Book Talk: Tonight The Streets Are Ours by Leila Sales

Book Talk: Tonight The Streets Are Ours by Leila SalesTonight The Streets Are Ours by Leila Sales
Published by Farrer Straus and Giroux on September 2015
Genres: Contemporary YA
Also by this author: This Song Will Save Your Life
Format: ARC
Source: For Review

I received this book for review consideration from the publisher. This in no way swayed my opinion of the book. Pinky swear!




Want an “at a glance” look at what I thought? Check out my Review On A Post-It or my “Final Thought”



Arden is recklessly loyal and always has been. She cares about her friends and family and really does a lot for everybody but lately she’s feeling like she’s being taken forgranted and that maybe she loves and cares for people just a bit more than they love her. An existential google search has her stumbling upon a blog called Tonight the Streets Are Ours that’s written by a guy named Peter who ends up writing things that speak directly to her soul and who she ends up pouring over his every entry. On a whim she and her best friend take off on a road trip to find this guy whose life she feels so connected to for one wild night in the city where she learns a bit about what she needs and wants as well as the fact that Peter might not be who she thought he is.

a2*muses on internet life and curation of our lives and all the things*

a4This Song Will Save Your Life by Leila Sales is a book I super love. Like really high up there for me. Tonight The Streets Are Ours didn’t quite make me feel like that one did but I really did enjoy this one (I mean, I read it in a whole afternoon) and it made me think A LOT about internet life because Leila weaves a lot of interesting thoughts about how we curate our lives for the internet.

At times the story was a little all over the place and I struggled to really feel IN it always plus I was eagerly awaiting the moment Arden would set off on this roadtrip to find Peter but it was like half way into the story before that even happened. I didn’t find the characters to be all the compelling even though I did really connect with Arden on that feeling that sometimes, only with certain people in my case, you just feel like you love them/care for them/do more for them than they do you. You put in 100% while you feel like they aren’t at all. I especially related to how she felt like she needed to fix everything for her best friend — there is someone in my life I find myself bending over backwards for and trying to fix everything for at the drop of a hat…even when it negatively affects me. I did connect with Arden there but I wished I felt more for her and the other characters…to feel their characters more deeply.

Despite how rash and flimsy her reasoning for going to find Peter is, I really did understand that feeling of being SO invested in someone’s life on the internet that you don’t even know. I’ve been there. Back in college but also as an adult. Not that I would have ever gone and tried to find them but I understood that level of investment.

I think my favorite thing about this book is how much it made me think about internet life. Arden is SO invested in Peter’s life through is blog — his breakup with his girlfriend, his writing journey, his missing brother. She feels like she KNOWS him through what he’s written but in meeting Peter and spending a night wandering the city with him she sees how easy it is to curate and filter your life to portray what you want your readers to think about your life because Peter isn’t exactly who she built him up to be through what he shared.

It’s always an interesting thing about internet life — you can be anyone you want to be. For me, my blog was actually the place where I started to feel like I could be 100% me. The interesting thing is that with all social media it’s easy to curate and filter and present what you want to present to the world. We all do it. I’ve talked before about my struggle to be authentic but allow myself to keep some things more private. I try to shows my lows with my highs as best I can but it’s always a fine line.

Something happened to me recently that made me really connect with the lesson Arden learns — that sometimes someone you grow to admire online is not the #brand you see once the veil is lifted and you learn that what they portray is not actually the person they are — while others’ #brand is pretty true to who they are. And it’s easy to be fooled…even at 30! Humans + the age of curating your life for public consumption equals tricky business deciphering real, sort of real and not real.
One last thing I loved about this book View Spoiler »


factors+ interesting plot, how it made me think about a lot of things, Leila’s writing, how I flew through it
–  characterization, felt here and there sometimes lacking a sort of focus

Should you read it? I think if you are a fan of contemporary YA it’s a quick read and worth it! If you aren’t a contemporary fan/are picky about your contemporary YA I think you can skip it.

Should you buy it or borrow it? I would say it’s a borrow for me but if you haven’t already bought This Song Will Save Your Life…do that.

a5contemporary YA fans, fans of Leila’s previous books

a8While I didn’t LOVE it as much as This Song Will Save Your Life, I really did enjoy this one a lot and it had me thinking a lot about internet life in general. Leila’s writing is always so delightful and smart and I love the way she explores friendship, family, internet life and love in this one.

review-on-post-itTonight the Streets Are Ours Leila Sales


a8j* Have you read this one? What did you think? Similar or different from me? I would LOVE to hear regardless!
*If you haven’t read it, does it feel like something you’d be into?



