Thursday, 12 February 2009

Split by a Kiss by Luisa Plaja

Jo has just moved to America with her mum. On her first day in her new school, she seems to be adopted by the It girls - and is invited to one of their parties. There, she meets Jake Matthews, and when they begin to play the kissing-in-the-closet game, Seven Minutes in Heaven, amazingly Jake picks Jo join him in the closet! She can't believe her luck. But the reality of being kissed and groped by Jake is not quite as great as the fantasy... Jo has a choice to make: should she carry on, kiss Jake and secure her position in the It crowd - or should she tell him where to get off and risk relegation back to the land of the ordinary ...? At this moment - Jo splits. She's Josie the Cool - girlfriend of Jake, member of the It crowd. She's also Jo the Nerd - rejected by the It crowd, single ...Will her two halves ever come back together again?

Firstly, any author who mentions Buffy the Vampire Slayer in their book will immediately get my attention. And Snow Patrol too, for that matter. Thumbs up for that, Luisa!

Split by a Kiss is like a cross between the movies Sliding Doors and Mean Girls. It's fun, original and very hard to put down.

Jo/Josie has a brilliant voice, and reminded me of Georgia Nicolson from the Angus, Thongs... series. She's funny, honest and is your typical sixteen year old girl. I laughed out loud quite a few times, especially at some of her UK to US vocabulary mistakes. Speaking of US to UK, this aspect of the book is one of the things I liked most. It's interesting to learn about the different phrases and words that each country uses to describe the same thing: for example, 'closet' and 'cupboard'.

All the characters are likeable and realistic, especially Tori (the nice mean girl), Albie (Tori's lovely brother) and Chelsea (rich bitch clique leader). I won't spoil the plot, but I was very happy to see who Jo ended up with. I think I may have clapped at the end, or something along those lines. That's how much I wanted her to end up with the character-that-can't-be-named.

I like how the story has been left open, and I would love to know what happens to the characters in the future. I also liked the sneaky hint about the voodoo doll, and the possibility that it could have been the cause of Jo's split. Very clever.

If you're a fan of Louise Rennison or Liz Rettig, then you should enjoy reading this book. Split by a Kiss has reminded me why I love UK teen fiction, and I am now eagerly awaiting Luisa's next novel, Extreme Kissing, which is being published this April. It sounds great!


Steph Su said...

Sounds good! I'll look for a copy of it.

Bookworm said...

Looks cute! But the cover so does not look like a sixteen year old girl....Unfortunately, I don't live in Britain, which I wish I did! (: Great review.

stargirlreads said...

I thought it was pretty good

H said...

Oh, I have to get this one. I adore the cover!

Lindsay Champion said...

I love the movie Sliding Doors and the similar movie, Run Lola Run. Just the comparison alone will get me to read this book. I suffered a similar split in high school and lived to tell about it. Thanks for the review!