The Compulsive Reader: Tangled by Carolyn Mackler

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Tangled by Carolyn Mackler

In April, four teens head to Paradise for Spring Break, but their vacation is far from fun. For Jena and Skye, thrown together because their mothers are friends, it's a trip full of bitter memories, and brothers Dakota and Owen are only there because their mother believes that the vacation will be a great bonding opportunity. When all four leave though, they have no idea that their lives have become hopelessly intertwined.

Tangled is a very interesting book in that it follows these teens throughout the course of four months, delving into their lives and their own problems. This very layered and smart read not only exemplifies that people aren't always who they appear on the surface, but highlights questions and issues that every teen faces about identity, friendship, love, and self-confidence.

The characters are superb--Jena is self deprecating but honest and witty, and she is always in pursuit of the self confidence she believes Skye possesses that will help her become the person she wishes she could be. Skye, on the other hand, is not quite as perfect nor balanced as she appears, and her isolation and search for what's missing in her life make for some interesting drama. Dakota may seem like a bit of a jerk at first, but his issues and how he learns to confront them redeem him with readers. And last but not least, Owen is smart and cute and quite funny, and will everyone cheering him on as he takes a huge risk for the girl he likes. These protagonists are real and genuine--they have some issues, but they learn how to sort through them and live their life to its fullest.

Carolyn Mackler is an intelligent and witty author, and Tangled is insightful and unforgettable. This charming story about chance encounters and life-changing events will be on the tip of readers' tongues for quite a while.

Cover Comments: This cover is very cute! The hearts and the pink in it make it very girly, but I do like how the hearts are connected. Very sweet!

ARC received from HarperTeen.


Anonymous said...

I want to read this book so much, I'm a fan of Carolyn and I've loved her books so far -specially The Eart, My Butt and Other Big Round Things - so I'm even more excited more now 'cause you made it sound even more interesting!

Thanks for the review


Rhiannon Hart said...

I really love Mackler's stuff. She has a way with characters. They always seem so real. It's good to hear that you liked this one. I'll have to step out of my spec-fiction bubble and give it a go!

Thao said...

This book seems even more interesting than I thought it was. Thanks for the review.

Erin said...

I haven't yet read a book by Carolyn Mackler, but after seeing all the great reviews of this book I added all her books to my bookmooch wishlist and I'm sure I'll be buying this one soon.

Meg @ write meg! said...

I've never read anything by Mackler, but I'm definitely intrigued! Sounds like a fun book -- and the cover is very eye-grabbing! :)

aqtbenz said...

I gave you an award!


nadine said...

I love the cover, which attracts me to the book in more. Great review.

kanishk said...

It's good to hear that you liked this one. I'll have to step out of my spec-fiction bubble and give it a go!

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