'Reading a book is like re-writing it for yourself. You bring to a novel, anything you read, all your experience of the world. You bring your history and you read it in your own terms.'- Angela Carter

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

REVIEW: Roomies - Sara Zarr, Tara Altebrando

RoomiesTitle: Roomies
Author: Sara Zarr, Tara Altebrando
Series: None
Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton
Source: Review Copy
Publication Date: 2nd January, 2014

It's time to meet your new roomie.

When East Coast native Elizabeth receives her freshman-year roommate assignment, she shoots off an e-mail to coordinate the basics: television, microwave, mini-fridge. That first note to San Franciscan Lauren sparks a series of e-mails that alters the landscape of each girl's summer -- and raises questions about how two girls who are so different will ever share a dorm room.

As the countdown to college begins, life at home becomes increasingly complex. With family relationships and childhood friendships strained by change, it suddenly seems that the only people Elizabeth and Lauren can rely on are the complicated new boys in their lives . . . and each other. Even though they've never met.

National Book Award finalist Sara Zarr and acclaimed author Tara Altebrando join forces for a novel about growing up, leaving home, and getting that one fateful e-mail that assigns your college roommate.

Sweet is the word that springs to mind when I think about this book. Sweet and nostalgia-inducing without a doubt. When this book first appeared on NetGalley I ignored it. I wasn't into Contemporary YA and it just didn't sound like my thing. A few months later this lovely book appeared on Bookbridgr and at the perfect time. I'm currently going through a Contemporary kick and this was just the loveliest read for the mood that I was in. Elizabeth and Lauren are two girls that are in their final summer before university. They decide to get in contact before becoming roomies and this book follows their path.

Roomies brought back so many memories from my final months before going to university. The leaving school, the saying goodbye to friends, the absolute terror but excitement of going off to this new world to live independently and to make new friends in a strange place. It all came rushing back and I finished the book missing university and that excitement so much. I was definitely more on Lauren's side of things family wise - I found it incredibly difficult moving away from them. On the other hand, I felt very similar to Elizabeth on the friendship front. I really felt like the authors did a fantastic job of depicting what it's like in the run up to university. There is so much fear, nostalgia, excitement, uncertainty and happiness in these pages that you can't help but reminisce on (or look forward to!) university life.

This wasn't a book that I expected to enjoy as much as I did. I enjoyed it so much that I'm hoping that there will be a follow up book that shows us EB and Lauren's university life. I really want to know how their friendship developed, how they found university and what it was all like for them. It turns out that I really love books like this! I find them so emotional and they're such easy books to connect with. Roomies was an absolutely fantastic read. If you haven't read it yet, you seriously need to! It's a quick and easy read that deals with some pretty hard hitting stuff. There's change, there's love, there's friendship; there's everything you could need from a book like this. Highly recommend!


  1. I've never had an experience like that. In the Netherlands it is not common to live on campus and live with a roomie. From that point of view it will be fun to read about that experience! Nice review, Leah :)

  2. Wow. Well, this definitely looks like a good book. I am going to college this year. But in Iraq, you don't live on the college campus,, you just live with your parents, as always.
    GREAT review, though
    Your reader,


Please leave a comment, I love reading each and every one of them :).
This blog is an award free zone. Thank you for your thoughtfulness and I appreciate them :).