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Top 8 by Katie Finn

October 3rd, 2008 (08:07 am)

Current Mood: thirsty
Current Song: The Drip-Dry Waltz by Henry Mancini from Charade

During Spring Break, Madison MacDonald visits the Galapagos Island with her parents and younger brother. Though Ecuador is cooler than she expected it to be, Madison, without her phone or her laptop, feels totally out of touch with her friends. The second she gets home, she rushes to her room to check her voicemail and her email. When she tries to log on to her favorite networking site, she finds out that her profile has been hacked - ROYALLY. The hacker changed her picture and every single detail on the page, then sent rude messages to her friends, her classmates, and her boyfriend, who then broke up with her. Yikes!

Mads is determined to find out who hacked her page and why. Along the way, she rehearses for the school musical (a contemporary version of Hamlet), updates her profile, screams at her finnicky laptop, rolls her eyes at her little brother, and tries to regain the trust of her friends. Ultimately, she realizes who her true friends really are, and learns how hurtful gossip and lies can be. She also kind of falls for another guy, a boy who appreciates fine films, good ice cream, and the simple things in life. (I cheered when he encouraged her to watch Charade, one of my favorite films.)

Madison's profile appears a few times throughout the book, complete with profile pictures of her friends. These pictures are not only next to their comments, but also on the spine of the book. Quotes from books, films, and/or songs start every chapter, noting Madison's mood and current inspiration (or frustration!)

Those who are addicted to MySpace and Facebook will instantly click with Top 8. With its social networking tie-ins and its likable narrator, Katie Finn’s debut novel is timely.

Read my review of Top 8 at SparkLife.