Thursday, March 20, 2014

Review: Don't Even Think About It


I have to thank whoever decided I should be sent a "read now" copy of Don't Even Think About It, Sarah Mlynowski's recently released novel. Without that auto-approval, I never would have picked this book up. And that would have been a sad, sad thing. I blew through this short novel because I couldn't stop reading it. It was so much fun!

Here's the synopsis:
We weren't always like this. We used to be average New York City high school sophomores. Until our homeroom went for flu shots. We were prepared for some side effects. Maybe a headache. Maybe a sore arm. We definitely didn't expect to get telepathic powers. But suddenly we could hear what everyone was thinking. Our friends. Our parents. Our crushes. Now we all know that Tess is in love with her best friend, Teddy. That Mackenzie cheated on Cooper. That, um, Nurse Carmichael used to be a stripper.
Since we've kept our freakish skill a secret, we can sit next to the class brainiac and ace our tests. We can dump our boyfriends right before they dump us. We know what our friends really think of our jeans, our breath, our new bangs. We always know what's coming. Some of us will thrive. Some of us will crack. None of us will ever be the same.
So stop obsessing about your ex. We're always listening.
I don't read nearly enough fantastical/magical books. I used to all the time when I was younger but now contemporary books rule my reading list. Don't Even Think About It is a book I would have adored when I was a teen and, happily, I still loved it even almost a decade out of teenagehood (is that a word? It should be.). My favourite thing about the novel was the story itself. People getting ESP because of a flu shot? I can't say that I've read a story like that before. It could have gone another way but Mlynowski made the outcome humorous instead of scary, which I loved (I don't do scary or creepy or bizarre).

The way the book was written was interesting, too. The story is told in sort of an omnipresent voice, which doesn't always work. We learn about everyone's story at the same time and the story is told as a collective we. It sounds weird but it totally makes sense and I liked that Mlynowski deals with that issue early on by having the narrator explain that the story is being told not by one person but by all of them.

I don't often like reading about young teens - it's been a long time since I was in grade ten - but I managed to get over that usual stumbling block when reading this book. Which is odd since I really was reading their every thought. Instead of being totally annoyed at the "ohmygosh, do you think he likes me?" in the beginning (since after the ESP kicks in they know if someone likes them or not), it reminded me of what my friends and I were like in high school. Makes me wonder if I would have appreciated having ESP when I was sixteen...

If you want a quick read that's all about teens and is really fun and quirky, pick up Don't Even Think About It. Sarah Mlynowski has written an awesome YA novel that's a perfect mix of the ordinary and extraordinary and I just loved it.

*A copy of this novel was provided by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.*

1 comment:

  1. When I read the synopsis for this book a few weeks ago, I kind of snorted and thought "that sounds silly." Now I'm wondering if I should reconsider!

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