Punching The Air is a perfect example of current racism in America


The cover art of the book showing the character’s identity

I feel like Punching The Air realistically depicts race issues going on currently in our country and as I turned the pages, I was hoping that anyone who gets a chance to read this novel can find a way to prevent excruciating conditions of prejudice just because of one’s skin color.

It’s about a person who’s dealing with a racist society, trying to figure out how to express his feelings. The novel Punching The Air is narrated by a teen boy named Amal Shahid who has a skill for art and poetry. He eventually got wrongly convicted in trial and finds a way to convey his anger and despair through his art. The topics covered in this book include racial discrimination, fighting for justice, and learning how to take a stand for the truth.

My favorite character is the narrator because he’s relatable as he deals with internal struggles. I admire his heroic acts of using his words and art to show how he feels. I can also draw an emotional connection with the character when following his trials and errors.

I was captivated by the part when Amal was able to keep his relationship with his caretaker whom he calls “Umi” and always gives his best to show how much he loves and cares about her. I can also draw a connection to this because, personally, I have a lot of people who care and love me while I try my hardest to do the same for them.

Punching The Air is one heartrending story that will make it impossible to forget.

I would rate it five out of five stars because the novel does such an excellent job of focusing on the main character’s struggles and how he was able to overcome them using his own way of showing his feelings about it with his gift of art and poetry. The words used were vibrant and gave a clear image of each scene happening.

Punching The Air is written in free verse and was published on September 1, 2020. It has a minimal amount of swear words, violent scenes, and drug use and no sexual references. This is a realistic fiction novel that was a National Book Award Finalist.

If you are a person who enjoys poetry, realistic fiction, or books that talk about dealing with personal and public issues, then this one is for you.

Punching The Air is one heartrending story that will make it impossible to forget.