Book Talk: The Geography of You and Me by Jennifer E. Smith

Book Talk: The Geography of You and Me by Jennifer E. SmithThe Geography Of You and Me by Jennifer E. Smith
Publisher/Year: Poppy- April 15, 2014
Genres: Contemporary YA
Format: ARC
Source: Borrowed
Other Books From Author: The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight, This Is What Happy Looks Like, You are Here The Comeback Season, The Stormmakers
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book synopsis “Lucy and Owen meet somewhere between the tenth and eleventh floors of a New York City apartment building, on an elevator rendered useless by a citywide blackout. After they’re rescued, they spend a single night together, wandering the darkened streets and marveling at the rare appearance of stars above Manhattan. But once the power is restored, so is reality. Lucy soon moves to Edinburgh with her parents, while Owen heads out west with his father.

Lucy and Owen’s relationship plays out across the globe as they stay in touch through postcards, occasional e-mails, and — finally — a reunion in the city where they first met.”

 

good books to read

I really enjoyed The Geography of You and Me by Jennifer E. Smith. It was absolutely different than I thought it would be and in such a good way. I think Jennifer E. Smith’s books are such feel good books and while this WAS that it was a whole lot more honestly. I still think The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight is still my favorite but this comes pretty darn close to rivaling it. It was really a beautiful story that really displayed what a talented author Jennifer E. Smith is. Let’s break it down:

1. I loved the idea of this book and, even though it didn’t go the way I thought it would, I loved it more how it DID go: I loved the idea of this chance meeting during the blackout and then the fact that circumstances would send them both away so they’d have this long distance relationship. First, I thought we’d see a lot more of their adventures through the blackout. Secondly, I thought it would be more of a long distance relationship where they were together and keeping the relationship alive through cutesy emails and texts and postcards and stuff. They did communicate through postcards and emails but they weren’t “together” and it wasn’t this constant communication. It was more of a story where these two people meet, feel this really strong spark but move to opposite sides of the world before anything can really happen between them and are left to deal with what to do with all those feelings plus what they were individually going through before they met. I LOVED watching this play out — them in their new environment moving on with their own lives but still having these lingering feelings for each other that nagged at them at certain point. That question of “what might have been” just dangling there because it was never able to really start! It was romantic but in a different way than her usual books — maybe not in such an obvious way.

2. As far as writing goes this is my favorite Jennifer E. Smith book: Another blogger, Heather, and I were talking on Twitter about just how BEAUTIFUL the writing was in this book. I thought her books were always well written but there was just something about this one where I really kept getting lost in the words and was just really impressed by the writing of this one.

3. I loved how the characters really learned what “home” meant in this novel: Both characters, when we meet them, have this really broken feeling of what home means. Owen’s mom passed away and him and his dad just can’t bear to be in their home without her so they just wander. Home for Lucy has been kind of lonely with her parents always traveling and her brothers away at college. I just really enjoyed watching both characters have to reconcile what HOME means for them and what and who it includes. It was just really beautiful to watch this happen though I think Owen’s story just really resonated with me more with losing his mom and watching him and his dad work through that.

4. LOVED all the travel going on in this novel: There were just these little moments that perfectly and quietly captured each location and I just loved seeing these new places through their eyes! At times I wish we could have gotten even more immersed in some places — especially New York during the blackout! I wanted to see more of Lucy’s New York!

5. I loved Owen and Lucy but I didn’t find them to be super REAL to me: I liked their stories and really connected with Owen’s but I never found them to be these super alive characters that I could picture and felt like I really KNEW them. They just fell a wee bit flat despite how much I enjoyed their stories and watched their growth.

6. I loved that this wasn’t necessarily all about the romance but the romance was still compelling: I so deeply felt that lingering of their one night in New York. There wasn’t an insta-love or anything like that but there was this SPARK that they had and they never got to examine that. I loved that they didn’t pine for each other when they parted but there was a very realistic feeling of wanting to know what COULD have been had they had more time together. Wanting to know more about the other person from the little bit you got. I loved watching them work through the other things going on in their life but could SO SO SO feel the pull of each other at times.

book reviews

The Geography of You and Me was just what I needed — sweet, romantic in a untypical way, reflective, beautiful, messy and just a really enjoyable read even if it didn’t go at all how I thought it would by the summary. I expected it to be a bit lighter and more of a long distance romance but I really, really enjoyed what I read instead.  I don’t think the characters were as full and real as I needed them to be to make this a favorite but I really enjoyed this nonetheless.  Really impressed with Jennifer E. Smith’s writing in this one and the refreshing plot!

 

 

short book reviewGeography of You and Me Jennifer E Smith

 

Let’s Talk: Have you read this one? What did you think of it? Did you think this one was going to be a bit lighter than it was or think certain elements were going to be different because of the summary..or was that just me? If you’ve read her books before where does this rank for you? I think I LOVED Stat a wee bit more but loved this WAY more than This Is What Happy Looks Like.


