Second Chance Sunday – Thumped by Megan McCafferty

Second Chance Sunday – Thumped by Megan McCaffertyThumped by Megan McCafferty
Series: Bumped #2
Published by Balzer + Bray
Published: April 23, 2013
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four-stars

Megan McCafferty’s Bumped series of books are must-read teen dystopian fiction, along with Ally Condie’s Matched series and Veronica Roth’s Divergent trilogy. Thumped, the sequel to Bumped, manages to be satiric, scary, and romantic at the same time. It continues the story of separated-at-birth twins, Melody and Harmony, girls as engaging as McCafferty’s Jessica Darling. These sisters are the most popular teen girls on the planet. To their fans, they seem to be living ideal lives. Harmony is married to Ram and living in Goodside, the religious community that once meant everything to her. Melody has the genetically flawless Jondoe as her coupling partner, which means money and status—and a bright future. But both girls are hiding secrets. And they are each pining for the only guys they can’t have…. The biggest risk of all could be to finally tell the truth.

I was nervous reading this one. Bumped was such a great story that I was worried that Thumped wouldn’t live up to its awesomeness. Not to mention the fact that the description confused me. But I must say that McCafferty not only did an amazing follow up to Bumped, but she also left me wanting more of these characters.

Thumped picks up about 8 months after Bumped left off. Harmony is back with her church community and her husband Ram pregnant with Jondoe’s twins. She thought it would be best to go back but things are complicated and not getting any better. Melody, on the other hand, is still in Otherside the princess of a media frenzy that is now surrounding the twins of The Hotties as they have been branded. She and Jondoe are pretending to be an item to keep up appearances and another big secret…the world also thinks Melody is pregnant with twins. When Harm comes back to Otherside the twins’ whole world gets shaken up and not only are truths finally revealed but both girls seem to finally figure out who they are and what they want out of life.

Honestly, I really enjoyed this story. Sometimes when reading a sequel you can actually feel like you are reading two different books. There is no flow in some so it almost seems like you aren’t reading a continuation but an entirely different story. That wasn’t the case here. I almost felt like this was just an extension of the first book. The characters were all the same, minus some flaws I found with Zen this time around, and the situations and circumstances were the same. It was like coming home and just following on with their journey. I liked seeing where Melody and Zen’s relationship was and how Jondoe was missing Harmony terribly. There were also some twists in this story that I didn’t expect and some I saw coming from the first page.

Really what I liked the most was the message at the end. Melody explained perfectly what was being taken away from this teenage girls by parents, media and peer pressure. By these kids being forced to bump they weren’t really getting to make any choices on their own and it just wasn’t right.  McCafferty did an excellent job of pointing out exactly what the problem was in Harmony and Melody’s world and it was done with tact and great execution. I know there is likely no third book in the works, but for the record, I wouldn’t be opposed if she changed her mind. Really a great series.

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Second Chance Sunday: Bumped by Megan McCafferty

Second Chance Sunday: Bumped by Megan McCaffertyBumped by Megan McCafferty
Series: Bumped #1
Published by HarperCollins
Published: April 26th 2011
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five-stars

When a virus makes everyone over the age of eighteen infertile, would-be parents pay teen girls to conceive and give birth to their children, making teens the most prized members of society. Girls sport fake baby bumps and the school cafeteria stocks folic-acid-infused food.

Sixteen-year-old identical twins Melody and Harmony were separated at birth and have never met until the day Harmony shows up on Melody’s doorstep. Up to now, the twins have followed completely opposite paths. Melody has scored an enviable conception contract with a couple called the Jaydens. While they are searching for the perfect partner for Melody to bump with, she is fighting her attraction to her best friend, Zen, who is way too short for the job.

Harmony has spent her whole life in Goodside, a religious community, preparing to be a wife and mother. She believes her calling is to convince Melody that pregging for profit is a sin. But Harmony has secrets of her own that she is running from.

When Melody is finally matched with the world-famous, genetically flawless Jondoe, both girls’ lives are changed forever. A case of mistaken identity takes them on a journey neither could have ever imagined, one that makes Melody and Harmony realize they have so much more than just DNA in common.

It took a little while for this book to intrigue me before I actually decided to add it to my to-read list. I wasn’t sure if I would find the premise all that realistic. I thought it could be gimmicky. But after some small prodding and suggesting, I caved and added it. And then when I got a great deal on it for an eBook, I bought it right up. And so glad I did.

The story of Melody and Harmony isn’t one that is easily forgettable. Identical twins, separated at birth, sent to live in two different environments. The devil and the angel if you would. Harmony grew up very religious and God-fearing, while Melody grew up in a place that is full of teenagers getting pregnant for profit. Both girls are from opposite ends of the spectrum yet they share one thing in common, their face. After some initial awkwardness things happen between the two of them that will forever change the people around them and themselves for a long time to come.

When I first started this book I found Harmony over the top annoying with her preacher like attitude. But as the book progressed I actually became fond of her. I started to pay attention to what she was saying about Goodside and I started to realize how cult-like it had been. She was just behaving how she had been taught and there was nothing really behind that. And Melody I liked right away. She was a straight-shooting average teen that had made choices based on her parents and what they wanted her to do. Actually the more I examined the girls the more alike I saw them to be.

This book was a story of figuring out what you want and making choices for yourself and not for anyone else. With the help of Jondoe and Zen, these girls did exactly that damn the consequences. In the end, I really found myself loving this book and I can’t wait for the next chapter for these two remarkable girls.

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