Female Coder Takes on Building an App–and Middle School

in Children's Books by

New York Times Bestselling author Tamara Ireland Stone is back with another empowering coming-of-age novel, the second in her Click’d series, Swap’d (Disney Hyperion).

Middle school coder Allie Navarro has faced challenges before. She has learned from the mistakes she made in Click’d, and is back to prove to herself, her family and friends and Naomi Ryan, the CEO of Spyglass Game, that she deserves a spot at the Spyglass Summer Teen Hackathon, a summer program for talented teen coders.

Allie is excited for the opportunity to attend the elite summer camp, but also feels conflicted because the camp would interfere with her availability to spend time with her best friend Courtney (also a coder). Seeking a solution, Allie finds the Game On Con, a highly coveted conference for tech-savvy individuals. Allie and one guest are invited to this conference featuring an exclusive meet and greet with CEO Naomi herself. Allie hopes to have Courtney accompany her to the Game On Con, but must find a way to cover the staggering cost of her plane ticket to San Francisco, over 400 dollars.

This task seems almost impossible until Allie is assigned a new project in Advanced Computer Science with the theme of reusing and repurposing old code. While brainstorming ideas on the bus with her good friend Zoe, Allie has an idea that may be the answer her all her problems.

Students swap unwanted items at school all the time, why not make an app that organizes the process? Not only would she have a project for class, but she also may be able to raise money for a plane ticket at the same time.

Allie proposes the idea to Courtney, and before long they launch their app “Swap’d.” With the help of their friends the app gains a lot of traction. Tons students log on to buy and sell items on the anonymous online auction. The girls start to accumulate revenue and their odds of traveling finally seem attainable.

However, in the wake of all the Swap’d excitement, Allie must face her crush, Markus. In order to ensure his winning bid on her tutoring sections, Allie is tempted to cheat on her own app. Circumstances grow even more complicated when, Nathan, Allie’s arch nemesis finds out about her plans.

Allie is also faced with a new challenge that will question the integrity of her app. Explaining the app to her Computer Science teacher, Allie learns that buying and selling products is illegal on school property. Neglecting to mention that the app already launched and transactions were already being made, Allie must weigh the attraction bringing her best friend to California with the ethics of how they accomplish the trip.

Stone is able to put a unique twist on the constant ups and downs of being a middle schooler in the 21st century. She emphasizes the importance of friends, family and following your heart while also touching on what it’s like for girls in male-dominated fields like computer science. Readers of all ages will be able to relate to Allie and her adventures, and take positive messages away from this engaging story.

Swap’d is now available for purchase.

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ABOUT TAMARA IRELAND STONE:

Image courtesy of tamarairelandstone.com

Tamara Ireland Stone writes young adult and middle grade novels. Her New York Times bestseller, Every Last Word, won the Cybils Young Adult Fiction Award, the Georgia Peach Book Award, the Buxtehuder Bulle German Youth Literature Award, and was a YALSA Teens’ Top Ten pick. She is also the author of Time Between Us, which has been published in over twenty countries; its sequel, Time After Time; and Click’d, the first book in her new middle-grade series.

Before she began writing fiction full time, Tamara spent twenty years in the technology industry. She co-founded a woman-owned marketing strategy firm where she worked with small startups as well as some of the world’s largest software companies. When she’s not writing, she enjoys skiing, seeing live music, watching movies, and spending time with her husband and two children. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area. Visit her at TamaraIrelandStone.com.

Rachael Suhie is a junior at the University of Connecticut and a current intern at Meryl Moss Media. She loves reading and writing as well as a hot cup of coffee! When she’s not in class or working, she likes to spend time outside with her dogs.

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