If it’s Not a Rant, It’s a Rave: A Review of The Map from Here to There by Emery Lord

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Title:
The Map From Here to There
Author: Emery Lord
Publication date: January 7, 2020
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary
Rating: ★★★★

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Synopsis:

Acclaimed author Emery Lord crafts a gorgeous story of friendship and identity, daring to ask: What happens after happily ever after?

It’s senior year, and Paige Hancock is finally living her best life. She has a fun summer job, great friends, and a super charming boyfriend who totally gets her. But senior year also means big decisions. Weighing “the rest of her life,” Paige feels her anxiety begin to pervade every decision she makes. Everything is exactly how she always wanted it to be–how can she leave it all behind next year? In her head, she knows there is so much more to experience after high school. But in her heart, is it so terrible to want everything to stay the same forever?

Emery Lord’s award-winning storytelling shines with lovable characters and heartfelt exploration of life’s most important questions.


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Well, you guys, it’s official, Emery Lord is a contemporary writing queen. Throughout The Map from Here to There, Emery made me swoon, cry, and laugh. My anxiety peeked at the most vulnerable and heartbreaking moments, but in the end, after calming my hammering heart, I highly enjoyed Paige’s story and her ability to battle the stress that ensues during her senior year of high school.

As a sequel to The Start of Me and You, one of my all-time favorite contemporary books, The Map from Here to There will tug at your heartstrings. Lord’s passionate writing gives life to the most realistic and dynamic characters. She immerses the pages with familial dynamics, strong female friendships, and swoon-worthy relationships. Her knack to encompass anxiety, mental health, adolescent decision making,  and the streaming thoughts of panic and worry of a teenage girl’s future endeavors bursts throughout the novel. I could not put this book down.

Although The Map from Here to There is a sequel, the book can be read as a standalone tracing Paige’s journey through her senior year and focusing on big choices regarding college, her future, anxiety, and deeply rooted relationships. This novel is filled with hopes, dreams, struggles, and frustrations; it’s a must read for contemporary bibliophiles. Lord’s writing surrounds you like a comforting hug, as Paige, Max, and her friends deal with life-changing decisions while truly finding themselves one step at a time. 

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Blogger Note: Last year, I received this book as a gift from the author during a book event. I was not asked to review or promote the book. I reviewed the book at my own discretion.  All fangirling, statements, and opinions in this review are my own.

My Most Anticipated Book Releases of 2020

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Hello, Book Ravers! Happy 2020, which means New Year, New Books! Every since these books were announced, I have been so (im)patiently waiting for these new book releases, so I am so happy 2020 is finally here.

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  1. The Map From Here to There by Emery Lord: AHHH! The sequel to The Start of Me and You is almost here, and I am freaking out. I loved Paige and Max’s story, and I cannot wait to see how their story unfolds in this next book. GIMME GIMME GIMME!

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Title: The Map From Here to There
Author: Emery Lord
Publication date: January 7, 2020
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary

Synopsis

Acclaimed author Emery Lord crafts a gorgeous story of friendship and identity, daring to ask: What happens after happily ever after?

It’s senior year, and Paige Hancock is finally living her best life. She has a fun summer job, great friends, and a super charming boyfriend who totally gets her. But senior year also means big decisions. Weighing “the rest of her life,” Paige feels her anxiety begin to pervade every decision she makes. Everything is exactly how she always wanted it to be–how can she leave it all behind next year? In her head, she knows there is so much more to experience after high school. But in her heart, is it so terrible to want everything to stay the same forever?

Emery Lord’s award-winning storytelling shines with lovable characters and heartfelt exploration of life’s most important questions.

Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

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2. The Midnight Lie by Marie Rutkoski: I LOOOOOOOOOOOOVE Marie Rutkoski’s The Winner’s Trilogy, and when I found out about The Midnight Lie, I knew I had to have it. Set in the Winner’s world, I’m so excited to see if we get a cameo from Kestrel and Arin. Please, book gods, let there be a cameo by these two! Plus the book comes out on my birthday, so the book fairies are giving me the best birthday present of the year.

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Title: The Midnight Lie
Author: Marie Rutkoski
Publication date: March 3, 2020
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux (Fierce Reads/Macmillan)
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy

Synopsis

Where Nirrim lives, crime abounds, a harsh tribunal rules, and society’s pleasures are reserved for the High Kith. Life in the Ward is grim and punishing. People of her low status are forbidden from sampling sweets or wearing colors. You either follow the rules, or pay a tithe and suffer the consequences.

Nirrim keeps her head down and a dangerous secret close to her chest.

But then she encounters Sid, a rakish traveler from far away who whispers rumors that the High Caste possesses magic. Sid tempts Nirrim to seek that magic for herself. But to do that, Nirrim must surrender her old life. She must place her trust in this sly stranger who asks, above all, not to be trusted.

Set in the world of the New York Times–bestselling Winner’s Trilogy, beloved author Marie Rutkoski returns with an epic LGBTQ romantic fantasy about learning to free ourselves from the lies others tell us—and the lies we tell ourselves.

Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

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3. Chasing Lucky by Jenn Bennett: GIVE ME ALL THE JENN BENNETT BOOKS! If you aren’t new to my blog, you know I adore Jenn and her books so, so much. I love her quirky characters, the swoons, and Bennett’s realistic depiction of teens, sex positivity, and adolescent issues. When I first found out about Chasing Lucky, I may have screamed and immediately added the book to my TBR. There’s a family owned bookstore and a brooding boy . . . OHMYGOD just kill me with your addicting and musing words now, Jenn.

