Wednesday, January 22, 2020

True to Your Selfie, by Megan McCafferty

Twelve year-old Ella and popular IT girl Morgan aren't just taking seventh-grade by storm, they plan to achieve multi-platform global domination!  Morgan's got the vision: what they should wear, how they should act, what they should put on their website.  She's shaping the "brand" of Morgan & Ella.  But as the number of followers that the girls have start to rise, Ella finds that more and more she seems to merely be an accessory for Morgan's climb to fame.  And, as much as Ella would like to be famous on the socials, there are things about her old life she misses and opportunities she can see slipping away.

Fairly heavy-handed look at the allure of fame and fortune, from a middle schooler's perspective. It's largely over the top but the descriptions of social media will ring true enough to make any adult cringe.  In the end, Ella learns her powerful lessons about life, so the moral purpose of this fable is served, bu there are few surprises here.  Ella is not a character to really like as she spends most of the book making mistake after mistake, but she's real and one can't help but feel a bit sorry for her.

More successful for me was the entertaining and quick moving story.  It's a fun and breezy read.  It's not fine literature, but it's a good story, told well, with some satisfying lessons about being true to yourself (which is always a good message to drive home with middle schoolers).

[Disclaimer:  I received an ARC of this book from the publisher in exchange for an impartial review.  The book is scheduled for release on February 4th.]

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