I recently watched a video where Hannah Witton interviewed Emma Gannon about her new book (view video here). After watching this video, my heart was set on reading this book, and I was super excited to go out and buy it.
The next day I was in Cardiff and I visited the two biggest book shops (Waterstones and WHSmiths) which had both sold out of this particular book. I got back on the train and went home to visit the library to see if it was there, and surprisingly it was there. I snatched the copy up and took it straight home to read.
This book is fantastic. I thoroughly enjoyed it and I was pretty upset when it ended because it had finished. Emma talks about growing up online and the way it changes how we communicate. She talks about how older generations view the online world and the evolution of social media.
It was a good read for someone my age because things like MSN were still going strong by the time I was 9/10. The social media networks Emma has grown up on aren't too different from my own. She also talks about relationships online and how the way we meet new people both for romantic reasons or just for friendship is changing. She talks about the validity of online friendships, and how even if you never meet them, that doesn't make them any less real.
There were a few points in this book where I was reading and thinking that the short anecdotes Emma was sharing were fiction because they were so embarrassing and were making me cringe; but I think that's what makes this book so great. Emma shares her experience so openly that you have to laugh at the embarrassment.
Another chapter that I really enjoyed was the chapter about feminism. I'm not going to ruin the all of the chapter, but she highlights how difficult it is to be the "right kind of feminist" and how nobody really knows which way is the right way to approach solving inequality.
I would recommend this book to anyone over the age of 13. I think it's a good read for both boys and girls, because the experiences Emma has aren't exclusive to girls. Boys experience similar sorts of things and it shows the reality of growing up in an age where everyone is always connected.
To end my post I would like to say thank you to Emma. Thank you for acknowledging that it's not easy growing up in a world where everything you say or do is evaluated by everyone online. Thank you for sharing your experiences, because it lets us know that we aren't alone (and for me, that any online humiliation I have experienced, you have experienced worse). Finally, thank you for reminding me that I have a voice, and that my voice is just as strong as anyone else's.
If you would like to buy the book, you can click here.
What do you think of my review? Does it sound like a book that would interest you? Will you be reading it? Do you think it's good for us to share our online experiences? Let me know in the comments.