Title: The Geography of You and Me | Author: Jennifer E. Smith | Headline Publishing | Stand Alone | 5 Stars Source: Review (Bookbridgr)| 352 pages | Young Adult Contemporary | Release Date: April 15th 2014
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 marvelling 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
Lucy and Owen meet in a lift while there is a power cut across all of the city. When they get out of the lift they spend one night together on the roof and when the power comes back so does normality. They end up at opposite sides of the globe, one reason being Lucy’s father’s job and the other being Owen and his father trying to get over the loss of his mother and his dad trying to find work.
I didn’t know what to expect from this novel. From what I have heard about Smith’s work, they are cute, simple and quick contemporaries. Although the sound of this was appealing to me, I found that this novel did not fall in to this category and that it deserves so much more credit than that.
This novel isn’t just about a love that spans across oceans or a promising couple that has been torn about due to circumstance kept apart by geography. It is about grief, the loss of a parent, growing up in new surroundings and growing apart.
Lucy and Owen only spend around the first two chapter together. Even though didn’t expect this and I expected them to spend a lot more time getting to know each other, I am so glad it was executed in this way. It gives us time to see both of them grow up before they meet for the first time again in a few months and then when they meet again after around a year.
One thing I loved about this novel is how believable it was. Without going in to spoilery territory, their first encounter after their time apart does not go as planned. It is not as it was. I can empathize with this so much as I have moved countries and left people behind. It introduces the plausible concept of change. When you leave someone, you leave with the idea you have of them and the likelihood is that when that you see someone again after a long period of time, the person no longer correlates with the idea you had. They grow up, they change. Lucy and Owen have grown up and changed.
Another thing I adored was the relationships apart from that between Lucy and Owen. I despised Lucy’s parents to start with. They travel a lot and they always seem to leave her behind. Later on in the book we see why and you see them more from Lucy’s grown up perspective. The relationship between Owen and his father was beautiful and I am glad we got to see so much of it while they travelled across country, how they struggled finding work and with their grief. These relationships added so much depth to out main characters.
Overall I loved this read. We have a beautiful romance that spans over oceans and post cards and we have some of the most believable family relationships I have ever read. I will definitely be taking a look at Smith’s other Novels: The Statistical Probability of First Sight and This is What Happy Looks Like.
Goodreads Average: 3.86/5 (out of 505 ratings)
Want to buy it? Amazon UK | Amazon US | The Books Depository
Now for the fun part! 🙂
Headline sent me two copies of The Geography of You and Me. So I thought I would give one away! Enter with the rafflecopter below ( you have to click the link as wordpress won’t let me show the widget and it will take you to a rafflecopter page) for a chance to win. I am sorry but this is UK only, I canny afford the international postage! There is only one mandatory option! Thanks for entering and good luck!