Book Review: Dead Flip by Sara Farizan
You never know what will make you want to read a book. Supernatural pinball machines? Now that’s a catchy hook that will make anyone want to pick up a book. Riley was the first one to pick up our copy of Dead Flip by Sara Farizan and read it. She shares her book review below. But first, here’s a look at the Publisher’s Book Description to give you a broad overview of how they’re trying to sell the book. I’m not going to lie, the supernatural pinball machine and Stranger Thing vibes right as season 4 of the popular Netflix show comes out is a great marketing tactic. But what did a teen reader think of the book? Read on to find out.
Publishers Book Description:
Growing up, Cori, Maz, and Sam were inseparable best friends, sharing their love for Halloween, arcade games, and one another. Now it’s 1992, Sam has been missing for five years, and Cori and Maz aren’t speaking anymore. How could they be, when Cori is sure Sam is dead and Maz thinks he may have been kidnapped by a supernatural pinball machine?
These days, all Maz wants to do is party, buy CDs at Sam Goody, and run away from his past. Meanwhile, Cori is a homecoming queen, hiding her abiding love of horror movies and her queer self under the bubblegum veneer of a high school queen bee. But when Sam returns—still twelve years old while his best friends are now seventeen—Maz and Cori are thrown back together to solve the mystery of what really happened to Sam the night he went missing. Beneath the surface of that mystery lurk secrets the friends never told one another, then and now. And Sam’s is the darkest of all . . .
Award-winning author of If You Could Be Mine and Here to Stay Sara Farizan delivers edge-of-your-seat terror as well as her trademark referential humor, witty narration, and insightful characters.
Recently I finished reading Dead Flip by Sara Farizan, and it was full of so many surprises. I was expecting just a kind of scary and humorous book that would be a fun read, but it tackled a lot of issues that I was not expecting to come from a book about an evil pinball machine.
First of all, what surprised me most was the way this book handled the grief of losing a friend. There wasn’t just one way that every person dealt with the grief of the loss they felt, there was multiple grieving processes that contributed to the development of each character. Both of the main characters who lost their friend tried to get away from the person that they were before the loss of their friend. I appreciated that this book continued to show the effects of the grief over the six years that the characters had lost their friend.
Also, I was very happy to see the regrowth of the friendship between Maz and Cori over the course of the book. It felt like such a realistic representation of what it would be like to rekindle a friendship. There were awkward moments, but there were also moments where you felt like they had never stopped being friends. Their friendship was something that I was really happy to see, especially since in this book Cori felt a lot of pressure to grow away from her male friends due to the time period and her age.
That was another thing that I enjoyed about this book: the specific issues that were tackled during the time period. This book takes place from 1987 to 1994, and there were certain things in that time that were discouraged (and still are), such as homosexuality. Cori is struggling with the admission of her sexuality throughout this book, and her character development was some of the best I had read. It was really comforting to read her go from someone who was trying to hide her sexuality to someone who was finally happy in a relationship with someone who truly cared about her.
This book was extremely fun to read with its many interesting quirks, but what really made it enjoyable to read was the wonderful character development and regrowing friendship. I may have been confused about the idea of a book with an evil pinball machine in the beginning, but it is something that I really enjoyed.
Coming August 30th from Algonquin Young Readers
About Riley Jensen
Riley Jensen is a college student studying forensic chemistry. She likes to read books about murder and friendship because those go together really well.
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