Sunday, March 29, 2015

The Start of Me and You (Early Book Review)

Sunday, March 29, 2015 3:55 PM with 4 comments

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The Start of Me and You

Author: Emery Lord
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Release Date: March 31, 2014

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Following her pitch-perfect debut Open Road Summer, Emery Lord pens another gorgeous story of best friends, new love, & second chances.

Brimming with heartfelt relationships and authentic high-school dynamicsThe Start of Me and You proves that it’s never too late for second chances.

It’s been a year since it happened—when Paige Hancock’s first boyfriend died in an accident. After shutting out the world for two years, Paige is finally ready for a second chance at high school . . . and she has a plan. First: Get her old crush, Ryan Chase, to date her—the perfect way to convince everyone she’s back to normal. Next: Join a club—simple, it’s high school after all. But when Ryan’s sweet, nerdy cousin, Max, moves to town and recruits Paige for the Quiz Bowl team (of all things!) her perfect plan is thrown for a serious loop. Will Paige be able to face her fears and finally open herself up to the life she was meant to live?

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My Thoughts:

Despite hearing absolutely nothing but good things for Emery Lord's debut, Open Road Summer, I have yet to read it. Sometimes I shy away from books that get a lot of love (I'm adversarial that way). Regardless, I was thrilled to snag an early copy of The Start of Me and You and dived into it a bit early when I found myself in the mood for a sweet romance. Thankfully, it delivered. While the book isn't only a romance, its tone and story was exactly what I needed in those last stressful days before the start of spring break when my students (and I) were feeling so restless.

Paige Hancock has spent the last year trying to get over the shocking drowning death of her boyfriend a year before. She has decided that things need to change at the start of her junior year and she makes herself a list of the things she wants to do to live the life she wants: date Ryan Chase, her longtime crush; start going to parties/social events; join a group of some sort; travel; and swim. Since Aaron's death, she has been terrified of getting in the water and even dreams of drowning herself.

Paige is in a tight group with three other girls, and before she knows it, her group of friends has befriended Ryan and his cousin Max. Max is a somewhat nerdy boy who used to go to school with all of them, but has spent the past couple of years at a private school. He and Ryan are incredibly close, though, so he has decided to come back to public school after Ryan recently went through a break-up with his long-term girlfriend. Paige is surprised how easy she finds it to talk to Max and finds herself agreeing to join the Quiz Bowl team that he belongs to. She is also surprised how easy she finds it to be friends with Ryan after crushing on him for so long.

Paige's family is going through a lot, too. After a nasty divorce, Paige's parents have started dating each other. Paige knows she should be happy for them, but she just cannot get over how bad it was when their relationship fell about the first time. In addition, Paige's grandmother, who she is extremely close to, is battling alzheimers disease.

I loved The Start of Me and You. I loved her group of friends (although I have to admit that I had a really hard time keeping the other three girls straight). I loved Max and Ryan and Max and Ryan together. I loved how realistic the story was, Paige was, her parents were, etc. I loved the writing--especially the different things the author had to say about friendship. I'm not even going to ramble on anymore. The Start of Me and You was adorable without being cutesy which tends to be my favorite type of story. Read it. (And yes, I will be reading Open Road Summer).  Now here are some of my favorite quotes (taking from the ARC, so quotes may change):

When it all closes in, there are only two kinds of people: best friends and everyone else.

In history class yesterday, she raised her hand to politely suggest that the teacher was slut-shaming Anne Boleyn. 


Definitely Recommend.

*I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange of an honest review.*



4 comments:

  1. I have been meaning to read read both of these. I will have to add them both to my list asap! They sound like perfect summer books and I am definitely ready for summer!
    Missie @ A Flurry of Ponderings

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  2. I have heard that this one is great but have been weary since I worry about hype. I am glad to hear that it lives up to the hype. I really like a well written book with strong friendships :)

    Ashley @ The Quiet Concert

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  3. I'm so glad you enjoyed this one. I will have to get my hands on a copy. I can't wait to read your thoughts on Open Road Summer...one of my faves! I love the quote about Anne Boleyn. That made me laugh out loud! :) Great review, Natalie!

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  4. I just finished this one (my review is scheduled to post tomorrow) and I enjoyed it too. I liked that Paige wasn't the typical YA main character (Jane Bennett instead of Elizabeth) and I loved nerdy adorable Max. And yes, really liked how important friends and family were in this book. My only complaint was the ending. I wanted MORE. Just a little bit. Do you think there will be a companion novel, maybe about Tessa? Then we can get more of Paige and Max too. :) ~Pam

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Hello, there! Thanks for taking the time to comment. I read each and every one and will do my best to respond--usually on your blog instead of on mine. I will, however, always answer direct questions. Due to serious time restraints, this blog is now an award free zone, but I appreciate the thought!