Hot Best Seller

Our Year in Love and Parties

Availability: Ready to download

In this poignant, funny, and romantic novel, four nights of epic partying will see two teens through their highest highs and lowest lows over the course of one unforgettable year. Perfect for fans of Gayle Forman and Mary H.K. Choi! Tucker knows that some relationships take work. With his best friend, Bobby, and his mom, everything is simple, steady. His dad, on the other In this poignant, funny, and romantic novel, four nights of epic partying will see two teens through their highest highs and lowest lows over the course of one unforgettable year. Perfect for fans of Gayle Forman and Mary H.K. Choi! Tucker knows that some relationships take work. With his best friend, Bobby, and his mom, everything is simple, steady. His dad, on the other hand, seems to only show up when he wants to bring Tucker down. Then there’s Erika Green, who comes back into his life, stirring up old feelings. A small part of him knows he shouldn’t get too attached during senior year. But a bigger part doesn’t want her to disappear again. Erika from before the video loved to shock people. Now, she just wants to hole up in her quiet college life and leave the past where it belongs—in a dumpster fire. But then she reconnects with Tucker Campanelli. Erika can’t explain what it is about him. There’s just this undeniable connection between them, and she really doesn’t want to lose that feeling. Not yet.


Compare

In this poignant, funny, and romantic novel, four nights of epic partying will see two teens through their highest highs and lowest lows over the course of one unforgettable year. Perfect for fans of Gayle Forman and Mary H.K. Choi! Tucker knows that some relationships take work. With his best friend, Bobby, and his mom, everything is simple, steady. His dad, on the other In this poignant, funny, and romantic novel, four nights of epic partying will see two teens through their highest highs and lowest lows over the course of one unforgettable year. Perfect for fans of Gayle Forman and Mary H.K. Choi! Tucker knows that some relationships take work. With his best friend, Bobby, and his mom, everything is simple, steady. His dad, on the other hand, seems to only show up when he wants to bring Tucker down. Then there’s Erika Green, who comes back into his life, stirring up old feelings. A small part of him knows he shouldn’t get too attached during senior year. But a bigger part doesn’t want her to disappear again. Erika from before the video loved to shock people. Now, she just wants to hole up in her quiet college life and leave the past where it belongs—in a dumpster fire. But then she reconnects with Tucker Campanelli. Erika can’t explain what it is about him. There’s just this undeniable connection between them, and she really doesn’t want to lose that feeling. Not yet.

30 review for Our Year in Love and Parties

  1. 5 out of 5

    Riley Redgate

    edit: this book is out today! pick it up. you won't regret it. --- surprisingly understated for a book set entirely at parties! also as sweet and complex as a truffle plucked off a silver tray. this story nails the wistful feeling of being up too late and tipsy on good conversation and never wanting to go back to regular daylight life. you never feel the constraints on setting at all, it’s a wonderful framing device. also, tucker is the softest male romantic lead and i’m living for it. let boys cry edit: this book is out today! pick it up. you won't regret it. --- surprisingly understated for a book set entirely at parties! also as sweet and complex as a truffle plucked off a silver tray. this story nails the wistful feeling of being up too late and tipsy on good conversation and never wanting to go back to regular daylight life. you never feel the constraints on setting at all, it’s a wonderful framing device. also, tucker is the softest male romantic lead and i’m living for it. let boys cry 2k19

  2. 4 out of 5

    Danielle (Life of a Literary Nerd)

    "Fine," she said, with the biggest eye roll she could manage. "Bring on the star-crossed bullshit." I wasn't expecting to be so enamored by Our Year in Love and Parties, but here we are. This is a beautiful story filled with nostalgia, hope, and pain and I couldn't put it down. I honestly don't think I can write a coherent review because it would just be me stating and restating everything I liked over and over, but I'll try. I loved the format of the story. We see snapshots of Erika and "Fine," she said, with the biggest eye roll she could manage. "Bring on the star-crossed bullshit." I wasn't expecting to be so enamored by Our Year in Love and Parties, but here we are. This is a beautiful story filled with nostalgia, hope, and pain and I couldn't put it down. I honestly don't think I can write a coherent review because it would just be me stating and restating everything I liked over and over, but I'll try. I loved the format of the story. We see snapshots of Erika and Tucker's lives through these 4 parties. We see how much their lives change and how much they grow throughout the year. The parties are really the perfect setting to both get them out of their comfort zones and foster a closer relationship. There is such a strong foundation for Erika and Tucker's relationship. I completely buy their history and why they are initially attracted to one another. Their cute inside jokes, genuine care, and intense love of Harry Potter made it so easy for me to cheer for them. There's just this perfect bittersweet quality to this story that makes the story all the more personal. It's not a happy ever after, but it's not a tragedy either. The ending - and the story overall - just feel so real and personal that I couldn't put this down. I received a copy of the book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

