TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 6 July 2009
I don't know about anyone else, but whenever I hear the words Freaky and Friday, I automatically think back to Lindsay Lohan and Jamie Lee Curtis circa 2003. But this is a different FREAKY FRIDAY, the original, the better of the two in my opinion (I know there was another movie version in the 70s, but I've not seen it in years, and don't remember much about it besides Jodie Foster). This is the story of Annabel and Ellen Andrews, and Annabel needing to learn her lesson.
I will tell you now, don't expect the same exact story as the movie that you've probably seen at some point in your life; expect the same premise, but a better story. Annabel is the stereotypical 13-year-old girl: she's loud, bossy, and negative, hates her family and teachers, but loves her friends and annoying her brother. Annabel is a highly amusing narrator and she sees things like most kids do, i.e. better than adults give them credit for.
Annabel wakes up as her mother, gets dressed, fixes breakfast, sends Ben, aka Ape Face, and Annabel off to school, and then goes through her day in her mother's body. Dealing with all kinds of issues throughout the day, from the neighbor boy saying he loves her, losing both the kids, the police thinking she's crazy, and her husband's unexpected clients as guests, she handles it well...at first.
Not only does she have a wild ride, dealing with things her mother normally would have to deal with, she also has a school meeting to attend...about herself. She finds out things that she probably needed to hear, but things that hurt to hear, and that's where the lesson really starts to set in.
The majority of the story is told from Annabel's perspective, while she is in her mother's body, and that actually helps the humor even more. Take this little gem for instance: "Well, in case you're interested, a mouthful of heart is something like a mouthful of captured frog, and a mind in turmoil simply means all the blood in your body rushes around in your head, leaving you icy cold from the neck down. As for 'butterflies in the stomach,' there is no such thing. They are June bugs." You'll have to read the book to find out the context here, but there are plenty more humorous moments between the 175 pages that make up this book.
This is a quick read, but one I definitely recommend. It's funny and somewhat realistic, not in the whole switching bodies with your mother aspect, but in the way this family interacts with one another. I know that despite the length and the material that make up this adorable story, even I learned something about myself and I think everyone could take something away from this book, kids and parents alike.
The whole 1972 copyright may throw some people off, but don't let it; it's a story that is still relevant today and probably will continue to be for as long as there are 13-year-old girls with mothers and little brothers especially.
Reviewed by: Samantha Clanton, aka "Harlequin Twilight"