A review by jerrica
Tangled by Carolyn Mackler


I really wanted to like this book, because I loved "The Earth, My Butt, and Other Big Round Things" when I read it in fifth grade. I haven't read a single Mackler book since.

"Tangled" is about four typical teenagers (Obsessive Shy Girl Archetype, Beautiful Screwed Up Girl Archetype, Jock Archetype, Computer Nerd Archetype) who meet briefly in Paradise and then live the rest of their lives, as we see how that meeting plays out in their lives. It sounds like an interesting construct, and that's why I picked it up. And though I found it to be an enjoyable story, it wasn't a head over heels, can't put it down kind of love that I do experience with those few wonderful books.

I probably could've liked it more if it hadn't been for Jena. Something about her personality and her "humor" grated on my nerves. And when Owen described her humor as "self-deprecating" it just broke the last straw for me. I hate when characters call other characters funny or describe their style of humor, it's usually always a letdown.

Plus Jena and Owen's blog usernames "Miz J" and "O-Boy", really? Nothing more interesting or less typical came to mind? Much less Jena sharing her namesake with Miss Jay of America's Next Top Model, a cross-dressing runway coach. Jena is of course, nowhere near as fabulous.

I liked Dakota and Skye's storylines a great deal, they definitely delved deeper into their emotions than the other two stories, and they probably could've just had those two stories with their brief brush in Paradise. And that's the thing, I thought the whole thing would take place in Paradise, as the description led me to believe. But I suppose it's about how even just the briefest of meetings can change the course of life, which is a very interesting concept, the butterfly effect, as Owen said. I just wish it had been carried out differently.