ELEANOR AMPLIFIED AND THE TROUBLE WITH MIND CONTROL

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Miku Tangeroa, a determined seventh grader at Brighton Middle School, is confident that the new principal, the class president, and mysterious tech company SuperInteliCom are in league together. She believes they are turning the once-ordinary school into an unrecognizable place of cruelty, brainwashing students with ubiquitous digital devices called ZipTabs and virtual reality helmets. As founder of The Brighton Beacon, the school newspaper, Miku feels a weight of responsibility after a beloved teacher is fired for refusing to use the required technology during lessons. Enter Eleanor Amplified, Union City’s famed reporter. Eleanor follows Miku’s (initially) anonymous tip, setting in motion their partnership to expose the wrongdoings. As the students of Brighton continue to suffer, Eleanor and Miku dig deeper, uncovering a villainous plot and working to save the day. This is an energetic novel with plenty of valuable commentary about the dangers of data mining and excessive technology use wrapped in an entertaining mystery. However, the characters have little depth and are minimally described, making it difficult to connect with them. Still, this novel inspired by the popular podcast Eleanor Amplified, with a tone reminiscent of superhero shows, contains enough action to keep readers interested. Characters default to White, with ethnic identity signaled through names.

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