Source: I received this book as a gift from my wonderful BookTube friend Heather (Bookables). Thank you!
Beth Fremont and Jennifer Scribner-Snyder know that somebody is monitoring their work e-mail. (Everybody in the newsroom knows. It's company policy.) But they can't quite bring themselves to take it seriously. They go on sending each other endless and endlessly hilarious e-mails, discussing every aspect of their personal lives.
Meanwhile, Lincoln O'Neill can't believe this is his job now- reading other people's e-mail. When he applied to be "internet security officer," he pictured himself building firewalls and crushing hackers- not writing up a report every time a sports reporter forwards a dirty joke.
When Lincoln comes across Beth's and Jennifer's messages, he knows he should turn them in. But he can't help being entertained-and captivated-by their stories.
By the time Lincoln realizes he's falling for Beth, it's way too late to introduce himself.
What would he say . . . ?
I absolutely adore this book. It's my second Rainbow Rowell book, and I love it more than the first one I read, Landline, which I really enjoyed. The story sucked me in and the characters stole my heart. When I started reading, I couldn't put it down. As soon as I finished it, I wanted to go back and re-read it. It's been nearly a week since I read it, but thinking about it still puts a smile on my face. This book brought me so much happiness.
The characters are definitely the highlight of this story for me. I love the main character, Lincoln. It's so cool to read a "chick-lit" contemporary book from the perspective of a male. I connected to him and he felt so real. I love how quirky he is and the depth of his personality. This is, overall, a light-hearted book, but Lincoln has his struggles beyond the main plot of him falling for Beth. He is at a point in his life where all of his friends are getting married and living their own lives after college, but Lincoln still lives with his mom and hasn't had a girlfriend in years. This is an internal conflict for him, and it adds more layers to his character. There is so much more to this story than a guy reading two girls' emails.
Beth and Jennifer are wonderful as well. Even though the reader pretty much only knows them through reading their email, they are very strong characters. Rowell brilliantly develops them without the reader even realizing it. Beth is hilarious and Jennifer is relatable, but their interactions back and forth just make their characters come to life. I fell in love with Beth along with Lincoln while reading her email, and that made the whole story believable.
I love how Rowell makes this romance and story seem possible. When reading the summary it sounds weird and a little crazy, but by the end, I whole-heartedly believed in it. I think it really comes down to the details. Rowell puts so many meaningful details in the story and characters. I mentioned this about her book Landline too. The details in her writing make everything feel realistic, and it adds a relatable humor. There are small lines here and there that had me laughing because I could totally imagine or relate to the scene or emotion described, and those little details make all the difference.
Those details also extend to the setting. This book is set in 1999 and it goes through Y2K. It was so fun reading about this. I was 5 years old at that time, but I do have specific memories of the Y2K turnover, and I've heard my parents talk about how big of a deal it was. I was so entertained and intrigued while reading about Y2K from the perspective of people that were currently experiencing it. I totally felt like I was there, and I just think that's another wonderful element of the story.
Obviously, I totally fell in love with this book and I would highly recommend it. It's so well developed and I loved everything about it. I even happy cried at the end. This book just brought me laughs and joy and it will definitely stick with me.