Sometimes the fact that I am extremely late in getting to books and have a TBR pile that is out of control works to my advantage. Many times I read reviews months (and sometimes more than a year) before I actually get around to reading a book - no matter how good it may be or how much I am looking forward to it. Since so much time passes between me reading reviews and me actually reading a book, I have had plenty of time to forget what a book may be about. Of course I could read the inside flap to refresh my memory, and sometimes I do that, but sometimes I just dive right in to the book and enjoy being surprised.
Surprised I was with Tangled by Carolyn Mackler because I knew absolutely nothing about this book before I started it yesterday, except that I had been wanting to read it for quite a while. The first portion of the book is narrated by Jena, a girl I felt I could relate to. She doesn't feel as pretty as her mother's friend's daughter, Skye, and the two are forced to room together on a week long vacation they take with their moms. The two don't do any real bonding, and when Skye hooks up with Dakota, a guy Jena had an interest (and very short-lived romance with) in, they have even less to do with each other.
Dakota narrates the second portion of this book which was helpful since I had not liked him at all during Jena's story. His narration does make him more likeable since I could see where Dakota was coming from. At the time of the trip Dakota had just suffered the loss of his girlfriend who was killed in a car accident. He eventually finds out that this girlfriend was planning on breaking up with him and was in the car with another highschool boy, leaving him to question why the two of them were together.
Skye narrates the third portion where it becomes obvious that the drop dead beauty doesn't really have it all and is just as confused as every other teenager. She is also dealing with the issue of never knowing her biological father, who died in a motorcycle accident before she was born, and who her mother never wants to talk about.
The final portion is narrated by Owen, Dakota's younger brother. Owen is the total opposite of his muscular, athletic older brother, preferring to spend his time online than doing anything physical. Because Owen has always lived with his mother and Dakota with his father after their parents' divorce, the two boys have never really spent a lot of time together. Owen finally has a chance at a relationship - for once living in the real world instead of online.
Because I really had not remembered anything about Tangled, I was not expecting the different narrations, but enjoyed hearing each characters' story. These four teenagers end up tangled up in each other's lives in ways they would never have predicted prior to their meeting each other. Each section ends with readers not knowing for certain how things are resolved until it is revealed during the next person's narration, something that kept me wanting to finish this book in one sitting.
Mackler has written other young adult novels: The Earth, My Butt and Other Big Round Things, Guyaholic, and Vegan Virgin Valentine, all of which I have yet to read and am looking forward to.