by Ellen Hopkins
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Source: Gift from Michelle
Available as of August 26, 2008
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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've always said I LOVE Ellen Hopkins's writing and the stories she creates, but Identical was beyond amazing. She threw me for a loop and I can not begin to describe how much this book really showed me.
Kaeleigh and Raeanne are twins. Raeanne is the fun party girl who enjoys her high and will do anything to get it. Kaeleigh eats to feel better and when that doesn't work she cuts. The girls are polar opposites of one another and haven't been close in years. To make matters worse, the girls strive for the attention of the parent not providing it. Raeanne wants her father to see her, but he's to busy starring Kaeleigh's way to realize what he's doing is destroying them both. Kaeleigh wants her mother to be present in her life, but she's too busy trying to make it in D.C. The big question, who will save the other in the end?
Ellen Hopkins has a way with words that leaves me begging for more. It is rare when I can find an author that can shock me with the slightest twist. That is what I loved most about Identical. One minor twist, revealed by one epic scene, had me setting the book down to collect my thoughts and process what I had just read three times. I was at a loss for words, in disbelief, but I loved every minute of it. The only thing I didn't care for was how long it took Kaeleigh to speak up. Her secret almost cost her life, but if she had spoken up, there would be no story to tell.
Overall, Identical was an astounding read and I'm so grateful to my bookish friend for surprising me. It was one of the best books I've ever read and I highly recommend it!!