Sunday, November 19, 2017

Blog Tour: Not Now, Not Ever

Not Now, Not Ever
Lily Anderson
Series: n/a
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary
Publisher: Wednesday Books
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
The sequel to The Only Thing Worse than Me Is You, inspired by The Importance of Being Earnest.

Elliot Gabaroche is very clear on what she isn't going to do this summer.

1. She isn't going to stay home in Sacramento, where she'd have to sit through her stepmother's sixth community theater production of The Importance of Being Earnest.
2. She isn't going to mock trial camp at UCLA.
3. And she certainly isn't going to the Air Force summer program on her mother's base in Colorado Springs. As cool as it would be to live-action-role-play Ender's Game, Ellie's seen three generations of her family go through USAF boot camp up close, and she knows that it's much less Luke/Yoda/"feel the force," and much more one hundred push-ups on three days of no sleep. And that just isn't appealing, no matter how many Xenomorphs from Alien she'd be able to defeat afterwards.

What she is going to do is pack up her attitude, her favorite Octavia Butler novels, and her Jordans, and go to summer camp. Specifically, a cutthroat academic-decathlon-like competition for a full scholarship to Rayevich College, the only college with a Science Fiction Literature program. And she's going to start over as Ever Lawrence, on her own terms, without the shadow of all her family’s expectations. Because why do what’s expected of you when you can fight other genius nerds to the death for a shot at the dream you’re sure your family will consider a complete waste of time?

This summer's going to be great.

This was one of my Can't-Wait Wednesday picks, and I must say, I had chosen well, because this was such a fun and delightful read. The synopsis does say this is a sequel, but my understanding is it's more of a companion. There are characters featured from Anderson's last book, which I am definitely going to read, but I did not feel out of the loop reading this book, without having read The Only Thing Worse Than Me Is You (but I am going to buy it!). There are so many things to love, and here's my short list.
  • This is a great twist on The Importance of Being Earnest. Like Jack, Elliot had a lot of responsibilities. She had to forgo her own activities to babysit her younger bother and volunteer at her step-mother's theatre. She was also facing pressure from her mother's clan to uphold the family legacy, and enlist in the air force. Unable to pursue her own passions as herself, she created an alter ego, much like how Jack had Ernest, and set out to claim her dream of studying science fiction. Not only did the play inspire the story, it had a place in the story, as Elliot's step mother was repeatedly involved in a production of the play, and lines from the script worked their way into Elliot's inner monologues. I thought it was quite an ingenious way to include the original work, and found the passaged quoted quite brilliantly place. 
  • I fell in love with Elliot. She very fresh and a definite standout among YA protagonists. Her head was quite an entertaining place to be, as she shared her musings about serious and inane things, but I also loved the way she grew over the course of this book. It may have been a short time at the Melee, but it was a valuable experience for Elliot. 
  • The crew at Camp Onward featured so many fantastic characters. It made me giddy being surrounded by this quirky band of geniuses. With that many uber-intelligent people in one place, you know we are going to get exposed to some great nerdy talk involving fandoms. Fabulous references abounded in this book, and I loved every second of it. 
  • The characters in general were very well done. Each felt well crafted, their characteristics carefully selected to enhance my reading experience. 
  • I loved the extra challenges at Camp Onward! They had me at amoeba tag. 
  • The romance was so sweet. I love a good romance, and I had no problem shipping these two from their first meeting. There was something special in their interactions and the way they were with each other, that just made me want them to succeed. 
  • The ending!!!! I know I complain A LOT about endings, but this one was spot on. All I am going to say is that it put a big, stupid grin on my face and I still have a little warmth in my heart as I write this review. 

Overall: I have always enjoyed fun and endearing nerdy romances, and I am so excited to have found a YA author, who can fill that place in my world.


This book is chuck full of witty banter, nerdy talk, and great pop culture references. It was a difficult task, but I picked five of my favorite quotes to share.
"I'd broken out of the time loop of Elliot Gabaroche's life. I was Ripley waking up in Aliens, fifty-seven years in the future and away from the monotony of before.
Except without the PTSD and the being chased by Xenomorphs part.
"How many sisters should I be keeping watch for?"
He shuddered. "Don't even joke about them showing up. If you talk about them too much, they appear. Like Bloody Mary. Or Beetlejuice."
"Don't mind her. I once heard her say that Goonies would have been better without Chunk," he said.
"So she's a stone-cold monster?"
"'I know how to run without you holding my hand,'" Brandon quoted loudly.
I grinned at him over my shoulder. "If you start quoting Star Wars at me, we're never going to get anywhere."
"When you catch my references, I really don't care if we get anywhere..."
"He certainly smelled of bacon and syrup, but I supposed it could have been a hipster cologne with a name like Brunch Bro or IHOP Fiend."
**I would like to thank the publisher for the advanced copy of this book. Quotes are from an ARC and may change upon publication.


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Lily Anderson is a school librarian and Melvil Dewey fangirl with an ever-growing collection of musical theater tattoos and Harry Potter ephemera. She lives in Northern California, far from her mortal enemy: the snow.



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November 15th: Tales of the Ravenous Reader - Interview
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November 16th: YAWednesdays - Guest Post
November 16th: Amanda Gernentz Hanson - Review + Favourite Quotes
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November 18th: Belle's Bookish Reviews - Review
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November 19th: Staircase Wit - Interview
November 19th: We Live and Breathe Books - Review + Favorite Quotes
November 20th: The Mind of a Book Dragon - Review + Playlist
November 20th: The Layaway Dragon - Review
November 21st: Boricuan Bookworms - Review + Playlist
November 21st: forthenovellovers - Review

Do you like nerdy romances?
Let us know in the comments!


  1. This book sounds really cute. I kinda have to be in the mood for a nerdy romance. Glad to hear you enjoyed this sequel. Great review!

    1. This was really fun, but it had substance. Elliot was trying to be herself and pursue the dreams her family was stifling. I loved the overall theme.

  2. I love an adorable nerdy romance, they tend to be some of my favorites. Thanks for introducing me to this one.

    1. I can't even explain how awesome some of the references are. So awesome and nerdy and adorable and sweet.

  3. Good to know you can read as standalone. Sounds cute!! Great review!

  4. This sounds like such a great book! I had no idea it was inspired by The Importance of Being Ernest. Great review!

    1. Anderson's last book was inspired by Much Ado About Nothing. These may be re-tellings, but they are still very fresh and unique.

  5. This looks like a great book! I love when the author does a great job developing characters. Great review!

    1. Anderson definitely knows how to craft characters. They had layers and were interesting and had something to say too.