When Audrey Met Alice

Rebecca Behrens. Sourcebooks Jabberwocky, $16.99 (304p) ISBN 978-1-4022-8642-1
In Behrens’s entertaining debut, 13-year old-Audrey Rhodes finds life as the President’s daughter stifling. Audrey’s big party is canceled over a security breach, her classmates only see her as “Fido” (short for First Daughter), her mother is busy running the country, and her father is occupied with cancer research. When Audrey discovers the hidden journal of former First Daughter Alice Roosevelt, “the nation’s first celebrity” (as Behrens puts it in an afterword) and a freewheeling wild child, she finds a kindred spirit. Audrey’s Alice-inspired adventures don’t always turn out well (like the flapper dress she wears to a state dinner), but they get Audrey on the road to “eating up the world,” as Alice likes to say. Alice’s (invented) journal entries appear throughout and offer a window into the life of this fearless historical figure though, as Behrens notes, “when it came to good fiction versus factual accuracy, fiction won.” Details of life in the White House, combined with Audrey’s more ordinary struggles (including the potential for a first boyfriend), will keep readers hooked. Ages 9–up. Agent: Suzie Townsend, New Leaf Literary & Media. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 12/16/2013
Release date: 02/04/2014
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