Author: Anna Staniszewski
Series: Switched at First Kiss #1
Rating: 3 / 5 stars
This novel is definitely targeted to MG readers, but I’ve read other books by Anna Staniszewski that were so charming that I wanted to go ahead and give this one a try as well. Lena is a reaper. In what reminds me of Dead Like Me, she is tasked by her boss, Eddie, to give the touch of death to people on the brink. Marcus, on the other hand, is a cupid. He is tasked by his boss to give the touch of love. And when Lena lets Marcus kiss her on a dare at a party so she can mark it off her list of things to do before she starts high school, things get interesting.
It’s hard for me to read a love story about a boy and a girl in middle school. I know kids are growing up faster and faster these days, and I know a lot of kids start dating in middle school (even though I couldn’t date until my senior year in high school), but love? At that age, I don’t think kids can truly even grasp the meaning of the word, of the commitment and the responsibility. Even Lena isn’t sure about the whole love thing, although her disbelief stems from the fact that her father is a scientist, and after her mother left them, her father has bahumbugged love as nothing but a trick your brain plays on you.
I thought this novel was going to be charming, witty, and funny. Instead, it was cute, but more than a little too mushy for me. Sure, the novel digs a little into deeper topics – the declining health of an elderly love one for example. But this book is basically the tale of the budding, will-they-won’t-they story of Lena and Marcus. For readers that love romance, sure, dive in. But without the funny charm I expected from Staniszewski, this MG novel about young love doesn’t hold much for older readers such as myself, even if it is a cute story.