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Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Book Review: The Mockingbirds by Daisy Whitney

Title: The Mockingbirds

Author: Daisy Whitney

Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

Publication date: November, 2010

Hardcover: 352 pages

Stand Alone or Series: Stand Alone (I think).

How I got this book: Bought

Why I chose this book: First of all, I love this cover. It’s simple, yet compelling.  I also love the saying on the top part of the book, “Hush little students, don’t say a word…”  That just really grabbed my attention.  It’s pretty eeries, and I wanted to know what it was all about.

Synopsis:

Some schools have honor codes.

Others have handbooks.

Themis Academy has the Mockingbirds.

Themis Academy is a quiet boarding school with an exceptional student body that the administration trusts to always behave the honorable way–the Themis Way. So when Alex is date raped during her junior year, she has two options: stay silent and hope someone helps her, or enlist the Mockingbirds–a secret society of students dedicated to righting the wrongs of their fellow peers.

In this honest, page-turning account of a teen girl’s struggle to stand up for herself, debut author Daisy Whitney reminds readers that if you love something or someone–especially yourself–you fight for it.
Review:

The Cover: Like I said above, the cover is five-stars, plus.  It’s truly compelling, even though it’s simple.  The kicker though is the eeries quote on the top of the cover, “Hush little students, don’t say a word…”  It’s what really made me pick this book up, so no one else could take it!

The Characters: Alex, the protagonist, is very normal.  And I loved that.  I loved that she wasn’t unbelievable in some way.  She’s a pianist, a lover of music, which really helped me connect to her since I play the piano as well.  She’s your typical teenage girl.  Her struggles, whether date-rape related or not, can be understood by many a teen. 

Martin is a-dork-able.  He’s the science-nerd, but he’s got some good looks.  Too bad he has bad timing.  He likes Alex, and their tentative relationship is a great way to seperate how a heartfelt relationship differs from a night without consent.

Carter is scum.  Like, bottom-of-your-shoe, don’t-even-bother-to-bend-over-to-scrape-it-off-scum.  I have to hand it too Whitney, that creating this character must have taken a lot.  Because I hate Carter.  He’s greasy and deceiving.  He’s one of those guys that’s all charm and schmooze out in the open, but behind closed doors he’s just corrupted.

The Plot:

Alex got drunk one night.  One of the first times she’s ever had alcohol, and she gets drunk.  The next thing she knows, she’s waking up in some guys room.  So what’s the verdict?  She can’t remember.

As Alex’s memory comes back to her in bits and pieces, Alex learns what she was dreading to know…  She was raped.  But she can’t go to the school.  At Themis Academy the teachers think the students are perfect.  They do no wrong.  Therefore, they don’t dole out punishments.  So Alex decides to go to the Mockingbirds, a “secret” school society that’s made by the students, for the students.  They’re there to serve justice.

It just so happens that on the board of the Mockingbirds is Martin, one of Alex’s best friends.  While Martin and Alex more into a slow, questioning, secret relationship, Alex is dealing with struggles of her own as she questions who she really is, and as more memories attack her randomly.

Overall: An amazing read.  I will definitely be reading anything else Whitney brings to the table.

Spare Thoughts: I don’t usually read books like this.  (I’m a romantic, what can I say?).  But I’m sooooo glad I did.  This book can relate to you in so many ways, even if you haven’t been date-raped.  It really gets to the core of your heart and make you think hard about your life.

Final: The Mockingbirds is eerie, compelling, and downright extraordinary.

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