There’s somehow too much but also not enough going on in this book, and I still don’t know how to feel about it.
Thank you so much to TBR and Beyond and E. Lockhart for allowing me to be part of this experience and also providing me with a complimentary physical copy and media kit!
From the New York Times bestselling author of We Were Liars and Genuine Fraud comes a complex novel about acceptance, forgiveness, self-discovery, and possibility, as a teenage girl attempts to regain some sense of normalcy in her life after a family crisis and a broken heart.
If you could live your life again, what would you do differently?
After a near-fatal family catastrophe and an unexpected romantic upheaval, Adelaide Buchwald finds herself catapulted into a summer of wild possibility, during which she will fall in and out of love a thousand times–while finally confronting the secrets she keeps, her ideas about love, and the weird grandiosity of the human mind.
A raw, funny story that will surprise you over and over, Again Again gives us an indelible heroine grappling with the terrible and wonderful problem of loving other people.
- Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/48570522-again-again
- Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Again-Lockhart/dp/0385744803/ref=tmm_pap_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=&sr=
- Barnes and Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/again-again-e-lockhart/1134237356?ean=9780385744805
- Book Depository: https://www.bookdepository.com/Again-Again-E-Lockhart/9781471407291?ref=grid-view&qid=1618767379755&sr=1-2
- Indigo: https://www.chapters.indigo.ca/en-ca/books/again-again/9780385744805-item.html?ikwid=e+lockhart&ikwsec=Books&ikwidx=6#algoliaQueryId=200c2fb382d24a2433684fc728f1ef5b
- IndieBound: https://www.indiebound.org/book/9780385744805?aff=penguinrandom
Content and Trigger Warnings
For a list of warnings, tropes, and representation for this book, check out its page on BookTriggerWarnings.com.
About the Author
E. Lockhart wrote the New York Times bestseller We Were Liars and the upcoming Genuine Fraud, a psychological thriller. Her other books include Fly on the Wall, Dramarama, The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks, and the Ruby Oliver Quartet, which includes The Boyfriend List, The Boy Book, The Treasure Map of Boys, and Real Live Boyfriends. She also wrote How to Be Bad with Sarah Mlynowski and Lauren Myracle. Visit her online at emilylockhart.com, and follow her on Twitter at @elockhart.
Review (no spoilers)
If you’d like to follow along with the rest of the tour, you can find the tour schedule here.
I’m going to start off this review with a bit of a disclaimer. I rated this book 4 stars because I have no idea how to rate this book. When I finished it, I had so many overwhelming and conflicting feelings that I didn’t even understand how to feel about it. Now that a few hours have passed since then, I still don’t know. And I kind of think that might actually be the point.
Again Again is written in such a unique way that it begs the reader to think deeply about it’s trying to say. The overall plot follows Adelaide as she struggles to cope with her recent breakup and her brother’s illness, but throughout the novel, there are several bolded sections that (to my understanding) indicate what could have happened/did happen in an alternate timeline.
As a result, you find yourself reading very similar passages 2-4 times in a row, where the characters reactions are altered only very slightly but will result in an entirely new story. In one version you might watch as two characters share a few lines of dialogue and begin falling in love; in another, you might see the same two characters exchanging similar lines of dialogue but growing apart instead. The overall effect is both amazing and disillusioning at the same time.
When I read through the first sections featuring alternate universes, I was apprehensive at how it was going to work, but it actually grew on me very quickly. It’s never quite explained what these passages mean/are, but once again, I think that was kind of the point. The story is both written concretely, and extremely open at the same time . In fact, there was somehow both an ending and not an ending at all. I even managed to both hate and like the characters at the same time (tbqh I think Adelaide needs some serious therapy). Maybe now you see a bit of why I’m so conflicted with how I feel about it?
I definitely think that Again Again is a book that deserves to be read more than once. There are so many things going on that it can be difficult (or maybe impossible) to figure it all out with one reading. What was the book trying to tell me? It feels like something really big, but I’m not sure I’ve yet to pin it down. Maybe I’m not meant to.