Friend Me by Sheila M. Averbuch

Published by Scholastic Press

Friend Me: Averbuch, Sheila M.: 9781338618082: Books

Summary:  Roisin is struggling to adjust to seventh grade after moving to Massachusetts from Ireland.  A bully named Zara is making her life miserable, so when she discovers a new friend online, she is thrilled.  Haley has dealt with mean girls as well, and always seems to have time to listen to Roisin’s problems and offer sympathetic advice.  But when Zara has a potentially fatal accident and Haley seems unmoved, Roisin begins to have some questions.  Attempts to track Haley down in person prove unsuccessful, and Roisin finds herself in an increasingly dangerous situation.  She realizes she will have to risk reaching out to the people around her to find out who Haley is…and to survive their friendship.  272 pages; grades 4-7.

Pros:  Kids who are looking for a fast-paced adventure will enjoy this social media-based thriller, and will get some positive messages about bullying as well.

Cons:  Roisin’s final showdown with Haley requires a little suspension of disbelief…but it did make for an exciting last few chapters.

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