The use of the supernatural in storytelling is at its best with it serves to highlight concepts important to both advance the plot as well as deepen our understanding of the characters. In I’m With Cupid, Anna Staniszewski does exactly that.
Thirteen year-olds Marcus and Lena seem to be your stereotypical North American middle schoolers, except that the former is a cupid and the latter is a reaper. They thought that the kiss they were dared to share at a party would be just a kiss; but it actually made them switch powers. And now logical, rational Lena, who was perfect for the job of reaper, finds herself with the capacity to give “love boosts” while sweet, sentimental Marcus, the best for the role of cupid, has the ability to give souls the encouragement they need to separate from their bodies. With a little help from their boss, Eddie, the two band together to figure out how to control this new power they have been (unwillingly) given and to (hopefully) switch back before causing too much mayhem.
Unsurprisingly, the lesson at the core of this book is the importance of balancing heart and mind; Marcus has too much of the former, Lena of the latter. Because of this imbalance, both characters are not able to reach their full potential. Such important topics make of this book a great addition to a book club’s reading list, be it for middle graders or older readers. It’s going to be interesting to see how Staniszewski will continue developing these concepts in the next books in the series.
Book Review first published on Sahar’s Reviews in May 2015