Julya Rabinowich’s young adult titles are proving to be every bit as successful as her acclaimed literary fiction. This empowering coming-of-age novel addresses bullying, first love, a relationship that turns abusive, and a heroine who finds the courage to face the truth and choose her own path in life.
Our protagonist was named by her mother after Alice through the Looking Glass and, like her namesake, has strayed into another world and emerged to tell the tale. Alice breaks out of the apparently gilded, privileged cage of her family life and forges her own way, showing great resilience in her dealings with a vindictive gang of school bullies and maturity in her relationship with an older boy at school. When this relationship breaks down Alice has an epiphany and succeeds in relaying it to her parents: that they too are trapped, by the tyranny of her manipulative grandfather. From the start of the book we know that Alice has survived her experiences and made a new beginning, and this weaves an optimistic thread through the narrative.
Alice’s strong sense of idealism is attractive and will resonate with young people trying to navigate difficult moral choices