Review Detail

 
Young Adult Fiction
Overall rating 
 
4.3
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0

hit me right in the sore spot of my life and I liked it

What I Loved:
In Case You Missed It is told in first-person, but when we read Sam's journal entries as an interlude between each chapter, readers get an even deeper look into her mind. She focuses a lot on her crush Jamie Moss and makes clear that she's a bit shallow and childish, but that's okay. Though my focus wasn't on boys, I was the same way at her age and have the diary entries to prove it. (You don't get to read them, though.) She's a realistic girl you might know in real life and she's also the reason you really should keep a paper diary.

Seriously, keep a paper diary instead of an online or even offline digital diary. Sure, your brother is more likely to get into your paper diary, but it's far less likely to end up on the Internet for all to read.

Coverage of the hack, the patriarchal culture her father both engages in and fosters within his banking corporation, and the casual racism Sam encounters thanks to her dad and her friend Margo's mom feel real and relevant without the bagging fear that this book will be dated within just a few years. The big names of news might change, but the style of coverage remains the same. I'm honestly surprised Sam encountered no anti-Semitism since her family is Jewish and her dad's a banker. The neo-Nazis would be on that before you could say anything!

But the true heart of the novel and its most powerful element is how Littman paints tensions within Sam's family. She and her mother have shouting matches regularly, she can hardly recognize her father post-leaks, and her little brother is an anxious mess. Seeing as my family situation is similarly volatile for very different reasons, In Case You Missed It cuts deeply a thousand different ways for me and regularly reduced me to tears. As the rift between Sam and her mother started to heal, it made me wish things were so easy in my own case.

But that's another story I can't currently tell. Regardless, In Case You Missed It is a novel that will deeply engage your emotions in ways other novels could only dream of and Sam's family is given depth that family members don't often get in YA novels.

What Left Me Wanting:
The novel does its best to confront both systemic sexism and racism, but the latter is handled weakly at best. Though Sam is furious her father agrees to pay a recently hired woman named Aisha Rana less than he'd pay a man in the same position, it never comes up that Aisha is likely a woman of color based on her name. Intersectionality is important, but no one acknowledges that as a woman of color, she's likely being paid even less than she would if she were a white woman or a man of color. In addition, quoting Winston Churchill regularly in a novel with racism as a minor conflict is not a smart idea given his imperialist policies caused a famine in Bengal that killed 3 million people.

One further way the novel fails readers of color: when Sam writes in her diary that Hispanic girl Rosa's ability to sleep despite smelling of vomit must be "a cultural thing," Rosa is rightly angry. The scene in which she forgives Sam left a lot to be desired. Sam has the knee-jerk "I'm not a racist" reaction and Rosa downgrades what she said to "a hurtful thing from a non-racist person," which lets Sam off the hook too easily. There would have been no harm in Sam acknowledging the passive racism of what she wrote and fighting to be better than that going forward.

Final Verdict:
In Case You Missed It is an Issue book and there's no shame in that. It's the Issue book done right with genuine characters aplenty and a human approach to handling what teens might be struggling with instead of a didactic, novel-length lesson of what not to do. Did you read a bunch of Jennifer Brown's backlist and love it? Did her books fail you one way or another? Sarah Darer Littman's entire backlist should be on your TBR pile.

Good Points
*realistic characters and coverage of the data hack
*is the reason you should keep a paper diary instead of a digital diary
*feels relevant in a way that doesn't date it
*excellent, very real tensions within Sam's family
Was this review helpful to you? 

Comments

 
 
Ordering 
 
Already have an account? or Create an account
 
 
 
Powered by JReviews

FEATURED GIVEAWAYS

Latest Book Listings Added

Dear Martin
ustyce McAllister is top of his class and set for...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Come Home, Angus
Angus woke up mad and knew today was not his...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Rulers of the Playground
A stunning picture book about sharing, friendship, and kindness in...
 
4.5
 
0.0 (0)
June Sparrow and the Million Dollar Penny
June Sparrow and her best friend—a miniature pig named Indigo...
 
