A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this book.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Sadie, by Courtney Summers, is a harrowing, intense, and sometimes difficult read about a teen girl seeking revenge for her sister's murder. It includes mature themes of rape, pedophilia, drug abuse, and sexual assault. There's frequent strong language (including "f--k" and its variations). Parents should be prepared to discuss child sexual abuse and drug addiction.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
This story follows SADIE, the 19-year-old daughter of a single mom and addict, whose 13-year-old sister, Mattie, has been found dead. Sadie practically raised her sister in the tiny town of Cold Creek, Colorado (population 800), and now she's determined to get revenge by finding the killer. The story alternates between Sadie's point of view and that of West McCray, a radio journalist who's working on a segment about small, forgotten towns in America. He overhears Sadie's story at a local gas station, and in his true-crime podcast series, he tracks his efforts to learn what happened to Sadie, even if she doesn't want to be found.
Is it any good?
This is not an easy read, but a very compelling one. In the era of the #MeToo movement, Sadie seems important, and reading it might open the door talk about sexual assault and abuse.
The format of the book takes some time to get used to, as it switches back and forth between Sadie's first-person narration and the podcast script, a journalistic account of the search for Sadie. But in the end, Sadie is a raw, gritty page-turner that tackles violence, abandonment, and addiction.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about how sexual abuse is portrayed and dealt with in Sadie. Why is it important to read stories about sexual abuse, even if it's difficult at times?
What do you think about Sadie's devotion to her sister? How can revenge grow out of love?
How does this book compare to other books you've read and movies you've seen that deal with addiction? Does it seem realistic?
- Author: Courtney Summers
- Genre: Contemporary Fiction
- Topics: Adventures, Brothers and Sisters, Friendship, Great Girl Role Models, Misfits and Underdogs
- Book type: Fiction
- Publisher: Wednesday Books
- Publication date: September 4, 2018
- Publisher's recommended age(s): 14 - 18
- Number of pages: 320
- Available on: Paperback, Nook, Audiobook (unabridged), Hardback, iBooks, Kindle
- Last updated: January 12, 2021
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