BOTM – Flipped

It’s May, which means we’ve finished April’s Book of the Month. Who read along? Who’s just here for the review? Who’s reading this post because they have nothing better to do? No matter why you’re here, we’re happy to share our thoughts with you on this book. Beware though, spoilers ahead!

“One’s character is set at an early age. The choices you make now will affect you for the rest of your life.”

This story starts off when the two main characters are entering the second grade. Bryce is just moving into the neighborhood when Juli abruptly interjects herself into his life. She’s a spitfire who doesn’t seem to understand boundaries, and Bryce appears to be the total opposite. Throughout their entire elementary career Bryce does everything in his power to stay as far away as possible from Juli, but she just keeps coming back. At one point Juli gifts Bryce and his family with eggs every week for almost 2 years, and Bryce throws them out every single time without telling anyone! Everyone finds out eventually, and feelings are hurt a great deal all around.

“…Next time you’re faced with a hard choice, do the right thing. It hurts everyone less in the long run.”

Eventually Juli begins to see a different side of Bryce that she never expected to be there. She’s unsure if it’s a friendship worth fighting for. She begins focusing on other parts of her life like estranged family members and new hobbies. At one point she makes it into the local newspaper when she refuses to get out of a tree that someone is contracted to cut down. While this was a huge deal to her, Bryce didn’t care much about it. That is until he saw her picture in the paper and couldn’t take his eyes off of her.

“Get beyond his eyes and his smile and the sheen of his hair…Look at what’s really there.”

Around the same time that Juli began to see some of Bryce’s character flaws, Bryce began to see some of the strengths that Juli held. His grandpa is quick to point out that people are more than what we see at the surface. Will Bryce be able to overcome the hurdles he created to save his relationship with Juli? You’ll have to read to find out!

“Some of us get dipped in flat, some in satin, some in gloss… But every once in awhile, you find someone who’s iridescent, and when you do, nothing will ever compare.”

  • Young Adult
  • Coming of Age
  • Romance
  • Contemporary
  • Realistic Fiction
  • Humor
  • GoodReads: 3.95/5
  • LibraryThing: 3.86/5

Final Thoughts

This story is geared toward readers aged 11-14, however it can easily be enjoyed by anyone. While the main focus of this book is on the growing and ever changing relationship between Bryce and Juli, it is not a typical romance novel. There isn’t a ton of lovey dovey hand holding and dating. The story is more focused on a budding friendship that we are left to believe turns into something more.

It’s also important to note that the author chose to alternate the point of view between Juli and Bryce in each chapter. Sometimes when this is done it can become difficult to follow the storyline, however, Wendelin Van Draanen did a fantastic job of this in Flipped. We’re able to see the story clearly from both Bryce and Juli’s perspectives.

The ending of this book may leave something to be desired. It doesn’t have a neat and tidy closure, but rather leaves it up to the reader to decide what happens with Juli and Bryce’s future.

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