Book Review: People We Meet on Vacation by Emily Henry

People We Meet on Vacation  by Emily Henry Genre:  Rom-com Synopsis:   Poppy and Alex. Alex and Poppy. They have nothing in common. She’s a ...

People We Meet on Vacation by Emily Henry

Genre: Rom-com

Poppy and Alex. Alex and Poppy. They have nothing in common. She’s a wild child; he wears khakis. She has insatiable wanderlust; he prefers to stay home with a book. And somehow, ever since a fateful car share home from college many years ago, they are the very best of friends. For most of the year they live far apart—she’s in New York City, and he’s in their small hometown—but every summer, for a decade, they have taken one glorious week of vacation together. 
Until two years ago, when they ruined everything. They haven't spoken since. 
Poppy has everything she should want, but she’s stuck in a rut. When someone asks when she was last truly happy, she knows, without a doubt, it was on that ill-fated, final trip with Alex. And so, she decides to convince her best friend to take one more vacation together—lay everything on the table, make it all right. Miraculously, he agrees. 
Now she has a week to fix everything. If only she can get around the one big truth that has always stood quietly in the middle of their seemingly perfect relationship. What could possibly go wrong?

Content/Trigger Warnings: Anxiety disorder, bullying

Overall rating:  ★★★★☆

I won’t act like I didn’t enjoy this book, because I truly and thoroughly did. But I will say that People We Meet on Vacation is nowhere near as wonderful as Beach Read. Both have super similar elements, and both are incredible summer reads. But Vacation hit a little different, though not necessarily in a bad way. Where Beach Read is an enemies to lovers trope, Vacation is a friends to lovers trope, which obviously changes the dynamics throughout the entire book. I know I shouldn’t compare the two. They’re not in a series, or have any true relation other than the author, but it’s difficult truly finding that separation when I’m categorizing them together in my own head.

Poppy and Alex are best friends, and there’s obviously some sexual and romantic feelings between them. But this book is such a slow burn and the sexual tension between them is not truly unbearable. So by the time anything happens (it’s not a spoiler, this is romance, it was bound to happen), it’s fine but it’s not that “holy crap, thank god, I’ve been waiting forever” moment that makes novels like these so wonderful.

"Then again, sometimes when you guess about people, you end up very wrong."

That’s not to say I didn’t enjoy the book - I did. It just didn’t have those moments I look for in books like these and it all felt too slow for my tastes. What I did love is the characters themselves. They’re both so sweet and wonderful, flaws and all. They’re well developed which was absolutely critical since this story takes place over ten years. I loved getting to know them both. Their quirks, their families, their friendship. It’s all so weird and wonderful and made me happy. I felt like I was in the story and I felt really connected with both characters.

So I love the characters and the book really, the pacing was just off for me. But overall, really great summer read!

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