Can I Switch Places With These Characters, Please?

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and The Bookish

 

Top Ten Tuesday is one of my favorite memes, especially when we get a prompt like today’s.  So often when reviewing and discussing books, we mention our love of the setting/world or how we would love to spend time with the characters.  Today’s prompt asks us to list the ten characters we’d like to switch places with for 24 hours.  Here we go!

Along for the Ride by Sarah Dessen (Goodreads)–I don’t really want to deal with Auden’s home life, but I love the town she’s staying in over the summer.  I love beach town settings, and this one’s a favorite.  Plus, I like Eli 🙂

City of Bones by Cassandra Clare (Goodreads)–I can’t say that I’d be very good at demon hunting or anything like that, but I would love to cuddle up with Jace and hang out with Simon!  Clary can go ahead and sit a day out so I can have fun with these Shadowhunters + Simon!

Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist by Rachel Cohn & David Levithan (Goodreads)–This is still one of my favorite books because it’s incredibly funny and I love the cast of characters.  I’d totally be okay with switching places with Norah and running around New York with Nick all night.  I’ve never been to New York City, and I don’t have a character crush on Nick or anything, but he’s a cool guy and he really knows his music.  How fun would it be to hop from crazy New York club to crazy New York club all night with your friends!

Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins (Goodreads)–If you’ve read this book, I don’t think I need to explain myself, do I?  Living in Paris for a school year.  Eating delicious crepes.  Going to famous museums.  Etienne St. Clair.  Enough said. 🙂

Freshman Year & Other Unnatural Disasters by Meredith Zeitlin (Goodreads)–I really have no desire to repeat my high school years, but I would love to spend a day with Kelsey Finkelstein because she is so darn funny.  I love how melodramatic she is and how loyal she is to her friends.  If I could choose a day, I’d choose the last day the school play is performed.  I’m pretty sure that would be the best.  Or the night of the tooth mishap.  Either would be funny.

Born Wicked by Jessica Spotswood (Goodreads): I love this book’s time period and the powers the girls have.  And I have a book crush on Finn.  It would be fun to spend a day in the garden with Finn and maybe part of the afternoon at a gossipy tea gathering.  Writing this makes me feel like I’m an old soul or something because I don’t know many people who would want to spend their day like this! 😛

Small Medium at Large by Joanne Levy (Goodreads): This is one of the cutest middle grade books I’ve read, first of all.  Second, I would absolutely love to spend a day in Lilah’s shoes so I could communicate with my Grandma Rosemary.  I love that Lilah gets to spend more time with her Bubbie.  Those of us who have lost grandparents know how special and precious that extra time would be.

In Honor by Jessi Kirby (Goodreads)–Am I allowed to pretend Honor isn’t honoring her brother that just died?  Because if so, I’d switch places with her for a day.  I’d want to spend time getting to know Rusty, and I think it would be cool to revisit the scene when she’s swimming really early in the morning.  For the most part, their trip to California was fun to read (with the exception of a few sad/scary parts).

I know that’s not ten characters I want to switch with, but it’s the best I can do today.  Let me know which character you’d like to switch with!  I’m sure I’ll feel the same way, or even better, find a new book I want to read!  Happy Tuesday! 😀

Review: Small Medium at Large by Joanne Levy

Title: Small Medium at Large

Author: Joanne Levy

Publisher: Bloomsbury

Release Date: July 3rd, 2012

Interest: Positive Reviews / Debut Author / Middle Grade

Source: Purchased

Summary (From Goodreads): After she’s hit by lightning at a wedding, twelve-year-old Lilah Bloom develops a new talent: she can hear dead people. Among them, there’s her overopinionated Bubby Dora; a prissy fashion designer; and an approval-seeking clown who livens up a séance. With Bubby Dora leading the way, these and other sweetly imperfect ghosts haunt Lilah through seventh grade, and help her face her one big fear: talking to—and possibly going to the seventh-grade dance with—her crush, Andrew Finkel.

In all honesty, I’m really picky about middle grade novels.  I don’t know if it’s just that I’m a high school English teacher and therefore more interested in young adult novels, or what, but I don’t always like middle grade novels.  I have a really difficult time connecting with them and enjoying them, so when I find one that I like I want to spread the word all over the place.  I didn’t just like Small Medium at Large by Joanne Levy, I loved it.

Small Medium at Large released this week and positive reviews have been all over Twitter, Facebook, and Goodreads, so on an impulse I decided to get a copy.  It’s a short book, at only 208 pages, but it has the perfect blend of realistic situations, supernatural elements, and humor that amounts to one positively adorable and enjoyable book.  I’m not always sure what’s “okay” for middle grade readers, but I feel secure recommending Joanne Levy’s debut to 5th graders and above because it’s a clean book and the themes in the story aren’t too complex.  The characters aren’t doing anything questionable or using foul language.  There are discussions about “boobs” and kissing but that’s as far as it goes.  Considering I was reading Caroline B. Cooney books and the like in 5th grade, I think this one is okay (not that her books are bad, but there were some “big” issues in her books).

Lilah Bloom is such a cute character.  She ends up with the ability to hear ghosts after being struck by lightning and is pretty level-headed about the whole thing.  The first ghost she encounters is Bubby Dora, her grandmother who passed away four years ago.  I love her interactions with Bubby because Bubby acts as both an authority figure and a helpful friend.  The way she and Lilah spoke to each other made me think of what it would be like if I could talk again with my grandma who passed away when I was six; I think many of our interactions would be the same.  The ghosts, in general, are really amusing and bring out Lilah’s character.  Lilah is a very believable sixth grader simply trying to fit in, but now trying to do that with the ability to talk to ghosts.  She worries about boys, bras, and bullies.  Lilah also wants to help her dad get back into the dating scene; those scenes are some of the cutest.

I like that even though Small Medium at Large might be considered supernatural since Lilah is communicating with ghosts, it mostly reads as realistic fiction.  Lilah is experiencing many of the same things an average 12 year old experiences, only she has ghosts helping her out at times.  She has a close group of friends, she struggles in school sometimes, she’s dealing with a bully, and she’s crushing on a boy.

What really sets this book apart is its execution.  Joanne Levy really makes Lilah stand out and come alive on the page, along with all of the supporting characters.  There wasn’t a dull moment in the book.  Small Medium at Large is my favorite book of the summer so far, and I really hope you read it.

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