Justine is famous. She is part of a group of five teens who were part of a documentary called Five at Six. Filmmakers made a film about her, Felix, Nate, Kiera and Rory while they were in Kindergarten. They were also in a second film called Five at Eleven. Justine is now sixteen and the filmmakers are back, but she is not sure she wants to do this anymore. Her friendship with Rory is over because of something Justine did. Nate and Kiera won’t speak to her. Felix is her only friend left from the group and he can’t wait to do the next film. The filmmakers come to town and start shooting but they are disappointed in the material so far, not exciting enough for them. To drum up some drama, they take all five to a team building camp. But when one of them goes AWOL, the rest run after her. The filmmakers give Justine the camera to take with her. With the film in her hands, she has some tough calls to make. I enjoyed this book very much. I think young readers will relate to the different issues going on with the five teens. Fans of reality TV will like that aspect too. One of the teens is on the Autism Spectrum and the author handles that beautifully.
Some ideas for discussing with teens:
Would you want to be part of a reality TV show or movie? How would it change your life? Would you want to watch yourself on the movie screen?
Discuss Jasmine’s interaction with Rory. What is your first impression of their relationship. How about her relationships with Nate, Felix and Kiera.
Discuss Rory’s Autism. Do you know anyone like her? Have you tried to be friends with that person?
Discuss Kiera’s interaction with her mother.
Discuss the filmmaker’s decision to use the painful conversation between Kiera and her father in the film.
Discuss how Justine’s relationship with Nate changes throughout the book.
Talk about when Nate says, “You were telling our story. And I think that is your story.”
What do you think will happen to the five next?