Published by Point on July 26th, 2016
Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Signed, sealed, delivered…
While spacing out in chemistry class, Lily scribbles some of her favorite song lyrics onto her desk. The next day, she finds that someone has continued the lyrics on the desk and added a message to her. Intrigue!
Soon, Lily and her anonymous pen pal are exchanging full-on letters—sharing secrets, recommending bands, and opening up to each other. Lily realizes she’s kind of falling for this letter writer. Only, who is he? As Lily attempts to unravel the mystery and juggle school, friends, crushes, and her crazy family, she discovers that matters of the heart can’t always be spelled out…
Anytime a new Kasie West book is on the horizon, I get tingly and excited and just cannot even bare the wait. It was about 10 times worse for P.S. I Like You, though. The title alone made me excited, the blurb got me bouncing in my chair, and when I got to post the cover reveal, I damn near fainted. IT WAS SO CUTE, THIS WAS OBVIOUSLY THE BOOK FOR ME — and I was so right. This book is a new favorite.
P.S. I Like You, at its essence, is You’ve Got Mail – only my favorite romcom of all time – meets Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda. Does that give you an idea of how adorable this book is? Good. Because seriously. It’s perfection. Lily gets an anonymous pen pal in her chemistry class after writing some lyrics on her desk, and suddenly chemistry becomes the highlight of her day (miracles do happen). Slowly they get to know each other… and feelings follow shortly after that.
The magic of Kasie West is that she writes ships like almost no one else. This one is particularly fun, because you spend the first part of the book trying to figure out who the anonymous pen pal is. I had my suspect pretty quickly, and when certain events transpired between them in real life (not in the letters) the ship hit me like a ton of bricks. From that point on it was just so much cuteness and so many adorable, bantery moments, and I definitely got to ACTUALLY PHYSICAL FLAILING LEVELS because this book just plays on all of my favorite tropes and I could not handle the feels. As far as YA contemporary romances go, I’m not sure it gets much better than this for me.
The other thing that Kasie always excels at is family dynamics. Seriously, Lily lives in a crazy house where she can scarcely get a moment’s peace – which she needs, as her hobby is songwriting. But her family is so kooky and fun. Her parents compete in everything, getting the family to vote on competing pies, DIY jewelry, you name it. Her three siblings cause chaos, but are absolutely adorable. At the end of the day, all of them go out of their way to help each other. It just all felt so real, if not idyllic, and heartwarming.
I’m a music person, and I adore having music play a role in books, so I loved Lily’s songwriting. She has a really alternative, indie vibe, and that’s what brings her and her mystery guy together in the first place. But she has never finished a song before. The book actually shows the songwriting process pretty well, as Lily gets inspired by her pen pal’s family struggles to write a song which she wants to enter in a competition to win a cash prize and songwriting lessons. She’s shy and nervous to share her music with people even though she’s so passionate about it, and that’s something I could definitely relate to.
As for the rest… There is some minor mean girl drama, but not so much that I was really bothered by it. At the end of the day, Lily’s not fussed about popularity and what other people think of her. She is confronted with the fact that she may rush to judgment at times and that she needs to be a little more open-minded. But she has a very authentic voice that just comes with a few natural flaws. I loved the bond with her best friend, because they were just so caring and pure towards each other. I need more healthy friendships like that in YA.