Friday, June 24, 2011

Double Take

Today I am doing better than Tuesday. I'm not in writhing pain all the time, but I am completely exhausted, even after a full night's sleep. I still hurt too much to live my life, even in the limited form I am used to. This new medicine is a Butrans patch, and so far, I am not a fan. I was really hoping that this patch could give me my life back, instead it's taken away even the bit I had. I am reading again though, so here's today's review. Please keep me in your prayers.

Double Take: A NovelDouble Take by Melody Carlson is a young adult addition to the growing Amish genre. Madison Van Buren is sick of all the pressure in her life; her mom wants her to go to Tuscany for spring break, her best friend, Vivian wants her to go to Florida, her cheating boyfriend Garrett wants to make it up to her with a trip to Nantucket, and her dad wants her to tour Harvard to enter it after her senior year. When all four get angry at her for refusing to cave to their pressure, she takes a drive to cool off and ends up in Amish country in Pennsylvania. The drive brings back fond memories of a visit when she was a little girl, as well as her love for the Little House on the Prairie series. It's a dream come true when she bumps into Amish girl Anna Fisher who is having her own questions about the life she is living. Anna's boyfriend Jacob left their community for New York, and her parents are pushing her to marry someone else, but Anna can't forget about her feelings for Jacob. When the girls meet, they discover they share an uncanny resemblance and decide to switch places for a week. Madison will take Anna's place helping her aunt Rachel care for her four children and husband during the end of her pregnancy, while Anna will go to Madison's penthouse in New York and try to find Jacob. Their crazy plan actually works and both girls are thrown into completely unexpected worlds where all of their allusions about the grass on the other side of the fence being greener. Both will learn important lessons about themselves, and both will change the other's life in significant ways. Carlson excels at writing compelling and moving stories for young adults that seem very real while sharing vital life lessons in a very non-preachy way. I love how she kept the faith aspect subdued in this novel. While both characters come closer to God, it's very natural and unforced. While the conclusion gives Madison some real closure, readers are left up in the air about Anna's return to her life. I hope that Carlson will consider a sequel to continue the tale of these fascinating young women.

Thank you to Revell for providing me with a copy of this book for review. Available June 2011 from Revell, a division of the Baker Publishing Group at your favorite bookseller.