Flipped by Wendelin Van Draanen

I got Flipped as a Christmas gift from a good friend and decided to read it since it seemed like a fun and light read so I decided to give it a try.

Here’s the summary from Goodreads:

The first time she saw him, she flipped. The first time he saw her, he ran. That was the second grade, but not much has changed by the seventh. She says: “My Bryce. Still walking around with my first kiss.” He says: “It’s been six years of strategic avoidance and social discomfort.” But in the eighth grade everything gets turned upside down. And just as he’s thinking there’s more to her than meets the eye, she’s thinking that he’s not quite all he seemed.

If I had to describe this book in one word, I’d probably go with cute, and I mean that in a good way. Flipped is a he-said, she-said kind of novel for middle grade and younger YA readers and I believe I would’ve loved it if I read it when I was younger. That’s not to say that I didn’t enjoy reading this now because I did, I just feel like I would’ve been able to appreciate it more if I was the target audience for it. It was so funny how different Juli and Bryce’s perspectives were! I liked that the story spanned several years starting from when Bryce moved in as Juli’s neighbor in second grade all the way up to eighth grade. I think the portrayal of the characters as kids and then young teenagers was very realistic. It was hilarious that Bryce couldn’t grasp what chickens, hens and roosters are and how they differ. At first, Juli only wanted to be friends with someone her age because she doesn’t have any neighbors to play with. But when she first saw Bryce’s brilliant blue eyes, she was mesmerized and she’s been after him ever since. It doesn’t matter that Bryce has been running away from her, Juli just thinks he’s shy. Both Juli and Bryce grew and developed as characters as the years passed by although in Bryce’s case, it was more towards the end of the book.

I loved Juli’s nutty family and how her parents are so supportive of the kids while Bryce’s dad was the opposite of that. It’s not surprising that it takes time for Bryce to become a better person because his dad is kind of a jerk and of course, Bryce looks up to his father. Juli’s dad is such a sweet and compassionate character and he really listens to Juli when she tells him her problems. He kind of reminded me of my dad and how I felt like I could talk to him not just as a dad but as a friend. I can totally understand why Juli thinks her dad is the best dad ever. Yay for awesome parents in YA! This is a story about puppy love, friendship, family and learning to see beyond people’s appearances to who they really are inside. I recommend it to fans of younger YA books or to anyone who’s looking for a quick read because this one is a lightweight at 224 pages but still manages to have some depth.

Thank you, Joy, for giving this as a gift. I love getting books as gifts and I really enjoyed reading this one. I’m now curious about the movie and I wonder if it’s as charming as the book is.

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