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Thairone20:45:41 - September 26 2012
RE: David J Van Toll (wendy van toll)
(Paperback) Hey! Switched was one interesting book. I loved the story. Every new dplnvoemeet was exciting and fun and left me wanting more. The whole plot line is supposed to be a mystery, and I don't want to spoil it for anyone so I'll make this a little vague. Wendy is a teenager who has, as she puts it, anger-management issues. She also has odd eating habits, odd hair, and an odd way of getting what she wants. Most people think this has to do with what happened to her when she was younger, because her mother tried to kill her as a child. Throughout the book, Wendy is thus struggling with the knowledge that she is hard to deal with, cold, and distant with people. And now that she's moved to ANOTHER new town, ANOTHER new school, with ANOTHER new house, she has promised her brother she's going to try to make this place work and not get in as much trouble. She tries making friends, and so is connected with two boys, one being her love interest with a secret, Finn. My favorite elements in this story were: - The Chosen Paranormal Element: I don't want to give away what Wendy is, but it's super rare to read a story about them. It was very cool to see something new and different come out in a story, instead of the same old vampires, werewolves, or fairies (Don't get me wrong, I like some of those, but they get tiresome after the hundred or so novels you read about them). - Wendy's Emotional Damage: I think this was dealt with both with subtlety and finesse. You can really believe that Wendy has been emotionally hurt, and that her life has been extremely impacted by that damage. - Wendy's Tough-Girl Personality: No damsel-in-distress here. No matter what is happening, whether she has an annoying popular chick giving her grief, two kidnappers trying to subdue and capture her, or an all-out battle engaged around her, Wendy is always trying to find a way to at least help take out the bad guys. Wendy doesn't wait around to be saved, she gives it everything she's got to save herself. - The Romantic Interest: NO LOVE TRIANGLE!! YAY!!! I am beyond sick of love triangles. She loves one guy, that guy loves her, they have issues that make sense, and the teen angst doesn't go on forever. Wendy doesn't just whine over the fact that their romance seems impossible, she goes out and tries to get the man she loves anyway. - The Quirky Viewpoint: This author has an interesting way of looking at things. There are several lines in this book that I find completely perfect, which is rare in any book. I love her point of view and would continue reading just to hear more of the way Amanda sees the world. What I Didn't Like: - The Ending: It sucked! It was a cliff hanger, nothing had been really settled, Wendy was doing something both stupid and annoying, and it left me unsatisfied and listless. Fortunately there's a sequel. Unfortunately, there's a sequel to that sequel, and it isn't out yet. - The Runaway Syndrome: Seriously, it's a 257 page book and yet Wendy manages to run away from home four times, not to mention running away from the situations and conversations she dislikes about six times. About the only thing Wendy doesn't run away from is a fight, which isn't always a good thing. - The Powers: While they sound really awesome, and seemed really cool, they weren't really integrated into the storyline very much. Neither were they fully explained. I was very disappointed not to see these used more in the story, and Wendy's powers never got to grow at all either. Very early in the story they discover one of Wendy's powers, talk about how she has to train it for the rest of the book, but never seem to get around to the actual training. Maybe Amanda Hacking tackles this issue in the next book in the series. Anyway, that's what I thought of Switched. It was a beautiful story, that I adored. I would have given it five stars if the ending hadn't been so disappointing. The rest of the book had me completely mesmerized, but the last chapter just didn't deliver. Even a cliff hanger can be alright, but the ending just left me vaguely annoyed. While I still want to read the next book, that ending stunted my desire a little bit, which was just too bad. The rest of the book had been thrilling and exhilarating, and I couldn't wait to see what was next. Now, I want to know what happens but I'm not so die-hard HAVE to know as I was before. Hope that helps and have a great day! Luv ya, Tashi
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