Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Both of Me” as Want to Read:
Both of Me
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Both of Me

3.18  ·  Rating details ·  1,153 ratings  ·  261 reviews
It was supposed to be just another flight, another escape into a foreign place where she could forget her past, forget her attachments. Until Clara found herself seated next to an alluring boy named Elias Phinn—a boy who seems to know secrets she has barely been able to admit to herself for years.

When her carry-on bag is accidentally switched with Elias’s identical pack, C
Hardcover, 272 pages
Published December 23rd 2014 by Blink
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Both of Me, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Jonathan Friesen I know! Okay, Clara has finished school in London, and Elias has been held back many times. This makes both of them older, 18 and 19.
Good question.
I know! Okay, Clara has finished school in London, and Elias has been held back many times. This makes both of them older, 18 and 19.
Good question.
Jonathan (author)(less)
Kate I think it is probably fantasy fiction with a little dystopian stuff mixed in.

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
3.18  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,153 ratings  ·  261 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Apr 26, 2015 rated it did not like it
Shelves: dislike
Bloke Word Count: 25
Number of Times I Bashed My Head Against Various Objects: no limit.

I WASTED ALL THAT TIME, ENERGY AND MY SANITY ON THIS BOOK FOR THAT ENDING?! REALLY?! This book sucked hardcore, and the ending even more so. I'm not one that NEEDS to have a happy ending or a typical happy ending, but this ending was AWFUL.

The writing for the entirety of the book was heinous. This author (American) wrote about a British girl named Clara, and in order to make her sound all "British", he used
Jan 01, 2015 rated it really liked it
Wow. The last 25 pages definitely made this read worth it. I was questioning my interest throughout the middle of the work but the ending was my deciding factor between 4 stars as opposed to 3. Clara's realistic internal conflict was intriguing but it was Elias's understanding of his own conflict, and Clara's place in it, that makes this book so special. This piece is more about contemplating personal conquest than falling into an entertaining plot.
Jan 22, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: read-2015
This was an okay book for me but wasn't really my cup of tea to be honest. I had some expectations going in but wasn't totally sure if I would like the book and after reading it found I didn't really like it very much at all.

I just felt throughout nearly the whole book that it was strange and I kept thinking oh gosh these characters are just a tad bit nuts in the head and it became quote annoying after awhile. I tried so hard to get past it and just think its part of the story and who these char
Sara Ella
Jan 24, 2015 rated it it was amazing
The Writing…

Stellar. Seriously. My only other experience with a male author writing from a female point of view is John Green (hard to top, I know). And yet, Jonathan Freisen totally nails it. While reading Both of Me, I felt zero author interruption (aka, the author’s male voice slipping in here and there). I just felt like I was reading a really good story about a girl named Clara who doesn’t have it all together. A girl who’s trying to find her way in the world and maybe she just needs a litt
Gabs {My Full Bookshelf Reviews}
I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Oh my god. I started this book, and immediately there was a feeling of dislike. I originally picked it up because of its portrayal of DID, but quickly realized that its portrayal of this disorder didn't handle it well at all. Really, Both of Me was a bit of a trainwreck.

Clara is a really self-centered heroine. The things she does and the way she acts made me dislike her almost immediately. There's little change in her throughou
Ari B
Jan 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: ages 12+
OMG! This was great, it was eye catching at the first moment I saw it. And these feelings were not misplaced nor had this author let me down. I would say there were some gruesome parts to this story and some realism at the end, but I thought it was suiting. Some parts of this read were confusing, but if you ask me if it is worth reading, I will say "YEESSS! read this book immediately! And don't put it down until you finish!" Well written characters, great storyline and plot, enough mystery and i ...more
Erin H. (ITIO Book Reviews)
Dec 25, 2014 rated it did not like it
Actual rating 1.5/5 stars


PG: Some kissing, weird hints at more than kissing


A huge thanks to Blink and Jonathan Friesen for a copy of this novel in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.

To be completely honest, I had no clue what was happening in this novel about 95% of the time. The writing was confusing and halting. The characters were flimsy and forgettable.

Jonathan Friesen seemed to have a unique, interesting idea with this novel about a boy with dissociative identi
Katie Grace
Jan 03, 2016 rated it it was ok
Shelves: contemporary, 2-star
Ehhhh. I feel like it could've been a lot shorter. And I was confused for part of it. (I had the confusion probably with some of his other books.) But the ending was heartbreaking and terrible but... I liked it? It had a certain amount of tragicness and a light of hope and that's how I like my endings. But overall I wasn't too crazy about the book.
Kayla (The Thousand Lives)
Just no.

