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Three rules

Cover of Long Way Down: The Graphic
A review of Long Way Down: The Graphic Novel by Jason Reynolds

Author Jason Reynolds teamed up with artist Danica Norgorodoff to rework his 2017 novel in verse Long Way Down into a graphic novel. The result it perfect - and haunting.

Fifteen year old Will's older brother, Shawn, has just been shot. There are rules, No Crying, No Snitching, Get Revenge. Will is convinced that Shawn's former friend Riggs is the one who killed Shawn. The next morning, Will takes Shawn's gun and heads out to get revenge. Will gets on the elevator in his building and begins to make his way down. The elevator stops at each floor along the way, and someone Will knew gets on. Each person was a victim of gun violence. They each have questions for Will. They tell him a bit more of their story. Finally, Shawn gets on, he does not say anything, but he does cry. What will Will do?

The story is powerful and Novgorodoff's watercolors match the emotion of the story. There are depictions of violence and grief. This is a thought provoking read that will make you want to take a pause and then start a conversation.


Mar 12, 2021