There is an implication that teenagers are easier to fool because they are willing trust others.
The only advice given to this unfortunate 14-year-old main character girl to stave off unwanted sexual advances is to let boys down gently by saying she can't date until she's 16.
I was really looking forward to reading this book but ended up feeling frustrated, upset, and regretting that I had read it.
This book has a powerful message of "trust your instincts" combined with a blunt assertion that young people know nothing of the world and thereby have no instincts, only ignorance. That is compiled with a strong determination to have whatever the main character is being denied.
The suspense preys on fear. In order to be compelling, the fear in the reader must be amplified from something that occasionally happens to something that happens hundreds of times a day. So often, in fact, that even a small town in Idaho has a task force devoted to it.
Pages 50 and 110 of the hardcover book "You're Never Weird on the Internet (Almost): A Memoir" by Felicia Day would be far more useful to teach young people the moral of this story. A quote from that book that applies to here- "No matter how lonely and isolated and starved for connection you are, there's always the possibility in the online world that you can find a place to be accepted." Normally I wouldn't suggest a different book in a review, but in this case, I feel I need to because I don't think most people should read Who R U Really without also reading Felicia Day's book.
Here's what really upset me about this book:
"A real friend is someone you associate with a daily basis. You know where he lives. You know his parents." That's something the Detective Corbett character states as an absolute and unalterable fact.
I have two nephews who are home-schooled and use the cyber-school network. That line means they are not friends with any of their classmates. I'm insulted by this.
I have an older friend. Both of her parents have passed on. Sorry orphans, NO FRIENDS FOR YOU!
A cousin of mine was homeless for a little while. Technically, a dear friend of mine was also without a home for a few months when he gave up his apartment, put his stuff in storage, and became a long-haul trucker. He had a post office box, but no address. So there was a time where I didn't know where either of those people lived. GUESS WE AREN'T FRIENDS NOW.
Let me conclude by saying that I value the relationships I've cultivated over the Internet. This review is just the opinion of a frustrated reader who considers the mother character in this book to be a more dangerous antagonist than the actual villain.