“Twin sisters Jack and Jill were seventeen when they found their way home and were packed off to Eleanor West’s Home for Wayward Children.
This is the story of what happened first…
Jacqueline was her mother’s perfect daughter—polite and quiet, always dressed as a princess. If her mother was sometimes a little strict, it’s because crafting the perfect daughter takes discipline.
Jillian was her father’s perfect daughter—adventurous, thrill-seeking, and a bit of a tom-boy. He really would have preferred a son, but you work with what you’ve got.
They were five when they learned that grown-ups can’t be trusted.
They were twelve when they walked down the impossible staircase and discovered that the pretense of love can never be enough to prepare you a life filled with magic in a land filled with mad scientists and death and choices.”
I LOVED THIS BOOK.
After reading the first book in this series Every Heart a Doorway a couple of months ago (you can find my review of it here!) and loving it, I knew that I was fully prepared to continue on with the series when I had the chance.
Most people that I have seen around the bookish community that have read this series say that this book is even better than the first.
I completely agree with that.
Starting off with the characters, I found both Jack and Jill to be very relatable. I found more traits that I could relate to in Jack rather than Jill. Jack has these qualities to her that can be very girly or kind of tomboyish and I have some of those same traits myself. I also found Jill to be an interesting character. Seeing her grow from what see was like at the beginning of this book and what she was like at the end knowing what her actions resulted in during Every Heart a Doorway. It was a very interesting experience reading from both of their perspectives.
As far as the romance aspects of this book. I liked how it was barely mentioned at all. I loved the romance between Jack and her love interest (who, unfortunately, cannot remember the name of). LGBTQIA+ romance isn’t something we see a lot of in YA fantasy books, especially between 2 girls, so seeing it in this book put a smile on my face. It had a tragic ending but overall, I really liked their romance while it lasted.
As far as the plot, I think it could have been stronger. This was such a short book and although I think the author did a great job of packing a lot of information into just 160 pages, I wish it would have been a little longer. There were some questions that I had that I never got answered (I believe those might be answered in the future books of this series). The plot jumped forward in time a little to much in my personal opinion. Despite these problems, I did enjoy what happened otherwise.
Finally going into the representation, there was plenty to please everyone. Every Heart a Doorway had quite a few characters that were a part of the LGBTQIA+ community and so did this book. Like I mentioned earlier, we had a female-female romance that took place which was, in a way, a major part of the plot of this book. Every book in this series has had those moments of great representation and even though I myself am not a part of the LGBTQIA+ community, I know so many people in my life who are. I always ask them if those moments were represented correctly and so far all of them have said yes.
Overall, I’m so glad I continued on with this series. It is well worth the hype that it has been getting around the internet and bookish community. They may be short but they definitely pack a punch. They all have this underlying message that we have to uncover. For this book, that message was telling us that we don’t always have to live up to the expectations of our parents. We pave our way on our on path. I can’t wait to read the next book!