And We’re Off

Listen, I’m low-key obsessed with Dana Schwartz, Twitter mastermind and host of the podcast Noble Blood, so when I found out she’d published a YA book and that it was a BOTM pick once, I traded and traded until I could get my hands on it. And I finally read it, and I really enjoyed it! As someone who follows Dana on twitter, listens to her podcasts, etc, I could FEEL so much of her personality and heart in this book, and it was the perfect low-stakes teen contemporary I needed this week.

Nora Parker-Holmes is an artist, or at least she wants to be, but she spends a lot more time doing cartoon commissions and fandom-drawings than anything else, but that’s about to change when she heads to an artists camp in Ireland for the summer. Plus, she’ll get to do some European touring at the expense of her grandfather, uber successful artist Robert Parker. But on the way to the airport, she hits a snag. Her mother wants to come with her, and….off they go.

This book’s got teen angst, cute boys, study abroad glory, complicated parental relationships, that weird moment in high school when you’re trying to be an adult, and it’s good! It’s a really easy read in the best way–Nora’s complicated, her situation is weird at times, the stakes are low, but you fall into this novel and her world and you root for her and you want to know how she’ll find her legs and you cheer when she does!

I loved the cultural references, the way flirting happens and doesn’t dominate everything, the weird family ties, and the way she talked about travel realistically instead of making every moment of it seem like a glorious gift when we all know long train rides suck.

Can’t wait to read more by her–including an upcoming Noble Blood book! EEEK


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