Title: Identical

Author: Ellen Hopkins

Summary:Once there was a happy family with a loving Mom and Dad and two perfect identical twin daughters, Kaeleigh and Raeanne. Their perfect home was filled with love and laughter. Then the accident happened. Now only anger, fear, perversion, and self-destruction reside in that perfect house. The loving mom has become a politician who prefers the campaign trail to home. And the loving father, a tough, but respected district-court judge, becomes another man at home.  He’s a lonely man who seeks comfort from the bottle and in controlling his most pliant daughter Kaeleigh with perverse attention.  

While Kaeleigh silently struggles with her father’s abuse and the efforts to maintain her prim outer facade at school; Raeanne loudly bristles at the way her Dad ignores her and plays ‘favorites,’ rebelling against the loneliness by turning to drugs, alcohol, and sex.  Both girls are sprialing toward self-destruction, but it isn’t until the end of the story that everyone discovers the toll keeping such secrets has on a family. 

Who will like this book:  With its’ themes of sexual abuse, drug and alcohol use, cutting, and promiscuity this is definitely a book for mature teen audiences.  That being said, this is a well written book that will take the reader into the minds of its’ troubled characters in a way that few books do.  If you like a gritty, raw, emotional story, this is the book for you.   

If you like this, try this: Anything by Ellen Hopkins, Cut by Patricia McCormick, Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher, Go Ask Alice by Anonymous,  Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson

Recommended by: Jen, Fairfield Woods Teen Librarian