Review: Both of Me by Jonathan Friesen

21755125Release Date: December 23rd 2014

Publisher: Blink

Genres: Young Adult Contemporary/ Realistic Fiction

Format: Hardcover

Source: Publisher via Booklook Bloggers

My Rating: 3 Umbrellas

Find It: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N 


It was supposed to be just another flight, another escape into a foreign place where she could forget her past, forget her attachments. Until Clara found herself seated next to an alluring boy named Elias Phinn—a boy who seems to know secrets she has barely been able to admit to herself for years.

When her carry-on bag is accidentally switched with Elias’s identical pack, Clara uses the luggage tag to track down her things. At that address she discovers there is not one Elias Phinn, but two: the odd, paranoid, artistic, and often angry Elias she met on the plane, who lives in an imaginary world of his own making called Salem; and the kind, sweet, and soon irresistible Elias who greets her at the door, and who has no recollection of ever meeting Clara at all. As she learns of Elias’s dissociative identity disorder, and finds herself quickly entangled in both of Elias’s lives, Clara makes a decision that could change all of them forever. She is going to find out what the Salem Elias knows about her past, and how, even if it means playing along with his otherworldly quest. And she is going to find a way to keep the gentle Elias she’s beginning to love from ever disappearing again.



I liked the book, but it confused me to no end. Well, not really confused me, more like I just was not into it most of the time while reading. It has bouts of prolonged episodes that I found to be rather puzzling. Then there’s just enough concept to keep you interested. Which, in turn, saved the story.

Disassociate Identity Disorder is the focal point to this story. But let’s start with Clara, who has been through things that she’d rather forget about but can’t quite seem to get away from her past. She meets Elias on board an airplane. She is somewhat taken aback by his perceptiveness about her life. After realizing that she and Elias have walked off with each other’s bags, she tracks him down. When she sees him again, he is not the same boy that left her speechless on the plane. After learning about his disorder from his mother, Clara is determined to help Elias and to make him stay the boy that she first met. In order to help Elias #1, she must journey with Elias #2 to get a better understanding of the things that he deals with. Throughout their journey, you get to see what it is like for Elias and, therefore, get a better understanding of his disorder.

I really like the way that the author makes Elias this very likable character. My problem is that once I got to know a little about him, I started to drift off course with his personality. He’s this very charismatic guy one minute, and the next he’s all over the place. I am not being divert about his disorder, I am merely stating that it was very hard for me to keep up. And that led to me opening and closing this book too many times to count. Clara, on the other hand, I liked. She is young and trying to run away from her problems but running is not always the best answer. Her character, I’m sure, is very identifiable for some readers. The ending seemed like it was too precise. I didn’t get the way it ended to the rest of the story.

I’m not sure on the recommendation for this one, as I’m not sure WHO to recommend it to. This is another one of those books that are just not for me. Maybe others will enjoy it.



2 thoughts on “Review: Both of Me by Jonathan Friesen

    • It’s an acquired taste. I’m not even sure that young adults would like it, other than connecting with Clara. DID is too heavy a subject for a young mind. Hell, it was too much for me.


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