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In Conversation With Sydney Dunlap

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Chosen as Loudoun County Public Library's 2023 pick for the One Book, One Community program, It Happened on Saturday is an important story for all parents and kids to read. Join this poignant discussion about how adults use the internet and personal DMs to pray on kids when they feel the most vulnerable.  

About the book 

Thirteen-year-old Julia would much rather work with horses at the rescue barn than worry about things like dating and makeup. But when her BFF meets a boy at camp, Julia’s determined not to get left behind. After a makeover from her older sister, she posts a picture of herself online and gets a comment from Tyler—a seemingly nice kid who lives across town. As they DM more and more, Julia’s sure that Tyler understands her in a way her family never has. Even better, their relationship earns her tons of attention at school.

Then Julia finds out Tyler’s true plan, and her world is turned upside down. She fiercely guards her secret, but could her silence allow her friends to fall into the same trap?

“A powerful work.”—Kirkus Reviews

“I hope every young person, every parent, everyone who works with young people will read this book. It’s that important.” —Barbara Roberts, author of Nikki on the Line

“Sydney Dunlap tackles a timely and serious topic in a way that’s accessible, realistic, and eye-opening … It Happened on Saturday is a must-read!” —Erin Teagan, author of American Girl Luciana and Kira books

“This book could, literally, save your life.” —Kathryn Erskine, National Book Award-winning author of Mockingbird

“I believe that it will leave readers with real courage, like main character Julia’s—courage to speak their truth and courage to protect each other.” —Kelly J. Baptist, author of Isaiah Dunn Is My Hero.

About the Author 

Sydney Dunlap is a former elementary school teacher who has worked with at-risk youth in a variety of settings, and she enjoys reading and writing heartfelt, hopeful fiction that expands young readers’ awareness of tough topics. She is a published poet and has also written for a newspaper. A lifelong animal lover, Sydney lives with her family in a home where the dogs and cats outnumber the people.


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