Punching the Air

Punching the Air by Ibi Zoboi & Yusef Salaam
Ibi Zoboi & Yusef Salaam
5
Nov 7, 2021

16-year-old Amal Shahid is an artist, a poet, a son, a cousin, a student. But in the eyes of the law, he is a monster and nothing more. After a fight in a gentrified neighborhood sends a white boy to the hospital, knocked unconscious, the world turns to Amal to shoulder the blame. He didn’t do it — but to the world, that doesn’t matter. Convicted of the crime and sent to prison, Amal suddenly finds that the weight of prejudice and racism and despair and rage is unbearably suffocating. Somehow, he must find a way to make sense of the life he has been given and this senseless world where he is no more than the color of his skin.

This book was amazing. It was painfully honest and emotional, and the story haunted me for days and days after I finished it. The format of the writing made everything somehow more powerful, and the poetry was beyond beautiful. Overall, this book was incredibly hard-hitting, and I would highly recommend it for everyone.

Written by
Lisa J.

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