Full review to follow in March.
Janie Johnson
Feb 06, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2015-challenge
I received this book through BookLook Bloggers in exchange for an honest review. I really did not know what to expect with this book, but the synopsis of the story pretty much sold me so I went ahead and requested it for review. I have to say that is was just ok for me.

Clara finds herself running away from her problems, heartaches and responsibilities. She finds herself on an airplane seated next to Elias Phinn and he somehow knows a few of her secrets. After they land Elias departs with her bag
Dec 30, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: owned, ya
Do you ever read a book and realize that, objectively, the book isn't bad, but it just isn't for you? That's how I feel about this book. My sister asked me what it was about, and I did my best to tell her.

"Well, that sounds interesting," she said.

Exactly. That's what I thought, too, which was why I decided to read it. However, it quickly became clear that this wasn't a book for me. I struggled to get through it and probably wouldn't have finished except for the fact that I had received it for re
Ashley Tahg
Jan 04, 2015 rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jun 04, 2016 rated it it was ok
When I was about halfway through this book, I didn't think I was going to like it by the end.

The main character in this book is from London, whereas Friesen is an American author. It's obvious that he's looked up British terminology/slang in order to make the book as accurate as possible, however reading this feels like reading a mockery of British language. It feels like Friesen took it one step too far.

I also felt uncomfortable with the plot and the morals which it presented.

The main character
Nadine Keels
Jan 05, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I, too, had fallen through the cracks, as surely a resident of Salem as Elias was himself, and I didn't want to return.
Maybe this was home.

I think it says something when a reader--me, in this case--can feel rather lost through most of a piece of young adult fiction and still be intrigued, moved, and even at times, floored by it. Floored, but not stumped, I should add. Wandering, teenaged Clara's journey with alternately paranoid and sweet, teenaged Elias is something of a whirlwind with the maki
Jan 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
**A big thanks to Zonderkidz-Books and NetGalley for providing me with a digital ARC copy of this novel.**

I went into this book fairly blind. I remember first hearing about it from Sasha (abookutopia) on YouTube and subsequently looked it up to find that it involved DID -- Dissociative Identity Disorder -- previously, and still more commonly, known as Multiple Personality Disorder. And that was it.

What I didn't anticipate was that I'd get a story that is equal parts engrossing and equal parts fr
Jeff Raymond
So this is the second book from this imprint that I've read recently, and, while this one was marginally better than Summer by Summer, the end result is still the same, with a dull narrative and not much in the way of engaging characters (while, at least this time, leaving the religious stuff mostly off to the side). The story is about a teenage boy who has disassociative identity disorder, which we learn about after his bag is inadvertently switched at an airport and a girl returns it. The stor ...more
Jul 30, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I picked up this book without having heard of it before. Reading the premise, I thought it sounded exactly like the type of book I would be interested in. So I went with my gut and bought it.

Just before I started reading it, I read the reviews here on it. In spite of the fact that so many of them were negative, I still had a really good feeling about it.

My gut was right and I finished it in three days.

Both of Me is fantastically well written, humorous, heartbreaking, breathtaking, and full of a
Jan 27, 2016 rated it it was ok
To be frank, I spent most of this book trying to get it over with.

I didn't enjoy it that much other than a few chapters.

The characters were everywhere and hard to follow.
Clara's mindset changed constantly.
Elias was much like a deer in the headlights.
The dad was mentioned constantly, but barely explained.
And, so on..

I read the entire book and I still can't grasp the meaning behind everything.

I could state multiple things why I didn't like this book. I didn't hate it, but I didn't like it very muc
Pavitra (For The Love of Fictional Worlds)
Actual Rating 4.5 Stars

The full review will be up here as well as on ForTheLove of Fictional Worlds as soon as I come to terms with what this book has done to me!
Feb 19, 2015 rated it liked it
Too unrealistic for me but maybe that's because it's more of a symbolic story. It doesn't really come together until the end but it was alright.
Galaxy Adventurer
So...umm...not really sure what to rate this at the moment...that ending :(
(Side note: I would like to say that I added the mental health category for this one since the main character does suffer from DID (dissociative identity disorder) but it is NOT in the same vein as other books such as Girl in Pieces , so please keep that in mind)

Well, I was not sure what to expect with this one, and at the end, I'm not sure what I got from it. With that being said, I did give it 4 stars, and I'll stand by them. Mainly because I was so intrigued while reading, and because I just
Jan 08, 2018 rated it liked it
Both of Me , written by Jonathan Friesen, is a romance novel that describes the adventure of Clara, a young British girl running from her past, and Elias, a boy from Minnesota who is caught between reality and an imaginary world, Salem. Their growing relationship displays how the strangest of events can connect two completely different people.

