At its heart, What Unites Us is a memoir of an elderly white man’s life from the casual racism of his youth to the Trump administration’s perceived nationalism. It also attempts to explain what is causing our national chaos and how we can, and should, move forward toward a kinder, more inclusive, society.
The book will quickly divide readers on party lines. If you are a Trump supporter, you will not enjoy this book. In fact, the author condemns the current nationalistic mood of the country. MAGA supporters, with their dislike of immigration, are not true patriots according to the book. Mr. Rather writes these words as Trump just begins his presidential term. I am reading and reviewing the book in December 2020, just as Trump’s term ends. Many of the book’s predictions have come horribly true. Yelling fraud, with no evidence because you lost the election, is tantamount to discarding our fundamental democratic process.
While What Unites Us occasionally seems almost preachy at times, it is an interesting read especially for a liberal high school student interested in US politics. It uses telling, rather than showing, and so it is much slower-paced than the usual graphic novel. The artwork is rather blah line drawings with two color backgrounds. For these reasons, 3 stars.
Thanks to First Second Books and NetGalley for a copy in exchange for my honest review.