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Sophomore Switch

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3.51  ·  Rating Details ·  1,363 Ratings  ·  168 Reviews
Take an administrative snafu, a bad breakup, and what shall heretofore be known as "The Hot-Tub Incident," and you’ve got two unprepared sophomores on a semester abroad. For American party girl Tasha, an escape to Oxford may be a chance to ditch her fame as a tabloid temptress, but wading Uggs-deep in feminist theory is not her idea of a break. Meanwhile, the British half ...more
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published March 10th 2009 by Candlewick Press (first published January 1st 2009)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Blue
Apr 09, 2012 Blue rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2012
The beginning was fun (despite the unrealistic premise - I know from looking into exchange programs at my university that these things are typically arranged a year or so in advance), the middle was shaky and the end was a haphazard mess. That pretty much sums up Sophomore Switch in a nutshell.

I'll admit it, I didn't have very high expectations of this book; it sounded like the same old rehashed plot-line that we've seen a dozen times over on the YA scene. Despite this I picked it up anyway beca
...more
Nian
Sep 15, 2009 Nian rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2009
The beginning was practically perfect. No lie, either. The sophisticated writing style pulled me in quickly, and the characters were quite relatable and sounded just like any normal being that I might be friends with. I particularly liked the storyline - after all, I love the study abroad program and hope to participate once I'm in college - since the S.A.S.S series, which was about foreign exchange students and therefore practically the same, really sucked. I mean, there were a few mediocre ...more
Brittany Durrant
Jan 13, 2014 Brittany Durrant rated it it was amazing
Shelves: finished
I really enjoyed this book a lot. I thought "Sophomore Switch" was a great book. This book is about two girls, Tasha and Emily. Tasha goes to school in Santa Barbra, California, and Emily goes to Harvard in England, then Tasha got "famous" by having a video being posted for the world to see. Tasha decides she wants to go to Harvard because everyone kept teasing her in California and she was sick of it so after she made a bunch of calls they finally accepted her because there was an opening. ...more
Aura
Aug 01, 2012 Aura rated it it was amazing
This book is everything I want out of contemporary YA. The two main characters have their own individual voices and it is a pleasure to watch them learn how to deal with their problems as burgeoning adults. I liked them so much I was always a bit torn when POV would switch before getting caught up again. As a personal bugaboo I also heartily appreciate that the slang was realistic rather than being an adult caricature of what "the kids sound like these days". Best of all the plot flows naturally ...more
Danielle
Oct 30, 2010 Danielle rated it it was amazing
Shelves: for-review, chicklit
For Emily, leaving Oxford for a fresh start away from her recent ex is just what she was looking for. Unfortunately, she never imagined that her late decision would land her at the ever so popular party school U.C. Santa Barbra, switching places with the now tragically famous “Tasha”. Natasha is also looking for a clean slate, but for entirely different reasons. Her recent staring role in a hidden camera tv reality show has left her permanently scared and all she can think about is getting far ...more
Chrissy
Apr 03, 2012 Chrissy rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-in-2012, ebook
If I could describe SOPHOMORE SWITCH in just one word, it would surely be ADORABLE! But, I'm never *that* brief, so of course I'll be rambling way beyond that one word, you know!

This is basically the story of two girls from completely different lifestyles who end up swapping schools for a semester for a study abroad program. Emily, an uptight perfectionist with a detailed five-year plan for every aspect of her life, studies politics at Oxford. Natasha, a California blonde with a love for shoppin
...more
Kiley Akey
Oct 05, 2014 Kiley Akey rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: teenage girls
Sophomore Switch was a very interesting book, but I could guess what was going to happen very easily. In the beginning of the book there were two girls who switched colleges. One of the girls was from England and the other girl was from California. The girl from England was named Emily and she was super smart, attended Harvard University for her first few years of college, and was very innocent. She decided to go to the University of California because she broke up with her boyfriend and needed ...more
Shesten
Apr 06, 2011 Shesten rated it liked it
Shelves: hardcover, book-group
Plot Sketch: Natasha needs to escape the fall out from "The Hot Tub Incident," and Emily needs to experience America and get away after breaking up with jerkwad Sebastian, so these two enter a college exchange program. Tasha gets sent to Emily's PoliSci curriculum in Oxfrod and Emily to Tasha's Film studies at UCSB. The plot follows a path of self-discovery for both of the girls, with half of the book remarking on the differences in culture between California and Britain, and of course there are ...more
Nicole
Jul 29, 2015 Nicole rated it it was ok
I wasn't supremely interested in the concept of this book, mostly because I've been on a fantasy/supernatural kick recently and wasn't much feeling a contemporary novel. However, as a native Californian who has just completed her sophomore at UCSB, I couldn't pass up the chance to see how my school and my state were portrayed in writing.