The Perpetual Page-Turner

P.S. You might also enjoy  Musings on Internet Life // On Meeting Your Heroes // This Song Will Save Your Life

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About Jamie

Jamie is a 32 year old married lady (with a new baby!!) who is in denial that she's actually that old to be a married lady and a mom. When she's not reading you can find her doing Pilates followed by eating ice cream, belting out Hamilton (loud and offkey) and having adventures with her husband, daughter and rescue dog.


  1. Have you read Super Sad True Love Story? Parts of your review here made me think of that – it’s very dystopia/social media takes over the world, and would be an interesting read 🙂

  2. Wow, that’s a gorgeous cover! However, haven’t picked up a copy of This Song Will Save Your Life yet, so maybe that takes priority 🙂

  3. I totally agree–I was so excited to read this because I’d loved This Song Will Save Your Life and also Sales’ earlier work, Mostly Good Girls. But then I was like–well, that was okay. Liked some of it, but never got fully invested.

    On another note, I kind of adore your sliding scale graphic. Someday I will learn how to do things like that. Maybe.

    • Yeah, like it just didn’t hit THOSE kinda feels for me that I need to love something which was sad. Leila is a talented writer and that was evident yet again in this one but this was just like well I liked it…but that’s about it. Loved some of the things it got me thinking of for sure!

      And thank you! I made it a couple years ago because after like 2-3 years of blogging with a rating because a typical 5 star rating never worked for me I finally spent a lot of time brainstorming and trying to develop a rating system that WOULD work for me…because I know people enjoy seeing ratings. And I came up with this and it works sooo well for me because it’s really true to my basic reactions to books and I can like explain below what my factors for the rating was. Because sometimes the stars just didn’t work…like a book could be a 5 star as a fun book but that was different for me than a really profound 5 star book…if that makes sense. Still loved both but in different ways.

  4. I loved her other books but I DNFed this one. It wasn’t on purpose- I just put it down and forgot to pick it back up.

  5. Hmmm. Seems interesting. I LOVE the way you lay out reviews (also your blog aesthetic is beautiful, but I think I have already told you that). Thanks for the great review 🙂

  6. This was my first Leila Sales book, and I enjoyed it. I just found the synopsis to be a little misleading, so I was a bit surprised by some of the stuff that I read, but in a good way. I was hoping that they would re-work the blurb before they released it because of it, but oh well.

    I agree with you on borrowing it, though. I’m glad that I read a borrowed ARC of this one, instead of buying a copy like I originally planned. It’s cute, but it’s not something I’d buy after reading it. (However, I still want to buy a copy just because I’m in love with the cover!)

  7. This sounds like a cute read….one that Iʻd pick up between much heavier books. I hope they have it at my library the next time I go…I want to check it out.

  8. Interestingly, I think I liked this one even more than This Song Will Save Your Life. This book started an ongoing thread in my own life where I think about how I use (or don’t use) my online presence to shape the narrative of my own life. It’s really interesting to think about and I loved seeing all of that play out in a novel. I also really liked how casually (and sometimes unexpectedly) diverse it was in places and . . . well I don’t even re-read books but now I want to pick up my copy again after typing up this comment <3

  9. Hey Jaime, I have a question!
    How do you add that view spoiler button? I try to do spoiler free reviews, of course, but some things I just need to say but want people to have the option to see it instead. Im still new at the whole website editing stuff, so just curious x3 Thanks!!

  10. I quite liked Tonight the Streets Are Ours for a lot of the reasons you’ve mentioned! I thought it was such an interesting commentary on how we can really grow attached to the online personas we encounter, only to discover that people might not be how they are online. But, more importantly, I found myself relating to Arden! I was in the same sort of friendship she had in years past, and it took a long time before I realized how to balance things properly and talk my feelings out with my friends. That really resonated with me!

  11. I liked it. It definitely made me realize how much I identify with Arden’s character – not the searching for some blogger across the country, just how invested I can be in ensuring a person’s happiness should be exceedingly greater than my own.
    – Krys