Jackson, Kosoko

Survive the Dome

(2) YA In this thriller set in an implied near-future, aspiring teen photojournalist Jamal (who is Black and gay) brings his camera to a protest in Baltimore following a police officer's acquittal in the shooting death of a Black man. What he ultimately captures on film is the emergence of the Dome, a force field ordered by the racist governor to separate the city (a "problem area") from the rest of the world. Isolated and surrounded by police, Jamal isn't sure he will survive the night. But with the help of two new friends (both BIPOC)--Catherine, an AWOL soldier; and hacker Marco, who has ties to controversial activist group Nemesis--Jamal makes a dangerous attempt to take the Dome out of commission. The fast-paced first-person narrative is perfectly suited to Jamal's journalistic nature as he doubles down to gain information from everyone he encounters. His account lends itself to a layered view not just of Nemesis but also of the cops; the police chief, he notes, is "capable of love and kindness and still chooses to look at people like me with nothing more than anger." From the lengthy (but by no means complete) opening list of unarmed Black and brown victims of police violence to the astonishing conclusion, this is a searing futuristic story of systemic racism, police brutality, and unchecked power.


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