Friday, 3 January 2014

Roomies Review


Roomies by Sara Zarr & Tara Altebrando

Roomies
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.


Lisa's Review - 4.5 out of 5 stars

I was lucky enough to snag a copy of Roomies when NetGalley sent out an email saying there were just 500 limited copies to grab.

Roomies is set out similar to diary entries, with each chapter switching between the two main characters, Lauren who lives in San Francisco, and Elizabet, or E.B, who lives in New Jersey. Both girls are in their last few months at home before heading off to College at Berkeley, and receive an email to inform one another of their roommate assignments. E.B sends Lauren an email to attempt to co-ordinate items they will need for their rooms, and this results in a summer of the girls swapping emails, going from the basics to sharing their deepest secrets.

I really enjoyed this book, it was so easy to read that I finished it in one day. The lives of the two girls are so different, Lauren is the eldest child with a barrage of much younger siblings, while E.B lives alone with a mum having an affair with a married man, and a dad who ran off when she was 5, having come out as gay, and now runs an art gallery in San Francisco and has no desire to be in her life. But at the same time, they are very similar. I like the fact they had similar opinions, both struggling when they get new relationships while worrying about where they will go when College starts, both have difficult relationships with old friends they need to try patch up before leaving, but at the same time they have their own morals too and still manage to be two totally different characters.

I really enjoyed reading about their blossoming relationships, both with each other, but also with new boyfriends, and with parents. It was nice to read that not every day was perfect, and there were ups and downs to get through, without being too over the top dramatic.

The fact that two authors wrote this book together is something I quite liked. Their writing styles obviously fit well together and I would love to hear how they jointly wrote this book. I have a nice vision that each author had a 'character' and they wrote a side of the story each.

I thought having to read two different characters stories might be tiresome, but after a few chapters I got into a flow, and the fact that they were responding to one anothers emails in every chapter worked really well.

Release Date - 2nd January 2014






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