Monday, December 20, 2010

What If... All the Rumors Were True by Liz Ruckdeschel and Sara James

(Photo taken from Goodreads)

Title: What if... All the Rumors Were True
Author: Liz Ruckdeschel and Sara James
Publisher: Delacorte Books
Language: English
ISBN - 10: 038573641X
ISBN - 13: 978-0385736411

Remember the time when you used to horde those Goosebumps Choose Your Own Adventure books?  Well, this one's a Choose-Your-Destiny book. TM.

This is the last book in the What If... series of choose-your-own-destinies by Liz Ruckdeschel and Sara James, and stars a girl named Haley.  After a year in Hillsdale High, she thinks she has finally conquered her new school, now a Junior, she is in a rush to fill her college application with interesting activities, like her other classmates.  But along with that hurdle is the upcoming SATS, being ignored by her supposed-boyfriend, and a huge bundle of rumors.   Can she really handle all of those issues?  And what if the rumors were true?

I picked this book up without really thinking and seeing that it was a choose-your-own-whatever thing, I thought it wouldn't be that bad.  I was wrong on both counts.  I should have thought before picking this up, and just because it's those interactive fiction stuff does not mean it would turn out good.

The plot is simple enough, the endings predictable enough, that no matter what you choose, you're pretty sure what's going to happen already.  There is also a lot of repetition in the plot going on, as if you haven't read about what happened before turning the page, and you have to be reminded for the umpteenth time AGAIN.  I understand that as choose-your-own-adventures go, it's easy to lose the reader, but in this book, it's like your mom telling you over and over again that her back is aching so you need to do the vacuuming yourself.

I also don't like the characters that much.  I mean, Haley's very well-rounded and everything, but they're all so one-sided, the cute well-rounded smart guy Reese, the beautiful and sporty Sasha, the rich bitch Coco.  It just screams "Book Characters!" to me.  I don't really connect with them and I can't feel them as live human beings.  And to think that Haley's destiny is in my hands.

After reading the book once and getting to my chosen ending, I decided to read the whole book, every destiny, and every ending, to see if it would improve. No, it didn't.  If you would like to read books about teenage life, better not pick this one up, too dull.  But then, if you've read the other books, or this is your thing, then go ahead and dive in.

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