  3. 4 out of 5

    Liza Wiemer

    WOW! This novel is so GOOD! And bonus: One of the things that I love about it is that Erika, one of the MCs, is in college. We need more books with older YA! It's written in dual perspective, alternating between Tucker and Erika. To watch how their friendship and connection grows over the course of four different parties over a year is so cool. They both bring baggage to the relationship. I was impressed with how Karen dealt with the issue of slut shaming. There is a shocking dad scene that WOW! This novel is so GOOD! And bonus: One of the things that I love about it is that Erika, one of the MCs, is in college. We need more books with older YA! It's written in dual perspective, alternating between Tucker and Erika. To watch how their friendship and connection grows over the course of four different parties over a year is so cool. They both bring baggage to the relationship. I was impressed with how Karen dealt with the issue of slut shaming. There is a shocking dad scene that illuminates why Tucker has struggled with self-esteem issues, and Erika's response and what begins to transpire afterward is heartwarming. I love the themes of betrayal, trust & giving friendship/love a chance. I got swept away. Highly recommend, especially for older YA looking to read a book that has a MC in college. I have no doubt they will either see themselves or people they know and will be able to relate to Tucker and Erika.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Laurie Flynn

    Wow, what an absolutely beautiful book. I love a story that feels genuine and goes deep emotionally, and OUR YEAR IN LOVE AND PARTIES delivers in spades. It's sweet without ever being cloying, which is hard to accomplish. Karen's writing is phenomenal. Her language is evocative and intricate, and she has a true gift for dialogue that feels consistently authentic. As I read, I could visualize each party, and the interactions between Tucker and Erika. With themes of rebuilding trust, finding Wow, what an absolutely beautiful book. I love a story that feels genuine and goes deep emotionally, and OUR YEAR IN LOVE AND PARTIES delivers in spades. It's sweet without ever being cloying, which is hard to accomplish. Karen's writing is phenomenal. Her language is evocative and intricate, and she has a true gift for dialogue that feels consistently authentic. As I read, I could visualize each party, and the interactions between Tucker and Erika. With themes of rebuilding trust, finding yourself, and believing in a bit of magic, this book is an emotional ride you won't want to miss.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Melanie Brinkman

    Life is it's own special sort of party. After working together at the cave, Tucker began crushing on Erika. Even after the summer work season ended, they never forgot each other. But when the cave closes, they unexpectedly find each other once more. As they go about their lives throughout the next year, they can't seem to stop running into each other. Just what will this mean for their hearts? A story of two young souls trying to make sense of the world. A tale of foraging your own path rather Life is it's own special sort of party. After working together at the cave, Tucker began crushing on Erika. Even after the summer work season ended, they never forgot each other. But when the cave closes, they unexpectedly find each other once more. As they go about their lives throughout the next year, they can't seem to stop running into each other. Just what will this mean for their hearts? A story of two young souls trying to make sense of the world. A tale of foraging your own path rather than following the one everyone already thinks you're on. Trigger warnings for slut shaming, underage drinking, toxic masculinity, rape culture, parental illness, and death. Sweet and sensitive, Tucker stole my heart. unfortunately, the high school senior fought a constant battle within himself, thanks to enduring his father's ideas of toxic masculinity. From caring for his family to being there for the people who needed him, his heart was soft and golden. As he struggled to gain self acceptance, Tucker's vulnerability was a gorgeous show of strength. He was such a genuine, down-to-earth guy, that deserved the best. Jaded yet gentle, Erika was not the girl she used to be. But as the college sophomore slowly recovered from being a social pariah, she learned to be okay with that. The strength she had to despite the atrocity of her past, was awe-inspiring. However, the way her compassionate heart shown in a situation all too similar to her own, was remarkable. It was impossible not to admire this young woman. Sometimes love burst into flame in an instant. Sometimes it takes time to coax that flame through the "will they, won't they winds", and even then you're never completely sure the flame will combust into a full-fledged fire. Regardless of the adorable romance, the bond between Tucker and Erika was undeniable. A shared love of nerdy things, inside jokes, and similar personality traits, the two young adults just got each other. Although they both carried heavy emotional baggage, the push and pull was fantastically done. Every time they met once again, and restoked those feelings, I rooted for them all the more. The last party I went to was in my freshman year of high school, so slipping into a year of parties with Tucker and Erica was enjoyable. Vividly depicted unforgettable, I got to experience the highs and lows of their lives. Even more gorgeous than the atmosphere of the book, was the quiet strength these characters showed as they delved into the emotionally vulnerable sides. The happiness of normality tinged with the uncertainty of the future made their journeys realistically hard-hitting. Karen Hattrup penned so much more than a love story as she respectfully explored feelings, trust, family, and finding yourself. As she helped shut down assumptions about rape culture and toxic masculinity, I found myself applauding. Between beautiful little flashbacks, four parties, and present-day scenarios, this novel flew by. So much more than I was expecting, I wasn't ever ready to leave the emotional party of Tucker and Erica's lives. Now that you've got the invite, read Our Year in Love and Parties.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Jamie

