The Mockingbirds (The Mockingbirds, #1)-Daisy Whitney
Plot: Alex attends the prestigious Themis Academy, a boarding school where the administration is largely passive and finds a system built on the honor code to be the most effective. A notorious group known as The Mockingbirds, a secret society of teens, runs the school on a combination of vigilante justice and sleuthing. Alex never knew that The Mockingbirds existed until she unfortunately became desperately in need of their unique brand of crime solving. Alex is a pretty quiet girl, her focus is on mastering her violin and getting accepted at her dream school-Julliard. One night, while seeing on of her favorite bands with a few friends at a club, things get out of hand, Alex gets wasted and she wakes up the next day in Carter’s bed with no idea how she got there. Alex is mortified and sickened that she lost her virginity, something she cherished and wanted to be special, to a night of drunken stupidity. However, as flashbacks of that night come back to her, Alex is not so sure that it was consensual. Alex is pretty sure she has been date-raped. So begins Alex’s quest to figure out what truly happened that night, how to deal with it, and her partnership with The Mockingbirds to sniff out clues, and bring justice to Themis Academy.
- I wanted to love The Mockingbirds because the story deals with serious issues that are not only relevant to teens but people of every age and not talked about enough. Date-rape is a terrible, traumatic thing that is all too often brushed over or not talked about because it causes people to feel uncomfortable or people are scared (the reasons are endless and all important), it’s a hard subject and props to Daisy Whitney for tackling it. One of the best elements of this story is how realistic and true to emotions Alex is. Daisy really captured the horrible sense of guilt, the idea that the victim thinks they’re at fault, that they could have done something more to protect themselves. Alex’s reactions were heartbreaking, emotionally poignant, and so easy to identify with. Everyone has felt that gnawing feeling of uncertainty when something bad happens that tosses them into a whirlwind of doubt, the quintessential if only I had…maybe I should have…thoughts.
- Alex. Although she’s a little naïve, she’s willing to fight for justice, to believe in herself, and to push through her own insecurities over what happened to her to truly grow as a person.
- The Mockingbirds as a group of teens willing to solve crimes, dig through dirt, weigh stories, and deal out their own form of justice is really a great idea, especially if, like in the book, the administration would only cause a bigger mess or simply not care at all. The concept of taking away what matters most to the loser of the case is a harsh but much better alternative to the slap on the wrist or suspension that most bullies would have gotten.
- The plot is a little slow and really drags in some parts as Alex spirals into depression but livens up as the Mockingbirds clues become more pronounced. If you’re looking for a book that is thrilling, fast-paced, and has lots of plot twists, this is NOT for you.
- The characters are fuzzy, like shadows, they feel incomplete. It’s hard to become invested in the characters when there are so many, a bunch of substories, and really not much development or focus on their character journey-except for Alex.
- One of my issues with the Mockingbirds is that they’re really vigilantes, they take advantage of the system and don’t only take away the accused’s (if found guilty) most loved hobby but they start with taking away their privileges before they even know they committed the crime for sure and then say, oh, if they’re innocent we’ll pay them back later. The problem with this is that most of the time, later is at the end of the school year when paying people back really doesn’t make up for a semester or so of hell.
If you liked any of the following, you’d probably enjoy this:*
***I’m really not sure what to recommend for this one so take these titles with a little leeway.
Pleasant reading and have a wonderful weekend,