Both of Me was written from the perspective of the main character, Clara. Jonathan Friesen uses her thoughts and struggles to create the intimate relati
Kaysia (bookskay)
Oct 03, 2018 rated it liked it
6.5/10 Lots of mixed feeling about this one. I went through stages of loving it and stage of being very confused. The ending was interesting but I’m not sure if i feel like it was a bit o a cop out? So conflicted :’)

the only thing that saved this book from 2 stars was the characters. the story was pretty good but the writing was not that great, not enough was explained and it was so fast paced. I felt like a lot of the characters were just talking heads and not fully developed characters, it got pretty tiring after a while. like I said, the only thing that saved the book were the characters and their chemistry. It was a good quick summer read but nothing i would read again and again.
Kay T
Jul 07, 2018 rated it it was ok
I think it would be a good movie, but I didn’t feel the characterization was deep enough for me. It wasn’t bad, and I did like the ending.
To Clara, Minneapolis is just another destination on the path she's been traveling for the past eight months- ever since her father got out of jail. Her trip is being funded by anonymous followers on her online blog who think they are donating to the needy. When Clara's bag gets switched with Elias Phinn's, she is quickly sucked into both if his worlds. Half the time, Elias is a sweet and genius boy, and the other half he lives in a fantasy world called Salem.

Well, first of all, I had no idea th
Nov 14, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: ya
I just finished this book and all I can think is, “What just happened?” I started reading this book, I liked it. I got lost in it’s world. I got confused and lost track. Things got cleared up and then I needed a good cry. There is a lot of imagining in this book. Is it real? No, it is imaginary. Both of Me is about a girl named Clara, and a boy who is split in two. It is an adventure and a journey of imagination and healing.

At first, I thought this was a YA fantasy book. It isn’t. Clara looses h
REVIEW: Both of Me by Jonathan Friesen

{About the Book}

It was supposed to be just another flight, another escape into a foreign place where she could forget her past, forget her attachments. Until Clara found herself seated next to an alluring boy named Elias Phinn—a boy who seems to know secrets she has barely been able to admit to herself for years.

When her carry-on bag is accidentally switched with Elias’s identical pack, Clara uses the luggage tag to track down her things. At that address she
Jan 01, 2015 rated it liked it
I do not entirely know how I feel about this book. On one hand - I couldn't stop reading. I found Clara's method of dealing with all that life had dealt her to be both incredibly childish, but also realistic for someone who was forced to grow up too soon. Elias's disassociate identity disorder was incredibly interesting and Clara's path to understanding it gave the reader a chance to also understand it.

The book was filled with valuable insights from both Clara and Elias as they fought to unders
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Greetings 1 12 Dec 12, 2014 08:41PM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • Alice in the Country of Hearts, Vol. 3 (Alice in the Country of Hearts, #5-6)
  • Story Time
  • Miles from Nowhere (Roadside Assistance #3)
  • Fruits Basket Collector's Edition, Vol. 1
  • Guys are Waffles, Girls are Spaghetti
  • Tabula Rasa (Tabula Rasa, #1)
  • Marvelous (The Books of Marvella, #1)
  • The Girl with Brown Fur: Tales and Stories
  • Season of Fire (The Remnants, #2)
  • An English Boy in New York (Boys Don't Knit, #2)
  • Playing Saint
  • The Priest with Dirty Clothes: A Timeless Story of God's Love and Forgiveness
  • Summer by Summer
  • Reapers (Reapers, #1)
  • The Lies That Bind (The Liar Society, #2)
  • The Garden Gate (Threshold #4)
  • Merlin's Nightmare (The Merlin Spiral, #3)
  • Chicken Soup for the Christian Teenage Soul: Stories to Open the Hearts of Christian Teens (Chicken Soup for the Soul)
See similar books…
I had the perfect life.

I was the grade-school star and the teacher’s pet. The world revolved around me and I suspected it always would. If you ask most people about their life, they don’t begin with fifth grade. But that was a good year.

Illness changed that. I retreated into a shell and escaped into words. Writing a story sucked the pain out of me, at least for a while. That’s when I learned to “f
No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »
“Wanting and wishing are very different” 8 likes
“How easy it was to slip through the cracks alongside him. To fall in the very same trap I had committed to free him from.” 4 likes
More quotes…