Review: By Any Means Necessary by Candice Montgomery

Title: By Any Means Necessary
Author: Candice Montgomery
Release Date: October 8, 2019
Publisher: Page Street
Pages: 320

Content Warnings: addiction, underage drinking, gentrification, racism, police brutality, death of family

This post does contain affiliate links. I will receive a small amount from any purchases made through Book Depository at no extra cost to you.

An honest reflection on cultural identify, class, and gentrification. Fans of Nic Stone and Elizabeth Acevedo will eagerly anticipate Torrey.

On the day Torrey officially becomes a college freshman, he gets a call that might force him to drop out before he’s even made it through orientation: the bee farm his beloved uncle Miles left him after his tragic death is being foreclosed on.

Torrey would love nothing more than to leave behind the family and neighborhood that’s bleeding him dry. But he still feels compelled to care for the project of his uncle’s heart. As the farm heads for auction, Torrey precariously balances choosing a major and texting Gabriel—the first boy he ever kissed—with the fight to stop his uncle’s legacy from being demolished. But as notice letters pile up and lawyers appear at his dorm, dividing himself between family and future becomes impossible unless he sacrifices a part of himself.

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Candice Montgomery has given us an astounding and culturally important novel with By Any Means Necessary.

  • the writing and voice

These were both so authentic. I loved the writing style and how it felt as if the main character was talking to the reader. It actually isn’t often that I enjoy this because it can feel really distracting and completely take me out of the story but Montgomery did it so flawlessly.

The humor was also spot on. So many funny things were sprinkled throughout and I appreciated a ton of the references.

  • the story

I’ll be the first to admit my privilege and say that I didn’t 100% understand gentrification. Until now. By Any Means necessary was a complete eye opener. This story held nothing back and plainly showed how harmful gentrification really is. This book has the ability to open so many eyes.

What is even more important is how many teens will see themselves in this story. Countless lives are negatively affected by gentrification. Like we see in the story, so many adults are giving up and letting it happen – leaving young people to stand up and fight. Their stories need to be told so they can see they aren’t alone.

  • the characters

I loved them all? I really think I did.

Sweet sweet Gabriel. He was just so soft and perfect. I love how unabashedly he would just start doing dance spins no matter where he was at.

Emery! All her sass and loving friendship gave me life. I really enjoyed every single interaction between her and Torrey. Honestly I think I need a book that focuses mainly on her.

Desh! Can you find a more perfect roommate? He had the most fun personality traits. It was really great to see how he helped take care of Torrey sometimes in his own way.

  • the feels

This book had them all. So many sweet lines between Torry and Gabriel. Their relationship gave me the warm fuzzies. Seeing them learn each other and become more attached throughout the book was the best thing.

Y’all seriously just need to read the damn book. I don’t care who you are – just read it.

A physical ARC was provided by the publisher in exchange of an honest review.

Candice “Cam” Montgomery is an LA transplant now living in the woods of Seattle, where she writes Young Adult novels. Her debut novel, HOME AND AWAY can be found online and in stores now, and her sophomore novel, BY ANY MEANS NECESSARY will be released October of 2019. By day, Cam writes about Black teens across all their intersections. By night, she bartends at a tiny place nestled inside one of Washington’s greenest trees. She is an avid Studio Ghibli fan and will make you watch at least one episode of Sailor Moon and listen to one Beyoncé record before she’ll call you “friend.”

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