Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Review: Back When You Were Easier to Love by Emily Wing Smith

Book: Back When You Were Easier to Love by Emily Wing Smith
Genre: YA Romance
Rating: A
For: Utah Authors Month
From: Bought it at the launch party last week!

And what a fun launch party that was! Did I even really ever tell you about it? Well, first Emily talked about the book a bit, how she's been writing it for a long time, how it's sort of a compilation of snippets of story, how the characters came to be named, how it's a little big based on a guy she knew in high school, etc.

Then her writing buddies, newly dubbed The Barely Manilows, sang a song that sounded a lot like Barry's Copacabana song, but with lyrics that described this book. I filmed it, but then my battery died, and Jenni already uploaded it anyway, so I'm stealing sharing hers here so you can see how fun this was:

Afterwards, we bought the book and stood in line to get it signed, surrounded by all her author buddies and other bloggers. As I said...tons of fun!

Luckily, I didn't have to wait long to fit it into my line up and one day last week, I started it in the morning, and by reading just during my normal down moments throughout the day, was finished by the evening. Yes, it's short quick easy read.

It's about Joy, who is a bit freaked out that her boyfriend, Zan, has left her to go to college in California. She feels like they are still together, even though she has had no contact with him since he left. When she gets a chance to go to California herself, to check out the colleges, she decides the trip will have a second purpose, which is to track Zan down and find closure somehow. Her friends won't or can't go with her, so she ends up taking Noah, Zan's ex-best friend. This makes for some interesting moments indeed. And in the end? Does she find herself? And closure?

I enjoyed the story and felt very much in Joy's head as she went through this struggle. There were a bunch of Mormon moments too, which nicely, weren't too much over the top and annoying, but showed how sometimes the Mormon culture can cause kids quite a bit of confusion. It was also interesting how Zan was so much a part of the story, yet we didn't really meet him until the end and then... oh boy.

I especially enjoyed the Las Vegas bits which I could completely relate to! How many times have we stopped to dodge through a casino in order to get to the buffet? Countless!

However I must say that I still find it unbelievable that kids can sneak out without their parents realizing what they are doing, to go on a days long trip. This happens in lots of books, and the parents are clueless. It doesn't make sense to me, and I'm always wondering what's going on with them that they aren't more aware and involved in their kids' lives.

Bottom line: I really enjoyed it!

Other reviews:

Sarah's Random Musings
Karen Krueger
My Pile of Books
Fire and Ice


  1. I really liked this one, too. The secret road trip thing kind of bugs me too, although I did sneak off to the beach one day without my parents finding out when I was in high school. I was on the news, too, since it was Spring Break - good thing my parents didn't watch it that night :)

  2. I'm glad you enjoyed it. I can't wait to read it.

    And, I'm glad you stole my video, lol. The more that see it the merrier. :)

  3. I'm happy to hear you liked this one. I wanted to review it for Utah Authors Month, too, but haven't gotten my hands on it yet. I'll have to hunt it down. :)

  4. I should get to this one if it's as quick and fun as you say. Sigh! I'm so bogged down in Forvever.

  5. That is too funny that they created that song. :) I think it's really awesome that they are all so supportive of one another!

  6. It sounds like this was a great launch party! I finished reading the book today, and I adored it.



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