First Lines: The car jams to the curb and I hop out before the valet can reach my door. I’m in the biggest hurry of my life and I don’t care who knows it.
I was initially interested in this book because it’s billed as When Harry Met Sally for YA. That’s probably my favorite movie ever, so I was all over that. But it’s also compared to the writing style of Stephanie Perkins, Huntley Fitzpatrick, and Jenny Han. My expectations were quite high.
June is ready for high school to end so real life can begin. Oliver is soaking up every minute of high school. Neither one truly knows the other one, and June would love to keep it that way. Except that wasn’t part of their moms’ plans. Now, Oliver is going to drive June to school Every. Single. Day. They don’t agree on much, but when promises and hearts get broken, Oliver and June will have to figure out what matters and what’s worth fighting for.
Perhaps not so shockingly, it didn’t quite live up to my very high expectations.
Realistically though, it played out the way I thought it would. It’s a cute romance with two characters who initially don’t really care for each other but come to be friends who maybe want more than that. In that respect, it very much is like When Harry Met Sally.
If you’re interested in the comparison, June is basically Harry and Oliver is Sally. June’s kind of cynical and definitely not a joiner in anything high school related. Oliver is bubbly and warm, befriending nearly everyone he meets.
I just had such a hard time connecting to the characters. I didn’t really care for June because she’s just so cynical sometimes. Sometimes she’s just plain rude or mean for no reason. I mean, there were parts of her personality I did like (she’s totally sarcastic, which I usually adore), but I just couldn’t relate to her enough to care, I guess. But I did like Oliver.
I think probably one of my biggest issues with this story was that I wasn’t feeling the romance. You know those love stories that get you all tingly and make you feel light inside? This wasn’t one of them. I was rooting for them to get together, but I didn’t actually feel that connection.
And one of the minor characters in the story is vulgar and I mean really vulgar. Trust me, I know that there are guys out there who talk like that, but it’s usually that creepy dude trying to pick you up in a seedy bar rather than a character in a YA novel. He was disgusting. And yes, weird as what I’m about to say sounds to me, he does have a reason for being disgusting. But just as it does in real life, it got old very quickly.
I also noticed there were a few issues with the plot. On the whole, I didn’t have a problem with the plot. It was cute and I liked the slow transformation in the characters. But there were moments that tried to force suspense or really just dropped the ball. Like why a senior in high school refuses to get her license. Kind of a crux to the plot, but also not really. But it keeps getting brought up to (I think?) create some suspense in the story. But when the answer takes about two seconds to explain, it’s really not worth it. This happened a couple of times with various plot elements.
Look, it’s a cute story, don’t get me wrong. But it had a few issues.