Girl Parts by John M. Cusick

Girl PartsMany people make the argument that teens today are too far removed from one another because of their addiction to technology; they are narcissistic and no longer know how to empathize.  They are also more prone to depression because of this lack of a human connection.  Girl Parts begins with David watching a classmate kill herself, live on her video blog.  After his morbid curiosity is satisfied, he simply logs off.  He doesn’t attempt to get help for the girl by notifying her parents or the authorities, nor do any of the other viewers.  After this is brought to light, David’s parents and school counselor decide to try a new form of therapy to bring him back from such a “disassociated” state.  He will be assigned a robotic companion, Rose, from a Japanese company called Sakora.  Rose is beautiful, charming, and programmed to make David happy while teaching him how to form relationships — or to zap him if he tries to move too quickly into “forbidden” territory.  What seemed like a hokey premise was actually a very touching story (no pun intended).  Not only do we get to watch David blossom into a more empathetic human being, but we get to see Rose “come to life” as well.  It’s almost as if the two of them are learning to be more human together.

Happy Teen Read Week!

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