'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Monday 24 January 2011

Review: Totally Twins: Musical Mayhem

Meet Persephone Pinchgut. Twin of the 'perfect' Portia, who is just sooo good at, like, everything. The girls are very much alike - except that they're not.

Well, they look the same. Persephone has a teardrop shaped birthmark on her face below her left eye and she tends to wear her hair in a ponytail, and perhaps dress a little less tizzy than Portia, but otherwise, they're identical twins.

In looks only.
You see, these totally twin girls aren't like 'usual' twins... they don't often get along and when Persephone is asked to audition for the new school musical - she's horrified. Not only because she can't sing, but she's terrified of being shown up by her angel-voiced sister.

But is Portia's talent and bravado all it seems to be? And are the girls really much closer than we 're lead to believe?

Author Darlison has created likable and very real characters in her first in the Totally Twins series of books. At first, I was a little confused about the lack of closeness between Persephone and Portia - almost disappointed for them, that they didn't share the closeness most twins enjoy... but Darlison uses this conflict very effectively to eke out a story that will keep readers guessing.

The story is relatable. The text is age-appropriate without patronising, has an easy, rhythmic style with some super cool tweenisms and humour that will enormously please readers. I also really enjoyed the diary-style entries, the funny lists and adorable line-drawn images by Serena Geddes that perfectly encapture the book's characters.

Nicely woven subplots regarding the twins' parents give depth and promising future story development, and I really enjoyed the fresh little quirks (usually via characterisation) Darlison has added to this girls' fiction series, adding a little bit of magic in a real sort of way.

Fun fiction for your filly.

Title: Totally Twins: Musical Mayhem
Author: Aleesah Darlison
Illustrator: Serena Geddes
Publisher: New Frontier, A$14.95 RRP
Publication Date: September 2010
Format: Soft cover
ISBN: 9781921042348
For ages: 8 – 12
Type: Junior Fiction