Author: Emery Lord
Publication date: March 31, 2015
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
Source: ARC from publisher (Thank you, Bloomsbury!)
Following her pitch-perfect debut Open Road Summer, Emery Lord pens another gorgeous story of best friends, new love, & second chances.
Brimming with heartfelt relationships and authentic high-school dynamics The Start of Me and You proves that it’s never too late for second chances.
It’s been a year since it happened—when Paige Hancock’s first boyfriend died in an accident. After shutting out the world for two years, Paige is finally ready for a second chance at high school . . . and she has a plan. First: Get her old crush, Ryan Chase, to date her—the perfect way to convince everyone she’s back to normal. Next: Join a club—simple, it’s high school after all. But when Ryan’s sweet, nerdy cousin, Max, moves to town and recruits Paige for the Quiz Bowl team (of all things!) her perfect plan is thrown for a serious loop. Will Paige be able to face her fears and finally open herself up to the life she was meant to live?
*Photo and synopsis from Goodreads
When news about The Start of Me and You broke out on social media, I was one of the people who longed for it right there and then. At long last, I got a chance to read an ARC. Let me tell you this: its magnificence is twice the level of author Emery Lord’s debut, Open Road Summer. Need more convincing? Read on until you crave for the book like ice cream on a hot summer day.
A heartwarming novel of friendship, family, love, and second chances, The Start of Me and You is simply unforgettable. It’s a story that takes your breath away in a matter of minutes. In my case, I knew it was going to be an instant favorite at the end of Chapter 1. It’s that amazing! I admire how The Start of Me and You is about being brave to step out of your comfort zone. Putting one’s self out there is indeed scary. But this book instills courage in readers. It conveys the message that trying new things help you see the beauty of possibilities and new beginnings. Moreover, The Start of Me and You presents inspiring points on living again and finding happiness. I had tears in my eyes when I finished reading, deeply moved by the final scene that shines with the promise of a bright tomorrow. The Start of Me and You is truly a YA contemporary I’d fall in love with over and over again! Notable details include the cool pop culture references and the authenticity of the main character’s relationship with her family and friends. For me, those two elements brought out the extraordinary spark of the story.
Main character Paige Hancock revitalizes the existence of geeky, inward-looking characters in YA. Paige’s words express the most genuine of emotions that would certainly resonate with readers. Her character started off wounded by her past but as Paige opened herself to a second chance at a normal life, she began to move forward. It wasn’t easy at first yet Paige was determined to get up after her bad fall. I saw pieces of myself in Paige, a character that echoes the voice of my soul. This is why The Start of Me and You will forever live in me.
Then there’s Max Watson. Oh. My. Goodness! In all his adorable, geeky glory, Max Watson has my heart. He is always there for Paige. He listens to everything she says like the good friend that he is. I really loved that Max helped Paige overcome her fear (you’ll find out when you read TSOMAY!) as well as motivated her to move forward. You know, every girl needs a guy like Max in her life. It’s wonderful to have someone who believes in you, sees the real you, and most especially, loves you for who you are.
As Paige and Max got to know each other, their chemistry intensified. Their connection would make you glow with bliss, like you’ve seen the sun for the first time. The relationship unraveled the way you wrap a gift—slowly, carefully, and tied securely with a ribbon. Special, don’t you think? 🙂 It’s a warm, tender type of romance that gives you lots of happy and swoony feels! ❤ There’s an undeniable sweetness about stories in which friendship is the foundation of a romantic entanglement. Because both people are comfortable in each other’s company, they are their real selves. They are not hesitant to speak their mind and share secrets. To me, that’s a great thing because the relationship seems natural.
Emery Lord’s writing is gorgeous! Moving at a graceful rhythm, her words will carry you along in the most beautiful, sweep-you-off-your-feet dance of extraordinary feels. 🙂
An outstanding second novel from a talented author, The Start of Me and You is pure heart and soul and the best kind of perfect.