Wednesday, March 19, 2014

The mockingbirds by Daisy Whitney

Themis Academy is a boarding school with an excellent reputation for mature students with a strong sense of honour, and there are never any problems   That is the view of Themis Academy that the faculty hold dear and that parent believe, but the students know the shiny apple has a rotten core and when things go wrong the students have no choice but to turn to the Mockingbirds for help.  When Alex wakes up in a strange boys bed with no memory of the night before she feels ashamed, but that shame soon turns to the realisation that she has had sex with a boy for the first time - and she did not consent.  Convinced by her friends to seek justice, Alex approaches the Mockingbirds for help.

It will not be an easy journey though, the Mockingbirds can only act if she asks them for help, and they can only act on her case if the rest of the school agrees that sex must always be accompanied by a yes from both parties - anything else is date rape.  It is a difficult time for Alex, she sees Carter everywhere she goes, and even if she tries to hide from what happened there are all the rumours and innuendo to deal with.  As the trial approaches Alex must hold on to what she knows is true and not let her doubts ruin her chance for justice.

The Mokingbirds is not an easy read - mainly because of the theme of date rape, which is a highly controversial topic for some people.  Alex is portrayed with amazing sensitivity  and when you realise that the author herself was date raped you can understand where the thoughts and feelings Alex experiences come from - there is an authenticity and sympathy for Alex and her situation which can not be faked.  From what I have read in the past (fiction and non-fiction) the division of opinion is very realistic - Alex was very drunk and for some people that is enough to say it wasn't rape, while for others it is the cherry on top proving Carter took advantage of Alex and her condition.  

This is not an easy read, but I am very glad that I read the Mockingbirds - the idea of a student council that protects other students and seeks genuine justice has an amazing amount of appeal to me.  The characters are laid bare for their strengths and their weaknesses, and the cast of characters that flesh out the novel add depth and credibility to the story.  Just amazing, and highly recommended for teenage girls.

If you like this book then try:
  • Hate list by Jennifer Brown
  • Sold by Patricia McCormick
  • Thirteen reasons why by Jay Asher
  • I swear by Lane Davis
  • Rooftop by Paul Volponi
  • Panic by Sharon M. Draper
  • Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson
  • Such a pretty girl by Laura Wiess
  • Living dead girl by Elizabeth Scott

Reviewed by Brilla

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