It’s interesting reading a book that takes place in the same city that you live in, which, in this case, is Washington, D.C. Freshmen Year: Bullies Beware was written by mother and daughter team Kesia Ryan-Webster and Anita Ryan-Webster.

The plot revolves around Tiara Johnson, an African American high schooler who starts a new life when her family moves from Boston to D.C. the summer before her freshmen year. She soon finds herself up against a bully both on the tennis court and in school.

I liked the message of keeping an open mind to a new place. Tiara is upset about moving, but makes an effort to adapt to a new place by making friends and joining extra curricular activities. The presence of bullying within the story was also a good element, as it made the plot more realistic.

The pacing could have used a little work. The story included different view points from multiple characters, including Tiara’s mother and father work as a lawyer and doctor. I liked the different angles, but I felt the subplot involving a case of Tiara’s mother’s unnecessary because it didn’t contribute to the overall story.

There is even some added humor, with one part of the story mentioning D.C.’s reaction to snowfall. Currently being in D.C. in the wintertime, I found the description very realistic.

If you want a story about bullying and moving to a new place, this is a book worth checking out.