You know how some days you just want a nice vanilla sundae with some hot fudge? Not overly complex, fast but still really good… In Real Life was the book form of that for me. Good story, a quick read and it totally hit the spot. Hannah and Nick have know each other via computer and phone for years but have never met. They are best friends and know everything about the other. When Hannah gets the chance to surprise Nick and finally meet she jumps on it. But then complications, such as his girlfriend she didn’t know about, ensue. Can Hannah and Nick remain best friends, morph into something more, or is reality going to rear its ugly head and slap them down?
Jessica Love created a very real world in In Real Life. The settings were well thought out and made sense in the story. The writing was great and Love really nailed the teenage heart. There was a nice emotional quotient; friendship, love and family all played large roles. The pacing was quick and no scenes lingered. The characters were well fleshed out and you understood their motivations and actions. The plot, while simple, packed a lot in and made an impromptu road trip weekend something special.
In Real Life is one of those YA books that I could re-read as it hit just what I needed. I particularly enjoyed that this was a YA minus absent or uncaring parents. While they did not play a huge role, they showed their children consideration and genuinely cared about their well being. This is Love’s debut as a stand alone author (she has one other co-authored title) and I think she did it extremely well. While this was not a weighty tome with deep undertones, it was just what I needed to refresh after a bit of a reading slump. In Real Life is a sharp story with heart and emotion, and I highly recommend it for those days where you just want a book to make you smile.
I received this book for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.