Book Talk: The Love That Split The World by Emily Henry

Book Talk: The Love That Split The World by Emily HenryThe Love That Split The World by Emily Henry
Published by Razorbill on January 2016
Genres: YA Science Fiction
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”



Sticking with the official summary to be safe and not to give away things:

“Natalie Cleary must risk her future and leap blindly into a vast unknown for the chance to build a new world with the boy she loves. Natalie’s last summer in her small Kentucky hometown is off to a magical start… until she starts seeing the “wrong things.” They’re just momentary glimpses at first—her front door is red instead of its usual green, there’s a pre-school where the garden store should be. But then her whole town disappears for hours, fading away into rolling hills and grazing buffalo, and Nat knows something isn’t right.

That’s when she gets a visit from the kind but mysterious apparition she calls “Grandmother,” who tells her: “You have three months to save him.” The next night, under the stadium lights of the high school football field, she meets a beautiful boy named Beau, and it’s as if time just stops and nothing exists. Nothing, except Natalie and Beau.”



I have been putting off this post since January. Why? Because I didn’t love it as much as I hoped (it was a most anticipated debut!!) or as much as everyone else did and it’s been hard for me to put those thoughts together.

I loved the premise sooooo much. Instantly I was like okay is this time travel? Parallel worlds? I immediately fell into the writing which is GORGEOUS and I was turning the pages to figure out just what was going on and why she was seeing strange things around her that didn’t quite match up to her reality. ALSO I was really intrigued to figure out who Grandmother really was and the who and why of the boy who needed to be saved. It started out marvelously for me. Emily Henry really knew how to suck you into it.

But then here’s where the problems started for me: the romance. I didn’t get it. I didn’t feel it. When you (not the author’s fault necessarily) compare it to The Time Traveler’s Wife (one of my faves) I am expecting this certain level of a sweeping and all-consuming love story that made me feel all the things. I literally felt nothing (okay maybe disappointment). I’m not at all a hater of instalove but this was an instalove based on not much followed by not much development to even make me feel the stakes in this romance. I didn’t understand it at all. I have to feel the chemistry and I didn’t at any point. View Spoiler »

And then here’s the other thing I’m going to be straight up with you about: I did NOT understand what actually happened. I read it with a friend and we both were trying to make sense of the ending and were sooo confused to some degree. We understood the gist of okay this is what happened and who Grandmother is but we had so many questions of things that didn’t make sense to us like some logistics of how things worked and some plot holes in our mind when it came to the paradoxes. We tried working it out and got too frustrated and just chalked it up to maybe we weren’t smart enough for this one. I don’t mind having to think but, to be honest, I just found the ending and explanations to just be confusing for some aspects of it.

SIGH I feel sad just talking about this, guys. WHY DID IT NOT CLICK FOR MEEEEE? I kept waiting to feel what everyone else felt.


factors+ writing, how it kept me engaged and racing to find out all the things, the first half basically
–  the romance, so many confusing things & questions still  (two really important things)

Should you read it? Hard to say. Take my opinion but then read this review and this one.

Should you buy it or borrow it? Gahh another hard one. I’m inclined to say borrow but given how many people I know that have 4 or 5 starred it….IDK.

a5fans of YA science fiction, fans of romance (especially those who don’t mind instalove type situations)

a8I am curious to see what Emily Henry puts out next because her writing is great and there was a lot of good in this book (storytelling that pulls you in, care to details, some really good non-romantic relationships) but unfortunately The Love That Split the World just never found that spark within me like it did sooo many other people. It started with feeling zero chemistry with the romance (which much of this book hinged on) and then when all the reveals started coming in I just felt straight up confused and had more questions than answers. I’m not going to say “don’t read it” because I don’t think it was actually a bad book…it just wasn’t for me apparently as much it started out well and as much as I willed myself to feel something for it.



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

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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. AMEN, Jamie! I loved the writing and the way Emily Henry sucked me into the small town feels, and I liked the love interest but was never convinced of why they were in love? Too many info dumps with the tales and therapy sessions broke up the pacing for me too. And the end was so full of holes and contradictions that I wanted to hulk smash the book. Have I ever wanted to smack a Grandma character so bad? No. I gave it 2 stars. My review vid got a few comments from others who didn’t like it and they brought up so many great points, but I haven’t seen any other low rated reviews yet so this makes me really happy! BUT, yes, I am really looking forward to whatever Emily writes next because I’d love to see more of her storytelling. This one just didn’t do it for me.


      sooooo many info dumps, man. So agree about the tales and therapy breaking things up. I kept skimming over the tales.

      I’m glad I’m not the only one who was like WOHTOIOIWJEF*$YHLKSJ over the ending.

  2. Stephanie Volkmer says:

    I agree about the ending. I loved the writing style and the way she started but much like you I was extremely confused by the ending. As one who watches a lot of Sci-Fi and reads many parallel universe stories I was waiting for her to explain some of the major plot holes but they never were.
    I think I gave this a 3.5 simply because of the writing style. Which saddens me because had the ending been more solid I would have definitely liked this more. 😊

    • OMG THANK YOU. I was like “am I just not seeing the answers to some of these holes??” So that makes me feel much better that I’m not just dumb or something haha. I don’t normally get so confused with sci-fi!!

  3. I have not read this, but I will say it doesn’t take much to get me confused and cross-wise when it comes to time travel, heh. Good to know about the beautiful writing, I always love when a novel has got the prose going on. 😉

    • I’ve read some time travel books where I’m confused but then I have this A HA moment…that did not happen with this one haha. Def can’t wait to see what she writes next BECAUSE of the writing!

  4. Sorry to hear this was a miss for you :/ I’ve seen so many mixed reviews for this book, so I’m super interested to see what it’s all about. I actually requested it from the library when it was released but it’s taking FOREVER to come in. So frustrating haha.

