When I review a book, it’s either because it really stands out to me, it’s popular enough that I want to voice my opinion on it, or it somehow relates to an anime I’m currently watching. In this case, Riker’s High reminded me a lot of Rainbow. The two have their differences, different time periods, different countries, one’s a jail and one’s a prison. However, the sympathy for characters despite the fact they committed a crime, the brutality and the struggle to survive is similar. I feel like I came out of reading Riker’s High understanding Rainbow better.
Summery: Riker’s High follows the day to day life of Martin Stokes where he’s been kept in a jail in on Riker’s Island, New York for the past five months awaiting trial. The story covers the last 17 days Martin is in jail where he ends up transferred to another part and attending the school’s high school.
Why I Picked It Up: Interesting looking young adult novel. Need I say more?
Why I Finished It: While I never got attached to Martin himself as a character, I liked all the characters all around him. Also, the world of Riker’s Jail is a fascinating one. There’s
An author note as the beginning of the book stating that a majority of the incidents that appear in the book are events he witnessed first hand when he was working as teacher at Riker’s Island, and it is intense. Remember talking about that crazy psycho guard in Rainbow? Turns out, he’s pretty normal. Put guys in charge of a bunch of people they believe are scum, don’t make accountable for anything, and watch what happens. On top of that, there’s fierce politics among the boys of Riker’s. Still, the boys fight back against the condition they’re in and fight to make it from day to day.
Who Would I Recommend This To: Fans of the premise of Rainbow.
Rating: 3/5 stars-I liked it
If you’d like to read an excerpt, it’s available here.