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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 exclusively wear baseball caps and jerseys.
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 the distance between who she is and who he is, is worth the risk.
ARC received for review purposes in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Nick made me read this a few weeks ago and it was absolutely adorable! I’m so glad I read it as I loved Abby, Zeke and Alice. Today I’m gonna share with you the ABC’s of this book, just a few words that remind me of The Distance from A to Z, as well as my thoughts on the book below. 🙂
(I have no idea if anyone has done a feature like this, I just thought it would be fun cause of the title of the book)
The ABC’s of The Distance from A to Z:
Our baseball hating/French loving MC.
Baseball plays such a huge role in this book. Abby’s family is obsessed with baseball and Abby wants absolutely nothing to do with it. This summer is not just her opportunity to master her French, it’s also a chance to get away from baseball.
I love when authors share small details about their characters that help me connect with them better. Abby loves converse, Zeke wears converse. It’s actually one of the first things Abby noticed about him. 🙂
Obviously, like the title states, there are so many things standing in the way of any kind of relationship between Abby and Zeke. One of which is the fact that they live in different states.
Their relationship can be defined in two different stages. Their ‘English’ conversations are the normal Abby and Zeke…
The ‘French’ version of Abby and Zeke was so addicting! I normally hate different languages in books (I don’t know French although I can guess some words) but it really worked with this book. I love when Abby and Zeke spoke to each other in French, it was like seeing them fall for each other with each French word.
Abby’s childhood revolved so much around baseball games.
I’m not joking when I say that Abby hates baseball. Hate is probably not a strong enough word. When she first meets Zeke and realizes he likes baseball too, she hates that about him.
I’ll admit that there were times when Abby and her ‘I hate baseball’ attitude would irritate me. I was like ‘okay Abby, I get it!’
Actually, at first she kind of annoyed me because she was a little bit judgmental. But her character did grow, which I liked a lot.
I loved the friendship between Alice and Abby and I loved how kind they were to each other all the time. Even when they didn’t always agree on things. I love good female friendships in books.
Duh. This had such a cute romance, love is the first L-word that came to mind.
M: Madame Joliet
Abby’s French instructor was a great supporting character. I love dhow supportive she was, but I especially love that she paired Abby and Zeke as partners!
This is not only Abby’s first time on her own, away from her family, but it’s also the first time she’s experiencing all these new emotions…like love.
Abby and Zeke are complete opposite in so many ways, and despite it all, they can’t help the way they feel about each other.
Despite how wrong they may seem for each other, I love that they are perfect together anyway.
Q: Quote Cup
Othe rthan the romance, anothe rthing I loved was the friendship between Abby and he roommate Alice. I especially love dthe scene where Abby made Alice a cup for her coffee with the word ‘courage’ on it.
Abby knows that things could end very badly with her and Zeke, she has to decide if it’s worth the risk anyway.
Not only does this make the perfect summer read, but it also takes place in the summer.
One of my favorite scenes involves baseball trivia… who knew baseball trivia could be hot?
Abby’s whole reason for attending the summer program at Huntington University is not only to improve her French, but to get into a French University.
Although Abby’s French was pretty good, with Zeke’s help she was really able to find her voice.
Even though I loved the romance, I also loved the message of the book. I love how Abby realized that she didn’t have to let baseball, French or a boy define who she was and I loved how the summer helped her find herself.
X: X-Rated French Films
As part of their assignment, Abby and Zeke watch a couple of X-rated French movies 😉
I’m such a sucker for YA contemporary books because there is nothing sweeter than reading about young love.
Zeke was exactly the type of guy Abby was trying to avoid, too bad their summer had other plans.
I was expecting something cute (and short), I wasn’t prepared for what I got in this book. I got a story with a really good romance, the good slow-burn kind that you can’t figure out if you want to slow down to keep enjoying the tension, or to hurry up so the tension doesn’t kill you. The pacing in this book was perfect and just what I like in my YA contemporaries. I also got a great friendship with Abby and Alice, I loved how supportive they were each other and how understanding Abby was about Alice’s anxiety attacks. I really wish we had a book about Alice because it would be really interesting to see a character with anxiety deal with falling in love, among other things. Last but not least, we see great character development, not just with Abby, but also with Zeke and Alice.
I will say that it took me a little while to warm up to Abby, it kind of seemed like she purposely looked for excuses to be mad at Zeke, just because he liked baseball, but once I saw her growing as a character I was able to forgive that and like her. The ending was a little bit abrupt, I kind of felt like I was missing a chapter but I still felt like things wrapped up nicely. I still want more though and I hope we get that bonus epilogue or even a novella.
This book was such a pleasant surprise for me! I had a feeling I would like it because my blogger friends were liking it, but I didn’t expect to like it this much. I would love to re-read this again. I’ll definitely be on the lookout for more books by this author! If you’re looking for a really cute contemporary with a great slow burn romance, you should check this one out. You can also check out Nick’s review of this book if you need more convincing. 🙂
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