My rating in stars: 4 stars
My rating in words: I really liked this
What it’s about:
While spacing out in chemistry class, Lily scribbles some of her favorite song lyrics onto her desk. The next day, she finds that someone has continued the lyrics on the desk and added a message to her. Intrigue!
Soon, Lily and her anonymous pen pal are exchanging full-on letters—sharing secrets, recommending bands, and opening up to each other. Lily realizes she’s kind of falling for this letter writer. Only, who is he? As Lily attempts to unravel the mystery and juggle school, friends, crushes, and her crazy family, she discovers that matters of the heart can’t always be spelled out…
“I’m with you on measuring this week in letters and the two-day drought we are about to experience. If only there was a way to transport letters faster, through some sort of electronic device that codes messages and sends them through the air. But that’s just crazy talk.”
Oh my, I ended up really liking this one and I was honestly not expecting to like it that much. I was on a fluffy contemporary roll and I picked this up expecting a quick and fluffy read that would be fun but also rather forgetable. BUT I ended up LOVING this book. It made me think of a Morgan Matson book and I adore Morgan Matson books so that’s high praise. It was my first Kasie West book but I’ll definitely be checking out some of her other books.
Let’s see, why did I love this book so much?
It has a penpal romance. I love me some penpal romances. As someone who is more expressive on paper than in person, I really relate to these kinds of interactions. I loved it in Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda and I once again loved it here. Reading the letters Lily and her penpal exchanged were some of the highlights of the book
They connected over music. What starts of as absently scribbling song lyrics on a desk became connecting over a shared love of music and ended up in opening up to eachother about other things as well. But the music connection never stops. The whole book is full of lyrics and song recommendations (fictional songs though, which is a bummer because actual songs would have made it even nicer).
A quirky, awkward and relatable main character. I loved Lily. She was a little quirky, kinda awkward but also really funny, nice and relatable. She was straddling the line of stereotypical ‘I make awkwardness cool’ main character for a while, but in the end I just didn’t care, she was super fun and I both loved and related to her.
My all-time favorite trope. Other than the pen pal aspect, the story also included my all-time favorite trope, and I thought it was well executed here. I’m not gonna go in more details though because I don’t want to give away the main mystery of the identity of the pen pal. (Even though I thought it was actually super obvious from the very beginning)
Family shenanigans. Lily’s family has just officially become one of my favorite fictional families ever. They are super present in the story and though it’s not something Lily always appreciates, it was something I most certainly did. Quirky parents, 3 siblings and a pet rabbit come with their own set of hilarious shenanigans and I loved every single family scene we got.
Is it a perfect read? No. It still had a best friend whose only function was basically just to talk to Lily about her love drama. She’s hardy developed and we just don’t get to know her well enough (I actually kind of already forgot her name, so that’s saying something). The ending was also dragging things out just a bit too long and featured characters unable to make up their mind and a lack of communication which could have solved everything way faster.
So overall, I really liked this book and would recommend it to anyone who’s looking for a quick, fun and fluffy read and who loves: penpall romances, music, quirky characters and family shenanigans.
“I’m with you on measuring this week in letters and the two-day drought we are about to experience. If only there was a way to transport letters faster, through some sort of electronic device that codes messages and sends them through the air. But that’s just crazy talk.
Friday from me:
Sending letters through the sky? Like when airplanes attach notes to their tails? I thought they only advertised for going-out-of-business sales. But perhaps our letters would be okay up there as well. I wonder how much they charge per word.”
“You’re my favorite way to pass the time. But time stands still when you’re on my mind.”
“Oh, also, if Mr. Ortega catches me writing you this letter, I am committed to shoving it in my mouth and swallowing. I hope I can count on the same commitment from you.”
“I feel like if I hold things close, never share, then I never give anyone the oppotunity to judge me”