Hello, everyone. I was finally able to read Here’s to Us by Becky Albertalli and Adam Silvera. I’ve wanted to get to it ever since it was published back in December. It definitely lived up to my expectations, and I’m glad I made the time to get to it despite the pile of ARCs I need to read.
Becky Albertalli and Adam Silvera reunite to continue the story of Arthur and Ben, the boys readers first fell for in the New York Times bestselling rom-com What If It’s Us.
Ben survived freshman year of college, but he’s feeling more stuck than ever. His classes are a slog, his part-time job working with his father is even worse, and his best friend Dylan’s been acting weird for weeks. Ben’s only real bright spot is his writing partner Mario, who’s been giving him a lot of Spanish lessons and even more kisses. Mario’s big Hollywood dreams make Ben start to dream bigger—and the choices he makes now could be the key to reshaping his future. So why can’t he stop thinking about a certain boy from his past?
Arthur is back in New York City for the first time in two years, ready to take the theater world by a storm as the world’s best . . . intern to the assistant of an off-off-Broadway director. Of course, it sucks to be spending the summer apart from his sweet, reliable boyfriend, Mikey, but he knows their relationship is strong enough to weather the distance. Which is why it’s no big deal when his ex-boyfriend Ben stumbles back into the picture. And it’s definitely fine that Ben’s blissfully happy with some mystery boy. First loves are special, but it’s way too late for what-ifs. Right?
Even as the boys try to shake off the past, they keep running into each other in the present. Is this the universe trying to tell them there’s a do-over in their future?
***Beware! There are some spoilers in this review. So, if you haven’t read the book yet, be warned that the final outcome of the main relationship is discussed.***
I devoured this book in one day. The writing was just so easy to read that I flew through it. It didn’t hurt that I love these characters and was incredibly excited to be able to revisit them. The ending of the first book left me a little let down even though I did also appreciate the message behind it. So, getting the boys back again for another do-over made me very happy.
I still loved the main characters even if they didn’t seem to have matured very much in the two years between the books. It didn’t bother me a lot, though, since they are still teens anyway, and I did feel that their actions were in line with the characterizations from the first book. Arthur was still super extra, and his journey of determining what it means to be ‘in love’ brought the drama and kept me glued to the page. Ben felt stuck throughout most of the book, and his new relationship was interesting because it illustrated his struggle with opening up to someone new after being heartbroken over the loss of Arthur. I really loved both of their journeys, romantic and career-wise, in this story.
The secondary characters were also fantastic. Dylan was hands down my favorite character from these books. He brought a lot of hilarious banter, yet again, but he also showed quite a bit of growth. His love story with Samantha was once again a joy to read, and they still made a fantastic couple. Arthur’s new boyfriend, Mikey, was also a favorite of mine. I quickly grew to love him and felt so bad for him about how his relationship with Arthur ended.
There wasn’t much of a plot to the story other than the drama of Ben and Arthur’s do-over against the backdrop of their new relationships. I wish the new relationships had ended a little earlier in the book because I would have loved to get more of Ben and Arthur together again. The epilogues were a beautiful window into the couple’s future, but I would have loved to get more of them together than just a few chapters.
Overall, I loved the writing and characters and thought the dramatic tension of all the relationships and the ending were excellent. The focus was definitely on the characters and their relationships rather than a plot, but I loved the dialogue and interactions between the characters. So, I really didn’t care and ate it all up, especially the ending.