Queen of Likes

Book review by
Terreece Clarke, Common Sense Media
Queen of Likes Book Poster Image
Lighthearted but memorable look at social media addiction.

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Explores the negative effects of social media and cell phone obsession. Reinforces the idea of standing up for kids being bullied.

Positive Messages

Beliefs about and behaviors toward tech and social media can change. You can live without your phone. It's good to find a balance between tech-centered and other activities. 

Positive Role Models & Representations

Both the main character and her parents model positive behavior. The parents notice there is a problem and actively engage the main character to monitor and set parameters for tech and social media use. They also follow through with consequences for violating these parameters. The main character, through a series of missteps, also models positive behavior in both interactions with friends and her family. 

Violence

A couple of instances of bullying behavior. In one instance, a student is tripped. He is unharmed, but his feelings are very hurt.

Sex

Typical middle school boy-girl attraction.

Language

There is mild name-calling, including "dork" and "weird."

Consumerism

Mostly made-up names for brands, including social media.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know Hillary Homzie's Queen of Likes is a funny and engaging look at social media and cell phone obsession among tweens. There are some instances of peer bullying that are quickly stopped by both adults and peers. Parents should be ready to talk about social media influence and technology use.

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What's the story?

Seventh-grader Karma Cooper rose from geek to chic at school because of her thousands of followers on SnappyPic, the hottest social media app there is. Since her rise to fame, she's been careful to balance her following-to-followers ratio and post killer pics. Sure, she's gotten in trouble a few times for using her phone at school, at the temple, at home, at night, and all day long, but hey, she's gotta take care of her followers! They need her and she needs them. So when she misses a teensy bit of a bar mitzvah to check her likes, her parents are so unreasonable they delete her account and take her phone! How will she survive?

Is it any good?

This is a funny and interesting look into the lives of typical tweens and teens who are obsessed with social media and tech. Karma is the stand-in for every kid who counts on social media popularity for self-esteem and believes tech is as important as a family member or an appendage. The novel does a great job of capturing the mindset behind social media obsession while juxtaposing social media use and the main character's interaction with the outside world. Author Hillary Homzie creates really active parents as partners who help Karma navigate her social media and tech dependency.

Readers will like how Karma has a gradual change of heart throughout the experience and learns more about her other interests, not only her "likes." This is a great introductory book about social media use for tweens.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about social media use and influence. Did it help Karma to have so many social media followers? How did it hurt her? How can you keep social media popularity in perspective?

  • Do you feel panicked if you leave your phone at home? Do you find yourself absentmindedly checking it? How can you help monitor your own social media use without relying on parental checks and balances?

  • Have you ever had to stand up to a bully? Do you know how? Whom can you tell when someone you know is being bullied and you can't help?

Book details

Themes & Topics

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For kids who love stories about middle school and standing up to bullies

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