In Neil Milton’s young adult coming of age story, Who Wants a Rewind?, two young girls are faced with very serious decisions and their life changing consequences. Michelle is a good girl, but devoted to her best pal, Lauren. Lauren isn’t known for making the best decisions for herself nor for giving much thought to the feelings of others.

I really like the story that Neil Milton weaves. It is fresh and has a unique flow to it. Unfortunately there are many errors in Standard Written English that keep this manuscript from being marketable at this time.

When writing for the masses, it is advisable to stay on the universal track with language and idiosyncrasies in dialogue. Several times Milton’s slang terms are purely cultural, which alienates the reader.

The characters are appealing and extremely believable, but the presentation of these characters is ruined by poor editing. Misuse of the verb “is” creates confusing dialogue and description that detracts from an otherwise well-written script.

After researching the author’s credentials, I believe that this is an oversight that could be remedied with a more thorough edit of the material; therefore, the intention of this review is not to negatively criticize the writing, but to encourage the writer to be more diligent to detail.

I really like this story and very much see merit in the lesson presented here. Substance abuse runs rampant throughout the world in this day and age, tempting our youth to experiment aimlessly without thought to the consequences. I would love to see a revised version of this, as it is a very relevant issue for today's teens.

3 stars
Official Review: Who Wants a Rewind? by Neil Milton

Post Number:#1 by Shelle » 08 Feb 2016, 16:37

3 out of 4 stars Review by Shelle

Who wants a rewind? 

I think a lot of us would answer that question with a loud and enthusiastic, YES! There’s at least one bad decision, wrong turn, embarrassing gaffe, poor choice, or awful accident in each and every one of our lives that we’d like the chance to do over. In Neil Milton’s Who Wants a Rewind? That exact question is offered up in the first chapter of the book to the main character, and the reader gets to follow along as she recalls the exact moment where she’d like the rewind button to be pushed.

Lauren and Michelle are long-time pals just out of high school. Michelle is the kind of girl most of us know – stable family, parents who care about her, works hard in school, a good friend. Conversely, Lauren is the girl all the others are warned about. Her family isn’t too stable, with her dad’s live-in girlfriend doing the lion’s share of the actual parenting. She’s chummy with the local drug dealer, as well as his favorite customer, and her sense of right and wrong is heavily skewed. Despite these obvious differences, the girls genuinely care for each other and want the best for one another.

Their night out starts out like many do – a group of friends dancing together at the local nightclub. But that’s where the good times end. Lauren wants Michelle to relax and have fun, more than she usually does, so she takes it upon herself to slip Michelle some drugs, unbeknownst to her friend. Michelle’s reaction is predictably extreme – she hasn’t been a regular user like Lauren and trips out more than her friend thought she would. Actually, that’s giving Lauren too much credit. The more we learn about Lauren, the more we learn that thinking things through is not her standard operating procedure.

Author Neil Milton does an excellent job creating a cautionary tale of how bad choices, whether they be habitual or a one-time event, can have far-reaching consequences. He’s clearly passionate about this theme and it’s repeated throughout the story. Some of Milton’s writing can be a bit tough to follow, and some of the characters lacked depth and development.

Who Wants a Rewind? could easily be classified a YA fiction, but like a lot of YA, the appeal is certainly wider than just teens. Much of this story takes place in 1997, the year I graduated from high school, so I easily related to the main characters. But now, nearly twenty years later, I am a mom of two daughters and I cringe when I think of them in Michelle or Lauren’s positions. I think parents and teens could both enjoy this story together, and perhaps share some open and honest conversations about goals, priorities, and ultimately, how life doesn’t really give us a rewind.

I rate this book 3 out of 4 stars. I did have a hard time following some of the plot, but Milton's passion for the subject matter was evident, and his characters were immensely relatable.