    • Did it come in yet for you?? Curious what you think about it! I saw so many rave reviews so I def felt in the majority but I feel like it’s def a book to check out if you are interested!!

      • I just picked it up on Saturday! Haven’t started it yet since I have a few other library books to finish first, but I’m hoping I like it!

  5. I felt the EXACT same with this book. I was really looking forward to it but at the end I was just meh over it.

  6. I am going to wait and get it from the library. I am going to read about the ledgends and folklore first just to see how faulty she was in her research. That stuff really bothers me. Thanks for the honest review. 🙂

    • Yeah def a borrow for me! I will be curious to see what you think re the legends and folklore. I honestly had no knowledge so I wouldn’t have known otherwise.

  7. Jamie, it’s really interesting to see this review because 1. it’s the first critical one I’ve seen and 2. I haven’t read the book but I think you might be onto something. I’m featuring this book in a time-travel reads round-up I’m writing for another blog site and in creating that post I had to boil down the plot synopsis for each book into a couple of sentences. After reading this blurb a few times I realized it was really hard to do for this title. Something I have noticed is when you have a hard time getting down to that “elevator pitch” for a book it usually means something is wrong. Either the marketing focus is on the wrong areas (the romance here maybe?) or the plot wasn’t refined enough to properly distill. I’ve sort of decided to skip this one already because I was put off by some of the comp titles that I saw but now I am intrigued to find other people talking about the actual plot more than just the “feels” of the book.

    • YESSSS you can’t really explain the plot without spoiling and also it was kind of all over the place. I think you make such a good point about the elevator pitch! I like honestly kind of want you to read this one just so we can talk about it hahah

  8. Ooh, I’m glad I’m not the only one! I really liked the writing and the main character, but I also felt nothing on the romance front and ended up becoming bored. Then, like a terrible person, I skipped through to the ending and….also got very confused! I concluded that this just wasn’t a Gillian book, as well-crafted as it seems to be!

    • OMG THIS MAKES ME FEEL SO MUCH BETTER. The romance just was sooo not a me thing. Like if it was so epic I would want to go to the ends of the earth with it…I did not at all. I did not even want to go around the block with it. And even reading the whole book the ending was still confusing as FCK

  9. Aww, I’m so sad you didn’t enjoy it! The Time-Travelers Wife is one of my favorite books as well, so the comparison creates HUGE expectations. Plus, the cover is just so pretty. To me, feeling connected to the romance in a book is a big deal for me as well, so I totally understand why you didn’t like it. Hope you next read is a great one! Lovely review <3

    Brittany @ Brittany’s Book Rambles

    • Yeah, I think if you loved the romance in this one it probably was wayyyy more satisfying! Thankfully I read so many good books after this one!!! Like The Crown’s Game. Now THAT ship. YEP.

  10. I’m curious as to how I’m going to feel about The Love That Split the World! It seems like a very divisive novel, as it’s been getting all sorts of mixed reviews from people. But the elements about it that appealed to you are also the elements that make me curious, so I guess we’ll have to see what I think…

    • And I just read something about this book that made me change my mind completely about it. I’ll unfortunately need to skip reading this one 🙁

      • Was it the Native American stuff? I was reading some of the stuff posted about it and eeep. It’s so hard when I read a book because I never really SEE representation problems myself which makes me feel like a failure but I do like to learn from those that one. If that was at all what you were referring to haha.

  11. I received this book in my monthly subscription to Owlcrate but haven’t read it, yet. I’ve seen a few scathing reviews and a few glowing reviews about it. I still want to read it, but I’m not in as big a hurry as I was after reading your thoughts on it.

    • I will be super curious what you think! I know sooo many people who loved it so I know it hits some notes for people!

  12. LOL this sounds like The Walls Around Us where we were like- wait, what happened??? I definitely needed to be smarter to read that book (even though I LOVED it). But I don’t think I’m going to read this one because while I loved loved loved The Time Traveler’s Wife… a time travel book has to be really special for me to want to give it a shot.

    • Honestly it confused me MORE than TWAU lolol. I don’t know this would be a Michelle book tbh. Esp knowing that you love TTW like I do!

  13. Thanks for linking to my post, lady! So sorry this one wasn’t a hit for you but I TOTALLY understand. Whenever someone makes that BIG BOOK comparison and it falls short of that expectation — because of content or feels or whatever — it’s so hard to shake. I’ve had many books where that comp is thrown out there and the book is NOTHING like it.
    This book gave me feels of Walk Two Moons which I have loved since I was a kid and still love as an adult so that gave it the little something extra for me that I didn’t expect and it really helped me connect. Sorry this one wasn’t a fav!

    • Sometimes I feel so bad because it’s not the book or the author’s fault that is what marketing compared it to and I TRY to ignore those but a lot of times those comparison’s get me jazzed for it!

      OMG I loooooved Walk Two Moons as a kid! I remember nothing about it except loving it. I want to reread that for sure!!

  14. Now I’m REALLY intrigued to read it just to see if I “get it.”

    • Ahh you will have to update me if you read it as to if you liked it and maybe explain it to me if you get it!!

  15. OMG I’m so glad I’m not the only one who was confused by this book! This was one of my most anticipated 2016 releases, and I was so disappointed when I didn’t totally love it–especially when so many people do! I agree with you–the writing is gorgeous, but I never became totally invested in the story or characters. And I didn’t get the ending at all; I read it a few times, but I was still really confused.

    • OMG YOU MAKE ME FEEL SO MUCH BETTER. It was also one of my most anticipated too. BUMMER. I’m glad I wasn’t the only one who kept trying to read the ending over and over hoping I would get it lol


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