3.5
 
0.0 (0)
Story Sparks:  Finding Your Best Story Ideas & Turning Them into Compelling Fiction
Find rock-solid story ideas before you start writing ...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Elect
For the past thirteen years, the Foundation has ruled Belstrana...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Girl in the Tower
A remarkable young woman blazes her own trail, from the...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Soul Mates by J Butterworth
Alex is born into a future society were at birth...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Coming Up For Air
Swim. Eat. Shower. School. Snack. Swim. Swim. Swim. Dinner. Homework....
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
Landscape with Invisible Hand
National Book Award winner M. T. Anderson returns to future...
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
26091228.jpg
Follow-up to the New York Times bestselling novel, Forget Tomorrow!...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Follow Me (Amateurs #2)
It was the perfect night for a party. That is,...
 
3.7
 
0.0 (0)
Legacy (The Biodome Chronicles #1)
What if all you thought you knew was a lie?...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Dreadful Tale of Prosper Redding
Prosper is the only unexceptional Redding in his old...
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
Fireblood
Against all odds, Ruby has defeated the villainous Frost...
 
3.7
 
0.0 (0)
Nothing
From Annie Barrows, the acclaimed #1 New York Times–bestselling...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)

Latest Member Reviews

Dear Martin
 
5.0
"Justyce is at the top of his class, captain of the debate team, and on track to attend a prestigious..."
A Court of Wings and Ruin
 
5.0
"Alright warning time. As with most books that I read, this has been labeled problematic. Though this one is completely..."
Wintersong
 
1.0
"This is going to be more like a rant/review than just a review. I am honestly proud that I finished..."
Enshadowed (Nevermore #2)
 
5.0
"First off... that freaking cliffhanger!? I can't even... I could not imagine having read this the year it came out..."
Nevermore (Nevermore #1)
 
4.7
" It's great! What I love the most is how dark and gritty the world felt. It was so cool..."
House of Night: Hunted
 
3.3
"So the Nerd Herd is now underground and hiding away from Kalona. Aphrodite and Stevie-Rae have imprinted, Stark is an..."
House of Night: Untamed
 
3.3
"So this one picks up right where the other left off and don't worry if you haven't read the others..."
House of Night: Chosen
 
3.3
"Zoey now knows that her old mentor is not what she claims to be. She's hiding something and doing things..."
House of Night: Betrayed
 
3.3
"This one picks up not far where Marked left off. Zoey is now in charge of the Daughters of Darkness...."
Roar (Stormheart #1)
 
N/A
"DNF PAGE 133 - I hate DNFing a book. I hardly ever do it. I personally feel like I'm giving..."
Truthers
 
3.3
"So, I've said before that for some reason I love conspiracy theories. Do I believe any of them? No. I..."
Mask of Shadows
 
3.3
"Okay I loved the premise of this book and I love the fact that it features a Genderfluid MC but..."
Hunted
 
3.7
"What I love most about this book is the setting. Medieval Russia, like hell yeah sign me up! I love..."
Come Home, Angus
 
5.0
"Most of us have days when we just get mad. We don’t know why. We don’t know who is to..."
Rulers of the Playground
 
4.5
"Jonah wants to rule the playground. And he’s a good ruler. Except when he’s not. The problem is that Lennox..."
Plant the Tiny Seed
 
4.5
" This book relies on the interactive nature of read-alouds for young children. Beginning with a single zinnia seed, the..."
The Hanging Girl
 
4.0
"The Hanging Girl was a quick, suspenseful read. Author Eileen Cook has a great writing style. The story picked up..."
June Sparrow and the Million Dollar Penny
 
3.5
"In JUNE SPARROW AND THE MILLION DOLLAR PENNY, June Sparrow is a very rich pre-teen living in New York City..."
Princess Breeze
 
4.3
"This is the second book in a very adorable, fun series. This story starts with Breeze Brannigan's end of the..."
Story Sparks:  Finding Your Best Story Ideas & Turning Them into Compelling Fiction
 
4.0
"This is an easy to read reference book on how to take creative ideas and thoughts and turn them into..."