Sixteen-year-old Quan, an African American youth, faces many struggles including his dad’s incarceration, an abusive stepfather, and searching to find his place in life. Faced with these difficulties, he is forced to make desperate decisions such as turning to gang life to find a sense of family and committing petty crimes which land him in youth detention. Fortunately, letters from an old friend and help from a supportive teacher give him hope for a better life. This engaging novel, for mature students, explores complex themes of racial injustice, police bias and violence, and the importance of family and connection. Social considerations noted; read-aloud may not be suitable due to specific language.