Review: The Geography of You and Me by Jennifer E. Smith

18295852Released April 15th 2014 by Poppy

Young-Adult, Contemporary, Romance

Borrowed from the library

My Rating 4 Stars

Goodreads | Amazon | B & N

Lucy and Owen meet somewhere between the tenth and eleventh floors of a New York City apartment building, on an elevator rendered useless by a citywide blackout. After they’re rescued, they spend a single night together, wandering the darkened streets and marveling at the rare appearance of stars above Manhattan. But once the power is restored, so is reality. Lucy soon moves to Edinburgh with her parents, while Owen heads out west with his father.

Lucy and Owen’s relationship plays out across the globe as they stay in touch through postcards, occasional e-mails, and — finally — a reunion in the city where they first met.

A carefully charted map of a long-distance relationship, Jennifer E. Smith’s new novel shows that the center of the world isn’t necessarily a place. It can be a person, too.


REVIEW This is my first Jennifer E. Smith book, so I wasn’t sure how it would be for me, but it’s been on my wish list since last year. I’m getting back to reading a lot of YA Contemporary, and this was a perfect add to my reading list. It’s very realistic, which may be the reason I enjoyed it.

This book is about long distance relationships. Whether they are friendship or love; If you care, no amount of distance – nor time – can make that bond disappear. Lucy and Owen gave this story life. I loved the moment of their meeting, no matter how scary it was. I imagined being trapped in an elevator during a city wide blackout, and I would have probably passed out. I’m all for getting from one floor to another, as long as it’s quick. I don’t like closed up spaces, which is why I never enjoyed being inside closets or riding in the back of a 2 door car. They didn’t freak out, which I expected Lucy to do. They talked and waited to be rescued. In that time, they shared  little about themselves and from then on a friendship was formed.

But, all things good come from hard work and sacrifice. As Lucy and Owen embark on different paths, they are determined to keep in touch. What I liked about this book the most is the character growth in Lucy. She’s not so much the invisible girl she was when we are first introduced to her. She moves on with her life and travels like it’s the right of her life. Owen, however, comes from a very different background than Lucy. His story is heartbreaking, but also uplifting. I love the way that he takes care of his dad and relishes in the memories of his mother. They keep in touch via post cards and email, which really wasn’t much – but they get to know how the other is doing.

This book is not about happily-ever-afters. It’s about the power of friendship and the bumps along the road to finding yourself. I’m not spoiling it, but the ending really surprised me. I really thought that I knew how it would end, but it took a completely shocking turn. Considering all that this book held, you’d think that everything would be out in the open. As this felt so anticlimactic, it really changed my feelings for the book as a whole. Still, it’s worth getting lost in; especially for teens. I am looking forward to more from this author and definitely recommend checking out this book.

reviewstars4of5

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7 thoughts on “Review: The Geography of You and Me by Jennifer E. Smith

  1. I’m glad you enjoyed this. I love the cover of this authors books and am always eying them, but have still yet to actually try one. I am not a fan of enclosed spaces either, so I can’t even imagine being stuck on an elevator. But it seems like the two MC’s know how to develop and maintain a bond while still dealing with their everyday lives and issues. I think I’d love to read this one for myself. Especially since the ending surprised you.

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  2. I actually picked up this book once from the library but after having it sit on my shelf for too long I decided to return it. At the time I was not very much into YA contemporaries, but it is a genre I have been getting back into lately so maybe I should try it again! Long distance relationships always interest me as well, so I wonder how it plays out here.

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    • I think that you will love it or hate it. Some people like cut and dry romances. They want the happily-ever-afters and all the in between. This story is complex and somewhat distracting, with the post cards and emails. You get your hopes up for what is to come, but then there’s the what-ifs and whys. I liked it because I’ve gotten over everything turning out perfect. That is not reality to me.

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  3. Trapped? During a…blackout in an elevator? I mean SO with you girl I would have DIED. I’m not super claustrophobic but stick me in the back seat of a two door car and see what happens. Holy.crud. I’m glad you liked this book and the characters and plot seem lovely;)

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    • Yeah, total freak out on my end. But, the complexity of the relationships made this one a good read for me. The ending wasn’t great, but the book as a whole is enjoyable.

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