As is the case with many books in the young adult genre, the theme of growing up is also present in The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas. This theme is closely related to the theme of identity.
In many ways, the story is a coming-of-age story for Starr. At the beginning of the novel, Starr is a teenage girl who has to deal with a range of typical teenage issues, such as relationship trouble or worries about a friend who has stopped following her on social media. However, as an African American girl who grew up in a dangerous neighborhood, her life also involves much more serious concerns. Examples are the memory of her childhood friend Natasha who was killed in a random drive-by shooting and Starr’s fundamental doubts about her identity and where she truly belongs.