In this debut novel, author Brittney Morris, follows 17-year-old Kiera Johnson, who on top of being an honour student and one of the only black kids at her prestigious school, is the secret developer of the virtual reality game SLAY. Played by hundreds of thousands of gamers around the world, SLAY is more than just a game. It’s an empowering space for the black community of players, free from the racism and judgement of the real world. As Keira explains, “As we duel, as we chat, there’s an understanding that ‘your black is not my black’ and ‘your weird is not my weird’ and ‘your beautiful is not my beautiful,’ and that’s okay.”
But the line between reality and game is shattered when a teenage SLAYer is murdered following an online currency dispute. Keira, already grieving the death of the young player, is now faced with accusations of racist behaviour, threats of a lawsuit, and the possibility of losing the game she loves.
Themes of identity, relationships, and belonging run through this fast-pace story that is both plot and character driven. SLAY is one of those books you won’t want to put down once you start reading and will be a welcomed addition to any classroom library – by both the gamers and non-gamers in your classroom!