I’m Not Her by Janet Gurtler
Published: May 1, 2011
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Synopis (Goodreads): “For the first time in my life, I didn’t feel envy…”
Tess is the exact opposite of her beautiful, athletic sister. And that’s okay. Kristina is the sporty one, Tess is the smart one, and they each have their place. Until Kristina is diagnosed with cancer. Suddenly Tess is the center of the popular crowd, everyone eager for updates. There are senior boys flirting with her. Yet the smiles of her picture-perfect family are cracking and her sister could be dying. Now Tess has to fill a new role: the strong one. Because if she doesn’t hold it together, who will?
This was a hard book to read, mainly because of the subject matter. Cancer is one of those things that you know exists in the world, however, we think that we are invincible and it will never impact us. That is not the case for Tess’ sister Kristina. She’s the perfect daughter, popular, athletic and into boys and makeup and Tess’ mom prefers her over Tess. Nobody notices Tess at school and she is the outcast. Everything changes when Tess’ family discovers that Kristina has cancer. Tess begins to be noticed at school, but not for the right reasons. Everyone is talking to her because they want to find out the latest on Kristina’s cancer and how she is doing. It all starts to be too much and Tess can’t handle it.
I found Tess’, Jeremy’s and Nick’s characters the most relatable and developed. We didn’t really get a chance to really know Kristina beyond the surface. The twist towards the end was shocking and I wasn’t expecting it. It was like ‘wow, did that just really happen’? The book definitely impacted my mood for a few days and made me really think about what kind of world we live in. Janet Gurtler tackles the story line really well and it feels realistic.
This is my second book by this author and she is going on my auto-read list. Her writing style grabs at you and your feelings, it makes you look at the world in a different way. There is no sugar coating in any of her books and she tells it like it is, what you do with it is a different story. Although this was a difficult read, I will be re-reading it sometime in the future. Sometimes when you re-read books, you tend to find out more and see things more clearly from when you originally read it.
Rating: 4/5 Stars