The Perpetual Page-Turner

 

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About Jamie

Jamie is a 28 year old married lady who is in denial that she's actually that old. When she's not reading you can find her doing Pilates followed by eating gelato, listening to music with oversized headphones and teaching her niece how to be as awesome as she is.

Comments

  1. I haven’t read a book by this author yet, but I’m glad you enjoyed it! Her books seem really cutesy, which is fine by me, I just haven’t gotten around to reading one yet. I’ll probably start with Statistical Probability since that seems to be a fan favorite.

    • YES Stat and This is What Happy Look Like are def more cutesy than this one! I haven’t read The Comeback Season so idk how that one is! I expected this one to follow suit. It wasn’t SUPER heavy but it still wasn’t as light and cutesy as the other two.

  2. I have a potentially shameful confession to make: I have never read a Jennifer E. Smith book. I know, I know! *Ducks rotten tomatoes* As someone who loves the contemporary genre above all else this is likely a cardinal sin but I do actually own two of them (The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight & This Is What Happy Looks Like) so that must count for something, right? Hopefully I’ll be able to remedy this soon :)

    After reading your review it sounds like your experience with this book was a little like mine with Leila Sales’ This Song Will Save Your Life in 2013 – I expected a lighter, ‘fluffier’ book but in the end I was much happier with the more serious and thoughtful story I was given instead. I have to say, much like you, I imagined something far different from The Geography Of You and Me than what you’ve described – I expected much of the novel to take place during the blackout and their ensuing day together, but I do prefer the idea of Smith examining Lucy and Owen’s stories on a vaster scope and seeing how this chance meeting evolved into something more and shaped their lives from that point on. My feelings about this release were a little tepid prior to reading your review but I’m definitely going to pick up a copy now. The characters might not have been as realistic as you had hoped, but I’m intrigued by the subtly of the story you’ve described and I’m excited to experience this novel for myself :)

    • I loooove STAT…get to that!!

      I don’t think it was as great as This Song Will Save Your LIfe in terms of thinking it was going to be light (I so did too with that one) and getting something SO different but it was different if you’ve read her other books. Less cutesy I guess but still cute enough? If that makes sense. I will be VERY curious about your thoughts re: this one if you get to it!!

  3. I have not read it, but sound like a great book. Can`t wait to read it :)

  4. I am so not reading your whole review right now – I pre-ordered my copy, I’ll read your post after that :D

    I think I prefer This is What Happy Looks Like, but I am a Maine girl at heart :)

  5. I recently found this author and fell on love with her and her book THE PROBABILITY OF LOVE AT FIRST SIGHT. I can’t wait to read this one! Thank you for sharing!

  6. Thank you for this review. It sounds just what I need for the up coming school holidays!

  7. Hooray! I’ve really liked her other books and how they don’t seem realistic while at the same time seeming realistic. If that makes any sense. Can’t wait to read this one!

    • THIS. “how they don’t seem realistic while at the same time seeming realistic”…that is actually an amazing and apt way to describe her books!

  8. This is such a great review! I’ve been getting a bit more into YA and I’m definitely a fan of feel good books! I’ve not heard of this author, so I’m also going to give her other books a look as well!

    • Yeah definitely feel good books though this one was maybe a little bit less cutesy as the other two I’ve read. This Is What Happy Looks like wasn’t my fave but I enjoyed it enough and it reminded me of like a Mary Kate and Ashley movie or a Disney movie…cheesy but entertaining. The Statistical Probability of Love At First Sight though..loved that one! Still cutesy but not as much cheese!

  9. I’m so, so excited for this book. I love Jennifer E. Smith, and I love travel, and I think long-distance relationships (be it of the romantic or platonic variety) aren’t explored enough in YA. I’m glad you found the writing to be better than in her other two novels-some of the writing in The Geography of You and Me just wasn’t doing it for me. Thanks for your review!

  10. Is this one in a series with The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight? Or are they just similar sounding?
    :)

  11. The Geography of You and Me was a gorgeously written book! I loved that the story focused on more than just Lucy and Owen’s relationship. And I also loved that they didn’t jump straight into a romance right away, but instead, just kept feeling/being reminded of that spark. Glad you enjoyed it!

  12. I’ve been meaning to read this for a while, I read The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight some time ago but all I remember is that I liked it xD This seems like the perfect book to break my endless stream of fantasy and paranormal that I’ve been reading lately. Cuz like I NEED SOME CUTESY FLUFF IN MY LIFE. I’m intrigued by the whole long-distance relationship thing and the travel because I adore books with traveling/road trips add-on the beautiful writing you mentioned? *Adds book to huge pile of TBR* Great review!

  13. I wasn’t sure what to expect. I knew it would be romantic, but I wasn’t sure how that tied in with geography. I liked it. I kind of wished the two would have wound up together in the end, but, hey!, can’t win ‘em all :)

  14. I seemed to be in the minority with this one as I DNF’ed it about 100 pages in. It was doing nothing for me and I didn’t particularly like any of the characters (I don’t have to like the characters to like a book though) I am now very reluctant to pick up another one of her books. Glad it worked for you though Jamie.

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