Long Way Down by Jason Reynolds

Long Way Down by Jason Reynolds

Will’s brother Shawn is dead. After watching him get gunned down on the streets, now Will has to do what’s expected. He has to follow The Rules.

No.1: Crying
Don’t.
No matter what.
Don’t.

No. 2: Snitching
Don’t.
No matter what.
Don’t.

No. 3: Revenge
Do.
No matter what.
Do.

The Rules say it’s Will’s duty to murder the person responsible for his brother’s death. So, with a gun tucked into his pants, he leaves his apartment and gets on the elevator. But it’s a Long Way Down and, on each floor, the doors open, and Will is joined by someone from his past.

The catch? All of these people are dead. And they have a message for Will.

Long Way Down, which received both a Newbery Honor and a Printz Honor, is a heart-wrenching yet accessible look at gun violence and its impact on young people. It’s also a masterful novel in verse, which will appeal both to teens looking for a fast read and to those who enjoy beautiful writing.

Readers may also enjoy other books by Jason Reynolds, including When I Was the Greatest, The Boy in the Black Suit, and All-American Boys, co-written with Brendan Kiely, as well as How It Went Down, by Kekla Magoon, and The Hate U Give, by Angie Thomas.