The Underground Railroad

Last week I finished The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead. It’s one of those books that when you finish, you want to recommend to everyone. It’s been on my list for a while and I’m sure many of you have read it. Whitehead uses a cool device where he will introduce an impending event at the beginning of a chapter. While you know something is coming, you get lost in the story and the alluded event still comes as a surprise.

I believe this would be a great book for high schoolers to read. While it has graphic scenes describing the experience of slaves, the personification of their experience through fiction is valuable. Whitehead makes you empathize. For those that have read it, do you think high school juniors or seniors could read this book? I know there would be pushback because of the graphic details but I think tough conversations are important.

What do you think?

By Colson Whitehead