Review Blog

Apr 07 2016

Hello, goodbye and everything in between by Jennifer E. Smith

cover image

Headline 2016. ISBN 9781472235565
(Age: 12+) Recommended. If, like me, you have often struggled to find a romance for tweens without graphic or inappropriate content, this is one to put on your list.
From the author of The statistical probability of love at first sight and The geography of you and me this is the thoroughly enjoyable story of Clare and Aidan and a list. These two seniors have been an item for the final years of high school and along with their best friends, Stella and Scotty, are about to embark on the thrilling but anxiety-making adventure of college.
The conflict lies in the fact that these two are bound for colleges on opposite sides of the country and their last night is one of very mixed emotions. Clare has made a list (that's something she is very good at) and the pair re-visit their favourite haunts, the scenes of firsts, catch up with their friends and toss the problem of whether to break up or not, back and forth. The very thought of being apart after their two years of being virtually inseparable is completely distressing for both and they postulate on whether it might be less painful to break up rather than let the relationship die away from long distance constraints.
Along with their own personal dilemma the night holds many other complications as tensions run high while they hang out with each other and others. Of all the events that impact on the pair probably the most confounding is that Stella and Scotty who have sniped at each other incessantly since kindergarten have suddenly become a couple. And it is this that influences their respective thoughts as much as anything else.
All in all this is a really engaging novel with very likeable characters for which the reader can really care. One cannot help but wish them the happiest of endings as they are such funny and endearing people. Recommended for your romantically inclined readers from around 12 years up.
Sue Warren

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