good. I liked the open ending and the character development. It’s not an easy topic to read about but I would recommend this book. ( )
  Kassilem | Oct 1, 2014 |
When Nick Levil shoots up his high school, killing many including himself, everyone is shocked - including his girlfriend Val. Though they'd worked together on a Hate List of those who had been constantly bullying them, she never thought of taking the Hate List to this level. In the aftermath of the shooting, Val learns how hate can be viewed under more than one lens, and how to accept not only herself but others for who they are. Jennifer Brown takes bullying to a new level by asking her viewers, the "bullied" as well as those doing the bullying, to look beyond the obvious and "see things as they really are." Once more, remind yourself of the repercussions of bullying. Words, and actions, are powerful. Think before you act. ( )
  ShouldIReadIt | Sep 26, 2014 |
This is a hard book to read. It is sad that this horrible tragedy is becoming a continuous thing over the past few years. Valerie is constantly living in fear of what others are thinking and saying about her, which makes a lot of sense considering the circumstances she is in. ( )
  FrankieAntenucci | Sep 25, 2014 |
I didn't really know what to think at the start of this book. I've only ever read one book where there's a high school shooting which was Nineteen Minutes by Jodi Picoult, she's one if my favourite authors so as you can tell this book had a lot to live up to in my eyes from the very beginning.

I felt sad for Valerie through out the whole book. Always second guessing herself unsure if she did force Nicks hand, missing him even though it wasn't acceptable to because everyone just expected all the love she had for the boy who was her rock to fade away the minuet he killed those kids. He wasn't a monster, he cracked up after all the abuse he had suffered at the hands of the kids at school though I'm not justifying what he did, not by a long shot, anyone who had ever been bullied knows how it feels to have just had enough. To ask yourself why they can't just leave you alone for one day. And even though you may not have made a hate list you had those people that you would be ok never seeing again.

It reminded me a lot of my own high school experience which allowed me to connect more with the book. No, we didn't have a killer out my school but isn't every school the same?, the kids who walk around thinking they are better than everyone else even though others have done nothing to warrant being treated the way they do. I was bullied relentlessly through out high school because I was different, a lot like Valerie. Everyday I would wish for it to stop and the only time I was happy was break where I had a chance to escape and chose who I wanted to be around. If you had a similar experience or not Jennifer makes you connect with the book in one way or another. Maybe you had parents like Val , who were slowly drifting apart and resented/blamed you for it. Even though all you ever did was want the pain to stop.

I thought was a very well written story, my only problem was I feel like there wasn't enough about Nick. I know that is was from Valerie's point of view but there should have been more about Nick. He was painted as a monster, and even though some students stopped referring to it I felt like no one never truly believed it. I know he killed people, but we never got to see his reasons why. If anything I felt the blame for his bad behavior was put on his friend (who I've forgotten the name of, sorry). ( )
  Staciesnape | Sep 14, 2014 |
It's an harsh reality, but avoiding it won't ever do anyone any good. It's 2014 and I still read about people who write about how bullying is essential to build up character as a kid - how there's an absolute necessity to have violence inflicted onto young kids by their peers. Because it will make them grow stronger, kinder, learn how to defend themselves, get tough. But if you look at our youth, does it really? Bullying shouldn't ever be okay. Because bullying is both making your partner trip on purpose and telling him he won't go anywhere in life just because he doesn't get math. There's a difference between partnership jokes and engaging into acts that might come off as inofensive, but fill people up with rage - and hate. So they build up a Hate List inside their heads and manage to get their lives going, but always keep a mental note of who made them hurt, who they should try to ignore/avoid in the future.

That's why Hate List feels like a very important book, one I'm glad to have picked up. Not only is it a book that explores a tragedy, but one that actually tries to understand the emotional status of everyone involved. A tragedy like a school shooting is a big situation, and if affects EVERYONE - even those who weren't directly involved. It should bring people closer together. Make them think about what they have been doing these past days, months, years.

Nick Levil opens fire in the Commons room of his high school on May 2nd. Dozens of people, plus his girlfriend get hurt. In the end, he shoots himself - as if suicide was the grand finale to the miserable event. His girlfriend Valerie however, only got shot in the leg and must now deal with the happenings that took place. Was she guilty? What was her role in Nick's plan? Had this been planned at all? All because both of them were the authors of a notebook called Hate List, which pointed out and described why they hated these people.

The narrative travels back and forth between the day of the shooting and the current day when Valerie has to go back to Garvin High for her senior year. It is written in her point of view. The writing style is easy to follow and Valerie's own string of thoughts never feel messy or overly detailed. Even though Valerie is drowning in emptiness at all times, the matter isn't repeated over and over again. In other words, it doesn't get boring.

The reason why I feel this is a must read is simple: Everyone is aching. No matter how they seem to merge okay into society or how smiley smiley they look at all times, there comes a time when people dwell. A couple of us deeper than others, but everyone does. And now what I ask is - if everyone is having a hard time, why can't everyone just act nicer? Most bullies aren't even bad kids neither teens desesperate for attention and feeling as if teasing others would be the only sucessful way to get there. Most of them are the ones who suffered the same when they were younger. No, that does not make it an excuse. You have free will. That's why some kids have parents who do drugs on their balconies every night and parents who fell down the stairs one night and when the paramedics came they noticed how they stink of alcohol. And a couple years late there are the kids who become exactly like their parents and the ones who swear to themselves to never touch alcohol. But if you grow in an environment of crime, hate, cursing and violence, most don't have the strenght to overcome it and become someone better. Most become just the same.

What I mean is that people should give out help. People shouldn't feel weak about asking for help. Not turn a blind eye when they see a young kid being shoved into a locker just because 'that's just how things are supposed to be'. I don't mean to get personal, but as a kid I didn't really have the time of my life in primary school, and what hurt the most weren't even the people bullying, but those who hanged around to watch, like emotionless figures just desesperate to watch someone getting his ass kicked... for the simple reason they were younger. Or fatter than most. Or dressed differently than most. Or wore their hair differently than most.

This feels more like a speech about the absolute necessity of bullying awareness than a review, but to be honest, I don't now what else to write about. As a whole, the book has some holes, but mostly everything falls into place. You get attached to Valerie and her character development is noticable and fenomenal. Also, the novel felt utterly realistic.

It is a raw piece of writing, but so so beautiful.
And so so important, too.
( )
  sarafwilliams | Sep 13, 2014 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Jennifer Brownprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bergboer, ErnstTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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We'll show the world they were wrong
And teach them all to sing along
For Scott
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[From the Garvin County Sun-Tribune,
May 3, 2008, Reporter Angela Dash]

The scene in the Garvin High School cafeteria, known as the Commons, is being described as "grim" by investigators who are working to identify the victims of a shoot spree that erupted Friday morning.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0316041440, Hardcover)

Five months ago, Valerie Leftman's boyfriend, Nick, opened fire on their school cafeteria. Shot trying to stop him, Valerie inadvertently saved the life of a classmate, but was implicated in the shootings because of the list she helped create. A list of people and things she and Nick hated. The list he used to pick his targets.

Now, after a summer of seclusion, Val is forced to confront her guilt as she returns to school to complete her senior year. Haunted by the memory of the boyfriend she still loves and navigating rocky relationships with her family, former friends and the girl whose life she saved, Val must come to grips with the tragedy that took place and her role in it, in order to make amends and move on with her life.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:20:03 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

Sixteen-year-old Valerie, whose boyfriend Nick committed a school shooting at the end of their junior year, struggles to cope with integrating herself back into high school life, unsure herself whether she was a hero or a villain.

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