Not Myself Today: A Paranormal Thriller - Book Review

Not Myself Today: A Paranormal Thriller

Author: Muriel Ellis Pritchett
Genre: Young Adult - Coming of Age
Publisher: Black Rose Writing
Date Published: September 24, 2020
ISBN-10: 1684335473
ISBN-13: 9781684335473

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Book Review of :  Not Myself Today: A Paranormal Thriller


The opening paragraphs of Not Myself Today, by Muriel Ellis Pritchett, quickly captures the readers’ attention. Ellis’s novel comes with a paranormal twist, her protagonist, Lindsey Anderson, upon awakening in a hospital, discovers she is living in the body of someone else. It becomes obvious that it’s the body of a younger person; in fact, it appears to be the body of a young drug-addicted prostitute named Annabeth Shepherd. The story incorporates a contemporary theme of criminal activities faced by many present-day teens. The plot is complex with many likable and relatable characters.

The eighteen-year-old protagonist, Lindsey Anderson, has it all; she’s a graduating high school senior from a wealthy family and a soccer star.  Having it all comes to an end, however, after kicking the winning goal in the final game of the season when she dies on the field. The story is told with wit and in the vernacular of modern Atlanta, Georgia teens. The plot involves Lindsey’s attempts to find herself, literally. Awakening in the hospital, to her horror, Lindsey discovers that she is occupying an outlandishly foreign body. Besides being trapped in a body that is not as good as her original one, she realizes she is no longer athletic, but scrawny and awfully smelly. This body she inhabits hurts and is marked with multiple wounds. Her once curly, short auburn hair had become straight and dirty blond. She also notices a tattoo on her alien body, which she would never have done – what is happening?

Lindsey states that she feels like she’d been beaten to a pulp, and soon realizes she has “the body of a drug-addicted teenage hooker.”  Lindsey’s quest is to find her own body and return to her previous life, but that is not in the cards. Dark humor, paranormal twists, and unique manipulations of the plot enable the author to introduce topics such as run-a-ways, sex trafficking, pimps, drugs and gangs.

Lindsey, now in the body of Annabeth, must reevaluate friendships not only with people who no longer recognize her as Lindsey but with those who know her as Annabeth. The author’s amazing ability to bring characters to life is obvious in her description of the character, Neely. The strange girl had frizzy, henna-dyed hair, overwhelming body odor, a Salvation Army outfit consisting of  “leopard-print mini skirt, thigh-high faux-crocodile boots,” a peasant blouse, and   “cheap costume jewelry,” her face painted like a 12-year old for a dance recital.

Lindsey learns that not only is she in Annabeth’s body, but she’s inherited the other girl’s troubles. Unfortunately, she discovers that the person she has become had lived a tough life and had stolen and hidden a drug dealer’s stash of ill-gotten money. The pimp, Tony, is out to beat information out of her or to kill her. Now her story becomes an action thriller with a car chase, intimidation, and laced with violence.

Lindsey must deal with the difficulty of living the reckless life Annabeth had lived. Will she be given the opportunity of a “do-over” of Annabeth’s tragic existence? The resolution is fitting and appropriate to the plot with an unexpected twist.

This is an excellent book for teenagers; it exposes them to the darker side of what life can be if you take the wrong paths in life. The author has tackled difficult contemporary issues with great understanding and empathy.        

Reviewed by: Carole W

About Muriel Ellis Pritchett


Muriel Ellis Pritchett writes fun fiction about feisty, smart, older women, who have been wronged, but manage to persevere and climb out of the muck. Her first three books she jokingly calls RomCom-HenLit. Her fourth book, NOT MYSELF TODAY, is a young adult paranormal she wrote for her daughters and their friends to enjoy.

An award-winning author, Muriel was born and raised in Georgia, but has lived abroad in Japan and German. She has three degrees from the University of Georgia in literary appreciation, journalism, and dramatic writing. When not cruising around the world with her computer guru husband, Muriel enjoys taking art classes at UGA and once spent 10 weeks studying art in Italy. She has visited art museums all over the world, including the Louvre in Paris, the Prado in Madrid, and the Hermitage in St. Petersburg, Russia. Her art is often on display in local art exhibitions.

Muriel, who professes to be a chocoholic, and her husband are both Disney-holics. In addition to visiting Disney World in Florida and Disneyland in California every year, they have visited Disneyland Tokyo, Disney Seas in Tokyo, and Disneyland Paris. Disneyland Shanghai is high on their travel list.


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