By Melody Carlson
Published by Revell
Back Cover: its spring break of her senior year and Madison Van Buren is fed up. Stressed over Ivy League pressure, her parents' marital problems, and her boyfriend's neglect,
gets in her car and drives west. Meanwhile, eighteen-year-old Anna Bronner wants to escape the so-called simple life--which for her consists of caring for younger siblings, sewing, cooking, and gardening--and she's well aware that her future will simply be more of the same with a man she doesn't love. Suddenly, worlds collide when Madison and Anna meet in a small town, realize they look uncannily similar, and decide the grass is definitely greener on the other side. Madison
Review: I’m a Melody Carlson fan, so when an opportunity came to receive a review copy of her newest book I jumped at the chance to read it. Double Take reminded me of two movies the first was the cartoon movie the Prince and the Pauper and the second was The Parent Trap. Melody Carlson blends these two premises in this novel. A spoiled rich girl is feeling overwhelmed by the choices she has to make with her life. Her father wants her in Harvard, her mother is pushing Yale, her boyfriend pressures to do things she doesn’t want to do and her best friend demands she attend social events she’s rather not attend.
just wants to get away from her life in the Penthouse suite. She drives off in her fancy car to the country. She meets Anna, an Amish girl who is in a coffee shop looking glum and so much like Madison she can't help but stare. Anna isn’t looking forward to spending time with her Aunt Rachel and Uncle Daniel who are expecting a baby any minute, and needed help to care for the rest of the little ones in the house. Not Anna’s idea of fun. Madison
Anna is waiting for her Uncle to pick her up.
is just taking in the view and talking to Anna when she comes up with a plan to switch places and help them both out. It’s a spur of the moment plan they both agree to on the spot Madison ’s parents are out of town for the week. Anna is staying with her Aunt and Uncle (whom she doesn’t see often or know well). It’s the perfect set up! They'd be staying with people who don’t know them intimately so they might pull this off. Madison
Now do I think this could ever happen in real life? No, but just like in the movie The Prince and the Pauper and The Parent Trap you just go with it! Its fun to think about what would happen if this ever could take place - a switch between an Amish girl and an Englisher . Fun, Fun, Fun! Parts were hysterical! I enjoyed every second.
I liked Melody’s attention to detail and the way these girls experienced the others life. It was fascinating. Anna says this to
, “I don’t understand why English have so much comfortable things-beds, chairs, pillows, blankets, rugs….so luxurious-and then wear uncomfortable shoes and clothes?” Madison
They have this conversation about different things they were experiencing in each others lives.
lives in a Penthouse suite and Anna takes her first elevator ride. Ohmygosh! What a riot! Anna doesn’t have indoor plumbing and Madison uses an outhouse for the first time. Hysterical! It’s all the little things about this story that I found humorous and eye opening as I hadn’t really thought about what the other would experience as they tried to life in a different world. Madison
There’s a sensitive spiritual thread that was uniquely woven throughout this story, which was very believable. I really liked how both of these girls searched the depths of their souls to discover what was real for them.
learns to slow down, stop and smell the flowers and realizes what she's been missing. Anna wondered if she would throw the Amish life style away just to be with Jacob a boy she loved! Was her love for this boy greater than her love for God? Melody’s stories are fun; I care about and enjoy her characters that catch me by surprise as I feel a twinge in my heart about an event in the book. It’s the simple truths that touched me. This is not like any Amish story you’ve read so far. It’s a delightful; humorous novel that is respectful to both the Amish and the Englisher life styles. It’s a great read for the summer. I highly recommend it! Madison
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