Release Date: September 1, 2015
Review copy from NetGalley
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?
This new must-read novel from Jennifer E. Smith, author of The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight, explores the difficult choices that must be made when life and love lead in different directions.
My Thoughts:As a fan of Smith's previous contemporaries, I was super excited about the prospect of reading her upcoming release Hello, Goodbye, and Everything in Between in advance. I am happy to say that the novel ended up being exactly what I expected it to be and much more.
Hello, Goodbye and Everything in Between follows Clare and Aidan the night before they are forced to say goodbye to their friends, their hometown and most importantly, each other. They have graduated high school and are about to travel to different sides of the country, Clare to New Hampshire and Aidan to California, and it feels to them like their two year relationship is suddenly running out of time. Over 12 hours, they drive around the town visiting places that hold an importance to them and try to figure out an answer to the question of whether they should break up or stay together in a long-distance relationship.
Hello, Goodbye, and Everything in Between includes every bit of the cuteness I expected, but also delves into deeper issues of family, friendships and the struggles one has with determining her future. I was quite surprised actually how "serious" this novel was in comparison to the other contemporaries I have read by Smith. I loved the way the novel is narrated and the differences Clare and Aidan have in regards to their views of the future.
Clare's very practical and logical - she is a list-maker, someone who is known for making the "right" decision. Aidan is more romantic and tends to "go with the flow". Clare is sure they should break up and begin college with a clean slate. Aidan thinks that they can make it long-distance. As the night goes on, they both start to make new realizations about their situation.
What I found special about this book is the fact that rather than following characters who fall in love, we follow characters who ARE in love and who desperately try to find a solution not to be in love or at least not to get hurt when they are separated. Within the 12 hours the novel follows we learn how they met, how they fell in love. Right from the bat it feels like these characters are so good for each other and how their personalities compliment each other well.
I loved the fact that Smith not only focuses on the romance but also on the problems Aidan has at home and the problems Clare has with trying to figure out what to do with her life. There's also a really good friendship narrative present in the novel and I am definitely hoping that Smith writes some sort of companion novel about Clare and Aidan's friends Scotty and Stella!
Hello, Goodbye, and Everything in Between is entertaining, romantic and occasionally very funny. Smith writes well and her characters are likable and very real. The struggle the characters face while planning their futures feels very real and honest and something that I was definitely able to relate with. If you have liked Smith's previous contemporaries, I am 100% sure you will enjoy this one!