Many times I’ve not been all that impressed by Fiction winners — but this is an emotional story very well told. Despite the horrors, it’s almost uplifting by the end.
It was based on the real story of the Dozier School, a reform school in Florida that operated for 111 years and had its history exposed by a university’s investigation.
It was named one of TIME‘s best books of the decade.
Set in the 1960s, the novel follows Elwood Curtis, a studious African American from Tallahassee with a sense of justice, who is adjudicated delinquent and sent to Nickel Academy, a juvenile reformatory in Eleanor, Florida, after riding in a stolen vehicle …
He befriends Jack Turner …
The Dozier school allowed beatings, rapes, torture, and even murder of students by guards and employees. Some 55 graves were uncovered on school grounds by December 2012.
The New Republic: “The Nickel Boys is fiction, but it burns with outrageous truth.