Parents' Guide to

Native Son

By Terreece Clarke, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 16+

Gritty novel of violence and race best for older teens.

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A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

Community Reviews

age 17+

Based on 1 parent review

age 17+

Incredible book

I read this my senior year for my summer reading assignment in AP Literature and I have to say it changed my life. I’m now a junior in college and it’s still by far my favorite book ever. The book is graphic and contains descriptions of murder and rape which definitely makes it not for everyone. However, the underlying message of systematic racism is greatly demonstrated into the story. The reader will either be able to analyze the book and relate it to society or they will be thrown off immediately and fail to analyze the message entirely. All in all, this book made me cry and feel real emotions and I would recommend it to anyone who is able to handle sensitive topics.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (1 ):
Kids say (6 ):

NATIVE SON, Richard Wright's classic novel of tragedy and violence, is intense. Wright is masterful in taking readers into Bigger's mind and explaining the processes that shape his behavior, emotional state, and decision-making process. Readers will be confronted with several uncomfortable and tragic issues, not the least of which is wondering whether the world is still anything like the one Bigger endures in the book.

This is a great read for anyone wanting to delve into the societal and psychological consequences of oppression, segregation, and poverty -- historically and today. It is definitely not suitable for younger children, and parents should be prepared to discuss the tough questions and situations in the novel.

Book Details

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