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Title: Chasing Lucky
Author: Jenn Bennett
Publication date: April 7, 2020
Publisher: Simon Pulse (Simon Teen)
Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance

Synopsis

In this coming-of-age romance perfect for fans of Jenny Han and Sarah Dessen, a rule-abiding teen embraces her more rebellious side while falling for her ex-boyfriend’s arch-nemesis.

Josie Saint-Martin is well-versed in the art of concealment. Bullied as a child, she’s spent most of her life with her single mother, moving from city to city, covering up what she doesn’t want others to see, comfortable behind the lens of her favorite vintage camera . . .until Josie’s grandmother dies and they return to her mother’s historical New England hometown to run the family bookstore. There, Josie pulls off the ultimate camouflage: dating Adrian, the Harvard-bound son of the most influential man in town.

But her smokescreen is blown when Adrian breaks up with her during his high school graduation party, and Josie’s poorly executed act of revenge lands her big-time trouble—jail alongside the last person she’d want to share a mugshot with: the mysterious and brooding son of the boat mechanic next door, Lucky Karras.

Forced to spend the summer together in mandatory community service, Josie and Lucky become the talk of their coastal town—shamed, trolled, and publicly disgraced. The weird thing is, Josie starts to not mind, because the pair have more in common than she once thought. A lot more. But during a summer of secrets, in a town built on gossip, everything rises to the surface. Can Josie and Lucky swim past these obstacles, or will they both go down together?

Goodreads | Amazon Barnes & Noble

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4. Beach Read by Emily Henry: OH, hi there new adult novel by one of my favorite young adult writers in the world. 2019 was the year I fell into an adult romance genre hole, and I’m so excited to see that Emily Henry is writing a book that will have me falling in even deeper. Give me the swoons, please! 

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Title: Beach Read
Author: Emily Henry
Publication date: May 19, 2020
Publisher: Berkley
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

Synopsis

A romance writer who no longer believes in love and a literary writer stuck in a rut engage in a summer-long challenge that may just upend everything they believe about happily ever afters.

Augustus Everett is an acclaimed author of literary fiction. January Andrews writes bestselling romance. When she pens a happily ever after, he kills off his entire cast.

They’re polar opposites.

In fact, the only thing they have in common is that for the next three months, they’re living in neighboring beach houses, broke, and bogged down with writer’s block.

Until, one hazy evening, one thing leads to another and they strike a deal designed to force them out of their creative ruts: Augustus will spend the summer writing something happy, and January will pen the next Great American Novel. She’ll take him on field trips worthy of any rom-com montage, and he’ll take her to interview surviving members of a backwoods death cult (obviously). Everyone will finish a book and no one will fall in love. But as the summer stretches on, January discovers a gaping plot hole in the story she’s been telling herself about her own life, and begins to wonder what other things she might have gotten wrong, including her ideas about the man next door.

Goodreads | AmazonBarnes & Noble

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5. Girl, Serpent, Thorn by Melissa Bashardoust: HOLY MOLY this cover is gorgeous. When cover love strikes, you better believe I am looking up the synopsis of the book. I am in need of a deeply rooted fairy tale-esque novel, and this book checks all my boxes: magic, mystery, and curses.

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Title: Girl, Serpent, Thorn
Author: Melissa Bashardoust
Publication date: May 12, 2020
Publisher: Flatiron Books
Genres: Fantasy, Young adult, Retelling

Synopsis

A captivating and utterly original fairy tale about a girl cursed to be poisonous to the touch, and who discovers what power might lie in such a curse…

There was and there was not, as all stories begin, a princess cursed to be poisonous to the touch. But for Soraya, who has lived her life hidden away, apart from her family, safe only in her gardens, it’s not just a story.

As the day of her twin brother’s wedding approaches, Soraya must decide if she’s willing to step outside of the shadows for the first time. Below in the dungeon is a demon who holds knowledge that she craves, the answer to her freedom. And above is a young man who isn’t afraid of her, whose eyes linger not with fear, but with an understanding of who she is beneath the poison.

Soraya thought she knew her place in the world, but when her choices lead to consequences she never imagined, she begins to question who she is and who she is becoming…human or demon. Princess or monster.

Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Waiting on Wednesday: The Map from Here to There by Emery Lord

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Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme that highlights pre-publication/upcoming releases that readers cannot wait to get their hands on. It is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine.

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Title: The Map From Here to There
Author: Emery Lord
Publication date: January 7, 2020
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary

Synopsis

No spoilers . . . but this is the sequel to The Start of Me and You.

Also, I just love this cover. 

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Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Treat Yo Shelf: June 2019 Recap

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June 2019: Monthly Recap

Welcome to my monthly recap post, in which I highlight the books I read in the last month, bookish items I acquired, book events I attended, bookish news, and/or subscription boxes I received this month.

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Reviews of both books are linked below.

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(Click on the banner to be linked to blog post)

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I will be reviewing Hello Girls for a blog tour in August. 

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Ahhh…The Map from Here to There is one of my most anticipated sequels. I LOOOOOVED The Start of Me and You, and I still cannot believe that the sequel is in my hands. A huge thank you to Emery Lord for gifting me a copy. 

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I received a copy of All the Bad Apples through a book trade on Facebook. I love Moïra Fowley-Doyle’s books and I cannot wait to read this one.

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Uppercase’s June Box

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June Bookhaul

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How did you treat your shelves in June?