Wednesday, December 3, 2008
Identical by Ellen Hopkins
Do twins begin in the womb? Or in a better place? Kaeleigh and Raeanne are identical down to the dimple. As daughters of a district-court judge father and a politician mother, they are an all-American family -- on the surface. Behind the facade each sister has her own dark secret, and that's where their differences begin. For Kaeleigh, she's the misplaced focus of Daddy's love, intended for a mother whose presence on the campaign trail means absence at home. All that Raeanne sees is Daddy playing a game of favorites -- and she is losing. If she has to lose, she will do it on her own terms, so she chooses drugs, alcohol, and sex. Secrets like the ones the twins are harboring are not meant to be kept -- from each other or anyone else. Pretty soon it's obvious that neither sister can handle it alone, and one sister must step up to save the other, but the question is -- who?
This is the first book I’ve read that was written in verse, and it definitely won’t be my last! Identical was a stunning, gorgeously executed piece of art. An Amazon reviewer stated, “The way she creates her little character paradigms - the writing that says more that it first seems to say, the way words arrange to make a maze of meanings, her displays that land somewhere other than the other side of rainbows - are fabulous” and I couldn’t agree more. This disturbing tale is woven with heart-wrenching images of sexual abuse, drug abuse, and eating disorders. This book opened my eyes to what can be happening behind closed doors. I sincerely recommend it to all. Brava, Ellen Hopkins!