I can’t tell if this novel is really good or if it just hit all my nostalgia buttons—hit them hard. First of all, this young adult novel is a novel of letters—actual letters—not e-mails or texts or Instagram photos—between Cath and Scott. This made me think of all the letters I wrote when I went off to college—to friends back home and later, during the summer, to friends I had made at school. These letters were written on stationary of various kinds as well as later typed on my friend’s Apple IIC and I wrote a lot of them. But I digress.
It is August of 1982 and Cath and Scott are separating after four years of dealing with high school together—Cath is going off to college at Wake Forest and Scott is staying home to work at his dad’s clothing store and not live up to his potential. Over the course of the next year, Cath and Scott fight, make up, encourage and challenge each other, and try new things—and it’s all documented in their correspondence. Also, life throws them both some curve balls that make their first year out of high school even more tumultuous and strange. They trade barbs and music recommendations in equal measure and clearly are perfect for each other—even though they are the last to realize it.
This was a fun read (that at less than 200 pages, really flies by) and not just because I could connect with every single musical recommendation that Scott makes to Cath (and vice versa). My only complaint was the novel had a perfect stopping point but the authors plowed by that—in order to spell out the end result (a pet peeve I have). Otherwise this was a great trip down memory lane—on so many levels.
*I received an ARC of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest/unbiased review.