Publication Date: November 2nd, 2012
Publisher: Little Brown Books for Young Readers
Age Group: Young Adult - Warning - Mature Content
Genre: Coming of Age
Some schools have honor codes.Others have handbooks.Themis Academy has the Mockingbirds.When a young girl at Themis Academy wakes up next to a stranger, naked and surrounded by condoms, with no memory of the night before, she is horrified. Alex is mortified not to remember losing her virginity she doesn't realise just how much she has really lost until she talks to her sister, Casey, founder the Mockingbirds.
Themis Academy is a quiet boarding school with an exceptional student body that the administration trusts to always behave the honorable way--the Themis Way. So when Alex is date raped during her junior year, she has two options: stay silent and hope someone helps her, or enlist the Mockingbirds--a secret society of students dedicated to righting the wrongs of their fellow peers.
Alex turns to the Mockingbirds who support her as she comes to terms with her memories of that night, they are determined to bring her justice.
What I Liked: This was not anything like what I expected. Somehow I missed the reference to rape in the blurb when I first heard about The Mockingbirds and expected a cute little story about a student organisation filled with fifteen and sixteen year old Batman wannabes.
What I got was a heart wrenching and mortifying glimpse into the most frightening and intimate of thefts. Using her own life changing experience in college, Whitney creates a story of magnificent courage and determination that pales only in comparison to her own actions to fight on behalf of victimised women.
Alex is a musician and her connection to her music, music composed by Bach in particular, was beautiful. The way 'Ode to Joy' was tarnished by her experience until she can truly make it her own again composed a lovely accompaniment to the story.
What I Didn't Like: Some of the focuses outside the main story ARC (the Mockingbird trial: ) felt out of place; the tension between T.S and Maia over Alex's friendship sometimes seemed as though they had been slipped in later.
Cover Conversations: I love the simplicity of the mockingbird against the black background. It represents the simple courage Alex shows in overcoming her fears of judgement.