"When plain and unpopular Annie Nutter gets zapped by one of her dad's whacked-out inventions, she lands in a parallel universe where her life becomes picture-perfect. Now she's Ayla Monroe, daughter of the same mother but a different father—and she's the gorgeous, rich queen bee of her high school.
In this universe, Ayla lives in glitzy Miami instead of dreary Pittsburgh and has beaucoup bucks, courtesy of her billionaire—if usually absent—father. Her friends hit the clubs, party backstage at concerts, and take risks that are exhilirating . . . and illegal. Here she's got a date to lose her V-card with the hottest guy she's ever seen.
But on the inside, Ayla is still Annie.
So when she's offered the chance to leave the dream life and head home to Pittsburgh, will she take it?
The choice isn't as simple as you think."
Title: Don't You Wish
Author: Roxanne St. Claire
Release Date: July 10, 2012
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Pages: 368, Hardcover
DON'T YOU WISH was certainly the perfect summer read. It doesn't exactly take place in the summer, but it has that fun, cute, easy-going vibe that represents summer. Not only did DON’T YOU WISH have the fabulous characters, adorable dialogue, and your not-so-average contemporary story, but the reader is able to walk away with an extremely important lesson.
Annie Nutter isn't exactly your average girl. In fact, she's below your average girl. She's a nobody at her school, along with her best friend Lizzie. Everyday, it seems, they dream to be part of the perfect, popular crowd. Drowning in her misery with Annie is her mother, who is having second thoughts on her marriage. Annie's mom could've married a past boyfriend, a man who is very, very wealthy now, and lives the perfect life. Before Annie knows it, her wish just happens to come true, in a parallel universe…
The characters were so utterly fun to read about. For me, Annie Nutter in the beginning of the story seemed very immature, like a middle schooler (they are actually juniors in high school). But once she is transported to the other universe, her personality changes a little, and she definitely matures. I could definitely understand her need to be popular and perfect. I loved watching her development as she learns that being perfect isn't always the best. And Charlie, goodness, I need a Charlie in my life. He was so pure, those perfect boys who see girls as they are on the inside, not the outside.
The dialogue was one of my favorite things about the story. Roxanne St. Claire was able to capture my full attention to the story. And, while the book is a little lengthy, I found myself wanting to keep reading and reading and reading. Annie/Ayla's voice was very addicting and witty. I loved it!
Now, the creativity of the story. While DON'T YOU WISH is considered a contemporary novel, it definitely had a little twist added in--the notion of the parallel universe. I have never read anything like it before! I enjoyed the concept very much, and I thought that Roxanne did a fantastic job creating it. It was very believable.
The lesson I personally walked away with after completing the novel was: Accept your life as is. What you think you want may not be what is truly right for you. The so-called "perfect" life you see is most likely not perfect. Underneath the flawless structure, is actually a hurt, wounded tissue. Be thankful with what you have, because it could be worse.
Needless to say, DON'T YOU WISH is a captivating, charming, and delightful read that has earned it's spot in my favorite contemporaries of the year. The creativity of the story is one you won't want to miss!
Source: Publisher via Netgalley--thank you Random House!