cover image In Case You Missed It

In Case You Missed It

Sarah Darer Littman. Scholastic Press, $17.99 (320p) ISBN 978-0-545-90437-7

As she did in Backlash and Want to Go Private?, Littman crafts an unnerving cautionary tale about misplaced digital trust and illusions of privacy. Amid Occupy-style protests, 16-year-old Sammy Wallach’s journal becomes collateral damage when hackers target her bank CEO father and gain access to the family’s cloud storage. Sammy is mortified when her classmates learn about her crush, her best friends give her the silent treatment, and her parents ground her for the lies she told to cover up a night out; she also learns that her parents have been keeping secrets of their own. Sammy’s voice, captured in straight narration and journal entries, is authentic and full of wit, whether she’s griping about her parents, aka “the Fossils,” or using slangy portmanteaus like “snarkasm.” The fallout from the hack raises important questions about bigotry, secret selves, and the multifaceted roles people assume in different areas of their lives, but the book’s exploration of these and other topics is quashed by a pressing health matter and Sammy’s overexposure, muddling the book’s takeaway somewhat. Ages 12–up. Agent: Jennifer Laughran, Andrea Brown Literary. (Oct.)