Thursday, June 6, 2013

Review: Identical

Goodreads Summary: 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?
I don't think Ellen Hopkins is capable of writing a book that doesn't have me bawling at least once during the course of reading it. I thought Identical was going to be the exception and then the last fourth or so of the book hit and it was all downhill from there.

She has a way of crafting characters that really makes you get into their head, a place that isn't always too comfortable and easy to escape as you might like it. What really wows me about this is the fact that she writes in verse and manages to make the poetry/verses for each character sound so much like them that after a couple chapters you don't need to constantly glance at the chapter heading to know whose head you're in. I thought Identical was going to be the exception to this (noticing a trend here?). Her characters felt real. I knew who was who and then something would happen and I'd think "But wait, doesn't this mean its X not Y?" and then the ending. Just the ending. I can't really say too much because of that twist ending but just wow.

Identical was another powerful read by an amazingly talented author. She has a way of making impossible issues come alive, of making you live through them with the characters, of trapping the reader with them so that they feel, they really feel. Her books are so strong, the emotions overpowering. You never walk away from one of her books the same person as when you started. 



  1. I have to be in the right mood to read an Ellen Hopkins because WOW does she take it out of you. Great review, this is one of hers I haven't gotten around to, but I might grab it on my next library trip.

    -Taylor @ Reading is the Thing

    1. I know the feeling. I'm the same way with her novels. And I can never, ever read one right after the other because it just kills you. One totally drains you. Her novels are all so powerful. [:

      Thank you and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

  2. I have always shied away from this Ellen Hopkins book. I read Impulse and Perfect and those, you're totally right, drained me. But rape or drugs or those other harsh topics she focusses on would probably give me nightmares...

    1. I haven't read Perfect but I did read and love Impulse. Powerful writing there. I haven't had nightmares from any of her books yet, but since they do invoke such strong emotions I can see why you'd be worried about it.