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Oliver, Grindon Hall Christian School

Long Way Down

'Long Way Down' is a short poetry book by Jason Reynolds that explores deep and thought-provoking ideas with a sinister tone which draws the reader in; compelling them to read more and more.

All throughout the book, it drops revelations and major plot points that build to form a perfect final one-liner that delivers a powerful blow to the reader and adds new meaning to the plot of the book. As the book unravels, it reveals Will's actions (following his brother's death) and how his morals and beliefs twist; will he avenge his brother? Will he kill the kid who killed him? Will he take the elevator to confront the killer?

All of this forms the ultimate epiphany for Will, with his mind clouded with grief and uncertainty, as more and more characters from his life enter the lift each with a story from their life (with them in the same peril). As the book continues, this wears down Will's intentions, adding more and more weight to his decision till he collapses under the pressure. The loaded gun in his belt, his indecision, the range of emotions, the sinister tone, the poetic format all further the commotion of feelings that the reader experiences during and after reading this book. The poetic format conveys this near perfectly with dramatic intervals, forming an in-depth, vivid book that describes what it is to lose someone you love profoundly.

It's the ultimate epiphany that leaves you speechless, it hits you like a ton of bricks.

Posted on: 22nd April 2019 at 06:01 pm

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