Life by Committee is a young adult novel about Tabitha who is suddenly hated by all of her friends. She finds compassion in an anonymous online group for people to post secrets. The catch is, if you post a secret, you have to do whatever task the group decides for you. For a more complete summary, you can go here.
The whole concept of this book reminded me of Post Secret on steroids. If you don’t know, Post Secret is a website where people can submit anonymous postcards revealing their deepest secrets. The only difference is that in Life by Committee you have to actually do something about those secrets, otherwise you get kicked out of the group. In one sense, the group helps people be brave and tackle some of their fears, but it also gets to be pretty controlling. The leader of the group started to get too power hungry and forced people to do some crazy things. I think that it is a statement on how impressionable teenagers are and how peer pressure can have a positive or negative effect. It honestly creeped me out how willing these people were to follow someone’s commands so blindly (ehem…cult…ehem….)
This book also reminded me of the movie Mean Girls. All the girls in this story were really just horrible to each other, for no obvious reason. I suppose high school can feel like that sometimes, but this was really exaggerated. I thought maybe it was meant to be a satire, based on how severe it was.
I went back and forth a lot about how much I did/didn’t like this book. Looking at other reviews, it seems that that is a common conundrum. I couldn’t decide if I wanted to give it three or four stars, but there was one part that pushed me up to four stars: Tabitha likes to buy used books with annotations so she can feel connected to other people. I’ll admit that I have done that before since it is interesting to see what other people think while you are reading. It’s almost like a private book club.
If you are interested in buying the book, you can buy it here. After you have read it, leave a comment and let me know what you think!
**** 4/5 Stars
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View my Q & A with Cory Ann Haydu!
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