Better together

Christine Riccio, 1990-

Book - 2021

Jamie's an aspiring stand-up comic in Los Angeles with a growing case of stage anxiety. Siri's a stunning ballerina from New Jersey dealing with a career-changing injury. When the two girls meet at the Rediscover Yourself retreat in Colorado, they discover they are sisters separated as young children by their bitterly divorced parents. With some fortuitous magic, the two change places to confront their pasts.

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Location Call Number   Status
Young Adult Area YOUNG ADULT FICTION/Riccio Christin Checked In
Young adult fiction
Domestic fiction
New York : Wednesday Books 2021.
First edition
Physical Description
439 pages ; 25 cm
Main Author
Christine Riccio, 1990- (author)
Review by School Library Journal Reviews

Gr 9 Up—Siri, an 18-year-old ballet dancer, receives the devastating news that a back injury has derailed her career. Jamie, a 20-year-old aspiring stand-up comedian, is unsure about her future after a humiliating performance. Both girls turn to the Rediscover Yourself retreat to refocus their lives. While neither girl attends willingly, both hope the experience will be life-changing. It is, just not in a way either girl imagined. When the two literally run into each other, Jamie recognizes Siri as the sister she has not seen for 14 years, due to their parents' bitter divorce and custody agreement. After spending the week tentatively reconnecting with Siri, Jamie convinces her to pull a Parent Trap switch. The sisters, with a boost from a magic glitter bomb, swap homes, parents, and personas. But the big reveal falls flat; the pair discovers revenge is unfulfilling and reality is messier than a movie script. With the assistance of a therapist, the sisters examine how their manipulated upbringing shaped their emotional development, and they eventually attain a more satisfying rapprochement with their parents. The overall read is compelling, particularly the after story, as the girls pick up the messy pieces. There is romance for both girls; one is heterosexual and the other is bisexual. The sisters present as white, their love interests are Pakistani and Filipino, and other minor characters vary in race. VERDICT Both realistic fiction and romance readers will enjoy this updated Parent Trap that focuses on the psychological trauma wreaked by selfish grown-ups.—Nancy Nadig, Penn Manor Sch. Dist., Lancaster, PA Copyright 2021 School Library Journal.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

With the help of some fortuitous magic, sisters Jamie and Siri, reunited after being apart for 10 years, switch places to get to know and confront their estranged parents while dealing with a parade of hijinks and budding romances. 150,000 first printing. Simultaneous eBook. Illustrations.

Review by Publisher Summary 2

The Holiday meets The Parent Trap in this clever comedic whirlwind brimming with romance, and just a touch of magic.Estranged sisters Jamie and Siri are quarter-life crisis-ing: hard. With adulthood breathing down their necks, suddenly their promising career aspirations feel way out of reach, and romance — completely implausible. After thirteen years apart, on opposite coasts, the sisters run into each other at a nature retreat. Desperate for a change of pace, they decide to go home in each other’s stead to see how the other half lives. It doesn't take long to realize: swapping lives might be more than they bargained for. Turns out, pretending to be a sister you hardly know can really complicate your previously non-existent love life. Navigating their new surroundings proves to be a precarious task, but turns out there’s no better way to learn about yourself than by trying to live as someone else.