Janis’ Story

I was a huge nerdy reader as a kid (surprise!) and when some of the kids at school got excited about Harriet it felt pretty cool at first to see them also getting enthusiastic about a book I really liked. But it all turned quite negative — girls got notebooks and wrote down nasty things about each other, then passed them around. It was an ugly shock to me, that something as rich and nuanced as this book could inspire some people to just act worse than they usually did. I don’t think this whole trend at my school lasted long, but it took a lot of the joy out of the book for me.

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