    This book should not have wrecked me. With a cover like this, with a title like this, I should not have been gasping for air to keep from crying at the 3/4 mark. But I’ll be damned if I wasn’t saying, “oh god oh god my heart oh god no I can’t,” while reading the third of the four(ish) parties portrayed in this phenomenally affecting YA novel. I’ll be honest: was expecting NOTHING from this. And yet the emotional and psychological arcs that Tucker and Erika take in this book - both apart from one This book should not have wrecked me. With a cover like this, with a title like this, I should not have been gasping for air to keep from crying at the 3/4 mark. But I’ll be damned if I wasn’t saying, “oh god oh god my heart oh god no I can’t,” while reading the third of the four(ish) parties portrayed in this phenomenally affecting YA novel. I’ll be honest: was expecting NOTHING from this. And yet the emotional and psychological arcs that Tucker and Erika take in this book - both apart from one another and together - are extraordinary. I was IN IT with these two. From Erika’s understandable wariness and distrust of men (boys) based off her terrible high school experience with a video that went viral, to Tucker’s surety, thanks to a brutally cold father, that the worst thing he could possibly do would be to be honest with people about his emotional state, I was sucker punched by how much I loved their journeys. It reminded me, in a way that seems almost uncanny, of the friendship/love between Marianne and Connell in NORMAL PEOPLE. But while that book was almost all surface (to the benefit of the characters - I don’t want to pretend like I didn’t ADORE that book), this one is about miscommunication. About being young and afraid to admit who you are, even when you find that one person who you know understands you. Hell. Went in planning to give this a four star ranking. After typing all this out? I just rounded this up to 5.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Samantha (WLABB)

