A collective of bibliophiles talking about books. Book Fox (vulpes libris): small bibliovorous mammal of overactive imagination and uncommonly large bookshop expenses. Habitat: anywhere the rustle of pages can be heard.
The Book Festival is over! *sob* And I am bereft. Two weeks of running around, hanging out, meeting old friends and new, hugging and high fiving and gossiping and drinking coffee and wine in a tent as the rain batters the roof. It was as glorious as ever! And I’m so sad it’s over. But I still have a ton of books that I read to share with you, so I’m going to continue the theme.
I am overjoyed to bring to you another read-it-in-one-sitting YA novel. If you cast your mind back a couple of years I told you all about The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight (or SPOLAFS) which was a wonderful teen romance with an equally long title by the same author. If it’s possible The Geography of You and Me is even better!
Lucy and Owen live in the same building in New York but have never spoken. Probably because Lucy lives on the posh 24th Floor and Owen’s dad works in the building and he lives in the basement. One night there is a power cut and they are trapped in the lift together. They overcome their reticence and start chatting and discover they actually have a lot more in common than first appeared. And after spending a night in a strangely dystopian-like blacked out New York they have formed a deep connection. See, already it’s a shivery goosebump-giving Fairy Tale!
But as in all the best fairy tales, things don’t go smoothly at all. Just as they begin their journey together, they’re ripped apart to opposite sides of the world. Lucy’s dad gets a new job in the UK and Owen’s dad loses his job in the building they share. And so begins their long distance attempt at trying to stay connected. It’s not easy to keep in touch with Owen not having a proper phone and him moving about all the time. So they use postcards. It’s awesome.
There is so much to love about this book. The characters are very well drawn and fully formed. The story is told from a dual perspective giving insight into the way both Owen and Lucy feel as they travel in opposite directions whilst trying desperately to pull together. (The fact that Lucy comes to Edinburgh was a particular joy for me to read!) The use of good old fashioned postcards was just so fabulously romantic. The settings,many countries around Europe and across the US are beautifully and meticulously described. The sense of place in each one is absorbing. The obstacles they encounter along the way were very real and true to life. The fact that Lucy and Owen barely knew each other before they were separated made the story all the more poignant to me. It was about a brief encounter that made a massive impact. One small moment between two people that changed everything. SO. MUCH. ROMANTIC!
Jennifer E Smith is a gifted writer of heart-tugging, dreamy, just downright sweet and lovely romance. I am a massive fan of all her work. In fact, so much so, I might just tell you about another one next week!