Off the Record

Knopf. May 2021. 320p. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781984829993.
Gr 9 Up–Seventeen-year-old Josie Wright wins a contest that allows her to write a celebrity profile for Deep Focus magazine so she tags along with her subject, Marius Canet, on a multicity press tour where he is promoting his upcoming movie. While her reason for being on this tour is to write about Marius, she soon finds herself with another article staring her in the face: Marius’ co-star Penny informs her about being sexually assaulted by a big-time director, and that she isn’t the only one. Josie collects the stories of various women but still wonders if she is the one to share them publicly and expose the truth. Garrett’s sophomore novel is a fantastic story and remarkable testament to the #MeToo movement. All of the sexual assault happens off-page, with the stories only being mentioned to Josie. The subject matter is handled in an appropriate manner, suitable for teens. Josie and Marius are Black, and Penny is white.
VERDICT A worthy purchase on a timely subject.

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