It's Not You, It's Me


Publication Date: 31 Aug. 2021
Format: Paperback / softback

ISBN 9781760526078

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    Holly Fitzgerald has inexplicably woken up inside the body of an LA teenager called Trinity Byrne in 1980--trapping Trinity in Holly's forty-year-old body back in Melbourne, 2020.

    Mind. Officially. Blown.

    Holly finds herself navigating a brand-new body, family and cute boy next door--not to mention rock band that might just make it, and potential kidnapper.

    Meanwhile, lies intersect with truth, hurtling both Holly and Trinity towards a dangerous fate as the connections between them grow deeper and stranger than either could have ever imagined.

    Information

    Book Type: Senior High
    Age Group: 15 years +
    Traffic Lights: Amber/Red
    Class Novel: No
    Good Reads Rating: 4/5
    Literary Rating: 4/5

    Review

    It's February 29, 2020 and Holly, an art teacher living in Melbourne, is celebrating her 40th birthday. A friend gifts her an orange 1980s Brother typewriter. When she begins to write a thank you note, she is suddenly flung back into the past where she wakes up in the body of an LA teenager, Trinity. LA in the 80s is being stalked by a serial killer known as the "Mariposa Murderer.'

    Lewis, her neighbour and classmate, finds Trinity (really Holly in Trinity's body) collapsed on the sidewalk. He says that he stumbled on a man trying to force her into his car. Holly is confused but plays along as Lewis takes her home. Her family and friends think Trinity is acting strange, but Holly brushes them off by saying she has a concussion. Holly is able to access Trinity's memories, and can do things--like play the guitar--from her muscle memory.

    Holly tries to discover why she has been sent back to Trinity's body 40 years in the past. She begins to type a letter on the "Brother Orange' and Trinity replies: she is stuck in Holly's body in the future. Their lives are connected: both were born on the 29th of February, both were born in LA, and both have the rare "Rhnull' blood type. Holly was an unplanned baby who was mostly abandoned by her young mother and cared for by her grandmother, while Trinity has two loving, but currently separated, parents and a younger sister, Loolah.

    During an ouija board session with Trinity's friends, Holly discovers the message "HELP TRINITY HOLLY.' Holly and Trinity communicate using the typewriter, with Holly believing that was sent back to "fix' Trinity's life. Trinity, in contrast, makes it her mission to "ruin' Holly's life until she switches them back. The two seem to have swapped due to a cosmic event called the "Date of Resetting,' which occurs on the last 29th day in February for the millenia.

    Trinity's mom, an obstetrician, delivers baby Holly at the hospital. Holly's mother met her father on her European travels, where the two had a brief romance. She goes to LA to track him down, as neither knew about the pregnancy, but discovered that he had died in an accident. While donating blood for baby Holly, she sees a man that looks like her father at the hospital and thinks that her mother has lied to her. The man seems to recognise her.

    Holly, as Trinity, accepts a lift from her "father' and he takes her to his home. She realises that it is not her father, who really had passed away, but his brother. He was the one trying to get Trinity into his car when she fainted and they switched bodies. Holly knocks the man, Holly's uncle, unconscious--thereby saving Trinity from being the serial killer's victim. Her mission seemingly complete, Holly and Trinity return to their own bodies. When Trinity returns to her life, she likes some of the changes and her family decides to adopt baby Holly. Both have new futures ahead of them, their paths entwined by a mysterious event.

    A fun body-swap story that, despite the subject matter, is playful and an easy read. In the vein of Pretty Little Liars, the serial killer plot is minor and never descriptive. Readers will enjoy the fast pace and mystery elements.

    Themes

    time, fate, mystery, crime, serial killers, punk music, body swap, time travel

    Content Notes

    1. Language: dick x 2, shit x 5, f**k x 10. 2. Susie smokes a cigarette. Holly refuses and calls them "cancer sticks' (p. 85). Smoking (p. 125, 224). 3. The girls conduct a "seance'. They use an ouija board which belongs to Susie's mother (a medium). The typewriter appears to move on its own. (p. 87). Susie's mum is a medium, and she predicts the "Date of Resetting'. (p. 227-9). 4. Holly wonders about whether her boyfriend, Micheal, will sleep with Trinity (while she is stuck in Holly's body) (p. 106). April calls the images Lewis has taken of Trinity for his art project "like sex on a stick." (p. 205). Trinity kisses Lewis (p. 268). 5. The girls shoplift at the mall and Holly is uneasy about it (p. 132). 6. Trinity (Holly) kicks the man who kidnapped her, the Mariposa Murderer, knocking him unconscious (p. 252).

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