Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Review of Flip by Martyn Bedford


Alex wakes up one morning after a night out, and he’s in a strange bed in a strange house.  Someone is shouting for him from downstairs, but they’re calling, “Flip!” He’s sure it’s just some kind of mix-up, until he gets his first look in a mirror and doesn’t recognize the person he sees. How did he end up in someone else’s body? Can he get anyone to believe that he isn’t who they think he is? And what happened in the 6 months since his last memory as the old Alex, and his first memory as Flip? About the only one who knows that Alex isn’t Flip is the Garamond family retriever, Beagle, who growls at him each time he sees him. Alex is confused and desperate, but, at the same time, he’s kind of fascinated by his new life and family. There are some great things about being Flip (being popular at school is one.  Having any number of girlfriends is another), but he’d rather be himself again. Flip’s family and friends are bewildered by his new habits (really his old habits), and it’s funny to watch Alex having to deal with a body that doesn’t work the same way his own does. When he abandons cricket and hanging out with his crude friends, his buddies are really worried. Then he falls for a sensitive, intelligent girl. Alex finds other people on the internet who have experienced what they call psychic evacuation –when a soul leaves a body and enters another body, usually because of the imminent death of their own body. I’ve watched lots of movies that involve people swapping bodies, but it’s always with someone they know. It’s really intriguing to watch Alex try to navigate a life as someone he’s never met, and surrounded by people he doesn’t know. There’s plenty of suspense as Alex tries to figure out why his soul took over Flip’s body, and how he can get back into his own before it’s too late. Review by Stacy Church