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

Everything All at Once
Lottie Reeves has always struggled with anxiety, and when her...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Lucky in Love
Maddie doesn't believe in luck. She's all about hard work...
 
3.7
 
0.0 (0)
She's So Boss
Whether you already have an idea for a business or...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
Wesley James Ruined My Life
Sixteen-year-old Quinn Hardwick’s having a rough summer. Her beloved grandmother...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
Beanstalker and Other Hilarious Scarytales
Once upon a time, a girl skipped into the forest...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Obsidian and Stars
In the sequel to Ivory and Bone—the prehistoric fantasy...
 
4.7
 
0.0 (0)
Maybe In Paris
Keira Braidwood lands in Paris with her autistic brother,...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
Revolt: Book Four of the Resistance Series
The Explosive Conclusion to the Award-Winning Resistance Series To...
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
16 Ways to Break A Heart
Unfolding through letters, texts, and chats, Lauren Strasnick’s smart,...
 
3.0
 
0.0 (0)
Changes in Latitudes
A "road" trip romance that takes place at sea!...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
First We Were IV
A group of friends start a secret society in...
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
Orphan is the highly anticipated sequel in the ORB trilogy....
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
The World Between the Trees
Jake Hunter has disappeared without a trace and when his...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Jupiter Storm
Only a week ago Grey Alexander thought she and her...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Alison Henry and the Creatures of Torone
After being picked on at school yet again, Alison Henry...
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Unbecoming
Three women. Three generations. Three secrets. ...
 
4.7
 
0.0 (0)

Latest Member Reviews

Kronnus 13
 
3.8
"The story: Zak Connors is a twelve-year-old boy who is not long for this world. A terrible virus has..."
Raise the Curtain
 
4.0
"Alexa loves theater, but her dad thinks it's a waste of time and wants her to focus on more important..."
Flicker
 
4.5
"'Flicker' by Melanie Hooyenga is a very gripping novel. The concept behind it - that the main character, Biz, has..."
Sarah
 
3.5
" I haven't read any horror novels but have a few on my TBR, so I thought this one would..."
Em & Em
 
4.0
" What I Loved 'Em & Em' was a sweet contemporary romance with a twist. There are back and forth..."
We Thought We Were Invincible
 
5.0
"I thoroughly enjoyed this contemporary offering from Lynn, as it is my favorite genre to read. In many ways, I..."
Curse of the Sphinx
 
4.0
"Curse of the Sphinx is a somewhat fast-paced story with one of my favorite types of mythology, starring the wonderful..."
Angels of Moirai, Book One (Angels of Moirai #1)
 
2.8
"Welcome to the new Twilight. *Sigh* Angels of Moirai had me at its summary since I'm one to fall..."
If We Were a Movie
 
4.5
"‘If We Were a Movie’ tells the story of ‘Nat’. ‘Nat’ is a triplet and struggles to have individuality from..."
 
3.5
"'Laerka' is a modern-day retelling of the fairytale 'The Little Mermaid'. Stella is a teenager in modern-day Savannah, Georgia...."
Waters of Salt and Sin
 
3.5
"The story: Kinneret Raza is a tough, adventurous, headstrong young woman with the misfortune of being on the lower rung..."
Magic Bound
 
5.0
"Love it!"
Like a Dream
 
5.0
"Amelia is a strong protagonist with great wit and charm. She does the best she can with what life has..."
The Eternity Road
 
3.0
"THE ETERNITY ROAD is full of action, secrets, vampires, love, and vampire hunters. THE ETERNITY ROAD follows Amanda who's..."
Stray
 
5.0
"We’ve all had that day. You know, that day you’re abandoned in a small town, you meet a boy then..."
Fallen to Grace
 
5.0
""A.J. Flowers gives a version of angels and demons that I haven't seen before" - TheStoryCollectorBlog.com "A fresh..."
Spies Like Me
 
4.8
"The story: Despite living a life of privilege, sixteen-year-old Emma Rothchild has known her share of tragedy. She lost..."
Royal Institute of Magic
 
4.8
"This book focusses on Ben Greenwood and his search for answers about his parents' disappearance. Two years ago Ben came..."
Blues Harp Green
 
3.0
"'Blues Harp Green' by Nicole Schubert has an interesting premise. The main character, Francie, meets Chet, a cute and friendly..."
The Unforgettables
 
3.3
"'The Unforgettables' by G.L. Tomas follows new next-door neighbors, and seeming soulmates, Paul and Felicia. Their instant connection at a..."