The relationship of siblings is an ever complicated and constantly evolving process. It can hold a family together like glue or even tear it apart leaving a huge gaping hole. But what happens when that relationship seems to define who you are and how you live your life? We may not all have siblings, but we’ve all seen the designations: the pretty one, the smart one, and the rebel. Most families do it to some degree even unconsciously. The question is what do those labels do to the children to whom they are attached? Once labeled are you destined to remain that way?
Lindsey is the smart one, the brainy girl who never has time for clothes, make-up, or romantic relationships because she’s busy building her career, her future. Lindsey is all business. However her twin Alex could not be more different. She is carefree and gorgeous; a magnet for attention while Lindsey mostly fades into the background. If people were colors Alex would be red like her signature hair and Lindsey the pale gray of a boring but tasteful business suit. But what happens when roles change or do the people in them change first? When confronted with the unthinkable what happens to carefree and overly responsible?
In Sarah Pekkenan’s debut novel The Opposite of Me explores the world of sibling rivalry and identity. Pekkanen dares to ask the question: Which came first: the personality traits or the labels attached to them? As a member of a family with a trilogy of sisters, I dove into this book with ease and did not surface until the last page had been read. As a woman I can identify with both sisters in this novel, as a sister I find myself wondering about my own labels—and that to me makes a good book. If a book makes you think and be introspective, well that’s magic and The Opposite of Me has done just that. Pekkanen has hit the nail on the head with her unique premise and original observations on what makes us who we are when we are part of a larger group. Lindsey is a star character with warmth, humor, and shape; she feels real and that makes the book genuine and warm—an absolute must read that will make every woman think and every sister make a phone call.