Author: Natalie Blitt
Find the author: Website, Blog, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram
Publication date: January 12th 2016
Format: eARC from publisher (thank you!)
This full-length novel by debut author Natalie Blitt is a pitch-perfect blend of Stephanie Perkins and Miranda Kenneally that proves the age-old adage: opposites attract.
Seventeen-year-old Abby has only one goal for her summer: to make sure she is fluent in French—well, that, and to get as far away from baseball and her Cubs-obsessed family as possible. A summer of culture and language, with no sports in sight.
That turns out to be impossible, though, because her French partner is the exact kind of boy she was hoping to avoid. Eight weeks. 120 hours of class. 80 hours of conversation practice with someone who seems to wear baseball caps and jerseys every day.
But Zeke in French is a different person than Zeke in English. And Abby can’t help but fall for him, hard. As Abby begins to suspect that Zeke is hiding something, she has to decide if bridging the gap between who she is and who he is is worth the risk.
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REVIEW: The Distance from A to Z by Natalie Blitt
SWOONS. BOOK BOYFRIENDS. What else can I say to get your attention? Because The Distance from A to Z by Natalie Blitt has both of those things in epic amounts. We’re talking full-on butterflies in your stomach, tears in your eyes, Anna and the French Kiss levels of swoons.
When I first heard about The Distance from A to Z by Natalie Blitt, I really liked the idea of a girl being in an intensive language course over the summer and falling for her language partner. I thought that The Distance from A to Z would be a cute, fluffy romance that I could read quickly and move on from.
Guys, I was wrong.
Natalie has elevated this book from a cute romance to a character-driven novel with, yes, a romance, but also with real issues. It’s not just fluff, it’s a book that deals with fear, anxiety, trust, friendship and family in a realistic way for teens. And it’s a romance created through language and imagination that pulls you into the world of the characters.
Every character is fully realized, with quirks and flaws and loveable moments:
- Abby is a nerd and proud of it, full of dreams and fantasies about Paris, and a lot of judgment about athletes, but someone who knows what she wants and goes for it.
- Zeke is snarky and funny and creative, elevating his and Abby’s French conversation sessions to fun outings that become a world where they can flirt and yes, fall in love.
- Abby’s roommate, Alice, is a phenomenal poet who is dealing with serious anxiety, but also a friend who supports and tells it like it is to Abby.
If I have any qualms about this book, it’s that there was a bit too much description of what was happening/time passing. It’s an author trick to move things along in time, but I felt taken out of the book because I wanted to SEE those moments. Also, I felt that the book may have spelled out too many of the revelations for me. Basically, the issue was that I felt a touch too much telling rather than showing here and there.
But, look…there is so much to love about this book. It’s funny, it’s full of banter and jokes and baseball trivia. And it’s a fantastic story of self-discovery for all of the characters. I came out exhilarated and desperate for more.
Heart-Squeezing Romance: Holy hell, not only is this romance heart-squeezing, but it’s also sexy and full of anticipation and longing. If you like slow-burn and intense moments…READ THIS BOOK.
Book Boyfriend Alert: I have a giant, insane crush on Zeke and I’m not afraid to admit it. Not only is the dude adorable physically, but he’s funny, caring, attentive, respectful of women, and willing to sacrifice his baseball shirts to satisfy Abby. I could go on and on about his awesomeness, but I don’t want to spoil the Zeke goodness for you. JUST READ IT.
Wanderlust: There’s actual travel in this book, but what I loved most about it was that a lot of the travel was in the characters’ imagination – making places on campus come alive by talking about them like they were places in Paris. I LOVED this. The characters have rich stories and imaginary lives and that just made them feel real to me.
Book Theme Song:
I know there’s the Edith Piaf version, but I feel like this one really says what this book is about – the magic of love, and how Abby and Zeke create their own world through language.
The magic spell you cast
This is la vie en rose
I’m in a world apart
A world where roses bloom
Angels sing from above
Everyday words seems
To turn into love song
The Final Word:
If you like swoony, character-driven romances and book boyfriends, The Distance from A to Z is for you. It’s an incredible, unique romance that will WRECK you. There’s angst and longing and fantastic build-up, and the payoff is so, so worth it. Highly recommended to contemporary romance lovers.
THE DISTANCE FROM A TO Z is available now on most ebook retailers, and it’s only $1.99! Have you read it? Are you in love? If not, are you putting this on your to-read list right now? Because you really, really should…and if you do read and review it, please post a review to Amazon because Natalie will give us extra scenes if we get enough reviews! And believe me, you want these extra scenes:
30 Amazon reviews: Natalie will release a deleted scene on her website. <– Earned!
50 Amazon reviews: Natalie will write a short scene that takes place within six months of the last scene of A to Z.
100 Amazon reviews: Natalie will write a real epilogue that… doesn’t take place in the United States.
Go. Now. Go.