It’s been thirty-five weeks since twin sisters Harmony and Melody went their separate ways. Since then, their story has become irresistible to legions of girls: twins separated at birth and living different lives, each due to deliver sets of twins . . . on the same day! In a future where only teens can “bump,” or give birth, babies mean money, status, and freedom.
Married to Ram and living in religious Goodside, Harmony spends her time trying to fit back into the community she once loved and believed in. But she can’t seem to forget about Jondoe, the guy she fell in love with under the strangest of circumstances.
To her adoring fans, Melody has achieved everything she always wanted: a big, fat contract and a coupling with Jondoe, the hottest bump prospect around. But this image is costing her the one guy she really wants.
Cursed by their own popularity, the girls are obsessively tracked by their millions of fans, who have been eagerly counting down the days to their “Double Double Due Date.” Without a doubt, they are two of the most powerful teen girls on the planet, and there’s only one thing they could do that would make them more famous than they already are:
Tell the truth.
I was pleasantly surprised by Thumped – especially since I could finally distinguish the difference between Melody’s and Harmony’s chapters! (Trust me. It was difficult to do so in Bumped.)
But the sequel really works to flesh out the sisters by using their relationships with their friends and family, in turn giving another dimension to said extended characters. There’s also a better sense of world building; an inside look at Goodside and mentions of other countries and locations help to place the status on bumping in various cultures. These two aspects bettered my understanding of the freaky concept, putting it literally in a universal perspective, but also a clearer one.
Still, it’s the boys that make the sequel so good. Jondoe, Zen and Ram are so much more amped up, showing promise and actual personalities. In a manner of speaking, they break out of their shells. I also like that the guys have such a stronger presence in Thumped because it balances the presences of the girls. Melody and Harmony are so much more dramatic in this sequel, and at times it was grating on my nerves. McCafferty really brought attention to Harmony’s religious beliefs and practices, almost to an over-the-top way. This only made me dislike her character even more. Melody’s drama, in contrast, is tamer, but just as annoying because of her incessant whining.
Another slight bummer is the ending, which attempts to wrap everything up all nicely and sisterly, but really just leaves a lot of questions still unanswered. After everything they’d gone through, I’d hoped for something a little more conclusive and a bit less cheesy. But other than the ending, the rest of Thumped keeps a nice pace and is a page-turner.