Winter 2011 Kids' Next List
“Themis Academy is a co-ed boarding school of the highest caliber. According to the administration, everything is perfect there.
According to the students, that's not quite correct. In response, The Mockingbirds, a very
organized judicial force of students is formed. Alex never dreamed that she would need their
services -- until she is date-raped. This is a very strong story that is difficult to put down, with an important message for everyone.”
— Jackie Blem, Tattered Cover Bookstore, Denver, CO
Some schools have honor codes.
Others have handbooks.
Themis Academy has the Mockingbirds.
From the glossy pages of its admissions brochure, the prestigious Themis Academy appears perfect in every way: exceptional academics, extraordinary students, the kind of extracurriculars to make an Ivy League proud, and zero instances of student misbehavior. But this boarding school isn't as pristine as it appears. There's a dark underbelly to the perfect record the Themis administration flaunts. Student infractions are rampant, and it's up to a secret vigilante society, the Mockingbirds, to maintain order on campus--a responsibility their members take very seriously.
Alex Patrick never thought she would need the Mockingbirds. But when she's date-raped by another student, she doesn't know where else to go. As much as she'd like to forget what happened, she can't escape the daily reminders of what went wrong that terrible night. Before she can summon the courage to take a stand, she'll have to accept that her battle for justice is not hers alone. Standing up for someone, especially yourself, is worth the fight.
Praise for The Mockingbirds:
* "First-time author Whitney boldly addresses date rape, vigilantism, and academic politics in an intense and timely novel... Besides showing skill in executing suspense and drama, Whitney masterfully evokes the complexity of her protagonist's emotions, particularly her intense longing to feel 'normal' again."
—Publishers Weekly (Starred review)
"[Whitney] writes with smooth assurance and a propulsive rhythm as she follows Alex through the Mockingbird's trial process and its accompanying emotional storm of confusion, shame, fear, and finally, empowerment. Authentic and illuminating, this strong debut explores vital teen topics of sex and violence; crime and punishment; ineffectual authority; and the immeasurable, healing influence of friendship and love."
"Extraordinary...Shocking and eye-opening, this book is hard to put down."
"Puts a compelling and ingenious twist on everything you think you know about sex, violence, victimhood, justice--and the true meaning of power."
—Gayle Forman, author of If I Stay
"Raw and riveting. Deserves a place of honor...alongside it's soul sister, Speak."
—Justina Chen, author of North of Beautiful
"In The Mockingbirds, Daisy Whitney has written an unflinchingly honest story about the importance of taking a stand and speaking out. An emotionally powerful debut that will leave readers breathless."
—Courtney Summers, author of Cracked Up to Be