“The Truth about Alice” Jennifer Mathieu

Rated 4 stars **** ebook. ARC. To be published June 3, 2014. Roaring Book Press.

TheTruthaboutAliceAlice’s junior year in high school went down the drain the day Brandon died.

Handsome Brandon, the town’s hero quarterback and every girl’s dream, was killed in a car accident. His best friend Josh and his former girlfriend Elaine blamed Alice. Rumors of her sleeping with him and another guy at Elaine’s party while sexting with him on the day he died followed Alice’s every move and earned her the title of Town Slut.

As the town slut, Alice had her very own Slut Stall created for her in the girl’s bathroom at school by her former best friend Kelsie. Little by little, school real estate closed to her until she was left ostracized, friendless and alone. Whether or not the rumors were true didn’t matter to Josh, Kelsie, or Elaine. Brandon was gone, so someone had to pay for it.

Kurt, the town nerd, is secretly in love with Alice and dared cross the invisible social barriers to befriend her. Despite his feelings for her, Kurt is afraid of telling her what really happened to Brandon. Will Alice ever regain her dignity, or will she forever be known as the slutty girl who killed Brandon?

Told through the viewpoints of Josh, Elaine, Kelsie, Kurt and Alice, readers are drawn through this high school drama brought on by rumors and popularity. Unfortunately, many students are subjected to this type of bullying, uncorrected by faculty and egged on by students. I found it very hard to believe that a slut stall, such as was described, could exist with no attempts made by the faculty to curb its creation through the use of paint and other proactive measures. I find it sad that students continue to be followers, rather than leaders, when bullying occurs.

Readers will, hopefully, gain compassion and insight into the feelings of any Alice’s they may encounter in their daily lives. Perhaps a bold Kurt may arise in their midst.

Recommended for ages 14 and older.

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