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You Don’t Know Me by Sophia Bennett

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Teenage Book of the Month

You Don’t Know Me by Sophia Bennett
Published by Chicken House, 2013

Sasha and Rose are best friends and members of the Manic Pixie Dream Girls, a band who have gone all the way to the top reaching the finals of Killer Act. When the judges’ decision means one of them has to quit, their friendship is put to the ultimate test.

Written from Sasha's point of view, the book gives us complete insight into the characters of the girls in the band and allows us to understand them fully.

The theme of social networking is well explored right from the start when Sasha’s phone goes missing; a video of her and her friends singing a cheesy song in their bedroom goes online and ends up being voted for by millions of viewers. So too is the awful reality of cyber-bullying, but the portrayal of the four girls as well-grounded teenagers may provide just the example teenagers need to cope, should it happen to them.

The hurt and heartache experienced by reality TV show competitors is realistically captured exposing the vulnerability of the girls and the enormous pressure placed on them, both to make decisions and to gracefully accept them, even though this may mean complete devastation.

This book strikes a great balance between serious and heartbreaking, fun and sadness. Death threats and catchy pop-tunes about sunglasses and silly outfits don’t usually go together but Sophia Bennett weaves a web of several teen themes in her latest book that will be loved by teenage girl readers in particular.