Me Myself Milly by Penelope Bush
|Me Myself Milly by Penelope Bush|
|Reviewer: Nigethan Sathiyalingam|
|Summary: Smoothly flowing writing makes Me Myself and Milly engaging and easy to read, but the story lacks any real lasting impact.|
|Buy? Maybe||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 182||Date: February 2013|
|Publisher: Piccadilly Press|
|External links: Author's website|
Like so many twins, Milly and Lily might look identical but have very different personalities. Lily had always been the unruly extrovert, while timid Milly was content to be her twin's cautious shadow. But ever since 'The Incident', Milly has been forced into the forefront. When this is combined with a decision to change school and the arrival of new tenants to her house, including an unfriendly and enigmatic American boy her own age, Milly finds her life changing faster than she can keep up with it. Embracing her new life will mean letting go of the bottled up memory of The Incident, but will she ever be strong enough to do so?
The dynamic of unequal identical twins has been explored many times before in children's fiction and Me Myself Milly doesn't break much new ground. However, the novel portrays quirky, believable characters, and the author cleverly subverts expectations, especially in the case of the American boy Dylan and the seemingly superficial Effy, who latches onto Milly at her new school. Though I liked Dylan as a character, the romance that develops between him and Milly felt a little forced and contrived.
The first person narrative alternates between the present, and journal entries written by Milly about life with Lily. The journal entries give some background to the relationship between the twins, but I think more exploration of their characters was needed to give it sufficient depth. Lily, in particular, needed to have more redeeming qualities. Consequently, when the nature of The Incident is finally revealed in a highly tense, moving and well-written scene, it lacks the impact that it had the potential to have, and felt like a missed opportunity. Milly may not be the most charismatic or distinctive of narrators, but she is more intelligent than some of the other characters give her credit for; thus, it isn't difficult to become engaged with her story and her progression. The story often felt disjointed and lacking in direction and drive, though I enjoyed the read overall thanks to some of the intriguingly unconventional characters and a number of strong plot points.
I'd like to thank the publishers for sending a copy to The Bookbag.
Black Heart Blue by Louisa Reid is another story about twins and tragedy. It is one of the most powerful dramas I have ever read, but be warned, as it explores themes of abuse and disability in utterly uncompromising fashion. Just as powerful, but suffused with hope rather than bleakness, The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson describes a teenage girl trying to cope with the death of her sister in a stunning story of grief and love that I would recommend to pretty much anyone.
You can read more book reviews or buy Me Myself Milly by Penelope Bush at Amazon.co.uk
You can read more book reviews or buy Me Myself Milly by Penelope Bush at Amazon.com.
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