    Rating: 4.5 stars Tucker had been crushing on Erika the summer they worked together at the Cave, and found that there was still a spark after their separation. They were reunited at a Farewell Cave party, and I had the pleasure of seeing their relationship morph and change over the course of one year and four parties, and I loved every second of it. I am actually shedding tears of joy as I write this review, because I ADORED THIS BOOK SO MUCH!! It was just so beautiful. It made me feel a truckload Rating: 4.5 stars Tucker had been crushing on Erika the summer they worked together at the Cave, and found that there was still a spark after their separation. They were reunited at a Farewell Cave party, and I had the pleasure of seeing their relationship morph and change over the course of one year and four parties, and I loved every second of it. I am actually shedding tears of joy as I write this review, because I ADORED THIS BOOK SO MUCH!! It was just so beautiful. It made me feel a truckload of emotions, and I really wanted to hug it multiple times as I compulsively perused Erika and Tucker's story. I really enjoyed the format of this book. It took place over a year - Tucker's senior year of high school and Erika's sophomore year of college. I didn't spend every day of that year with them, but rather, I was treated to "snapshots", where the important bits of their lives were fed to me, while they attend various parties. You would think it would leave me with holes, but Hattrup deftly filled in all the important details that occurred outside of the day in question, while keeping me wholly in the moment. The storytelling was fantastic, but it was the characters, who really stood out in this story. I was such a fan of both Erika and Tucker, and could not help rooting for them both apart and together. When Erika met Tucker, she was a social pariah, and although time had passed, she was still dealing with those residual feelings of shame, disappointment, and mistrust. She had isolated herself during her first year of college, and knew she wanted more from this new year and for herself. I loved the arc Hattrup gave her, and cheered for with every step she took in the right direction. She had to make peace with what happened to her in high school in order for her to be able to move forward, and those baby steps helped her to trust again and to forgive herself for what happened. I liked Erika very much, but oh, I loved Tucker. If only I was 17, I would be hoping to meet a wonderful soft boy just like him. He had the biggest and most beautiful heart, and it showed through so many of the things he did, but he was constantly at odds with this side of himself, because his father did not approve. He mocked his sensitive son, who was a bit nerdy, but I loved him, and liked the subtle approach Hattrup took while dealing with the issues of toxic masculinity and rape culture. Tucker's path to self acceptance was not an easy one, but I believed his relationship with Erika played a huge role in him getting there. Can we talk about these two together. The banter, the tension, the push and pull -- I loved it all, even if the will-they-won't-they drove me batty. In the end, they shared a friendship for the ages, that though, far from perfect, was nonetheless, perfection. They experienced their ups and downs, but they always cared for each other, and this bond transcended the typical romance, venturing into them being each other's "person" territory. One thing I would consider a gift, though, would be an epilogue or a novella followup to this book, because the ending, though full of hope, was a bit too open for me. So many things were perfection for me in this book. There was family, friendship, and fun galore. I mean, this book was so good, that I was able to overlook all the Harry Potter references. Those who know me will realize what a big deal that was, and it was because Erika and Tucker's story stole my heart. Every party I attended with them was a gift, and I am so elated I got to share this year with them. *ARC provided in exchange for an honest review. BLOG | INSTAGRAM |TWITTER | BLOGLOVIN | FRIEND ME ON GOODREADS

  8. 4 out of 5

    Jordan Francoeur

    I would never have considered picking up this novel and devouring it at the speed I did. As another reviewer observed, based off the title and cover art, this novel's literary value and the enjoyment I got from it, was a rather unsuspected experience. Even the first line didn't draw me in but damn. shortly thereafter everything about One Year in Love and Parties had me turning one page after the next. By structuring the story in four different parts, the author cleverly and carefully pieces I would never have considered picking up this novel and devouring it at the speed I did. As another reviewer observed, based off the title and cover art, this novel's literary value and the enjoyment I got from it, was a rather unsuspected experience. Even the first line didn't draw me in but damn. shortly thereafter everything about One Year in Love and Parties had me turning one page after the next. By structuring the story in four different parts, the author cleverly and carefully pieces together Tucker and Erika's complicated history. Through a high school party, a Christmas party, a college party, and a family gathering, Hattrup navigates her readers through the highs and lows of high school social life, the confusion strained family relationships can cause, and the challenge these things present to overcome, forgiveness seems hard to find. When Tucker and Erika keep running into each other across a year of partying and love, they begin to see there are underlying reasons for why everything happens and how even the most broken of moments experienced apart, can bring two people struggling to rise above shame. can together experience the reality of redemption and what sets them free to greater things ahead. Please don't miss out on this contemporary, realistic novel, releasing October 8. I can't recommend it highly enough. Just get past that first page or two and I promise, it pays off. Side Note: A new YA favorite of mine and written mature enough adults will connect as well, especially considering how the adult characters are crafted.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Rivers

    Clear-eyed portrait of that time between late high school and early college, when "adult" conversations and problems can be overtaken in an instant by a video game battle, a Harry Potter debate, or a fake fire alarm. The dialogue shines and reflects the tension between uncertainty and excitement as the characters navigate the transition from one stage of life to the next. While we care most about Tucker & Erika, the secondary characters feel like old friends when they appear. If you've been Clear-eyed portrait of that time between late high school and early college, when "adult" conversations and problems can be overtaken in an instant by a video game battle, a Harry Potter debate, or a fake fire alarm. The dialogue shines and reflects the tension between uncertainty and excitement as the characters navigate the transition from one stage of life to the next. While we care most about Tucker & Erika, the secondary characters feel like old friends when they appear. If you've been through this already, this book feels like a photo album of your favorite memories.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Gary

    I loved this book. I loved being back in high school for a few days. Hattrup really manufactured some very real and engaging characters and put them in a genuinely interesting world. I felt like I was immersed in that world too - amidst the urgency and minutiae and cataclysms and drama and fun and fear and listlessness and fun again of high school. And high school parties. And the relationships that happen therein. I really didn't want this to end.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Christy

