Friday, July 29, 2011

Alice in Time (MG)

Alice in Time. Penelope Bush. 2011. Holiday House. 208 pages.

"I'm not wearing it."
"Yes you are."
"No, I'm not." 
Repeat those last two sentences about fifty times and you'll get some idea of what I'm up against. I'm trying to get my little brother into his page-boy outfit so that we won't be late for Dad's wedding, but I've been trying for the last hour without success.

I picked up Alice in Time because I was interested in the time travel premise. Alice, our heroine, is fourteen and miserable. She thinks her life is ruined, and it just happens that everyone else is to blame for all her woes. Her parents are divorced. Her relationship with her dad and his new wife, a bit awkward. And her brother, well, he's a bother and then some. Her mom is the worst of all. Even Imogen, her best friend, doesn't understand her. It seems the whole world is against her...

One late night in the park, a spin on the merry go round, a little accident ends up changing Alice's life forever. She wakes up from the accident as a seven year old. Her teenage memories are intact, but she's now seven again. She's forgotten how to be a kid, though, which makes this transition a bit tricky. Her mom definitely does NOT like the new Alice, who has turned mean and disrespectful and disobedient. What happened to her little angel that loves playing with Barbie and needed help brushing her hair and braiding it?

Alice soon decides that she'll try to "fix" all the problems of her life. She'll try to stop her cat from getting run over by a car. She'll try to warn her Grandma about the cancer. She'll try to warn anyone and everyone about her mom's postpartum depression. She'll try to stop her mom from throwing her dad out of the house, etc. The question becomes what should she do with her classmates? Should she make the same decisions? Should she choose Imogen over Sasha? Or Sasha over Imogen? Or should she choose a new path altogether? What if she could change her life for the better by choosing a whole new set of friends?

Of course, Alice doesn't really know what the consequences of any of her actions will be... One thing is for sure, this new-new Alice will be a different girl.

I liked Alice in Time. I didn't love it; I didn't hate it. I thought it took a little too long to get to the merry go round. Though that could be just me, since the time travel element is what I was most interested in. And Alice wasn't very likable. She was a brat. A full-time brat. But as she began to grow up a little (by growing down), I began to like her more and more.

© 2011 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews


Charlotte 8:12 PM  

This went on my tbr list the moment I read about it! It sounds fun, despite Alice's brattiness...

Kate {The Parchment Girl} 11:53 AM  

Sounds like an interesting premise for a book, though I'm not sure it's right for me. There's nothing I hate more than a bratty teenage protagonist! Great review!

Kailana 2:32 PM  

I think the main character would annoy me too much to read this book...

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Review Policy

I am interested in reviewing books and audio books. This blog focuses on books written for middle grade on up (essentially 10 to a 110). I review middle grade fiction and young adult fiction (aka tween and teen).

I also review adult books.

I read in a variety of genres including realistic fiction, historical fiction, mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, and chick lit. (I've read one western to date.)

I read a few poetry books, a few short story collections, a few graphic novels, a few nonfiction books.

I am especially fond of:

  • Regency romances (including Austen prequels/sequels)
  • Historical fiction set in the Tudor dynasty
  • Historical fiction and nonfiction set during World War II
  • Jewish fiction/nonfiction
  • dystopias
  • apocalyptic fiction
  • science fiction (especially if it involves time travel and alternate realities)
  • fantasy
  • multicultural books and international books

I am not a fan of:

  • sports books
  • horse books
  • dog books if the dog dies (same goes with most pets actually except maybe fish)
  • westerns (if it's a pioneer story with women and children, then maybe)
  • extremely violent books with blood, blood, and more blood

I am more interested in strong characters, well-written, fleshed-out, human characters. Plot is secondary to me in a way. I have to care about the characters in order to care about the plot. That being said, compelling storytelling is something that I love. I love to become absorbed in what I'm reading.

If you're interested in sending me a review copy of your book, I'm happy to hear from you. Email me at laney_po AT yahoo DOT com.

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