Saturday, September 19, 2009

Same Difference by Siobhan Vivian

Emily's summer is going to be a little different this year. Instead of tanning and hanging out by the pool with her best friend Meg, Emily will be attending a prestigious art program in Philadelphia a few days a week. Coming from a wealthy suburb in New Jersey, Emily isn't like the kids at the school, who are extremely serious about their art and individuality. Emily doesn't feel unique, special, or talented; that is, until she meets Fiona. Fiona is passionate about art and some of her enthusiasm begins to rub off on Emily. But when the old and new Emily's clash, Emily must decide what kind of person she really wants to be, and discover who her true friends really are.

So I really wanted to read Same Difference because it takes place in Philadelphia, and I live about twenty minutes outside of the city. It was awesome seeing all the famous landmarks, like the William Penn statue and South Street. Not too many books are set in this area, so it fun to recognize the different places Emily visits. I'm not a big art person, but I liked reading about the art program and seeing all the different projects Emily worked on. Unfortunately, Emily started getting a little annoying because she was trying too hard to be unique. She comes from a town where everyone conforms and wears the same type of preppy clothes. But when she comes to Philly, everyone is the opposite and is obsessed with being different. So Em has to figure out who she wants to be. I also didn't like how she drops her best friend because Meg isn't artsy like her new friends. But everything works out in the end, so I guess it's okay. Emily learns that she doesn't have to wear crazy clothes and hairstyles to be an individual. I think anyone who likes art or coming of age stories will enjoy Same Difference.

7 out of 10.

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