By Jennifer O’Sullivan, Dover, Massachusetts & Boston College
As someone who recently graduated high school, I definitely feel like relevant teenage topics are covered in Stacy Padula’s “Gripped 4: Smoke & Mirrors,” because I saw people end up in situations very similar to the ones mentioned in this book. From complicated relationships and friendships to the party scene, this book painted an accurate picture of what it is like to be in high school and the pressures you feel all around you.
I recommend “Gripped 4: Smoke & Mirrors” to any teen who is in middle school or high school because of the valuable lessons it can teach to impressionable kids before it is too late. This book shows how easily someone can get caught up in dangerous behaviors and situations, which are often influenced by who they associate with and what they choose to do. It is important for young kids to know before they enter middle school and high school that there are a lot of peer pressure situations.
I think that parents should also read this book because kids oftentimes know that what is going on around them is bad, but they are too scared to tell their parents. If their parents read this book, they could become more tuned in to what could potentially be going on in their children’s lives and could bring those topics up in conversation in a healthy and non-confrontational way. “Gripped Part 4” can also open up parents’ eyes to the pressure that preteens and teens often feel in these situations, which would allow parents to better understand the actions of their children.
Jennifer O’Sullivan, graduated from Dover Sherborn High School in 2020. She enjoys reading, playing the piano, spending time with friends and doing volunteer work. Jennifer led her school’s community service club and ran on her school’s cross country and track teams. She also loves to travel—especially to Ireland where she spends time with friends and family. Jennifer also runs and operates her own childcare company in the metro west of Massachusetts. Currently, she is attending Boston College to pursue her career goal of becoming a physician.