Lost and Found (Alicia Connected, Book 3)
by Derek Fisher

"Sounds like maybe Megan isn’t getting good information from SocialBee."

This pre-teen novel is the third in a three-part series about children and the internet. The story is engaging and relatable for early middle schoolers and will help them navigate e-life, using the fictitious role models of Alicia and her friends. Alicia and her buddies are experiencing all the positives and negatives of being plugged in. Mainly, though they love having cell phones, the burden of being responsible for something as expensive as a cell phone is weighty. And then being vigilant against strangers lurking in cyberspace-it is a lot to take on. The points the author wants children to understand are clear, but he uses humor to emphasize them. For example, Alicia's mother remarks, “Just remember that not everything you see online is always true... I just won a free car, according to this email I got earlier today.”

Fisher is careful to avoid pedantic advice. He is a retired security expert but doesn't tell anyone when to hand out the electronic devices. In his fiction, some kids are connected before others, and they navigate the good, the bad, and the flat-out dangerous together by sharing their online experiences. The story is engaging, and the problems and intrigue are exactly what middle schoolers today are going through. Because most parents did not grow up with electronic devices, they lack some perspective on how children navigate and intermingle real and virtual life. This book is exemplary at describing how that process plays out in young children's heads. Fisher's unique background in security and his obvious ability to write for the middle school audience help make this book an engaging read.

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