Finding Audrey

Book review by
Kate Pavao, Common Sense Media
Finding Audrey Book Poster Image
Charming tale takes on bullying with sweet, light touch.

Parents say

age 13+
Based on 2 reviews

Kids say

age 12+
Based on 5 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this book.

Educational Value

Though the book often has a funny, lighthearted tone, it imparts a lot of lessons, including what it feels like to suffer from panic attacks (and some steps for managing their severity). Parents also can use this book to talk about bullying, as well as the benefits and liabilities of video gaming (which is something Audrey's parents and brother are trying to negotiate).

Positive Messages

There's a definite message about the damage bullying can do but also one about how it's possible to recover from traumatic events. Audrey learns some powerful coping mechanisms, including how to stop feeling that there are so many "have-tos" in life. 

Positive Role Models & Representations

A teen protagonist, suffering from anxiety and depression after being bullied at school, bravely tries to recover; her wacky family and cute new crush, Linus, stand by her side. 

Violence
Sex

Audrey and Linus strike up a romantic relationship, and she kisses him. Audrey's parents have a flirty conversation.

Language

Some swearing -- especially from Audrey's older brother Frank -- including words such as "God," "Jesus," "f--k," "s--t," and "a---hole."

Consumerism

Some snack food brands mentioned; several scenes take place at Starbucks.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Audrey takes prescription medication for her anxiety. Audrey's dad make a reference to drinking beers with his son during a guitar jam session but realizes it's inappropriate.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Sophie Kinsella's Finding Audrey features a 14-year-old protagonist suffering from anxiety and depression after being bullied at school. Audrey's wacky family and cute new crush, Linus, stand by her as she strives to recover. Though the book often has a funny, lighthearted tone, it imparts a lot of lessons, including what it feels like to suffer from panic attacks (and some steps for managing their severity). Parents can use this book to talk about bullying -- and about the benefits and liabilities of video game playing (which Audrey's parents and brother are trying to negotiate). Audrey and Linus strike up a romantic relationship, and she kisses him. There's some swearing, especially from Audrey's older brother, Frank (including "f--k" and "s--t"). Audrey takes prescription medication for her anxiety.

User Reviews

Adult Written byrebma97 September 12, 2015

Accurate portrayal of anxiety

This book was really good. Audrey's a pretty realistic, relatable character, and for people like me who've dealt with anxiety disorders will be able t... Continue reading
Adult Written by1NEleven1 August 4, 2015
While I think the reading level is suitable for around 11-12 and up, the language in the story makes me think it would be better suited for adolescents going in... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written byIzzyharper August 24, 2016

Awesome!

Well I thought it was really good I think it is so great I even did my book review on it!
Kid, 12 years old March 17, 2017

Amazing Book!

This book was amazing! I loved it! I was so addictive to this book that I read it in 2 days. I gave this book a 4 stars because at the beginning of the book not... Continue reading

What's the story?

In FINDING AUDREY, Audrey is on a break from school, trying to recover from a horrible but unspecified bullying incident at school that left her susceptible to panic attacks and unable to venture outside her house or make eye contact. Her therapist encourages her to make a documentary, and she records her home life, including often very funny interactions between her well-meaning but clueless parents and her older brother, whom they've banned from playing video games (but he finds ways to play them anyway). Plus, the film gives her an excuse to talk to cute, caring Linus, a friend of her brother who believes Audrey can get better. 

Is it any good?

This book takes on some serious issues -- bullying as well as depression and anxiety -- and still often comes across as sweet and funny, partly due to Audrey's (unintentionally) hilarious family. When her mother suspects her brother is playing computer games instead of doing homework, for example, she stands on top of the playhouse in the yard to peek in his window and ends up breaking the roof and being wedged inside the house.

The novel succeeds primarily thanks to the tender romance that blossoms between Audrey and Linus, who's very patient with her, even as he pushes her outside her self-imposed boundary by doing funny things such as asking a random man feeding ducks at a park if ducks are vegetarians. Ultimately, Finding Audrey is a charming story that will entertain tween and teen readers even as it encourages them to think about some heavy subjects. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the debate between Audrey's mother and her brother Frank. Do you think computer games have value, or can they be detrimental?

  • What exactly do you think happened to Audrey? Does her situation seem realistic to you?

  • What would you do if you saw someone being bullied? How can you avoid cyberbullying?

Book details

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