I saw this book at B&N and bought it without knowing anything about it. I didn’t even read the back cover. All I knew was that I liked this author’s other books, so I thought I’d give this one a try. I was not disappointed.
After a summer of doing landscaping work, Tyler’s new muscles attract the attention of Bethany, the most popular girl in school. At first, he’s thrilled, but after he gets blamed for posting naked pictures of Bethany on the Internet, his life starts to spin out of control. Twisted
is intense and very realistic.
Even without reading the back cover, it quickly became obvious where this story was heading. The foreshadowing and the references to death/murder/suicide are strong. This made the plot a little too predictable for my tastes. I also had a hard time connecting with Tyler. He has a good sense of humor, but he doesn’t seem as deep as the other narrators in Laurie Halse Anderson’s books.
I did love the author’s approach to the naked-picture scandal. These scandals impact more than just the person in the pictures. Tyler is just as much a victim as Bethany. He is harassed, threatened, falsely accused, and treated like a criminal until his innocence is proven. When we hear stories about teens posting naked pictures on the Internet, we don’t think about everybody
who is involved. Victims like Tyler are often ignored. Focusing on Tyler instead of on Bethany is a unique approach to a familiar story.
I didn’t like Twisted
as much as I like Speak
, but it did give me a lot to think about.