Twelve-year-old Jerome is shot by a police officer who mistakes his toy gun for a real threat. As a ghost, he observes the devastation thats been unleashed on his family and community in the wake of what they see as an unjust and brutal killing.Soon Jerome meets another ghost: Emmett Till, a boy from a very different time but similar circumstances. Emmett helps Jerome process what has happened, on a journey towards recognizing how historical racism may have led to the events that ended his life. Jerome also meets Sarah, the daughter of the police officer, who grapples with her fathers actions.Once again Jewell Parker Rhodes deftly weaves historical and socio-political layers into a gripping and poignant story about how children and families face the complexities of todays world, and how one boy grows to understand American blackness in the aftermath of his own death....
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Ghost Boys Reviews
Jerome is a 12-year-old boy who is shot and killed by a white police officer in Chicago. The officer mistakenly believed he had a gun, when really it was a toy gun. Jerome immediately becomes a ghost who has to watch his family grieve. He also meets Sarah, the daughter of the police officer who killed him. Sarah can see him, and she ends up needing Jerome as she grieves for the father she doesn’t understand anymore. Jerome sees that her family is affected by his death as well, but in different w ...more
In a world where we are inundated daily with terror and hate, we are taught to fear first, think later. This is the heartbreaking story of one young boy’s death when he is shot by a policeman and how his ghost will bear witness to the breadth of the devastation that follows.
Jewell Parker Rhodes’ GHOST BOYS addresses a slice of the rampant racism that still exists in our “enlightened” society. Jerome will witness the devastation of his family as they crumble as individuals forgetting to stand to ...more
This book is heartbreaking but is such an important book. It is one that I hope gets into the hands of as many kids as possible because as Rhodes states in the afterword, it is our youth that will be able to “dismantle personal and systemic racism.”
I love the way Rhodes writes and this book is no exception. Told from the perspective of Jerome, a 12 year old boy killed by a police officer, it is a complex look at the current state of our world.
I received an ARC of this book from Little, Brown.
ARC provided by publisher at ALA
Timely and sad. Made me wonder why toy guns are allowed to be produced and sold in the US.
I finished this book while the National Anthem played on the Atlanta airport TVs for the Super Bowl. I burst into tears. This is a haunting and important book I'll be thinking about for a long time.
For Jerome Rogers, living in his low-income Chicago neighborhood can be dangerous, but so can going to middle school. There, Jerome is the target of three bullies, Eddie, Snap, and Mike, who enjoy doing things to him like dumping out his backpack, hitting him in the head, or pulling down his pants. Jerome has no friends, and eats his lunch in a bathroom, locker room or supply closet - hiding out alone.
That is, until Carlos arrives. Carlos, a Mexican American boy, is the new kid in school, origin ...more
Several new Black Lives Matter fictional stories have used the magical realism element of the dead to tell their story as a whole or partially (I Am Alfonso Jones, Long Way Down, and Ghost Boys). What makes me most proud of these stories is the writing that elicits a stark emotional response for the characters and questions the world we live in.
Rhodes uses the twelve year old Jerome, dead after a white police officer mistakes his toy gun for a real one, and who he meets in the afterlife, a fell ...more
3.5 stars. Susan Cooper’s Ghost Hawk never stood a chance, and The Hate U Give fell short on some fundamentals, but maybe this one will stick. A Christmas Carol is still beloved even as the social problem it specifically addressed evolves. This book made me think of that, as well as Cooper’s and Thomas’ book, but I am not completely certain that, as Ghost Boys’ topicality evolves, it will have staying power. Rhodes isn’t Dickens. So I am going with the positive but not rave review, while recogni ...more