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Children's LiteratureAGERANGE: Ages 9 to 13.
Cassidy has never been one of the popular girls, but her 7th grade year gets even worse when her one friend dumps her to join the popular crowd. When Victoria shows up at school and seems to be able to make people "do" things through telekinesis, Cassidy is determined to become Victoria's friend. Cassidy is sure that if she can learn from Victoria how to use her mental abilities on others, then she will be able to keep the school bullies away from herself and her brother, Ben. What Cassidy begins to realize instead is she can rely on the powers of friendship and self-esteem to keep bullies at bay, regardless of whether they are family members or schoolmates. Using her friendship with Victoria as a springboard for resisting the mean girls at school, Cassidy begins to draw other students to her who have also previously been on the fringe of acceptance. Through their involvement with each other, these students begin to resist the bullies, and as Cassidy comes to understand what she and her friends have accomplished in their class, she begins to help Ben deal with his own problems at school. This is a good, solid book for middle school students and teachers interested in discussing the menace of bullying at school and how students can respond in a proactive manner. Reviewer: Jean Boreen, Ph.D.