YOU LOOK DIFFERENT IN REAL LIFE by Jennifer Castle

YOU LOOK DIFFERENT IN REAL LIFE

Age Range: 13 - 18

KIRKUS REVIEW

Five teens linked by a documentary following their lives reunite to film a third installment.

As 6-year-olds, they became easy friends, playing dress-up, watching cartoons and trying to stay quiet enough to win a prize from the kindergarten treasure box. At 11, their lives were more complicated. Autism, the loss of a parent and bullying are all caught on tape. When the filmmakers return five years later, the five barely speak to one another. Felix feels invisible. Nate is big man on campus. Keira is coldly beautiful. Rory is an awkward loner. Justine, the star of the first two movies, drifts without purpose. The reunion promises, for better or worse, to change everything. Multiple storylines and characters are slowly revealed through snippets from the films as well as Justine’s memories. The five teens are well-rounded and interesting. Unfortunately, the story is unnecessarily complicated by a too-big cast and throwaway characters. Additionally, Justine’s abrupt change from hating the camera to loving its voyeuristic power feels false. The story lags in the middle, making pacing an issue. In spite of these glitches, Castle’s individual scenes shine. Unfortunately, the sum of the parts does not equal a whole.

Clever premise, uneven execution. (Fiction. 13 & up)

Pub Date: June 4th, 2013
ISBN: 978-0-06-198581-2
Page count: 368pp
Publisher: HarperTeen
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15th, 2013




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