We recently purchased “Click’d” by Tamara Ireland Stone for the iCentre at Mount Alvernia College, and it has sat in my #tbr (to be read) pile since then. I finally got around to reading it this past week and I really enjoyed it.
Allie loves to code. She attended CodeGirls Summer Camp over the summer and built a whole new app designed to help people make new friends. The app was such a hit that Allie has been invited to present at the Games for Good showcase against her arch-nemsis, Nathan. Caught up in the competitiveness of the race, Allie risks everything when she decides to share her app with her school friends. At first the app is an absolute hit; everyone at school is playing it. However, when Allie has almost 1000 users, things start to go wrong and she is faced with many difficult decisions, including whether she should pull the plug or try to fix it in time.
This is a story of failure, resilience, and learning from you mistakes. I really enjoyed the way in which Stone deals with the trials that Allie faces. I think her portrayal of why a 12/13 year old girl would react the way that Allie does is very real and relatable. It would have been easy to write a different ending, but I admire Stone for taking a different path; this lends strength and authenticity to the story, something that is often missing when things go wrong for characters.
Also, I love that Allie loves coding and plays soccer. That she has friends that don’t understand coding but support her nonetheless. To me, this representation of coding being seen as “normal” and not “geeky” or “nerdy” (please don’t get me wrong, I am a self-proclaimed geek/nerd and am not being derogative at all) is so powerful for sending the message to young readers that coding is something that anyone can do and that it doesn’t have to change how people see you. We’re entering a new period in education, life, and the global stage where jobs are unknown and computers/IT are becoming a part of everything. It’s important for students to read books that show them that coding is doable for anyone and I think Click’d nails it.
Overall, I loved this book. I gave it 4 out of 5 starts on Goodreads and I will be recommending this to my students, particularly to my year 7s. I do wish that we had the alternative cover (I know we shouldn’t judge books by covers but if we’re being honest, everyone does), but otherwise I think this is a great read for all middle years readers.