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By: STONE, Nic
Young Adult, Forthcoming, Crown, 2017
Justyce McAllister is a good kid. Fourth in his class and captain of the debate team at his prestigious prep-school—where he's one of only a handful of African-American students—he's destined for success. But none of that helps him the night he’s accused of attempting to steal his girlfriend's car. The cops refuse to believe the truth—he was trying to keep her from driving drunk—and as a result, he’s forced to the ground, and held for hours in too-tight handcuffs.
Justyce begins writing letters to Martin Luther King Jr. to process his experiences. There are bumps in the road—especially when it comes to dealing with a best friend who refuses to acknowledge racism, and a Jewish girl he’s falling for that his mom wouldn’t approve of. Overall though, he’s fairly successful at living according Dr. King’s teachings. But when Justyce falls victim to the exact kind of incident he's worked so hard to avoid—an encounter with an off-duty police officer over loud music that ends with him and his best friend being shot—everything Justyce believed about "The King's Way" is called into question.
Based on a number of incidents involving the deaths of unarmed African American males, DEAR MARTIN is a heart-wrenching story about the realities of life in 21st Century America as an African American teen.
Rights Sold to:
North America (USCPOM), Crown Books (in a 2-book deal); Brazil, Intrinseca
"Be warned: DEAR MARTIN will charm your socks off and then smash your heart to pieces. Justyce’s story is earnest, funny, achingly human, and unshakably hopeful. I am forever changed." - Becky Albertalli, author of Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda
"Nic Stone's fresh, incisive voice gives us a perspective rarely seen: What does it mean to be a young black man in America, torn between the belief that you have something to offer the world, and the reality of how you are perceived? Painfully timely and deeply moving, this is the novel the next generation should be reading. Buy a copy for yourself, and another for the friend with whom you'll want to have a meaningful conversation about racism and bias." - Jodi Picoult, NYT bestselling author of Leaving Time and The Storyteller