    Told in alternating perspectives, we see two people falling for each other over a year, culminating around 4 parties. This book was character driven and checked every box for realistic fiction. I didn't go into this book thinking it would become a favorite this year but here we are. Wow, what a stunning story. I absolutely could not put this book down.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Ms. B

    Our Year in Love and Parties is a wonderful, poignant coming-of-age, shaped by the messiness of life's complexities. Eloquently written, with strong and well-developed characters - the story touches many important topics from toxic masculinity to slut shaming. All, I can say is Tucker and Erika captured my heart.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Michelle (Love, Stars and Books)

    (I received a free eARC from Edelweiss for a voluntary and honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own) Book review: Our year in love and parties by Karen Hattrup (2 stars) Our year in love and parties by Karen Hattrup Genre: YA, Contemporary, Romance Rating: 2/5 stars (Synopsis from Goodreads) Tuckerknows that some relationships take work. With his best friend, Bobby, and his mom, everything is simple, steady. His dad, on the other hand, seems to only show up when he wants to bring Tucker (I received a free eARC from Edelweiss for a voluntary and honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own) 

Book review: Our year in love and parties by Karen Hattrup (2 stars) Our year in love and parties by Karen Hattrup Genre: YA, Contemporary, Romance Rating: 2/5 stars (Synopsis from Goodreads) 
 Tucker knows that some relationships take work. With his best friend, Bobby, and his mom, everything is simple, steady. His dad, on the other hand, seems to only show up when he wants to bring Tucker down. Then there’s Erika Green, who comes back into his life, stirring up old feelings. A small part of him knows he shouldn’t get too attached during senior year. But a bigger part doesn’t want her to disappear again. Erika from before the video loved to shock people. Now, she just wants to hole up in her quiet college life and leave the past where it belongs—in a dumpster fire. But then she reconnects with Tucker Campanelli. Erika can’t explain what it is about him. There’s just this undeniable connection between them, and she really doesn’t want to lose that feeling. Not yet. (Review) (DISCLAIMER: All thoughts and opinions are my own.) It felt mysterious and I felt like there were too many details omitted because of the time jump via parties and we don’t get a chance to really get to know the characters. It wasn’t a bad book, but I did not connect to characters or the story. I feel that the time bounces are too far apart, it's good that we see serious aspects and growth, but overall, I wasn’t impressed with this story.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Elizabeth Sanchez

