Tuesday, 5 April 2011

Review: (re)Cycler - Lauren McLaughlin

Published: August 15th 2009, Random House (US)
Pages: 273 pages, paperback
Series?: Yes, this is the second and final book in the 'Cycler' series
Acquired: Kindly sent for review

Summary (from Goodreads): How do you grow up, if who you are keeps changing? Jill McTeague is not your average high school graduate, she’s a scientific anomaly. Every month for four days she turns into Jack, a guy—complete with all the parts. Now everyone in her hometown knows that something very weird is up with her.

So what’s a girl (and a guy) to do? Get the heck out of town, that’s what! With her kooky best friend, Ramie, Jill sets out for New York City. There both she and Jack will have to figure out everything from the usual (relationships) to the not so usual (career options for a “cycler,” anyone?).

My review: I read and reviewed Cycler last year and wasn't completely convinced by it, though I did love the idea. I felt as though Jack and Jill were very linear characters without much depth and this made it hard to bond with them, especially Jack. Despite not loving Cycler, I decided to give (re)Cycler a go, as the story intrigued me and I was keen to see how Jill dealt with the situation she found herself in at the end of book one.

Realising she has to make it on her own, without the protection of her overbearing parents, Jill moves to New York with her best friend, Ramie. She's determined to make her situation work and make a life for herself, hoping to find a job and a way to get along with Jack, who she just happens to share a body with.

Both Jack and Jill definitely grew on me in (re)Cycler - Jack especially impressed me. I thought he grew so much as a person and I really enjoyed seeing him and Jill slowly build a relationship, despite the issues they'd had in the first book. While I liked Jack and Jill's relationship, I wasn't so keen on the romantic relationships in this one - especially between Jill and Tommy.

Jill just grates on me, to be honest. She definitely improved during (re)Cycler but I just can't warm to her, which made it difficult to enjoy the book, seeing as the narrated the vast majority of the story. Ramie continued to annoy me with her incessant need to be 'quirky' and 'different' at all times. It's a shame that Jill and Ramie let the story down as I really enjoyed learning more about Jack. Unfortunately, I don't think he was given quite enough page time so, for me, this was a bit of a disappointment.

First line: 'It was a night to remember for a handful of Winterhead High seniors attending the annual prom at Karn Beach Yacht club last Saturday.'

Plot: 4/5
Writing: 3/5
Characters: 3/5
Cover: 3/5
Total: 13/20 (C)

1 comment:

Thank you kindly for the comment, you sweet thing.