Juli Baker devoutly believes in three things: the sanctity of trees (especially her beloved sycamore), the wholesomeness of the eggs she collects from her backyard flock of chickens, and that someday she will kiss Bryce Loski. Ever since she saw Bryce’s baby blues back in second grade, Juli has been smitten. Unfortunately, Bryce has never felt the same. Frankly, he thinks Juli Baker is a little weird–after all, what kind of freak raises chickens and sits in trees for fun? Then, in eighth grade, everything changes. Bryce begins to see that Juli’s unusual interests and pride in her family are, well, kind of cool. And Juli starts to think that maybe Bryce’s brilliant blue eyes are as empty as the rest of Bryce seems to be. After all, what kind of jerk doesn’t care about other people’s feelings about chickens and trees? With Flipped, mystery author Wendelin Van Draanen has taken a break from her Sammy Keyes series, and the result is flipping fantastic. Bryce and Juli’s rants and raves about each other ring so true. Teen readers will quickly identify with at least one of these hilarious feuding egos, if not both. This is a perfect introduction to the adolescent war between the sexes.
“Flipped” is a terrific movie that falls short as a family-friendly film in the language department. The story itself features young love as Juli Baker falls for Bryce Loski when he and his family move next door. The story is well rounded. Bryce ignores Juli until later when he has romantic eyes for her. She is not sure about her feelings at the time and it becomes his turn to wait.
There is plenty of charm in the form of the characters who are so vividly brought to life, particularly by lead actors Madeline Carroll (Juli) and Callan McAuliffe (Bryce). Most of the story takes place in the early sixties and by eighth grade the two young teens both have feelings for one another but don’t know how to let the other one know. Juli takes delight in collecting eggs from the chickens she cares for and she gives Bryce and his family free eggs every week. Little does she know that Bryce’s father is fearful about possible salmonella poisoning and doesn’t want the eggs. Bryce accepts them from Juli and promptly throws them into the garbage every week after she leaves. When she finds out, it is one of a few hurdles they will have to clear in order to find a lasting relationship.
We were charmed by this story which alludes to a more innocent time and yet reflects the same fears teens face today in fitting in and dealing with the confusion of blossoming love. We are, regrettably, unable to award the movie our Dove “Family-Approved” Seal due to three incidents of strong language.