Finished January 18
Reconstructing Amelia by Kimberly McCreight
This is an amazing novel about a subject that is very "in the news" right now, bullying and its effect on teens. Kate is a lawyer and single mother. Her daughter Amelia is 15 and goes to a private school with a good reputation. The two have a pretty good relationship despite Kate's long hours and the time they spend together is very much quality time.
But one day Kate gets a call from the school that Amelia is suspended and she rushes to the school. But by the time she gets there, Amelia is dead, seemingly having jumped from the school's roof. Following her initial grief, Kate struggles for answers and despite the police's initial investigation, doesn't believe Amelia killed herself. It is an anonymous text message that says simply "Amelia didn't jump" that triggers her to step back from her grief and look for what was going on in Amelia's life. Tracking her email, text messages, Facebook interactions and other clues, Kate finds that she missed a lot of what was going on in Amelia's life recently.
This book really shows how the online world and the anonymity that it can create allows bullying in a different form than what existed when I was young. This book is sad and shocking, but reads like something that actually happened. By the end, I was weeping.