Published by Delacorte Press on November 1st 2016
Also by this author: Everything, Everything
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Natasha: I’m a girl who believes in science and facts. Not fate. Not destiny. Or dreams that will never come true. I’m definitely not the kind of girl who meets a cute boy on a crowded New York City street and falls in love with him. Not when my family is twelve hours away from being deported to Jamaica. Falling in love with him won’t be my story.
Daniel: I’ve always been the good son, the good student, living up to my parents’ high expectations. Never the poet. Or the dreamer. But when I see her, I forget about all that. Something about Natasha makes me think that fate has something much more extraordinary in store—for both of us.
The Universe: Every moment in our lives has brought us to this single moment. A million futures lie before us. Which one will come true?
I’m extremely disappointed that I didn’t love this one more. I should have known that this wouldn’t be my thing since I’m not a fan of insta-love. I wanted to give it a shot anyway because Nicola Yoon’s debut Everything, Everything was just so spectacular. While Nicola Yoon still had such unique and beautiful writing in this one, the story itself wasn’t as fascinating and real to me. The book is about immigration so it’s a seriously relevant issue that will likely appeal to a lot of readers. It turned out to be a book not for me because I wasn’t able to overlook pretty much the entire romance in the story.
I hate to compare characters, but Natasha wasn’t as memorable as Maddy in Everything, Everything. Obviously they are totally different characters and it’s unfair to make any comparisons, but I honestly can’t help myself here. It’s a personal preference but I just wasn’t able to relate to her with all of the Science stuff. I obviously can’t relate to the terrible feeling of having to be deported because of your father’s mistake. But I was easily able to sympathize with her situation easily. Natasha has lived in America practically her entire life and has little memories of Jamaica, but she’s now being forced to go back to that country anyway? It’s such an unfair and heartbreaking situation that happens all too frequently. I’m glad that Nicola Yoon was able to tell this very important story.
Daniel was a diverse character. He’s Korean American and has spent his entire life in America. His parents immigrated here from Korea in order to give their children a better life than what they had. His parents both put a lot of pressure on him and his brother to go to Harvard and become doctors. This is something that Daniel doesn’t want for himself at all. He’d much rather become a poet. Daniel is also a hopeless romantic who believes that he falls in love instantly with Natasha and that they are meant to be. I didn’t find him to be all that swoony really. I might have my standards set too high due to how perfect Olly was, but I found Daniel to be a little disappointing. I was just so put off by all the love at first sight stuff that I really wasn’t able to enjoy his character.
As I’ve clearly already stated several times, the main problem that I had was with the romance. I think the book could have honestly been a lot more solid without romance being such a main point in the plot. Look, I’m a big fan of romance, it’s usually one of my favorite parts of a story. But I’m a person who absolutely can’t stand insta-love story. I only picked this up in the first place because I thought Yoon’s debut was so fabulous. I’m never going to love a book that promotes love at first sight so heavily. Maybe I’m a cynic, but I just can’t wrap my mind around this idea. In my mind, you have to fully know someone in order to fall in love with them, it’s just not love otherwise.
While I’m sad that I didn’t love this book, I still have to admit that Nicola Yoon’s writing is as beautiful as ever. I won’t lie though, I did find some of the random narrator’s to be totally weird, and I didn’t really buy the idea that all of these people are connected and all that stuff about fate. Nicola Yoon still has written yet another novel that is very much quotable. She says such fascinating and thought provoking things that really spoke to me on some level. All in all, this was still a well written novel, but one that I couldn’t fall in love with because of how the romance was written.