Hello, Goodbye, and Everything in Between by Jennifer E. Smith
Release Date: September 1, 2015
My Rating: 3.5 out of 5
On the night before they leave for college, Clare and Aidan only have one thing left to do: figure out whether they should stay together or break up. Over the course of twelve hours, they’ll retrace the steps of their relationship, trying to find something in their past that might help them decide what their future should be. The night will lead them to friends and family, familiar landmarks and unexpected places, hard truths and surprising revelations. But as the clock winds down and morning approaches, so does their inevitable goodbye. The question is, will it be goodbye for now or goodbye forever?
This new must-read novel from Jennifer E. Smith, author of The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight, explores the difficult choices that must be made when life and love lead in different directions.
The thing about Hello, Goodbye, and Everything in Between is that it’s completely relatable, especially for readers who are about to head off to college. In my case, this book hit me right in the feels, even though I’m not in relationship at the moment. The pure idea of everyone heading off to college is just so real to me right now. However, I didn’t entirely click with Hello, Goodbye, and Everything in Between for a number of reasons.
Clare was so difficult to like. Yes, she’s put in a very challenging situation. Should she stay with Aidan or should she go? But I just did not like her.
+ It seemed like she didn’t even like Aidan. JUST BREAK UP WITH HIM THEN.
+ She is selfish towards her “best friend” Stella. Clare complains to Stella that she’s distancing herself, but maybe it’s because you’re being inconsiderate, Clare!!
+ She is indecisive. Make up your mind already, girl!
Aidan was somewhat more likable. Mostly, I just really pitied him. He gives Clare so much more in the relationship (it felt awfully one-sided), and his family really sucks. There’s nothing worse than having a disappointed father. I think Aidan’s endearing nature kind of just got to me and made me really hate Clare more because of the love that wasn’t reciprocated back to Aidan.
3. THE CONCEPT OF “THE LIST”
The chapter headings are all a “stop” because Clare makes a list of places to revisit with Aidan for their 24 hours. I thought this idea was cute and awesome at the beginning of the story, but by the end, it all kind of just fizzled out. Upon finishing the story, I don’t really see a point to the list.
4. READ IT FOR THE RELATABILITY
Although the characters themselves are problematic and not easy to like, I would still pick up Hello, Goodbye, and Everything in Between if you’re heading off to college for the first time or are an adult who wants to reminisce back to the good ol’ days. Hello, Goodbye, and Everything in Between is incredibly relatable and Smith nails it with the feels about letting go, reconnecting with old friends, and growing into your own person. I have to say that I’m glad I read about Clare and Aidan’s story, knowing that I’m not alone in all of this.