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Tuesday, January 7, 2014

REVIEW: Being Sloane Jacobs, by Lauren Morrill

Meet Sloane Emily Jacobs: a seriously stressed-out figure skater who choked during junior nationals and isn't sure she's ready for a comeback. What she does know is that she'd give anything to escape the mass of misery that is her life. Now meet Sloane Devon Jacobs, a spunky ice hockey player who's been suspended from her team for too many aggressive hip checks. Her punishment? Hockey camp, now, when she's playing the worst she's ever played. If she messes up? Her life will be over.
When the two Sloanes meet by chance and decide to trade places for the summer, each girl thinks she's the lucky one. But it didn't occur to Sloane E. that while avoiding sequins and axels she might meet a hockey hottie—and Sloane D. never expected to run into a familiar (and very good-looking) face from home. It's not long before the Sloanes discover that convincing people you're someone else might be more difficult than being yourself.

What teenager feeling too much pressure to be "perfect" in the eyes of others wouldn't want to pull off the perfect identity switch? Heck, I'd have done it, though maybe not for an entire summer.

The dual points of view were incredibly well-done. Incredibly. I had no trouble keeping straight who I was reading and how her chapter fit into her story, as well as the greater story. Characterization is definitely a strong point for Morrill. I like that she used figure-skating (not something terribly "mainstream" for the average YA reader) and hockey (which isn't typically what you'd expect in a high school female) as plot points for this story. It's a fairly quick read and will attract reluctant girl readers well.'s my sticking points. This read like an "After School Special." (I just dated myself, didn't I?) Or...a Disney movie. I think I wanted it to be...meatier. And I think I wanted it to mean something that the girls had defied their parents and lied for weeks. Yet...there didn't seem to be much consequence. Also, the cover needs a serious change. I'm not one to judge a book by it's cover (much the opposite, actually), but this one suggested a romance story. Sure, there's some romance, but that's not what the story focused on at all--yet the cover does.

What do you think??

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this ebook galley from Random House Children's (Delacorte BFYR) through the netGalley publisher/reader connection program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

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