Long Way Down, by Jason Reynolds

long way downBy Grace Heine

Title: Long Way Down
Written by: Jason Reynolds
Genre: Young Adult/Fiction
Publisher: Atheneum/Caitlyn Dlouhy Books
Publication Date: October 2017
Paperback: 320 pages

They weren’t meant to be broken.
They were meant for the broken
to follow.

(page 35)

There are dead people in the elevator. People from Will’s past who have been shot. People he loved. People he didn’t. People who are smoky memories of pain, hate, and blood. But Will knows the rules and the rules say he must take revenge.

Well, okay then.

Thank you for reading this week’s review.

Just kidding – I need to rant about this book:

*dramatically clears throat*

Can I please read a book that actually ends?

You know: a book where by the last page everything gets resolved?

*READERS* But that’s not real life!

*ME* Why do you think I read?

Seriously though, why do people feel the need to stop writing their book just when it was getting interesting?

This book could have been about redemption –

but it’s not.

This book could have been about forgiveness –

but it’s not.

This book could have been worthy of the seven awards it has won – but it’s not.

Instead, this book is about an angry boy, a gun with fifteen bullets, and a bunch of dead people smoking in an elevator.

I read this book in thirty-five minutes and that’s thirty-five minutes I’ll never get back.

It’s weird, creepy, written in (unrhyming) poem format, and just ends.

I don’t do this often (and when I do it’s for a book I haven’t finished) but I don’t recommend Long Way Down for anyone.

For More Information about the Book and Author Click: HERE

Age Range: 15 and up


Violence: Seven people have been shot and other shootings are mentioned. Many of the past shootings are vividly described. Will thinks about getting a tooth ripped out. Will’s mom picks at/scratches her arms till they bleed. Smell of death is described. Will thinks about drowning, lips being ripped off, and being eaten. All the elevator people are ghosts.

Sensuality: Shawn’s girlfriend kisses him as he’s dying. Will remembers kissing a girl. Shawn’s mom hopes he doesn’t get his girlfriend pregnant. Talk about guys “studying” how women look.

Profanity: p–s, a-s, h–l, f–kers, d–n, and s–t.

Other(drugs/alcohol): Will’s mom drinks. Everyone smokes. Boys trash talk. Man begs for money instead of getting a job. Will pees his pants. Gangs, lots and lots of gangs. Coffins and stealing are mentioned.

Personal Rating: 0 out of 5 stars
Cleanness Rating: 2 1/2 out of 5 stars

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Grace Heine is a sixteen-year-old wanna be writer who spends most of her time reading, writing, playing piano, or finding clever ways to be unproductive. You can visit her book review blog here.

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