I think the problem sometimes is that kids don't think they are bullying. They don't realize it until maybe it's too late. In The Fall we have Sam looking back on his relationship with a friend, Morgan, who has committed suicide after being bullied.
Sam was a reluctant friend. He wanted to keep his friendship a secret. After all, who wants everyone to know you are friends with the person that everyone is bullying. There is one girl who is the instigator. No one knows why she hates Morgan so much, but that doesn't matter. She gives her "minions" assignments to post mean and hurtful messages to Morgan's online account. Sam is a participant because he fears the consequences if he refuses.
Our narrator is a bit unreliable. Who wouldn't have a hard time writing down in a journal the ways in which he contributed to someone's ending their own life? But he gets there.
Is The Fall the best book about bullying? I don't know. I've read quite a few. They all make you think -- at least they make me think. There is a powerful message here, and I hope a lot of teens get it. The Fall is a very short and easy read. It's appropriate for boys or girls. This one should be widely recommended and would be a great classroom read.
Published by Feiwel & Friends, 2015
Copy obtained from the library
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