Initial reaction: There were parts of this book I liked from Sarah Mlynowski, but I think I had the same issues with this book as I had with one of her other works – it lays the humor on a little too thick for my liking and missed some interesting opportunities with a unique premise.
Moral of this respective story: Teens with superpowers (or something close to it) can be a potentially hazardous, crazy situation. Especially if it involves your entire homeroom developing the power to read each other’s minds, including yours.
The scenario has the potential to be hilarious as well as thought-provoking, as the cast of characters in “Don’t Even Think About It” find themselves suddenly with the powers to read each other’s minds after getting the class flu shot. It’s told in individual third-person perspectives as well as a “we” perspective (because the class has something akin to “group think” with their respective abilities. That creates quite a bit of drama, like MacKenzie’s dilemma in whether to tell her boyfriend Cooper she cheated on him that summer, or Pi, despite being one of the smartest girls in her class, potentially using her new abilities to get ahead by reading other smart people’s minds (and *cough* cheat). These teens have the potential to do some bad and/or reckless things with their newfound powers, but there are others who find use for it in good/funny/cute terms (being able to further a relationship and get their first kiss or manage to run a successful fortune-telling booth at a fair).
This respective story was hit and miss with me. Some moments made me chuckle while others I felt like facepalming at how self-absorbed some of the teens used their powers for (read: sexual innuendo, some not so much on the innuendo). As well, some of the humor to me felt either a bit over the top or more force fed than I would have liked. (The pop culture references peppered in were a bit on the side of overkill, though some mentions were in decent humor.) Surprisingly, I was invested in the story for what it offered. It kept me reading, I felt like I really wanted to know what happened for the slice of life, at odds scenarios each of the teens found themselves within. I guess I shouldn’t have been too surprised at the ending, although abrupt. Some of them took the offer, others didn’t, and that means? Room for a follow-up.
There were enough moments in this one to keep me interested in reading the second book, so I’ll definitely peruse that sometime soon. For this one though, it was okay. Had some fun moments, had an interesting slice of life mend with an interesting supernatural ability, but I don’t know if this book made the most of what it had to offer with that premise.
Overall score: 2.5/5 stars.
Note: I received this as an ARC from NetGalley, from the publisher.