Wednesday, June 22, 2016

#JointReview: When We Collided

Happy Wednesday Everyone!
Today I thought I would try something new!
Instead of just my review today; you are going to get TWO reviews!
Holly from Nut Free Nerd has so graciously decided to review this novel with me!

Not only will you get to see our reviews; but we thought it would be awesome to show the readers a little bit of our thought process as we were reading this one!
Give you a little bit of insight in the "before the review" stage!
You can find this post on BOTH blogs! So check in with her as well!
Like what you read? Let us know! Grab Your Copy! Enjoy!

When We Collided
by Emery Lord
Published: April 5, 2016
Published by: Bloomsbury Childrens
Source: Purchased Myself
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N
We are seventeen and shattered and still dancing. We have messy, throbbing hearts, and we are stronger than anyone could ever know…

Jonah never thought a girl like Vivi would come along.

Vivi didn’t know Jonah would light up her world.

Neither of them expected a summer like this…a summer that would rewrite their futures.

In an unflinching story about new love, old wounds, and forces beyond our control, two teens find that when you collide with the right person at just the right time, it will change you forever.

Peyton's Thoughts

This was my first novel from this author and I have to say.. ALL THE FEELS! I will be going back and reading her previously published, as well as future novels that she publishes! When We Collided is written with a tone that I am not very familiar with reading. I thought it would throw me off, or be a bit of a challenge to get into, but I fell completely in love with everything about it. I can let you know, right off the bat, that my favorite thing about this novel is that is written as a Dual POV. Nothing makes me happier as a reader than to be able to see the story from both points of view!

Jonah has 100% won my heart. Hands down, no questions asked. He is different from the normal Alpha males I am used to reading about, but I think that is one of the main reasons as to why I love him so hardcore. Aside from being funny, loyal to a fault, humble and gracious - Jonah is a fan-freaking-tastic cook. (be still my beating heart!) #WINNING!

ViVi is a bit of a touchy subject for me. While part of me liked her because she felt insanely REAL - imperfections and all... another part of me spent the good majority of the book asking myself again and again how I could possibly like this girl! Then.. I understood her. She is a stark contrast to everything that Jonah is - but it is who SHE is. While some people are easy to love, others are sort of an acquired taste. ViVi has a strong, in your face kind of way about her.. a tough pill to swallow so to speak. Underneath it all, she is just like you and I.

Going into this novel I was unsure how the author was going to handle touching on serious subjects.. such as bi-polar disorder.. I think she hands down - without a doubt, knocked this out of the part. It was so graciously written with enough caution that you didn't feel any kind of opinion was being forced on you, but with enough care and depth we as readers could understand the character just a little better.

Heads up though! The ending threw me for a loop! I didn't see it coming in any kind of fashion, but the book wouldn't be what it is without this! Kind of a MUST HAVE, but a WISH IT WASN'T THERE kinda thing! The secondary characters in this story are amazing. The dynamic of the family was so well written that I felt like I was with them - experiencing the very same things that they were.. That this could be any family right down the street from me. Emery Lord really knows how to tug at the heart.. and write a novel that makes you feel as though she KNOWS something about your life.. and just throws it in there to connect you again and again! If you are a lover of YA.. This book is for you!

Holly's Thoughts

Wow. Little did I know when I began reading Emery Lord's When We Collided that I was embarking on an emotional rollercoaster, a journey of ups and downs and endless winding curves. I expected a light, summery read, but what I got instead was so much more. There are an abundance of reasons why I enjoyed this book immensely, but here are just a few:

+ The idyllic beach town setting. I'm a sucker for good settings, and Verona Cove is the perfect beach town for a summery novel. It's quaint, the locals are an eclectic bunch, and the scenery is gorgeous.

+ Dual perspectives. The chapters alternate between Vivi and Jonah's point of views, which adds a lot of depth to the story. Not only does it force you to look at the story from a different perspective (literally and figuratively), but it also allows you to better understand what is actually happening.

+ The emphasis on family dynamics. I love stories about families, and this one is no exception. The many flaws of the Jonah's big family (6 kids!!!) highlight the fact that no family is perfect in real life. Each sibling has a unique, multifaceted personality that grows and changes throughout the course of the novel. Besides Jonah, my favorite sibling is probably Leah-- she's so bubbly and adorable!

+ The approach to discussing mental illness. When I eventually realized what was going on, I honestly had no idea how the topic would be handled. However, I think that the subject of mental illness is approached with care, respect, and sensitivity in this novel. Emery Lord includes a thoughtful note towards the end of the book explaining how mental illness was portrayed in When We Collided and ways that those who are struggling can seek help. I don't think any fictional portrayal of mental illness will ever be perfect, but in my opinion Lord handles it very well.

+ JONAH. I must have thing for fictional guys named Jonah (Jonah Griggs from Jellicoe Road, anyone?) because I absolutely adored him! He's sweet, funny, kind, responsible, loyal, and would do anything for his family. He's also an amazing cook-- what else could you possibly want in a book boyfriend?

+ The ending. I was completely surprised by the ending, but in a positive way. (I actually gasped out loud in shock!) It was incredibly heartbreaking and emotional, but I feel as though the story couldn't have properly ended in any other way.

My only complaint might be a little controversial: I didn't like Vivi for a good portion of the novel. Her personality is overwhelmingly HUGE. I understand that she has a mental illness, but that doesn't mean that her personality cannot be critiqued. She is an overpowering character, especially when compared to the reserved, mature Jonah. Her outrageously boisterous personality makes their relationship seem almost forced, as though it is bordering more on "insta-love" than an actual substantial relationship.

Overall, When We Collided turned out to be a moving, eye-opening, and adorable summer read. I became completely invested in the characters and their stories, making it a difficult book to put down. It might not have been what I was originally expecting, but I'm so happy that it ended up being even better than I initially anticipated. I'll definitely have to check out Emery Lord's other books!

Would I recommend it to a friend?: Absolutely! Especially for someone looking for a meaningful, unique, summery YA read.

Inside Look At Our Thought Process!

We thought it would be neat to show you a little of our thought process!
-- Click on the images to see them bigger! --

What did YOU think of our #JointReview?
Have you read When We Collided?
Are you a fan of Emery Lord?
Holly & I would LOVE to hear your thoughts!
Don't forget to visit Holly's Post as well!


  1. Oh the insights! Not only do we have your thoughts, Peyton, but Holly's as well. It seems like you ladies are quite in agreement with Vivi (cute name) and the less-than-expected conclusion. Mental illness is such a sensitive topic, but it sounds like the author delivers her message with sensitivity and class. Great collaborative efforts Peyton and Holly!!

    1. I thought it would be awesome to try something new :) I love that this book touched us both the same! It was really fun talking with Holly through the entire process!

  2. I love getting two reviews "for the price of one!" Excellent idea here.

  3. Wow the reviews on this book makes me so interested in reading this book!!! I am very intrigued!!

    1. So glad you are interested! :) I do hope you give this one a try!

  4. I enjoyed reading both reviews, kind of a dual POV review to mirror the book. :). Writing about mental illness is difficult, and it seems like Emery Lord has done it well, especially including resources at the end of the book.

    1. It was a pleasure to read! I thought writing this post was such fun! I loved reading Holly's review as well && I thought it gave a little something extra to the review!

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  6. I really liked this joint review idea! The text exchange was an original element and it added a personal touch. Although I imagine joint reviews are more challenging, logistically, I would love if you would continue them. It's so interesting to read/compare the thoughts and review styles.