    I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review Originally posted on Ideally Inspired Reviews Here’s the thing…..I absolutely LOVED this book. Okay okay, you probably want to know WHY I loved this book, the entire point of the review. So let’s break it down. In the book, we have our two main characters: Tucker and Erika. Now, there is a small age difference (teeny-tiny), but Erika is older than Tucker by two years. He is going into his senior year of high school and she is going into her sophomore I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review Originally posted on Ideally Inspired Reviews Here’s the thing…..I absolutely LOVED this book. Okay okay, you probably want to know WHY I loved this book, the entire point of the review. So let’s break it down. In the book, we have our two main characters: Tucker and Erika. Now, there is a small age difference (teeny-tiny), but Erika is older than Tucker by two years. He is going into his senior year of high school and she is going into her sophomore year of college. I was into it. I am so used to reading stories where the guy is older and “more mature” (hehe), but with Erika being in college and having gone through a lot back in high school (more about that in the plot), the ability to be in her mindset was one of the best parts about the book. It felt refreshing and seeing how her path changes throughout the time-lapses we’re given, it just tugs at my heart and helped me connect to her character in a way I haven’t before. I can also say I loved Tucker’s character. With him being a senior he felt more childlike and innocent, and I loved it. The struggles he has to deal with internally, especially about his father and the way he grows and deals with them made them feel realistic in a whole new way. I loved being put in a world where a young man is being told that it’s okay to not want to be what society deems as “manly”. That it is perfectly okay to be okay with crying and to still deal with the hardships of growing up feeling broken and not enough in a way that felt so raw and realistic. I honestly just wanted to hold tucker 99.99% of the time and tell him everything would be alright. Now that we’ve talked about the characters separately, let’s talk about them together!! Romance time!!!! I was at first iffy about the romance, I truly wondered how these two characters that were leading different lifestyles would connect. That’s where the parties came in; an aspect of the book that made it SOOOO unique and even more amazing. Each party highlighted a change in the characters and they were put in so smoothly and they each held their own. Whether Tucker and Erika hadn’t seen each other in months or years. The parties made me want to party with the characters and it brought me so much joy to see how Tucker and Erika would interact at each of them. I could go on-and-on about how much I loved each party but I would say to read the book yourself and come back and let me know which one was your favorite and why because they’re just that good and I can’t even use enough words to explain what it was like reading those scenes and feeling so in the moment. Truly a masterpiece. I need you to feel what I’m talking about because it’s just something that is all at that moment, and Hattrup captures it so beautifully. UGGHHH a true masterpiece I have two favorite parties from the book that I’m stuck between, they were so beautifully written and they had me laughing and crying all at once. Just that good Also, the chemistry between the characters felt so realistic and raw. It felt as if this story could happen to anyone, but it wasn’t as cliche-filled as I had thought it would be, and I’m so grateful and happy about that. PLOT For the overall plot, like I’ve said a million times before, Tucker and Erika were unique characters. They brought stories that I fell in love with, and the obstacles they faced made me connect to them, unlike any character I’ve connected to before. Especially for a contemporary YA book. We were given so many emotions through Tucker’s perspective and his obstacles of having to deal with his broken relationship with his father, trying to find a place in the world where he fits, juggling his emotions and trying to see which ones were acceptable and which ones weren’t had me right beside him wanting to hold his hand. And this held true for Erika as well. She was such a strong character in dealing with trust that had been broken in the past and its after-effects, along with being slut-shamed and being labeled as one thing when she was so much more. Erika grew and continued to grow into what it means to be an independent woman and fight against slut-shaming, changing the world’s view on a girls’ sexuality. And it just made me love her character SO MUCH. She faced so many obstacles and I was just in the background cheering her on, and wanting to protect her at ALL costs. I could continue writing amazing things about this book but at the end of the day…I just have to say that you absolutely need to experience this book for yourself and read it and treasure it for the rest of your life. You will NOT regret it!!

  15. 4 out of 5

    Margot Harrison

    "Tucker used to think falling for someone meant entering a private world ... Now he felt like that wasn't true at all—if anything, it reminded him how much he needed other people, other kinds of love." I think my No. 1 favorite thing about this book is encapsulated by the quote above. This is a romance in context. A romance where the two people falling in love don't run away or shut out the world; instead, they help each other to deal with the world better, to bring the world in. And the strength "Tucker used to think falling for someone meant entering a private world ... Now he felt like that wasn't true at all—if anything, it reminded him how much he needed other people, other kinds of love." I think my No. 1 favorite thing about this book is encapsulated by the quote above. This is a romance in context. A romance where the two people falling in love don't run away or shut out the world; instead, they help each other to deal with the world better, to bring the world in. And the strength they draw from other people in their lives—friends, family members—puts them in a better place to come together. I'm not the best reader for a book set entirely at parties, because I'm not a party person. I'm a stay-home-and-read-maybe-watch-Netflix person. But even I have been to the occasional party that felt special and transformative, like a turning point in my life. The kind of party where old attractions rekindle and a conversation turns into something more. This book recaptures the magic of those transformative parties. It also features a hero who is a nice guy in the truest sense (not a "nice guy"), Harry Potter-themed holiday festivities, and a group of female friends having a hilarious conversation about being "boob virgins." It's funny and sad and wise and affirms the power of all kinds of love. I'm so glad I read it.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Kathy MacMillan

    To be honest, I am not a party person. Whenever I see one of those rom-coms where people are dancing on tables or playing beer pong, I cringe – because the idea of being around a big group of people, most of them drunk, is not now and never has been my idea of fun. But Karen Hattrup’s new novel, Our Year in Love and Parties, goes far beyond the “party night” tropes of teen books and movies to explore the evolving relationship of its two main characters – the sensitive Tucker and the jaded Erika. To be honest, I am not a party person. Whenever I see one of those rom-coms where people are dancing on tables or playing beer pong, I cringe – because the idea of being around a big group of people, most of them drunk, is not now and never has been my idea of fun. But Karen Hattrup’s new novel, Our Year in Love and Parties, goes far beyond the “party night” tropes of teen books and movies to explore the evolving relationship of its two main characters – the sensitive Tucker and the jaded Erika. It’s a clever device, to set the story up in parties on four nights throughout the year (end of summer, Christmas, spring, and the end of the school year), but by drawing on the ebb and flow of teenage lives, Hattrup’s sensitive portrayal goes much deeper than the calendar. Though Erika and Tucker’s relationship is the throughline of the story, we see it in context of the myriad other relationships swirling around the two of them – complicated family dynamics, friendships made and lost and repaired, romances and hookups and everything in between. (And Hattrup excels at creating lovable, memorable side characters who make me wish they each had a starring role in their own novels.) Like Hattrup’s debut, the excellent, lyrical Frannie and Tru, Our Year in Love and Parties captures the sense of fleeting magic in adolescence, when everything is changing but the possibilities are endless.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Sarah Louise

