Hello, Goodbye and Everything in Between by Jennifer E. Smith
Published September 1st, 2015
Young Adult Contemporary Romance
Premise:On the night before they leave for college, Clare and Aidan only have one thing left to do: figure out whether they should stay together or break up. Over the course of twelve hours, they'll retrace the steps of their relationship, trying to find something in their past that might help them decide what their future should be. The night will lead them to friends and family, familiar landmarks and unexpected places, hard truths and surprising revelations. But as the clock winds down and morning approaches, so does their inevitable goodbye. The question is, will it be goodbye for now or goodbye forever?
This new must-read novel from Jennifer E. Smith, author of The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight, explores the difficult choices that must be made when life and love lead in different directions.
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This is such a heartbreaking and heartwarming story at the same time that by the time I finished reading, I was left with both sad and happy tears. Damn you, Jennifer E. Smith! You always make me cry with your books.
This books follows Clare and Aidan, a teenage couple on their last night of summer before they go away to collage at opposite sides of the country. They both know they have to make a decision about their relationship. Are they going to break up before they go, on their own terms? Or are they going to try the whole long-distance thing? And what if by staying together they end up missing out on all the new experiences of college? What if they end up breaking up anyway further down the line, because of something stupid and meaningless?
The night goes by really quickly for them, while they visit all the significant places for their relationship, embark themselves in a few last adventures and say their last goodbyes to their few friends that are still in town. But before the clocks finally signals that it's time for them to say goodbye to each other, there are still a few secrets that need to come out.
Clare is the rational one, the girl who always has a plan or a really long to-do list, the one who always think about the future. Aidan is the spontaneous one, the one who likes to talk about anything and everything just because he feels like it, the one who likes to live in the moment. And they were freaking perfect together. I'm usually not a fan of already consumed relationships in a YA book. I like to see the first moments of flirting and the whole journey of the couple coming together. Bu in this case, we meet the couple in their last night together and somehow it still worked for me. I got really invested in their relationship and I was pulling for them to stay together.
There still is a lot of remembering during the story. We get to see a few of the best moments of their relationship during their conversations and sometimes when Clare is reminded of them by a certain situation. The problem with this is that the present and the past are mixed together in the writing, like I would be reading this scene were they're at the beach at night and then suddenly, it was a year back and they were having a conversation about something ridiculous or whatever. I had trouble keeping things separate at first, especially with dialogues, but then I guess I got used to it.
Overall, this was a really unique story and I enjoyed it greatly. I'm just such a huge fan of Jennifer E. Smith, that every book she publishes is an auto-buy for me. I go expecting cute contemporary romance, but it always gets me somehow and I end up sniffling and tearing up every time. This time it was no exception and I've never been so thankful for a prologue in my whole reading life. You'll know what I mean when you read this book, because you should, it's way to beautiful to miss out on.
About the author
Jennifer E. Smith is the author of The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight, The Storm Makers, You Are Here, and The Comeback Season. She earned her master's degree in creative writing from the University of St. Andrews in Scotland, and currently works as an editor in New York City. Her writing has been translated into 28 languages.