Author: Jennifer E. Smith
Publisher: Poppy, 256 pages
Expected Publication Date: September 1, 2015
*ARC received from publisher via NetGalley
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 is a tough review to write because I did like the book, but it just made me sad. Jennifer E. Smith does a fantastic job of capturing the mixed feelings that people can have when graduating from high school and starting college. On the one hand, Clare and Aidan are excited to start the next part of their lives; however, they are going to different colleges. Clare is going to Dartmouth and Aidan is going to UCLA. It's the last night before they both leave and they still haven't decided whether they're going to try and make it work or whether they should just break up. Aidan thinks they can make a long distance relationship work while Clare doesn't, which makes sense given their personalities. Aidan is more emotional, spontaneous, and a talker while Clare is a planner, a list maker, and more quiet and introspective.
Maybe it was just the mood I was in when I read it, but it made me feel a little nostalgic and missing people that I have let drift away. Even though Clare's parents have tried to help her, talking about college being the beginning of everything, the first chapter of the rest of her life, Clare is upset because it seems like they're saying that everything she's done up to this point in her life isn't important and that the memories don't actually count. To be honest, I've never thought about it that way before.
I liked both Clare and Aidan but I didn't connect with them as much as I wanted to. Reading this book about a couple at the end (possibly the end?) of their relationship made me realize how much I love reading about couples meeting, getting to know each other, falling in love, etc.
Hello, Goodbye, and Everything in Between is a thoughtful and realistic book about growing up and making tough choices. Although there's a sense of melancholy throughout, the second prologue (really the epilogue) made me smile. I do recommend it, but just know going in that this is not a light and fluffy read.
Posted by: Pam