Blog Tour: What I Like About You by Marisa Kanter!

Title: What I Like About You
Author: Marisa Kanter
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Rating: 5/5 Stars
Hardcover, 416 Pages
Publication Date: April 7th, 2020

Summary: There are a million things that Halle Levitt likes about her online best friend, Nash. He’s an incredibly talented graphic novelist. He loves books almost as much as she does. And she never has to deal with the awkwardness of seeing him in real life. They can talk about anything…Except who she really is. Because online, Halle isn’t Halle—she’s Kels, the enigmatically cool creator of One True Pastry, a YA book blog that pairs epic custom cupcakes with covers and reviews. Kels has everything Halle doesn’t: friends, a growing platform, tons of confidence, and Nash. That is, until Halle arrives to spend senior year in Gramps’s small town and finds herself face-to-face with real, human, not-behind-a-screen Nash. Nash, who is somehow everywhere she goes—in her classes, at the bakery, even at synagogue. Nash who has no idea she’s actually Kels. If Halle tells him who she is, it will ruin the non-awkward magic of their digital friendship. Not telling him though, means it can never be anything more. Because while she starts to fall for Nash as Halle…he’s in love with Kels. 

I received an advanced copy of Marisa Kanter's What I Like About You in exchange for an honest review on this blog tour, and let me tell you, I'm SUPER glad that I did, because I ended up finding a really amazing book that I LOVED and I've been screaming about it nonstop with all of my blogger friends! So without further ado, let's get into my review:

As the summary explains, Halle is a YA book blogger who forms a really close online friendship with another blogger named Nash. The only problem? She uses a fake name, Kels, because she is the granddaughter of one of YA's most famous editor's, and she wants to rise to fame on her own. Which she does, and everything's great...that is, until she moves in with her grandpa, and bumps into Nash in person. They immediately click, and everything is great. There's just one small issue...Halle doesn't tell Nash who she is, and Nash has no idea. And she starts to fall for him. But he's in love with Kels. And doesn't know that they're the same person.mWhich means, of course, that a mess TOTALLY ensues.

You guys, THIS BOOK WAS FREAKING AMAZING AND I 100% RECOMMEND PICKING IT UP, ESPECIALLY IF YOU'RE A YA BOOK BLOGGER. For the first time in my experience as a reader, I finally felt so SEEN. There were mentions of ARCs, of BookCon, of a blogger panel at BookCon (God, I wish), TBR lists, book Twitter...the whole thing. I felt so seen and appreciated, and reading this book just gave me the same kind of feels that going to BookExpo does every year -- that feeling of being around people that finally get you, who come from the same world you do, who know about all of its struggles and all of its triumphs. Reading this book as a YA book blogger made my heart feel all warm and fuzzy, and it made me feel very at home. It was truly such an exciting and adorable reading experience -- I read all 400 pages in a little under two days, because I loved this book so much and just couldn't put it down! 

Watching her struggle with Nash was also really exciting to read, too -- even if there were so many moments where I was groaning out loud and saying "Just tell him already!!!!!!!" I completely understand why Halle is hesitant to tell Nash about who she is, but like her brother Ollie points out, the more she puts it off, the messier the eventual reveal is going to be. And yes, without spoiling anything, let me tell you...this book definitely gets a bit messy.

Halle's whole daily life of working on posts and emailing publicists and trying to get her name out there as a blogger also really inspired me, and I think I've done more blog work in these past two days than I have in the past few months. Seeing her get to work and fully dedicating herself to her blog fueled me, and made me want to fully dedicate myself to The Book Bratz, too. Not that I don't, don't get me wrong -- but with work and school and internships and homework and graduating college, sometimes it feels like my reading and review-writing time suffers. So after reading this book, I made sure to carve out more time in my schedule to make sure that I get those things done, since they're super important to me and TBB is our baby that I absolutely want to see grow and thrive!

(Spoilers in this paragraph, so skip to the next paragraph to avoid them!) The only thing that left me a little confused about this book was the ending, because while it was super adorable and I'm glad that Nash and Halle end up having their happily ever after, it seems like the fact that he lied to HAlle and planned on going to the launch event to meet another girl was just...ignored? Like yeah, I know that Halle and Kels are the same person, but Nash didn't know that at the time, so he actively lied to his girlfriend and traveled to another state to meet up with another girl. And Halle even brings that point up to him, but it's just brushed past....which is a little weird and rubbed me the wrong way a little bit as a reader. But other than that, I absolutely LOVED this entire story!

Overall, I absolutely *loved* What I Like About You, and I know that I will be absolutely screaming about it to all of my blogging friends until the end of time. Like I said, I've never read a book that really discussed and focused on my life as a blogger, so this book was such a delightful treat where I felt seen and appreciated, and I felt like I was among my people. And yes, we have a blogger group chat just like Halle does -- so I made sure to recommend this book to all of them, too! :-)

Hats off to Marisa Kanter -- I absolutely adored her book and I will certainly be reading more of her work in the future!


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