I have a weakness for Lifetime movies and Young Adult novels in the way that I also crave fast food. I know they won’t be the best quality, the most satisfying, or necessarily make me a better person – but they will hit the spot. Katherine Tarbox’s autobiography A Girl’s Life Online or Katie.com was one of those finds I knew would be a quick and interesting read, especially for someone like myself who grew up in the age of internet predator fear. This is another $1.00 Book Off find, but from the non-fiction aisle.
In One Sentence: A thirteen year old girl meets a man online, who turns out to not be who he says he is.
Favorite Line: “I can’t tell you what all thirteen-year-old girls are like, but I can tell you what I was like.” – p. 1
Review: The book tells the story of Katie’s developing relationship with the man online, “Mark”, from their first online conversation to the results of Mark’s court trial. The book succeeds in not only exploring Katie’s own changing feelings for Mark, as trust is built and destroyed, but also in how Katie is able to see her own accountability in the events. Ultimately, the online relationship not only causes friction with her family, but also her swim team, her community, and even with how Katie sees herself. I think this is an important cautionary story for teens and would recommend it, especially for young people or students that may not enjoy reading. It’s definitely a page-turner.
The Book Would Have Ended a Lot Sooner If: Katie was never on the swim team and did a less competitive/traveling sport. Like badminton.