    Well darn, I’m so upset that I didn’t end up enjoying this. I read a short preview and immediately purchased it because I loved the concept. I thought I loved the concept. It follows Tucker and Erika, former coworkers, through four glimpses of time—four(ish) parties—which define the turning points in their relationship. Unfortunately ... With the jumps in time, the story felt messy. I couldn’t connect to a single character. Tucker has a rocky relationship with his sick father. Erika is still Well darn, I’m so upset that I didn’t end up enjoying this. I read a short preview and immediately purchased it because I loved the concept. I thought I loved the concept. It follows Tucker and Erika, former coworkers, through four glimpses of time—four(ish) parties—which define the turning points in their relationship. Unfortunately ... With the jumps in time, the story felt messy. I couldn’t connect to a single character. Tucker has a rocky relationship with his sick father. Erika is still dealing with the emotional trauma after a video was leaked. But having these serious conversations with major jumps in time made it impossible to care. There’s also a situation added involving Erika as a witness to a sexual assault case that seemed misplaced in the story. I wasn’t on-board with the romance. And Tucker seemed really young, like a preteen within a teen setting of parties. I’m not sure if it was the contrast to Erika being 20 and in college, but it felt strange to continuously remind myself that he’s only two years younger than her.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Cassie

    The first thing I want to say is how much I love Tucker's personality. He's such a funny goofball with a great heart. All of Tucker and Erika's friends were really awesome too. They reminded my of my high school friends. This book was heavier than I was expecting at times, but then it was balanced out with hilarious high jinks. I found myself grinning like a freak as I was reading, and even laughing out loud at times. The depth of the circumstances both Tucker and Erika faced added authenticity The first thing I want to say is how much I love Tucker's personality. He's such a funny goofball with a great heart. All of Tucker and Erika's friends were really awesome too. They reminded my of my high school friends. This book was heavier than I was expecting at times, but then it was balanced out with hilarious high jinks. I found myself grinning like a freak as I was reading, and even laughing out loud at times. The depth of the circumstances both Tucker and Erika faced added authenticity to the characters and plot. It felt like real life, and that was refreshing. It reminded me a lot of Rainbow Rowell's short story Midnights, but felt original and fresh. I didn't expect to like this one as much as I did.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Dan

    Another lovely book by Karen Hattrup. This novel tackles a lot and is definitely more emotionally draining than one would expect out of a YA novel (but perhaps I'm just a novice to the genre). It starts off sweet rom-com, but buckle up! Unlike her last novel-- which I loved, but was more reflective-- this novel is more dialogue driven, but still beautifully written and deep. For me, the novel successfully captures something authentic about party conversations (the novel takes place over a series Another lovely book by Karen Hattrup. This novel tackles a lot and is definitely more emotionally draining than one would expect out of a YA novel (but perhaps I'm just a novice to the genre). It starts off sweet rom-com, but buckle up! Unlike her last novel-- which I loved, but was more reflective-- this novel is more dialogue driven, but still beautifully written and deep. For me, the novel successfully captures something authentic about party conversations (the novel takes place over a series of parties in a year as the title suggests)-- the meaningless pop culture references one minute, the unexpected segues into personal hardship the next-- and limited emotional awareness that is part-self imposed discretion and part-uncertainty about how you actually feel until you say it. At very least it manages to mirror my own deep, yet tipsy-party convos that I've had over the years in all their fun and emotional exhaustion, equally interrupted by butting-in friends and the song that everyone has to dance to. The plot manages to surprise you and break your heart a few times. The two main characters are so incredibly likeable, and they tackle questions of romance, sexual violence, the unfair sexual expectations of boys and girls, and the stifling expectations of male emotion with ever making the book "preachy." It's a lovely, thought-provoking read about what it means to be young, and I love how deeply optimistic in its promises and celebration of these social experiences. A welcome read.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Aubrey

