Don’t Even Think About It by Sarah Mylnowski

Class 10B in High School receive their flu jabs, but the side effects they suffer from are more than a slightly sore arm. All the teenagers in the class who had the jab suddenly discover they have the ability to hear what other people are thinking. This has some amazing advantages: they can find out if someone likes them or they can cheat in exams. However there are drawbacks too – sometimes you would rather not know what people think about you and perhaps you don’t want people to know the secrets you keep in your head.

The book has taken an interesting concept – the difference between what we think and what we say and do – and dealt with it in an amusing way. The students in 10B discover that finding out what people are thinking can be hilarious and can affect the way you behave. However, the book also shows the downside of being able to see inside someone’s head – after all many of us lie and discovering the lies can be hurtful and painful. At the end of the book a number of relationships and characters have changed as the teenagers are forced to face the truth of what people think of them and of what they think too.

However, the potential the story had to make readers consider the difference between the persona we display to the public compared to what goes on in our heads is, to my mind, lost. This is due in part to the light hearted, and at times silly, tone of the book and also to its disappointing ending.

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