Book Title: Alicia Connected: The Big Gift by Derek Fisher
Category: Middle-Grade Fiction (Ages 8-12), 86 pages
Genre: Middle Grade Fiction
Publisher: Securely Built
Release date: May 2020
Format available for review: print-softback (USA), pdf
Tour dates: June 28 to July 16, 2021
Content Rating: G for everyone.
Alicia has finally entered a new world of technology when her parents give her a tablet for her birthday. She has watched and listened to her friends who have already been enjoying the games and apps in a connected world that Alicia has yet to experience. Until now. But using technology can bring a set of challenges that are new to both Alicia and her parents. Understanding the different apps and games and how to use them properly can be tricky. Will Alicia know how to use it in a way that is fun and allows her to connect with her friends while being safe and secure? Both her and her parents will face the excitement and challenges together as she jumps headfirst into using her new tablet.
Alicia Connected: The Big Gift is a book about a cause. The cause is to educate young children about online safety and security. In this age, we cannot keep our children away from gadgets, like smartphones and tablets, and from accessing internet. And, since it is not all safe out there in the online word, it is of utmost importance to make the children aware and conscious about protecting their online identity. This book primarily talks about this. It also emphasizes on parental supervision, another important aspect, in a subtle way. On one hand, it delves into the fun part of online browsing in the form of various apps like a game, a video watching site and a social media app and on the other hand, it puts across the educational use of tablets at the school by the way of exploring book titles in the school library.
The story touches upon the fetish among the kids for getting ‘more number of likes’ on their social media accounts in order to feel good and addiction to gadgets leading to inappropriate behaviour leading to harsh punishments.
The contrast between the characters of Alicia and one of her classmates is well depicted. Alicia is quite responsible with the tablet usage. She uses her tablet within permissible limits and is constantly mindful about her parents’ safety instructions and is vigilant about the online threats which in her case is an unknown friend request in the game app she plays.
Her classmate is shown as somebody who is not mindful of her maintaining her privacy as well she has little regard for others’ privacy or consent. She is boastful about the high number of friends, actually strangers, on her social media profile. She also lands up into trouble at the school when she displays impropriety with the tablet, the school property.
What I liked about the story –
Raising an important issue of online safety through simple storytelling with identifiable characters and story setting.
What I didn’t like about the story –
The lengthy and detailed description of how Alicia created her avatar for her game app. I felt it got unnecessarily stretched making me lose interest in this part. A line or two would have been enough to establish the idea and to keep the reader’s interest intact.
Buy the Book:
Amazon ~ B&N ~ IndieBound
Meet the Author:
Derek Fisher has spent decades in the computer engineering field with the last decade in cybersecurity as a leader, speaker, and instructor. His passion has been to take complex security topics and make them simple and easy to understand. He holds several security certifications and teaches cybersecurity at Temple University where he is also an external advisory board member to the cybersecurity program.
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This book review is a part of the Book Tour organized by iRead Book Tours.
I received a pdf copy of the book in exchange of an honest review.