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What do you do when you accidentally choose the wrong path, but realize in a short while that you've made a mistake? Ella and Maddy are identical twins, so close in looks and mannerisms that even their parents can't tell them apart sometimes. In reality, they're about as different as possible, but even so, underneath their differences and frequent friction, they love each other and have an incredible bond. Maddy has a boyfriend, Alex, Ella has a best friend, Josh, who happens to be a guy. When Ella is studying late one night, she gets a call from Maddy, asking her to come pick her up at a party. Ella's more than a little annoyed at having to rescue her black sheep sister once again, but does go. She finds Maddy an emotional mess, not even together enough to keep her shoes. On the way home, they argue and Ella turns the wheel sharply in frustration, forgetting that it's hailing. Unable to steer, she watches as they hit a curb and then a big tree. The next thing she knows, she's in the hospital, Maddy's dead and everyone thinks it's her that died. Her guilt makes her stay in the role of Maddy in an illogical attempt to make amends to her sister. The longer this goes on, the worse she feels, especially when she realizes how strong her feelings for Josh really are. Reading as she navigates her way deeper into this emotional morass and what ultimately happens is a wrenching experience. The author does a stellar job of making you feel every single emotion that Ella feels as she desperately tries to figure out what to do. This reminded me a lot of Jody Casella's book Thin Space which also dealt with guilt, grief and twins in a superlative way. Teens who like a very emotional read, who have dealt with grief or sibling guilt as well as those who have parents who favor, or appear to favor one child over another, will like or relate very well to this book. It would be a very good addition to both school and public library collections.
This book. First, it's not a spoiler to say that Ella and Maddy are twins, Maddy dies in a horrible accident and Ella assumes her identity. It's the brilliant premise for the book and why I had to get my grabby hands all over it. Well, I did. I got sucked into this story so hard and so fast that I raced through the pages--mostly because I fell in love with Ella. She is broken, vulnerable, unsure. I ached for every bit of her. And her choice to become Maddy never felt anything but genuine and giving, which was only more endearing.
Having one character pretend to be another character is no small feat for an author. The deception begins very early in the story but Leaver deftly creates these two distinct personalities so that the reader is never confused about motivations, personality traits or perceptions. The Secrets We Keep is brilliantly executed. And every time I was like, "Hmm. Wait a minute. This couldn't happen because..." Leaver would present the exact reason why it could happen--how this deception could hold. And I bought it. Because she was right. Every. Time.
It's no surprise this book is receiving so much buzz. It's too unique to pass by and the underlying message about bullying and self-love and shared love are so powerful that it's a must read.
This is the second book I've read by Trisha Leaver, and I've already noticed a trend in her writing style, even across different genres. She is the Queen of the Reveal. Leaver has this way of releasing bits of information that keeps you engaged and turning the pages. At the perfect time, too. Right when I was like... ok, I really need answers about this plot point, I turn the page and lose myself in the new plot development.
The premise of THE SISTERS WE KEEP is great. I honestly can't see anyone doubting that. And, if I'm being honest, it worried me a bit. I've come across many a book where the premise was mind blowing, but, in the end, I was left disappointed. With THE SISTERS WE KEEP, that didn't happen.
The characters were complex, the plot was layered, there were things I expected, but also things I didn't see coming. The writing style was conversational (something I look for in books) and easy to read. And on more than one occasion, the book pulled on my heartstrings, especially when I put myself in the parent's shoes. Teen and adults alike will both enjoy this book. Pick it up and see for yourself.
Beautiful read. Kept me engulfed the entire time Took me about 6 hours and I finished it....couldn't put it down. If you want something different but something you can connect to emotionally in everyday that matters...this is your book. My daughter chose it as her book this semester to read (8th grader) so I purchased it to help guide her along....im glad I did. Truly worth the read!!!
In telling the story of Ella and Maddie, the author offers a real, raw, and heartbreaking tale of the power of love between siblings. But she also manages to focus on a struggle all teens face--finding, trusting, and embracing who they are on the inside. Elements of lightness are deftly mixed in by the author to ensure this is a powerful read that, ultimately, is about love and hope.
Even though I am an adult I like to read YA books. I was really impressed with Patricia Leaver's ability to captivate the reader with unexpected twists and turns. I usually see the main character's path before each scene, but with the main character Ella I was not expecting what she did. I liked how the author gave another depth to the main character changing her motive for switching places with her sister. It added an additional suspense that made it a real page turner. A great read for young and old readers.
This book is about identical twins in a high school setting. One is popular and one is book smart. Only until a tragic event is when the sister really realizes who their identical twin sister is. As in real life, we always mourn more when someone dies but never make the effort to learn the person alive. Easy read and enjoyed the book. Would recommend to everyone.