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An intense look at the rules of high school attraction -- and the price that's paid for them. It happens every year. A list is posted, and one girl from each grade is chosen as the prettiest, and another is chosen as the ugliest. Nobody knows who makes the list. It almost doesn't matter. The damage is done the minute it goes up. This is the story of eight girls, freshman to senior, "pretty" and "ugly." And it's also the story of how we see ourselves, and how other people see us, and the tangled connection of the two.
More about Siobhan
Siobhan Vivian was born in New York City on January 12, 1979 . . .which might sound like a long time ago, but really isn’t. She grew up in Rutherford, NJ, where she got into trouble for such things as constantly talking out of turn, bringing a stray dog into school in a stolen shopping cart, passing notes to her friends, telling jokes, sneaking out, and not doing her homework.
Siobhan attended The University of the Arts, where she graduated with a degree in Writing for Film and Television. She received her MFA in Creative Writing: Children’s Literature from The New School University.
Siobhan has worked as an editor of several New York Times best-selling novels at Alloy Entertainment, a scriptwriter for The Disney Channel, and she currently teaches Writing Youth Literature at the University of Pittsburgh. (from her website)
Each of the girls uses a coping mechanism to deal with their positions on the list. Some healthier than others. Why did none of the girls turn to their friends?
Is there a healthy way to deal with being on the list?
Whose reaction surprised you the most? Why?
Was the lack of outreach from the rest of the school realistic? Was it because of a sense of "I'm glad it's not me?" Is this the bystander effect?
Although social media wasn't mentioned or used in the book, what effect would social media have on this event?
In what ways does society make things such as "The List" OK? Would there be an equivalent for males? If so, what form would it take?
"Sometimes, when you get something new, you trick yourself into believing it has the power to change absolutely everything about you." Does it? If so, what was that thing for you? Or is there something you thought would and it didn't?
"Maybe you haven't noticed, but everyone shares the same brain around here. It's like a mass cult. They've all drunk the Kool-aid." Was your high school like this?
Not so metaphorically resonant, but still delicious food
Check out this video! Teen volunteer Jenna interviews Siobhan Vivian, author of The List. Together, they talk about beauty standards, self-esteem, and the challenge of writing a book with eight main characters.
Lillia has never had any problems dealing with boys who like her. Not until this summer, when one went too far. No way will she let the same thing happen to her little sister. Kat is tired of the rumours, the insults, the cruel jokes. It all goes back to one person– her ex-best friend– and she's ready to make her pay. Four years ago, Mary left Jar Island because of a boy. But she's not the same girl anymore. And she's ready to prove it to him. Three very different girls who want the same thing: sweet, sweet revenge. And they won't stop until they each had a taste.
A Little Friendly Advice by Siobhan Vivian
Ruby's turning sixteen . . . but the day doesn't turn out to be as sweet as it's supposed to be. Her long lost father shows up, and Ruby doesn't want to have anything to do with him. Instead, she wants to hang out with her friends - loyal Beth, dangerous Katherine, and gossipy Maria. They have plenty of advice for her - about boys, about her dad, about how she should look and what she should be feeling. But really, Ruby doesn't know what to think or feel. Especially when a new boy comes into the picture . . . and Ruby discovers some of her friends aren't as truthful as they say.
Same Difference by Siobhan Vivian
Emily is ready for a change. She's been in the same town with the same friends for a long time...and none of them really understand her art. But when she goes to Philadelphia for a summer art institute, she suddenly finds like-minded people. One in particular, Fiona, intrigues and challenges her. But there are some things Emily is going to have to find out for herself -- like what the balance is between life and art, and which is more important when push comes to shove.
Not That Kind of Girl by Siobhan Vivian
Natalie Sterling wants to be in control. She wants her friends to be loyal. She wants her classmates to elect her student council president. She wants to find the right guy, not the usual jerk her school has to offer. She wants a good reputation, because she believes that will lead to good things. But life is messy, and it's very hard to be in control of it. Not when there are freshman girls running around in a pack, trying to get senior guys to sleep with them. Not when your friends have secrets they're no longer comfortable sharing. Not when the boy you once dismissed ends up