For What It's Worth

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

review: alex, approximately by jenn bennett


IMG_20170210_113809_088In this delightfully charming teen spin on You’ve Got Mail, the one guy Bailey Rydell can’t stand is actually the boy of her dreams—she just doesn’t know it yet.

Classic movie buff Bailey “Mink” Rydell has spent months crushing on a witty film geek she only knows online by “Alex.” Two coasts separate the teens until Bailey moves in with her dad, who lives in the same California surfing town as her online crush.


Faced with doubts (what if he’s a creep in real life—or worse?), Bailey doesn’t tell Alex she’s moved to his hometown. Or that she’s landed a job at the local tourist-trap museum. Or that she’s being heckled daily by the irritatingly hot museum security guard, Porter Roth—a.k.a. her new arch-nemesis. But life is whole lot messier than the movies, especially when Bailey discovers that tricky fine line between hate, love, and whatever-it-is she’s starting to feel for Porter.


And as the summer months go by, Bailey must choose whether to cling to a dreamy online fantasy in Alex or take a risk on an imperfect reality with Porter. The choice is both simpler and more complicated than she realizes, because Porter Roth is hiding a secret of his own: Porter is Alex…
Approximately. ~
Goodreads

Source: Borrowed (thank you Brooke!)

Review:

Alex, Approximately is a YA re-telling of You’ve Got Mail and I haven’t enjoyed a YA contemporary romance this much in a really long time. One that gives you all those YA fluttery, awkward, falling in love feels.

I love all of Jenn Bennett’s books, but I think she has a real knack for writing YA. Her stories, and characters, are always a bit different and quirky in all the best ways while maintaining an authentic (at least how I remember it as a teen) voice.

Bailey “Mink” Rydell and “Alex” have chatted online, using fake names, about movies for months now and Alex wants her to visit him in California so they can finally meet and go to all the classic movies they’ve emailed about. There has been some flirting but it’s mostly been an online friendship that helps them talk through a few issues they have going on in their lives and to be weirdo movie geeks together.

When Bailey moves to California to live with her father, who happens to live in Alex’s hometown, she decides to do some stealthy investigating based on their emails and find Alex first to make sure he’s the real deal and not some online creeper before she meets him in real life. But then beautiful, annoying surfer, Porter Roth stumbles into her path. And boy is he annoying at first. But hang in there people! He's worth it.

Alex, Approximately is filled with wonderful representations of healthy families, friendships and sex positive relationships.

The supporting cast of character leap off the page and tug at your heart. The California coastal setting, surfing, exploring museums and movie trivia add to the light, easy summer vibe.

There was a bit of drama with a friend of Porter’s that when it hits its peak – didn’t quite ring true - but that’s a small blip to an otherwise fantastic story.

25 comments:

  1. Eh, I can deal with a small blip :) I hope

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  2. A You've Got Mail retelling? That's so fun! I think I have a couple of her books on my shelf. Sounds like I need to make them happen.

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    1. Super cute! i know you're not a YA reader but her adult books are FANTASTIC too!

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  3. I adore Jenn Bennett's urban fantasy and PNR books, but I actually haven't read her YA stuff yet. Apparently I need to get on it though, because this sounds just as good (if not better!) as her other stuff. You've Got Mail is one of my favourite 90s movies, so how can I resist this? :)

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    1. Me too! I love all her stuff. I hope you give her YA a try.

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  4. I loved You've Got Mail! This sounds like a fun book, I am glad that you enjoyed it.

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  5. I'm a massive fan of Jenn's as well and was lucky enough to have won a copy on Twitter of a signed copy. I can't wait to crack it open. I love YA that have family involvement int he characters lives and this sounds so brilliant. Thanks for sharing Karen and so glad you enjoyed it <3 <3

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    1. Oh good for you! If you love family this book is for you!

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  6. Oh I'm adding this one to the wishlist. I'm with you, I love her writing and she does YA characters justice. I love those quirky characters! :D

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    1. She's a great writer but I think I love her YA's the most

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  7. I love the movie You've Got Mail..this sounds delightful. I love that the secondary characters are strong. Wonderful review.

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    1. If you love the movie you should love this. Super cute!

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  8. oh I am so glad that you enjoyed this one. Most YA romance don't appeal to me, normally its their story lines but this one sounds very tempting. I like the whole "you've got mail" retelling here. Especially since that is one of my favorite movies.

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  9. Gah! I'm so looking forward to reading this! I'm so ready.

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  10. This sounds like a great read. I loved You've Got Mail!!

    Great review Karen :)

    Michelle @ Book Briefs

    Also, when did you change your blog design? I love it! (and I hope it wasn't too long ago and I totally missed it.)

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  11. I was randomly sent a copy of this one. I'll have to check it out. It sounds really cute!

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  12. I enjoyed this book and so cute :) Thanks for letting me read it <3

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  13. I enjoyed this book and so cute :) Thanks for letting me read it <3

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  14. I AM SO EXCITED FOR THIS ONE! I want to buy it.. but I am on a ban. *cough* We'll see how long that lasts! *cackles* this sounds so adorable... and I need it nowwww.
    Thank you for stopping by at Booksarelife987!

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  15. I'm SO EXCITED for this one omg! It sounds freaking perfect - cute and lovely, aka just what I need in spring/summer. Wonderful review!

    Veronika @ The Regal Critiques

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  16. I see so much love for this book, can’t wait to read it myself. I haven’t read anything by Jenn Bennett, though a lot of my friends recommended her books to me. Mysterious pen pals is one of my favorite tropes.

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