I had quite a few issues with this book (the plot seemed disjointed to me, the ending was kind of lackluster, and what was with the extremely polarizing take on
...more
Alea
Mar 08, 2009 Alea rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-for-review
I found this to be a very fun and enjoyable book but also at the same time it brings issues that girls everywhere deal with, trying to be the real you but also a better version of yourself. I really liked that the story took two girls that were polar opposites and sort of brought them into a less severe version of themselves, to a middle ground. I also liked how the book shows that even if you aren't exactly like someone you can still have many things in common. I think it's very easy to strike ...more
Emilia
Switch of Success

I'm gonna be honest the only reason I started reading this book was because it was about two girls on an exchange. I thought " hmmm I'm on one too. Why not see how others handle it?" Well, their experience was totally different than mine is. First of all, they are in college. Second, they only went for three months. And third of all, they went to a country that spoke English. Me....not so much. Anyways, the book was interesting. Nothing crazy to rave about, but not terrible eit
...more
Ryanne Benz
Mar 21, 2014 Ryanne Benz rated it really liked it
In Abby McDonald's book Sophomore Switch she tells a story of two girls struggling to fit in with new surroundings and trying to survive in a world full of drama. I would recommend this book to teenagers in high school and for young adults in college.
Abby McDonald tells this story from the point of view of two different girls who decide that they need a change and a switch in their surroundings. Tasha is a California girl with a bad past behind her that has a lot of boy drama in it, and caused
...more
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by Jennifer Rummel for TeensReadToo.com

Tasha and Emily couldn't be more different, but each wants to escape their social nightmares. Tasha needs to hide out from the tabloid drama and Emily needs to nurse her broken heart. They swap lives: Natasha heads to Oxford and Emily heads to UC Santa Barbara.

The only problem - they've each already signed up for classes. So Natasha's stuck taking feminist courses and Emily's stuck learning about film. Neither of them fit in, until they lean on eac
...more
Sharon
This book was mostly fun, fluffy vacation reading, and it was pretty much perfect for that, but it was also a lot better than I expected and had some interesting statements about feminism tucked away in there. In a wacky circumstance that I'm pretty sure is mostly confined to the realms of fiction, UC Santa Barbara party girl and Oxford College Londoner Emily switch places for their sophomore year, both of them learning something in the interim. I grew to like Tasha a lot more than I thought I ...more
Nicole
Mar 03, 2009 Nicole rated it liked it
This is a fun "beach-read." Two college students (one British, one American) do an atypical semester abroad. It's atypical in that the two do a swap requiring them to take each other's classes rather than stick with their own programs. While the girls initially don't contact each other, they eventually find themselves in need of advice as well as contact with someone who understands the situation.

I found it a little jarring that the girls get in touch over instant messaging when there had previ
...more
Raina
Dec 06, 2010 Raina rated it did not like it
I had been meaning to read this for so long, I think I built up expectations for it too much in my head. Plus, I didn't read the summary close enough to realize that "Sophomore" refers to the sophomore year of college, and not high school. So there was no way this would work for my middle school booktalks, which was the impetus for me to finally pick it up. I only read a few chapters, and almost immediately knew it wasn't suitable for my current needs.
However, on top of that, I just felt like I
...more
Becky
Pretty cute. This book has great themes of bravery and acceptance and feminism and balance that are probably too overt for your typical adult reader but I think is really nice for teens. I also like the college setting. I am a fan of books with a breakup where the character is still single at the end (not common) and I'm pleased to say that happens here and I'm also really happy how it played out. Very girl-power-y.

