Friday, February 15, 2013

I Swear by Lane Davis

Feeling hopeless, Leslie decides to take her own life.  After her death in the first chapter her tormentors attempt to work together to keep secret the details of what drove Leslie to commit suicide.  Macie, the head of the mean girls, immediately becomes the public face of the tragedy, spinning the events as she wants everyone to see.  The other girls in Macie's group of friends have their own reasons for having followed her all these years but are beginning to question their actions.  What is very clear to the reader is that Leslie - dealing with rumors of plastic surgery and promiscuity as well as constant Facebook messages suggesting she kill herself - felt she had no other choice left.  Told in alternating chapters the story of Leslie's persecution and persecutors unfolds. I wasn't bowled over by this book as reading it which is not to say that teens won't like it.  I think the mean girls and the bullying will make it popular.  But one theme has stuck with me, a theme that I hope would make some bullies stop and think a bit.  As their stories are revealed it is clear that the girls in the book had their own reasons for picking on Leslie and felt justified in doing so.  But as they begin to break down and really examine what they did, they see how some very small choice would've made a huge difference to Leslie and they realize how meaningless their reasons were.