Is there anything better than book mail? I think not. I recently received a copy of the YA novel Hello, Goodbye and Everything in Between by Jennifer E. Smith from the team at Headline books and I was SO excited to get stuck straight into it. YA is one of my favourite genres of fiction, despite me being 22 years old (that’s still young, right?) and I’m always thrilled to get the opportunity to read new contributions to this incredible genre. Thanks to Headline for my review copy!
I haven’t actually read anything by the author before, although I’ve had The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight on my to-read list for way too long. I’m definitely going to get that one purchased (along with pretty much everything else in the author’s repertoire) as soon as I have a space in my reading schedule because I absolutely LOVED this book. I got through it relatively quickly, considering I was reading alongside writing essays galore, attending university classes and actually making time to eat and sleep. It fits perfectly into the YA world and I would honestly say that it’s up there with the best of them: any lovers of John Green or Stephanie Perkins would definitely love this book!
The story follows a young couple, Clare and Aidan, on their last night together before they head off to college for 4 years. They have to make the incredibly difficult and adult decision of whether or not to try and make their relationship work over a 3000 mile distance or to break up and try and move on with their lives. I can tell you now, this book is incredibly relatable and I can imagine that a lot of different people from all over will take solace in the message that this book puts across. I absolutely loved the anecdote from Aidan’s dad, repeated by him and by Aidan himself: sometimes the hardest things are the ones best worth doing. I loved the relationship that we saw between Aidan and Clare, and I also really enjoyed the little steps away from their relationship where they spent time with their friends. Stella and Scotty were a great addition to the story and I’d be curious to learn as to where their story is going to progress. I thought everything came together really nicely and I was rooting for them and their relationship from the word go.
I won’t spoil the ending for everyone because seriously, you should go out and buy this book, but I will say that it left me sad and happy and all sorts of other different emotions, all at the same time. It made me smile, it made me tear up ever so slightly and it also made me think a lot about my own life and the decisions I’ve had to make over the last few years. I absolutely ADORED the last pages and I think that the way the author went with the story was definitely the right one. I can’t wait to give Jennifer’s other books a good read over the coming weeks and months and advise you guys out there to get this book bought as soon as possible!
The paperback version of Hello, Goodbye and Everything in Between was published Thursday 21st April in the UK and can be purchased on Amazon right here.