When Class 10B got their flu shots, they expected some side effects. Maybe a sore arm. Maybe a headache. They definitely didn't expect to get telepathy. But suddenly they could hear what everyone was thinking. Their friends. Their teachers. Their parents. Now they all know that Tess has a crush on her best friend, Teddy. That Mackenzie cheated on Cooper. That Nurse Carmichael used to be a stripper. Some of them will thrive. Some of them will break. None of them will ever be the same.
A smart and funny story about friendship, first love and surviving high school from the bestselling author of Ten Things We Shouldn't Have Done." (synopsis from (x)
Don't Even Think About It is my first foray into Sarah Mlynowski's novels, and unfortunately I'm a little disappointed.
Like any other homeroom, the class of 10B don't really like each other or know each other. Until one day, when they get their flu shots. The next thing they know, they can hear other people's thoughts. Other people can hear their thoughts. A side effect to the flu shot? It seems likely. Now they have to band together and decide. To tell or not to tell?
I'll start with the good things.
I was really enraptured at first. It's written in a similar vein to The Virgin Suicides in terms of it being written in first person plural. You don't come across that a lot in fiction. I was curious. How was this going to play out? Would the book take a haunting tone?
I also thought it was an interesting concept. What would happen? While telepathy is by no means a new idea, I appreciate that Mlynowski explored a different side to the typical telepathy story.
I also found the book really easy to read. It's fluffy and quick. Perfect for summer. Perfect if you don't want to think too hard.
Now, for the not so great.
I'm always really hesitant to read books with a wide cast of main characters. Generally, they fall into the trap of being seriously underdeveloped. Unfortunately, Don't Even Think About It fell. While some of the characters are developed, most (like Pi or Mackenzie) come across as one-sided. This made it incredibly difficult for me to sympathise with them. It was unfortunate.
I also found that not a lot happened. Despite being an interesting concept, a lot of the plot was 'Do we tell our parents?' or 'Do we not tell our parents?' Because of this, I found myself getting bored quickly. I'm usually ok with character-driven novels, but seeing as there was a lack of development in character, this isn't really the case this time.
Overall, if you want a summer read, this book is ideal for you. While an interesting take on telepathy, unfortunately it lacks a certain something. The development in both plot and character is a little weak, and makes the reading experience a little boring.
Rating: ** (2 stars)
Publisher: Orchard Books
Publication Date: May 1st 2014
Want to buy this book? You can get it here:
Thank you to NetGalley and Orchard Books for providing me with this e-ARC