Monday, July 4, 2016

ARC Review: Change Places With Me by Lois Metzger

Title: Change Places With me
Author: Lois Metzger
Publication Date: June 14, 2016
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Pages: 224

Add to Goodreads

//This book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review//
Rose has changed. She still lives in the same neighborhood with her stepmother and goes to the same high school with the same group of kids, but when she woke up today, something was just a little different than it was before. The dogs who live upstairs are no longer a terror. Her hair and her clothes all feel brand-new. She wants to throw a party—this from a girl who hardly ever spoke to her classmates before. There is no more sadness in her life; she is bursting with happiness.

But something still feels wrong to Rose. Because, until very recently, Rose was an entirely different person—a person who is still there inside her, just beneath the thinnest layer of skin.

Change Places With Me grabbed my attention from the minute I read the description, despite the fact that the cover wasn't all that intriguing. I love, LOVE books where something just isn't right and you don't know what it is until the end. I love the feeling of unease that comes with not being able to put your finger on the problem and I had very high hopes for this book!

The story begins when Rose wakes up on a normal day in her normal room, but at first doesn't recognize where she is. Right away, her step-mother begins to act like something is a little weird about Rose's actions, second guessing many of her statements and decisions, but eventually just going along with her. It's all a bit unnerving, but Rose continues about her day. She knows that some of the things she does are not things she would normally do, but she does them anyway because that's how she wants to live now. People change, right?

I didn't really care much about Rose because I don't feel like I ever got to know Rose at all. I guess that kind of makes sense since this is a book where even Rose doesn't quite seem sure who she is, but I still hoped to find some way to connect to her. It's so hard to like a book when I can't connect to the characters. Speaking of, the secondary characters were just as flat as Rose, if not more so. Simply put, I just didn't like any of them because I didn't know who they were.

The writing was another area I had some trouble with. I can't quite put my finger on why I didn't enjoy it, but I just had a hard time getting into it. That's not to say that this was a difficult read, because it wasn't. I flew through this short book fairly quickly! I did keep turning pages to see what happened, but the writing style definitely was not my favorite.

Change Places With Me has amazing potential! I expected it to be truly unnerving and honestly I wanted a huge twist at the end. Instead, we find out fairly early on what the secret is. It isn't directly told to the reader, but it was basically dropped right in my lap and was impossible not to figure out. I'd really hoped for a lot more suspense and maybe this would have made it a more interesting story despite the flat characters.

The synopsis for this book had me totally, 100% sold and I expected to be totally confused throughout the entire thing and shocked at the end, but that's not what this was at all. To be totally honest, in the end (which was also strange and abrupt), I didn't quite understand what this book was trying to achieve. I liked some of the concepts presented in this book, but ultimately it just didn't work for me.