April 19, 2012

Book Review: Don't You Wish by Roxanne St. Claire

At First Sight: Annie Nutter might not be pretty or popular, and her parents might not have a lot of money, and yeah, her brother is annoying, but she has a best friend and a family she loves. And she's generally OK with her life. 

Until one day when bad things just keep happening to her - some of which put many 'what ifs' in her mind - and it all ends with a crazy finale when she's zapped by one of her father's inventions gone wrong and wakes up in a completely different world.

Her name is no longer Annie Nutter, and she's definitely not in Pittsburg anymore. Now she's the gorgeous, super rich Queen Bee Ayla Monroe, who's living big in Miami. Suddenly, she has everything she ever wished for, inhabiting this Ayla person, but on the inside, she's still Annie. 

And sure, she might now have all she ever dreamed off - including popularity and the hottest guy she has ever seen for boyfriend - but she quickly starts to wonder if the trade of is worth it: Her new friends shoplift for fun, her boyfriend Ryder pressures her to have sex and her mom (who is actually her own mom but completely different) doesn't even like her, and the only person she seems to connect with is the school's outcast Charlie .

Second Glance: When I first saw the cover for Don't You Wish, I was drawn to it, because it looked so cute and girly. Usually such covers let me down but, thankfully, Don't You Wish was a happy exception. 

Annie is a sweet girl and she makes for a great narrator, she's as confused as the reader is by all that's happening, so it's both easy and fun to follow her as she starts to make sense of things, and I loved seeing her grow and change as she learned who Ayla Monoroe was before Annie got there. 

The other characters served their purposes well, and I liked seeing the contrast between the people from Ayla's World and the ones from Annie's, seeing how much a life can change due to the choices we make and the situations we find ourselves in. 

I even liked Charlie, he's nice and super smart, and a great brother, though I do wish he had been a bit more fleshed out, since he has a large role in the book. In fact some of the other characters could have been more developed, too.

Other than that, the only other hang-up I had with the story was the Big Explanation of what happened and how Annie ended up with Ayla's life. I'm not going to tell you the explanation itself, but I'll say that I have an above average knowledge of quantum physics - because, yeah, sometimes I do read physics books for fun - and I like science, but I was so bored by the explanation, felt like it needed to be more concise. 

Bottom Line: When it's all said and done, I liked Don't You Wish. I liked the characters and the plot, and the way Annie handled the situations she was thrown into. I had some minor troubles, but nothing that took away from my over all enjoyment of the book. And I really liked the ending. Don't You Wish Comes out on July 10th, 2012.

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