Wednesday, June 17, 2015


Backlash by Sarah Darer Littman    326 pages

When Lara and Bree were in middle school, they were best friends and neighbors. They still live across the street from each other, but now that they are in high school, they barley acknowledge each other.  What happened?

 In middle school, Lara suffered from depression and was thirty pounds overweight. A target for all the snide comments and vicious nicknames. Bree, tired of listening to Lara whine, found new friends when they graduated to high school. But Lara got help. Now she’s thinner and prettier, but is still extremely sensitive. Bree is now jealous of her former friend.

 Although their parents monitor their Facebook activity, it isn’t hard for the girls to circumvent prying eyes. When Christian friends Lara, she can’t believe someone that good-looking would be interested in her, and despite all her parents’ warnings, she accepts his friend request.

They flirt, they laugh; Lara falls hard for Christian. He’s even hinting around that he may ask her to his school’s dance. Lara starts looking at dresses. Then the proverbial rug is pulled from under her feet. Christian starts to call her names, laughs at her, and even goes as far as telling her the world would be a better place without her in it. Devastated, Lara takes his last words too seriously. Bree’s reaction to Lara’s attempted suicide is horrifying.

 Backlash is told from four perspectives: Lara, Bree, Lara’s younger sister Sydney, and Bree’s younger brother Liam. What happens to Lara and Bree affects not only them, but their siblings as well. Short chapters make the action increase. It’s heart-pounding, non-stop action that pulls readers in from the first page and never lets go. This ripped-from-the-headlines should be mandatory reading for all seventh graders.

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