Funny How Things Change – Melissa Wyatt

May 21, 2009

Remy Walker has always lived in Dwyer, a small mountain town in West Virginia. In fact, the mountain that he lives on (Walker Mountain) has his family namesake. Now that Remy and his girlfriend, Lisa, have graduated from high school, Remy has to make the biggest decision of his life: Should he follow Lisa to Pennsylvania where she will attend college, and he will find a job, or should he stay in Dwyer? At first, the answer seems easy, follow Lisa, but then an outsider, Dana, helps him realize that the decision may not be as easy as it sounds.

Funny How Things Change is an intimate look into a young man’s life and the decisions he must make. Remy is one of the most well-developed characters I’ve read about. Wyatt really dug beneath the surface of him, and this helped create a novel with a lot of feeling. Another great thing about Remy is that while overall he is a good person, he is not perfect. Funny How Things Change shows several mistakes that Remy has made, but these mistakes do not detract readers to the character. There’s a specific moment toward the end (that I will not spoil) that could have ended in readers disliking Remy, but because his character was so well-written, readers were able to understand Remy. It takes a gifted writer to that, and Wyatt succeeded.

Another thing I liked about Funny How Things Change was that it’s so different from most YA novels. I mean, how many YA novels have you read that take place in a mountain town? I enjoyed reading about mountain town because it’s similar, yet different to what I know. While I certainly don’t live in a mountain town, my town is relatively small, so I can relate to wanting to move somewhere or wanting to stay. I also enjoyed reading about someone who does not want to go college, yet has a plan for the future. While I’ve always planned to go to college, I believe it’s important to state that it is possible to be successful without college.

P.S. Is it me or is the boy on this cover the same boy on The Guardian cover?