Posted on July 3, 2018 at 4:00 PM by Sadye Scott-Hainchek

A high school’s summer reading list has stirred up controversy in South Carolina.

The Hate U Give and All American Boys — which both address police brutality — are among the options for certain freshmen in Mount Pleasant to read for an assignment.

But The Post and Courier reports that their inclusion has raised the ire of a local police-advocacy group, which has asked the school to remove them from the list.

John Blackmon, president of the Fraternal Order of Police chapter, Tri-County Lodge #3, told a local TV station that he’d received complaints about perceived anti-police messages.

Though Blackmon didn't respond to the newspaper’s request for comment on Monday, it quoted him as saying in a June 11 TV interview: “This is putting in their minds, it's almost an indoctrination of distrust of police and we've got to put a stop to that.”

Wando High School’s response? It has kept the two challenged books on the list, along with the two others that didn’t make waves, and added four more books for a total of eight.

The Hate U Give is author Angie Thomas’s debut novel and a best-seller that's already being adapted into a movie.

It tells the story of teenager Starr Carter, who witnesses the fatal shooting of her best friend at the hands of a police officer. As her friend’s death makes national headlines, Starr finds her already complex life grow far more chaotic. 

All American Boys, by Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely, is also a best-seller as well as the winner of multiple awards.

It follows two teens — one black, one white — as they grapple with a violent act that leaves their school, their community, and, ultimately, the country bitterly divided by racial tension.

Categories: Today in Books

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