So, yet again, I decided to read something that wasn’t on this month’s TBR… 🤦🏻♀️ It took me a while to finish Wicked Like a Wildfire, and after I did, the idea of jumping right into another fantasy book just didn’t seem appealing. Instead, I picked up Gaby Dunn and Allison Raskin’s I Hate Everyone But You. It sounded like a fun, quirky coming-of-age book, and the structure — a story told entirely through emails and texts — really appealed to me.
Not sure what this book is about? You can find a short synopsis here! 🙂
What I Liked: I loved Ava and Gen. I wanted to hang out with them and be BFFs 4 LYFE (as Ava might say). I think Dunn and Raskin did an incredible job of creating two believable — and relatable — characters who are hilarious, but also struggling to figure out who they are now that they’re in college. We never get a clear physical description of either one, but I think this allows the reader to imagine Ava and Gen for themselves, or to even think about their own friends and consider who might be more like Ava and more like Gen. There were parts of this book that made me stop and think, Wow. I swear this is word-for-word a conversation I’ve had with [INSERT FRIEND’S NAME HERE]. I think that’s a big part of what makes this book so enjoyable — it all feels real. It captures the joyful, frustrating, and mortifying things about being eighteen and suddenly realizing that you don’t actually know half as much as you thought you did. And I think the use of emails and texts helped the authors to more easily explore subjects that many people often find difficult to discuss, including mental illness, sexuality, and discovering your own identity.
What I Disliked: (Spoiler: Nothing. But I have some thoughts and ~feelings~, so read on! 😁) I think the only times I felt frustrated with this book were when I was feeling frustrated with Ava or Gen. But that’s how you should feel as a reader. I was genuinely invested in their individual stories, as well as their friendship, so of course I found myself saying, “Ava. AVA. Just break up with Jake. Just do it. He’s the worsssssst,” or, “C’mon, Gen! Stop shutting down. She’s just saying this because she cares about you!” That’s honestly the only anywhere-close-to-negative thing I have to say about this book. Get ready to have lots of feels, especially if you’re someone who also felt confused and pushed out of your comfort zone when you were a college freshman. I’ve seen a few reviews that criticized the book’s lack of substance, but I think there’s plenty here for a reader to enjoy. And it was very refreshing to have a queer protagonist who’s just beginning to really explore what that means for her, along with a protagonist who struggles with a mental illness and isn’t somehow magically cured by the end of the book. So, basically: No dislikes! This was a delight. ❤️
About the Authors: Gaby and Allison
Gaby Dunn and Allison Raskin have a YouTube channel and show called Just Between Us. As their website describes, it’s “an LA-based odd couple comedy channel from co-dependent besties Allison Raskin and Gaby Dunn. Tune in on Mondays for a show on a couch. You will learn nothing. Tune in on Thursdays for an original sketch. You will also learn nothing.” Check it out!
My next read — since I’ve totally gone off the TBR rails, lololol — will be Marie Lu’s Warcross. This is another recent release, and I’ve seen tons of hype for this book. And have I mentioned that the hardback is stunning? (The U.S. edition is a beautiful turquoise hue, but the U.K. edition IS A RAINBOW. 😍)