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Parents' Guide to


By Kate Pavao, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 15+

Yet another cliquey series, but with a nicer star.

Private Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

Community Reviews

age 10+

Based on 5 parent reviews

age 11+

Excellent, well-written read for 6th grade and up

Private is a well-written guilty pleasure novel that is an enjoyable and entertaining read for 6th grade and up. Kids will enjoy the fun details of the wealthy and privileged. Your children should be smart enough to realize that this is guilty pleasure fiction and should not be taken seriously. A+
age 13+

It's a good book!

It's one of the best books I've ever read, but Noelle is a HORRIBLE role model as are the other girls. And the language isn't very appropriate.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (5 ):
Kids say (15 ):

This series starter has a lot of the trappings of the clique lit genre: An elite boarding school, a group of beautiful and popular girls, and lots of mean talk and pranks. It also has another common trapping: The debut sets up a lot of intrigue, but nothing is resolved (and it's unclear what lessons the protagonist has actually learned). What sets this book a little apart is that protagonist Reed is a realistic and sympathetic character. Blue-collar Reed can't wait to escape her boring hometown and her abusive, addicted mother. But she's flawed, too -- when Thomas accuses her of using him, he's right. And she uses the popular Billings Girls to a certain degree as well, though she's not driven by materialism, but rather a deep longing to belong.

In the end, readers will connect with Reed -- and all the drama she finds at Easton Academy, from discovering that her boyfriend is the school drug dealer to suspecting that the Billings Girls helped get someone expelled. Teens taking a break from required reading will likely find enough fun here to have them RSVPing for the next installment, Invitation Only.

Book Details

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