Me and Me
It’s Lark’s seventeenth birthday, and although she’s hated to be reminded of the day ever since her mom’s death three years ago, it’s off to a great start. Lark has written a killer song to perform with her band, the weather is stunning and she’s got a date with gorgeous Alec. The two take a canoe out on the lake, and everything is perfect—until Lark hears the screams. Annabelle, a little girl she used to babysit, is drowning in the nearby reeds while Annabelle’s mom tries desperately to reach her. Lark and Alec are closer, and they both dive in. But Alec hits his head on a rock in the water and begins to flail.
Alec and Annabelle are drowning. And Lark can save only one of them.
Lark chooses, and in that moment her world splits into two distinct lives. She must live with the consequences of both choices. As Lark finds herself going down more than one path, she has to decide: Which life is the right one?
Alice Kuipers, the award-winning author of 40 Things I Want to Tell You and Life on the Refrigerator Door, is an expert chronicler of the teenage heart, and she takes her work to new heights here. A riveting, high-concept novel with heart, Me and Me is about what it feels like to be torn in pieces, and about finally finding out who you really are.
This review may contain some spoilers with the characters and plot line. I write my reviews as I read the book for the full effect of how I feel throughout the novel.
Alright… harsh critic here. The first thing I thought that popped up in my mind over and over while reading this book was Wattpad. While I think the premise was pretty interesting, I had a lot of trouble getting into this book. The accident that the novel centers around happens in the prologue, before we even get a chance to like Annabelle or Alec. I had no pull as to who Lark should save because I didn’t know anything about Alec, who she wasn’t even dating yet, besides the fact that he said some cheesy lines. We knew that Lark had babysat Annabelle before, but we only got once sentence from her. So, my first issue was that I didn’t love either of the characters that Lark was choosing between. I didn’t know them at all. I’d rather the accident have happened a chapter or two into the novel, where we already get the chance to know more about the characters, and it would have made more sense for her to have stronger connections to both of the characters (a boy she had a crush on but was hanging out with for the first time or a girl she babysat like, once?). I understand that a life or death situation moves very quickly, but I didn’t feel a sense of urgency and excitement because there wasn’t detail.
Anyways, the story moved quick. The day after the accident, Lark’s basically dating Alec now and they’re super close and lovey and saying cheesy lines that no one really says to someone they barely know, so I just didn’t find it realistic. While she feels bad that Annabelle is injured, she’s back at school already and enjoying her new boyfriend, making out in parking lots. Lets be honest. If Alec almost died the day before and she chose so save him over a drowning little girl, they have some serious issues if they’re suddenly dating and getting hot-and-heavy the very next day.
Just being realistic here.
And then it only gets more confusing. We see alternate views on what happened, like if she chose a different scenario. And honestly, it’s a bit of a cop out for me. We replay the same days we already saw in the opposite scenario, and I skimmed through most of it because I wasn’t interested. I understand what the author wanted to do with the story, but I don’t think it was played out in a way that made a lot of sense. The novel switches like this over and over and I found it hard to follow more than anything.
The big twist is cool. But I don’t think it was played out well and it wasn’t a good book for me from the beginning. I didn’t get the character building and detail that I enjoy when I read a new YA novel. There were pieces that could have been amazing in the plot line, but I don’t think the writing played any of it out in a way that was captivating.