Sunday, January 12, 2014

Review: Twigs by Alison Ashley Formento

Title: Twigs
Author: by Alison Ashley Formento
Format: Hardcover, 272 pages
Pub. Date: September 18th 2013
Source: Goodreads First Reads

One star.

Twigs is a small girl with a big load of problems. Her mother is starting to date again, her father walked out on the family, and her little sister is focused on the dating and games that come along with high school. Things only intensify when a crazy woman comes into her work, and things get worse from there when she gets the news that her older brother is missing in Iraq. Twigs has to put herself to the test to keep it all together and to fight for what's important to her.


I wanted to like this book. I did. I was excited to receive it from the Goodreads First Reads program. However the title character, Twigs, made this nearly impossible for me to do so.

One of the things that turns me off of a book the fastest is slut-shaming, and it was clearly a theme in this book. Twigs makes all sorts of snap judgments about women, including her sister and mother, because they have men in their lives. I found this especially irritating in regards to her mother, who is actually dating Lou. Not sleeping around, not having wild orgies in the living room. Dating. Bitter much?

And while we're on the topic of her mom and Lou, Twigs comes off as an extremely rude character. She calls him Deaf Lou. Creatively, this is because he's deaf. Is that really necessary? Would she have called him Fat Lou or Lazy Eye Lou? It's disrespectful and really shows off her true colors, in my opinion.

Another reason why I found Twigs rude and unlikable is because she down talks her college. She goes to a community college that is a lot of students' last resort. We have a college like this in my town too. But she makes a lot of remarks about the people who go there and how it's a joke and a stepping stone and things like that. First off, you go there. Have some self-respect. Good for the people who go there who are trying to do something better with their education. I don't think that's something that's ridicule-worthy. As someone who has had to take breaks from school due to financial hardships, this struck a bad chord with me for sure.

As for Twigs' height, I think it's great that the author gave her lead girl a "flaw" and made it a part of the story. It just wasn't realistic to me, though. I'm barely over five foot myself, and I have never had a stranger comment about my height, even during an unpleasant exchange. Family and friends? Sure. But strangers don't really care, at least in my experiences.

And then there's Helen. The supposed-to-be-lovable-crazy-woman that goes on a tirade at the drug store after she found out her husband was with somebody else. She proceeds to steal his car, and get Twigs involved in other such shenanigans. This may have been quirky to some, but it was all kinds of red flags and disturbing to me. Namely because I've had one of my dad's exes stalk us. It's not cute. It's uncomfortable and unsettling to just see her places, or to find notes taped to your windows.

I'm not even going to get in depth about the amount of drama in this book, because I think that some readers will find it engaging. I personally however found it to be too much, especially when I'm not all too fond of the characters involved with it all.

This is a young adult contemporary genre book. If you enjoy books with a lot of drama or short protagonists, this might be for you, but it wasn't a book for me. Thanks to Goodreads First Reads for my copy.


  1. I tried to read this when I first started blogging last year. I hated the main character. I thought she was a judgmental ass. The Deaf Lou thing finally pushed me to a point where I had to walk away from the book entirely.

  2. Oh :( Disliking the MC that much wuold make me put a book donw!