Sunday, November 3, 2019

Audiobook review: Slay by Brittney Morris

By day, seventeen-year-old Kiera Johnson is an honors student, a math tutor, and one of the only Black kids at Jefferson Academy. But at home, she joins hundreds of thousands of Black gamers who duel worldwide as Nubian personas in the secret multiplayer online role-playing card game, SLAY. No one knows Kiera is the game developer, not her friends, her family, not even her boyfriend, Malcolm, who believes video games are partially responsible for the "downfall of the Black man."

But when a teen in Kansas City is murdered over a dispute in the SLAY world, news of the game reaches mainstream media, and SLAY is labeled a racist, exclusionist, violent hub for thugs and criminals. Even worse, an anonymous troll infiltrates the game, threatening to sue Kiera for "anti-white discrimination."

Driven to save the only world in which she can be herself, Kiera must preserve her secret identity and harness what it means to be unapologetically Black in a world intimidated by Blackness. But can she protect her game without losing herself in the process?

Flo's Review
I enjoyed the heck out of this book! I listened to the audiobook after being in a sort of audiobook slump and it just flew by! I looked forward to listening to it, and before I knew it, I was done. I'm not a gamer, but there were still so many relatable thoughts and conversations in this story. I, of course, did not see the twist at the end and though always felt a little iffy on that character was still like, "Wha?!?" I also really enjoyed the ending; realistic and so, so satisfying. I loved the connections made throughout the story that led the characters there.

Speaking of the connections, the cool thing about the audiobook is that the little player side stories were read by different narrators, making them particularly distinct from the story. Some I thought may have been too specifically detailed, but some were great and when they came back around I was all, "Aww! Yay!" Kiera had some great support. It was, of course, interesting to see the dynamic in her friendship with Harper, but I also really liked how awesome her family was. 

Author Brittney Morris will be at the Miami Book Fair on Saturday, November 23rd on a panel appropriately titled "On the Come Up: Women Who Slay" with fellow YA author Angie Thomas. Here is more information on that: . For more information on the Miami Book Fair in general, visit

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