Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Beside Myself by Ann Morgan

This is a very well-written novel about identical twin sisters who are about 6 years old. One is named Helen and she is popular, smart and their mother's favorite. The other one is named Ellie, and she has behavioral problems, trouble in school and absolutely no friends. Helen spends a lot of time making fun of her sister, and getting her friends to do the same. Helen makes up games to play with Ellie that showcase her "simple" personality, and they really are quite cruel. Even in school the teachers treat Ellie as if she isn't as smart as everyone else, which further alienates Ellie from everyone. One day Helen decides to play a game by switching places with Ellie. Ellie agrees, and they change clothes and Helen fixes her own hair to look like Ellie's trademark messy braid, and she braids Ellie's hair properly, as Helen, and they manage to fool the first person they see. What a hoot! Helen wants to take it a step further and try to trick their Mother. When they get home, their Mother is completely distracted because her new gentlemen friend has come a calling, so she introduces the girls by their switched names. The next morning Ellie refuses to switch back. Helen keeps insisting that she isn't Ellie, but her Mother, who is not the greatest mother in the world, doesn't believe her. Helen becomes frustrated, and starts to act out, so everyone really does think she is Ellie, both at home and at school. This is where things start to go downhill for Helen, and this is where the story begins. If you like books that are somewhat dark and creepy, that deal with mental illness, behavioral problems and someone's waking nightmare, then this book is for you! Read On!

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