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Brother of Mine
     

Brother of Mine

by Chris Westwood
 
Sixteen-year-old twins Nick and Tony, always envious of each other's talents, reveal in alternate chapters their differing perspectives of their sometimes complicated relationship. "Alex, Nick and Tony are well-drawn, sympathetic characters, and the device of alternating the boys' narratives is especially effective . . . the action is well paced, nonpredictable, and

Overview

Sixteen-year-old twins Nick and Tony, always envious of each other's talents, reveal in alternate chapters their differing perspectives of their sometimes complicated relationship. "Alex, Nick and Tony are well-drawn, sympathetic characters, and the device of alternating the boys' narratives is especially effective . . . the action is well paced, nonpredictable, and engrossing." --School Library Journal

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Twins Nick and Tony look alike, but their personalities could hardly be more different. Tony, the ``older brother'' by a few minutes, is socially at ease; Nick is intense, moody and quiet. An explosive sibling rivalry has grown up between them, fed by their differing perceptions of the same situations. Over the course of a few days, their mostly submerged hostility escalates, builds up to violence and then, tentatively, shifts into real communication and a new start. The brothers tell their story through alternating narratives, carefully structured to prevent the reader from falling into facile judgments. Westwood makes less use of the supernatural than in Shock Waves ; here it is present in a shared dream of pre-birth struggle that reveals the depth of Tony and Nick's mutual obsession. Tightly and effectively plotted, this suspenseful melodrama poses intriguing questions about the impact of conflicting points of view. Ages 14-up. (Apr.)
School Library Journal
Gr 6-9-According to Nick's reoccurring dream, the rivalry between him and his identical twin, Tony, began prenatally. For 16 years the unspoken conflict has endured, and now it is about to reach an almost deadly climax over- what else?- a girl. Nick meets Alex at a party. The next day she mistakes Tony for his twin and he plays along. The masquerade continues and the relationship rapidly intensifies. When Nick realizes that Tony has once again snatched away his happiness, he traps his brother in the basement of an unfinished house. In Poe-like fashion, he visits and feeds his prisoner while enjoying a sense of dominance for the first time. But also, for the first time, they begin to communicate. In a dramatic scene, Nick is overcome with guilt and by the realization that they truly love and need each other. After releasing Tony, he runs off in a reckless frenzy and is struck by a car. The melodrama increases as the major characters pass through his hospital room, saying and feeling all the right things and learning all the proper lessons about the hurtful pitfalls of a self-centered world view. There are also too many coincidences concerning Alex's twin sisters, an allegorical novel her father has written about competitiveness, and the resolution of the brothers' problems. However, Alex, Nick, and Tony are well-drawn, sympathetic characters, and the device of alternating the boys' narratives is especially effective. Although the message is heavy handed, the action is well paced, nonpredictable, and engrossing.-Margaret Cole, Oceanside Library, NY

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780395661376
Publisher:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date:
04/18/1994
Pages:
186
Product dimensions:
5.82(w) x 8.55(h) x 0.88(d)
Age Range:
14 Years

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