Meet Sloane Emily Jacobs: a seriously stressed-out figure-skater from Washington, D.C., who choked during junior nationals and isn’t sure she’s ready for a comeback. What she does know is that she’d give anything to escape the mass of misery that is her life.
Now meet Sloane Devon Jacobs, a spunky ice hockey player from Philly who’s been suspended from her team for too many aggressive hip checks. Her punishment? Hockey camp, now, when she’s playing the worst she’s ever played. If she messes up? Her life will be over.
When the two Sloanes meet by chance in Montreal and decide to trade places for the summer, each girl thinks she’s the lucky one: no strangers to judge or laugh at Sloane Emily, no scouts expecting Sloane Devon to be a hero. But it didn’t occur to Sloane E. that while avoiding sequins and axels she might meet a hockey hottie—and Sloane D. never expected to run into a familiar (and very good-looking) face from home. It’s not long before the Sloanes discover that convincing people you’re someone else might be more difficult than being yourself.
(Summary from GoodReads)
It’s amazing how quickly one little tidbit can make me want to read a book. When Lauren Morrill mentioned that the movie The Cutting Edge inspired her to write Being Sloane Jacobs, I immediately bumped this one up on my TBR. Being Sloane Jacobs isn’t an entirely light-hearted book, but it reminded me of so many cheesy 90s movies and was so cute that I had a total blast reading it.
As others have mentioned, the two Sloane Jacobs switching places is rather reminiscent of The Parent Trap. I was totally cool with this as I loved The Parent Trap as a child. Morill handled the believability of this situation incredibly well, though I found it helped if I didn’t think too hard about it.
Morill’s debut has serious elements. Each Sloane Jacobs has a problem that she’s trying to run away from, and both of their problems were real and realistically wrapped up. Obviously, this is also kind of a serious book in that it deals with two girls trying to figure out the direction their athletic careers should take. The more serious issues were nicely balanced with stories of romance and friendship. I had a lot of swoony and giggly moments while reading this book.
Being Sloane Jacobs was a book that made me incredibly happy and was even one of my favorite last year. It has particular appeal to readers who grew up watching The Cutting Edge and The Parent Trap. I’ll be curious to see if it holds up as well among younger readers, or if they struggle more with the believability of this premise. Personally, I just enjoyed reading it, and will turn to it again when I want a fun, feel good read. Sometimes that’s all that matters.
Disclosure: I received a digital galley of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review.