Friday, June 9, 2017

TELL ME THREE THINGS BY JULIE BUXBAUM - BOOK REVIEW


Hello everyone!

I am back with another new favourite, Tell Me Three Things by Julie Buxbaum.


I went into this book completely blind and I am so happy with how it turned out.

This book follows 16-year-old Jessie who has just moved across the country from Chicago to California after her mother passed away and her dad re-married. When she arrives for her first day, it's a disaster. She doesn't know anyone, ends up in the wrong class and feels like a stranger in her new home. Then she gets an email from someone claiming to be a fellow student who wants to help her: Somebody Nobody, or SN for short.

I was really excited to start this book once I figured out the premise. I was originally a little hesitant to see where things would go, I wasn't sure if it would be all told in emails and how I would be able to get the context of Jessie's everyday life, but the story is actually told in emails, texts, and regular text to help with the set up of the story. I thought it was going to be a little cheesy and the pessimistic part of me thought that it might be a cruel prank someone from her school was trying to play on her.

I appreciated how Buxbaum dealt with the death of Jessie's mother. I was worried that it might just become a plot point like it sometimes can in books. I think though and this is partly because she has personal experience losing her mother, Buxbaum was able to make Jessie and her father's grief believable. It wasn't just another part of Jessie's character, but she genuinely was grieving and I never once forgot it.

The mystery of trying to find out who SN was really interesting to me as well. I had three (ha!) main suspects if you will. Then the conversation progressed and I figured out it wasn't one of them. But I kept going back between the two. I thought Buxbaum did a great job of not making it obvious and letting the story progress without making it all about the suspense. I think Buxbaum is just really good at balancing out the key points of the story in general.

I actually liked this book a lot more than I thought I would. I read it in two sittings and was really quite invested in the characters. I wanted to see how Jessie and her friends' story evolved, I didn't just want to finish it to see who SN was.

Even though this book dealt with some serious issues, it was still super cute. It was the high school trope without being too trope-y. I've recently decided to try to get away from that sort of thing because I don't end up loving those books, but this one doesn't feel like another book about high school drama - partly because of the grief aspect and also because of the way Buxbaum depicts the high school setting.

I also really feel like I related to this book on a personal level. I was that girl who moved cross-country for grade 12, I was moving back so I had some old friends, but as Jessie soon realizes, once you leave, you can't go back. I didn't need a SN because I had my old friends-by-default but I could definitely see why someone might need one.

Overall, I highly recommend this one!