    Read the full review on my blog: http://theshelflifechronicles.home.bl... Instead of the typical flow of time that most stories follow, Our Year in Love and Parties jumps in time from party to party. This is the second book I've recently read that was written like this (see review of Maybe This Time) and while I though this one was better executed, there was still too much time in between parties and I was just not a fan of it. I felt like I never got to really know any of the main characters Read the full review on my blog: http://theshelflifechronicles.home.bl... Instead of the typical flow of time that most stories follow, Our Year in Love and Parties jumps in time from party to party. This is the second book I've recently read that was written like this (see review of Maybe This Time) and while I though this one was better executed, there was still too much time in between parties and I was just not a fan of it. I felt like I never got to really know any of the main characters because how do you get to know them if you only read about them in the pivotal life moments? There was a lot happening in between parties that I felt like I missed out on. I had a hard time connecting to the main characters.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Karen Fortunati

    I adored Karen Hattrup's Frannie and Tru and Our Year in Love and Parties shines just as bright! Tucker, struggling with the unwanted/guilt-ridden return of his father, can no longer deny his feelings for Erika. Erika, still in free fall from the aftermath of a bad decision caught on video, fights her growing attraction to Tucker. Over the course of basically four parties during the year, Erika and Tucker come to terms with the inner conflicts and their feelings for each other. Hattrup is a I adored Karen Hattrup's Frannie and Tru and Our Year in Love and Parties shines just as bright! Tucker, struggling with the unwanted/guilt-ridden return of his father, can no longer deny his feelings for Erika. Erika, still in free fall from the aftermath of a bad decision caught on video, fights her growing attraction to Tucker. Over the course of basically four parties during the year, Erika and Tucker come to terms with the inner conflicts and their feelings for each other. Hattrup is a gorgeous writer and the dialogue in this story is as good as it gets! And while the romance is sweet and funny, the story is more than that as the characters deal with serious issues. I loved this and I'm ready for book number three from the amazingly gifted author!

  22. 5 out of 5

    LizzyBerry

    I was a little frustrated with all the obstacles that kept popping up to keep these two apart. I get that the story wouldn't have an "antagonist" without that aspect, but so many issues would of been resolved if these two characters would of talked to each other a bit more. A plus for this book was that slut shaming was not OK and I did enjoy the fact that Erika was the older and more experienced partner. I developed a crush on "puppy dog" Tucker myself.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Liz Gaska

    This was really good. If you're a fan of Sarah Dessen (and who isn't), Kasie West, David Levithan, and Maureen Johnson (her YA Gen Fic not her YA Supernatural), you'll like this book. The characters are genuinely funny and the plot deals with some young adult issues that haven't been addressed enough. Definitely pick it up.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Annie Cassidy

    Such a good book that perfectly speaks to the hopeful confusion between late high school and early college. I finished it almost immediately after getting it because the pacing is superb and I just had to know what was going to happen. Hattrup’s subtle reveals and layered character development was ridiculously impressive.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Tara Weiss

    Great story arc with lots of real-world issues, including consent, but an ending that begs for a bit more. All great parties come to an end. And in the final scene there is a full circle to the exposition, but what happens once Erika and Tucker take that final leap? There's no real conclusion beyond the reader's imagination. But there is hope. Second story???

  26. 5 out of 5

    Carole

    I don't usually buy hard back books anymore but I do for Karen Hattrup! What a delightful book! It was well written and contained wonderful characters. Just loved them both, especially Tucker. Highly recommend!

  27. 5 out of 5

    lua

    I can’t do this book anymore. Or any from the genre.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Epsita

    The initial parts were boring but it got interesting and engaging as I read on. I esp. loved Tucker’s narrative, although I felt that it dragged towards the end.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Bailey

    •Parties •College •Family Relationships

  30. 4 out of 5

    Katie

    4 sections of this book, each one taking place during a different party throughout 1 year and IT WAS SO COOL. Tucker and Erika will have you so happy, so mad, so swooning, so annoyed, and so totally thinking Frank is a G. Favorite nonsense excerpt from my notes: “Got you” is KILLING ME SOFTLY

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...
We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.