The reader does both characters and her English accent is fine, but I would have
...more
Hannah Young
Oct 22, 2012 Hannah Young rated it really liked it
This book was funny. It is not for elementary aged children, there is talk about drinking and casual sex. There is also language that little kids should not be reading about. The end was the best part, I respect Natasha for standing up to her professor and keeping her head held high.
Samantha
Dec 27, 2014 Samantha rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2014-2015
more like a 3.5... fun, cute, quick read. I like how the main characters become independent and don't rely on guys. It's refreshing. Okay, that's all
Muphyn
got this for $2, so figured it didn't matter how good or bad it was... seemed entertaining enough (well, the first couple of pages) to warrant the $2!! :)
Jenni
Jan 01, 2015 Jenni rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4 stars because I had been waiting so long to read this book...and then it was over. There probably wasn't anything missing but there was for me :(
Laree
May 27, 2013 Laree rated it did not like it
Loved the idea, but just too much partying and sleeping around and language for me.
BOOK BUTTERFLY
Jun 23, 2009 BOOK BUTTERFLY rated it really liked it
Party girl Tasha Collins’ world is turned upside down when a compromising video involving her and a television star shows up in the tabloids. After the actor’s girlfriend breaks down on national television, Tasha is vilified by the media as a home wrecker and even her own family will barely speak to her. Unable to deal with the embarrassment of the scandalous video, she is desperate to leave her once carefree Californian college life for the anonymity of Oxford. Emily Lewis is the polar opposite ...more
Christine Marie
Jun 21, 2014 Christine Marie rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: YA, feminists, identity, struggling, high school girls, college girls, young people
Recommended to Christine by: The library shelf and fate :)
In Sophomore Switch, the characters are truly written well. Although often this book portrays California completely inaccurately, it might just help you realize some things about your own life. Not to mention, the whole story is fun, light, and one really gets invested in the characters.

It really took me until the last few chapters to actually get something from this book other than the pleasure of the plot-line and characters, which is completely fine, that's not a complaint. I wasn't expecting
...more
Courtney Johnson
Nov 25, 2016 Courtney Johnson rated it liked it
I liked the premise of this book; it was cute and I liked the separation between what was happening in England and what was happening in California. The two places are two very different environments and two very different girls. However, it got a little sappy for me as they found love interests and assimilated into the general population. They did what everyone else did and didn't really figure out how to be their own person in the beginning. In the end, the two girls meet up in Florida for ...more
Tiffany
Have you ever had a problem so big you wished you could just run away from everything, to another city, country, or even continent? How much distance would you need to put between you and it to make it better? Would an ocean be enough?

Who?
Natasha Collins: Natasha is a typical southern California girl with tanned skin, perfect hair, and an ability to party. Tasha, as her friends call her, is spontaneous and fun, always willing to skip a lecture in order to get some more beach time, make out with
...more
YA Reads Book Reviews
Two girls on opposite sides of the globe both want a quick getaway. The answer? They switch places through a last minute global exchange program. The catch? It’s a direct swap. They swap classes, accommodation and universities. No exceptions. Feminist political theory for film studies. On-camps accommodation for an share-apartment. A university where attendance is expected to one that doesn’t take a roll.

Tasha’s life seems to be coming to pieces. After the disastrous ‘hot-tub incident’, Tasha’s
...more
Danya
This review is written in my "snapshot" format.

The subject: two girls' experiences swapping universities and exploring different aspects of themselves.



The setting: Oxford, UK and Santa Barbara, US.



Shutter speed: slow through the first half, then picks up slightly in the latter part of the book.



What's in the background? A rather unfair portrayal of people who join feminist groups, unfortunately. The so-called feminists that Tasha comes into contact with are pretty cold and/or vicious in their tre
...more
Alex
Aug 13, 2009 Alex rated it really liked it
Sophomore Switch is very cute. It's light, it's funny. It's what the cover shows you and exactly what to expect. It is a fast-paced book with slightly heavier tones.

There is two different main characters each with their own story that then intertwine. Tasha is mostly at university in California for the parties. When she parties a little too hard and is filmed doing some pretty embarassing stuff with a big celebrity, the whole of America tears her apart. Her family is ashamed and so she escapes b
...more
Carla
Apr 04, 2010 Carla rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
It may just be me, but I love reading books that are in some way set in my home country. It makes me feel all warm and squishy inside, I love to read about places I know about, places i've visited or just read someone describe where I live with precision and accuracy. So, when I first read about Life Swap, I knew I had to read it. The narrative is spilt between our two protagonists, Emily and Tasha, whose are nothing alike. Emily hails from the UK, shes quite a straight laced, super organised ...more
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Author of several YA and adult novels, including DANGEROUS GIRLS and DANGEROUS BOYS (written as Abigail Haas).
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