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Saving Phoebe Murrow (2016)

 

Fourteen-year-old Phoebe spent her last year at school being bullied by a mean girl. She is starting at a new school and hopes this time things will be different and that her long-time crush, Noah, will ask her to the prom. Her mother, Isabel, is a successful lawyer who will do anything to protect her, from grounding her for a month to stopping her from seeing her best friend Jessie who she thinks is a bad influence on Phoebe. Jessie's mother, Sandy, had a difficult childhood and wants her daughter to have everything she never had. She hopes that by befriending Isabel she will get into the right circles. But when Isabel gives her the cold shoulder, she decides to have her revenge by using Phoebe. But things go too far. Telling the story from different points of view, the author explores how a simple disagreement between two mothers dangerously affects the lives of their own children. Inspired by a true story, this is a compelling, dark and thought-provoking novel about the side effects of social media and how cyber bullying is a serious problem, especially among teenagers. (NP) 8/10

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