I got Flipped by Wendelin Van Draanen back when I was in college, the same time I got Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli. I got those books to cheer me up after a particularly bad day in school, one that involved school stress, a long week of having to re-shoot my photography assignment, processing film and a breakdown at the school’s photo lab (good thing there wasn’t any adult acne involved, or else I would’ve gone crazy that day). I saw this book while waiting for my dad and decided to splurge on it even if I wasn’t sure what it was about.
I’m glad I splurged because Flipped became one of my favorite books. :) This tells the story of Julianna and Bryce, their childhood, their family, school, and kisses. :) I loved the alternating points of view, the overall plot and the lessons the book gave about family, crushes and growing up. But you know what I love most about this now? I just heard that there’s going to be Flipped the movie. :D
Okay, most movie versions of books are bad, but I’m willing to give this one a shot. I hope they do justice to Bryce and Julianna’s awkward relationship and their families, especially the egg scene! Oh dear, look who’s excited. :D
Sharing the trailer from Macy‘s blog:
I’m also re-posting my review of the book from two years ago. I haven’t re-read this recently, because I think my copy is still with my friend. Hm, I should get that back soon.
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Flipped by Wendelin Van Draanen
My mom didn’t understand why it was so awful that “that cute little girl” had held my hand. She thought I should be friends with her. “You like soccer. Why don’t you go out there and kick the ball around?” Because I didn’t want to be kicked around, that’s why. And although I couldn’t say it like that, I still had enough sense at age seven and a half to know that Julianna Baker was dangerous.
What did a kiss feel like anyway? Somehow I knew it wouldn’t be like the one I got from Mom or Dad at bedtime. The same species, maybe, but radically different beast. Like a wolf and a whippet. Only science would put them in the same tree. Looking back, I think it was at least partly scientific curiosity that made me chase after that kiss, but it was probably more of those blue eyes.
I’ve had this book for ages, but I haven’t reviewed it ever (then again, I hardly review books back when I bought this). This, along with Stargirl is one of my favorite young adult books. I bought this on a whim, and ever since I first read it, I’ve loved the story. Julianna, especially, is a very memorable character that I wish a lot of times that I carry the same wonder and sparkle she has. :)
When Bryce Loski moves into the neighborhood, Julianna Baker was mostly interested in having a playmate than a boyfriend. But when she saw his blue eyes, she flipped. Bryce wasn’t interested in the Juli, mostly because she scared him. He spent the next few years running away from her — from avoiding her when she’d visit to play, to asking someone out so she’d stop chasing him (backfired big time), to throwing the gifts she gives him, and every thing he could manage to do. As they grow up, Juli realizes that Bryce isn’t really the guy she thought he is, and Bryce realizes that he really didn’t take the time to know Juli and started seeing her in a new light.
This is a cute he-said/she-said story, which talks about childhood crushes, seeing beneath the surface, being a man, growing up and second chances. It’s quite deep for a YA novel, but the way Ms. Van Draanen wrote the story made it easy to understand; and it sounds so realistic that you’d believe there are situations like this.
What’s funny was, when I re-read it yesterday, I realized I understood it better now than when I bought it first. Let’s say…I was in a situation back when I bought this book, which made it a bit harder to understand and put myself in the place of the female protagonist. ;) All I liked back then was then Bryce finally realized what he’s missing, but the other things didn’t really strike me. This time around, however, I finally understood and related to the major parts of the story, such as:
- How Bryce realized that he was running away from Julianna for no reason at all. True, he had an effective strategy to avoid conflict – diving under – but it’s not really much of a strategy seeing that he carried it over to how he acts with things he should take responsibility for. Bryce is an example of someone who succumbed to easily to peer pressure and a guy who wouldn’t be accountable for his actions until it bites him back. I’m glad he managed to redeem himself in the end. :D
- How one shouldn’t be attracted to someone only with the looks. In a way Mrs. Loski seemed like a future Julianna, that is, if Juli didn’t realize what she realized in the end.
- And the major lesson of the story, IMHO, is that how one must not let shallow things such as the color of the eyes and how they used to act as kids in choosing someone as a lifetime partner, or at least, a boyfriend. I related so much to Juli because I was — and sometimes still — like her: easily swayed by the things a guy does, and excusing everything he does even if it is offensive and disrespectful, until it finally hits back. And there’s also the disappointment of the guy not being able to live up to the expectations set to him, as well as “getting over” the guy at some point and feeling relapses when he’s suddenly within proximity or when he does something. It’s a wonder I didn’t see this immediately. Then again, when I bought this, I was in a middle of something like this too. ;)
Flipped will always be one of my favorite books, no matter how old I get. I’d recommend this to everyone, especially the teens. The language is safe, the story is cute but not too cute, and it teaches both guys and girls some valuable lessons that I think they could definitely use as they grow up.