I LOST MY MOBILE AT THE MALL by Wendy Harmer

I LOST MY MOBILE AT THE MALL

Teenager on the Edge of Technological Breakdown
Age Range: 11 & up

KIRKUS REVIEW

The title says it all: Losing her cell phone triggers a cascade of ever-widening techno-disasters for Elly Pickering, the book’s high-functioning Aussie protagonist. Next, her BFF Bianca’s boyfriend, Jai—not an Elly fan—posts unattractive photos of Elly on FacePlace, and Elly’s loyal sister, Tilly, hatches a scheme to pay Jai back. This goes horribly wrong, leading to a rift between Elly and Will, her strong, silent, surfer boyfriend. Elly’s parents berate her for losing her mobile, but they also are techno-dependent, as becomes all too clear when the family home is burglarized. Photos, correspondence and study notes vanish, revealing the truth that text messages and email are ephemeral and hardware-reliant, unlike the cherished letters from Elly’s grandfather to her grandmother, carefully preserved for 50 years. As Elly adjusts to her technical deprivation, she discovers the pleasures of paying attention to one thing at a time; could multitasking be overrated? The story clearly wants readers to consider whether we really want to make our distracted, fleeting lives move even faster. Readers don't linger in philosophical territory, though. Technology’s role in complicating our lives is the story’s engine, but the power of love and friendship to get us through the ensuing mayhem is its heart. The net result is an entertaining, thought-provoking read. (Fiction. 11 & up)

Pub Date: March 1st, 2011
ISBN: 978-1-935279-97-6
Page count: 272pp
Publisher: Kane/Miller
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1st, 2011




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