Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Hello, Goodbye and Everything in Between | Jennifer E. Smith


On the night before they leave for college, Clare and Aidan only have one thing left to do: figure out whether they should stay together or break up. Over the course of twelve hours, they'll retrace the steps of their relationship, trying to find something in their past that might help them decide what their future should be. The night will lead them to friends and family, familiar landmarks and unexpected places, hard truths and surprising revelations. But as the clock winds down and morning approaches, so does their inevitable goodbye. The question is, will it be goodbye for now or goodbye forever?

+3 Cover Design 

While this isn't the best cover I've seen, I absolutely love the font of the title. Any title with this font automatically gets some points. I also really like the color scheme of the cover, but the actual image of the cover seems a bit cliché.

+5 Writing Style

Smith does a fantastic job of weaving all the parts of the story together in a way that's interesting and deep.

+3 Plot Development

While the entirety of the book was more of an emotional journey over a physical one, a majority of the book had good plot development. I particularly loved the flashbacks where we got to see the development of their relationship. While I understood the indecision our protagonist was struggling through, near the end the problem less significant than it started.

+5 Character Relationships 

This entire book focused on relationships. Boyfriend-girlfriend relationship, father-son relationships, best friend-best friend relationships. And they were fleshed out so perfectly. Every interaction had some sort of significance, no dialogue seemed unnecessary and out of place. 

+3 Character Development

Since the span of the book is over the course of one night, we don't really see much development in the characters individually. But we do see a lot of development in their relationships with one another, which compensates for the lack of individuality of the characters.

+3 Likability of Protagonist

I have no complains about Clare or Aiden. I related a little more to Clare in her practicality of thinking, but I wasn't in love with her. I could see how Aiden is a fantastic boyfriend and individual, but again I didn't love him as much as I have with other characters.

+4 Necessity of Minor Characters

While the minor characters weren't necessary to the plot itself, they were extremely important in the development of different character relationships. These minor characters shaped the situation that set up the book, but didn't do as much for the storyline during the book. 

+5 Setting Description

A good chunk of this book focused on the setting since each particular place they stopped had a significant impact on their relationship. I really think that Smith did a fantastic job with giving us enough detail so we could realistically picture the scenes in our minds without being overloaded with unnecessary detail.

+4 Interesting Storyline

Personally I really enjoyed this book and I think a lot of it had to do with how close the scenes in this book hit home. While I'm not saying goodbye to a first love or anything like that, I am leaving for college soon and in the same way I have to say goodbye to all my friends. Like in the book I have friends staying right here and I have friends going as far as California.

+3 Predictability

I wasn't really looking towards whether or not Clare and Aiden would stay together. While I was reading it, I was more living in the moment of their relationship, not really worrying whether or not they were going to stay together.

+50 Finished

Final Total: 88/100; B+ 

This is more of an emotional book than an action-packed one. But it's a fantastic summer read and I definitely recommend it as a good way to feel nostalgic, especially if you're like me and about to start college.