Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Tell Me Three Things by Julie Buxbaum {blog tour review}

Tell Me Three Things
by Julie Buxbaum
♦publisher: Delacorte Press
♦release date: April 9th, 2016
♦hardcover, 336 pages
♦intended audience: Young adult
♦source: ARC from publisher for honest review
What if the person you need the most is someone you’ve never met?  
Everything about Jessie is wrong. At least, that’s what it feels like during her first week of junior year at her new ultra-intimidating prep school in Los Angeles. Just when she’s thinking about hightailing it back to Chicago, she gets an email from a person calling themselves Somebody/Nobody (SN for short), offering to help her navigate the wilds of Wood Valley High School. Is it an elaborate hoax? Or can she rely on SN for some much-needed help?

It’s been barely two years since her mother’s death, and because her father eloped with a woman he met online, Jessie has been forced to move across the country to live with her stepmonster and her pretentious teenage son.

In a leap of faith—or an act of complete desperation—Jessie begins to rely on SN, and SN quickly becomes her lifeline and closest ally. Jessie can’t help wanting to meet SN in person. But are some mysteries better left unsolved?

Review: "I don't read much contemp". Somehow I hear myself say this often---and then books like Tell Me Three Things come along and prove that this is getting further and further from the truth for me.  I adored this book, it charmed the pants off me. The characters were fun, the situation was emotional, the stereotypes of the LA private school were at once hilarious and from tales I've heard first hand from my L.A.-raised niece and nephew, not too far exaggerated. But best of all, this was a story of a girl in a pretty crappy situation finding comfort in a mysterious stranger who has reached out to her. It's so very "You've Got Mail" brought into the now. 

Jessie's dad has sprung a new stepfamily and a move to L.A. on her just a few years after her mom passed away from cancer.  Needless to say, it's an adjustment. And I'd say, she does pretty well with it, all things considered. All things being: her dad seems to have forgotten she exists, her stepbrother is totally embarrassed by them at the beginning, the kids at her new school seems completely alien to her. 

Then she gets a mystery email from what appears to be a good samaritan looking to help her figure things out.  I loved watching the progression of their friendship, despite the fact that he was a total mystery. It's also a bit of an emotional roller coaster as Jessie deals with her best friend, Scarlet, growing distant, her dad's new marriage, a mean girl at school who seems to have set her sights on Jessie, and multiple guys who have interest in "the new girl" (this is actually my one gripe---I dislike it when the main character seems to catch every guy's eye), all while still missing her mom so much. I felt so much for her character, there were times when I was so angry for her (ugh, clueless teacher), times when I nearly cheered (the big reveal!), and so many times that her snark and wit had me laughing out loud..  As you see Jessie gain a bit of footing and confidence, you of course are also constantly guessing who SN will turn out to be.  The mystery of it (and the hope!) just made for a fun read.

Here's a few favorite quotes (from the ARC):

Scar's favorite word is "undeniable" actually, which tells you everything you need to know about her. My favorite word , on the other hand, is "waffle". Both a delicious breakfast food and a verb.

He's not real, of course,. We're all better versions of ourselves when we get that extra time to craft the perfect message. 

Read this one! You won't be disappointed!


Julie Buxbaum is the author of the critically acclaimed The Opposite of Love and After You, and her work has been translated into twenty-five languages. Tell Me Three Things is her first young adult novel. Her writing has appeared in various publications, including The New York Times. She is a former lawyer and graduate of Harvard Law School and lives in Los Angeles with her husband, two young children, and an immortal goldfish. Visit Julie online at and follow @juliebux on Twitter.

Or Pre-order: Indiebound  •  BookDepository  •  Amazon


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