real friends by Shannon HaleBook: Real Friends
Author: Shannon Hale
Illustrator: LeUyen Pham
Published: May 2, 2017
Publisher: First Second
Genre:  Kids Graphic Memoir
Source: Library

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Synopsis

Shannon and Adrienne have been best friends ever since they were little. But one day, Adrienne starts hanging out with Jen, the most popular girl in class and the leader of a circle of friends called The Group. Everyone in The Group wants to be Jen’s #1, and some girls would do anything to stay on top . . . even if it means bullying others.

Now every day is like a roller coaster for Shannon. Will she and Adrienne stay friends? Can she stand up for herself? And is she in The Group—or out?

Newbery Honor author Shannon Hale and New York Timesbestselling illustrator LeUyen Pham join forces in this graphic memoir about how hard it is to find your real friends—and why it’s worth the journey. (Goodreads)

Review

My rating: 4 stars
It was lovely. Definitely recommend.

Every elementary school kid needs to read this book.

Not only is it gorgeous (LeUyen Pham is amazingly talented), it is such a good story. It reads like fiction written for kids, despite being a memoir about childhood written by an adult.

Shannon Hale opens up about how her world changed when her best friend in elementary school moved away and then moved back and started making other friends. Told in an honest, authentic way, nearly everyone who reads this will be able to recognize some of the story in their own childhood — whether that childhood is current or happened thirty years ago.

Kids can be cruel and not even realize it. Cliques form seemingly naturally and someone is always left out. Kids feel lonely and don’t realize that there are other kids out there who are feeling the same and who they could befriend. Kids feel pressure to conform to what other kids are doing, even if they don’t like what they are doing or think it’s not okay.

Real Friends tells the story of how friendships change and develop, and how sometimes you need to stand up for yourself to your friends to figure out who you are and who your real friends are. I definitely recommend this book to parents, kids, teens, and even twenty-and-thirty-somethings who just want a solid read to help them reflect on their childhood and how they treat the people around them.

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