Review: Everything Leads to You by Nina LaCour

Title: Everything Leads to You
Author: Nina LaCour
Genre: YA, contemporary
Publisher/Publication Date: Dutton / May 15, 2014
How Did I Get It? Gifted
Format? Hardcover

Synopsis from Goodreads: A love letter to the craft and romance of film and fate in front of—and behind—the camera from the award-winning author of Hold Still.

A wunderkind young set designer, Emi has already started to find her way in the competitive Hollywood film world.

Emi is a film buff and a true romantic, but her real-life relationships are a mess. She has desperately gone back to the same girl too many times to mention. But then a mysterious letter from a silver screen legend leads Emi to Ava. Ava is unlike anyone Emi has ever met. She has a tumultuous, not-so-glamorous past, and lives an unconventional life. She’s enigmatic…. She’s beautiful. And she is about to expand Emi’s understanding of family, acceptance, and true romance.

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Okay, let me take a minute and compose myself. *deep breaths* Disclaimer for this entire review: I’m writing this at 11:45PM, after being up since 5:45AM, I’ve got a kink in my neck that’s been giving me headaches (got it fixed today, thank God), and I’ve started the Paleo diet and my body is screaming for bread and other stuff that I’ve cut out. So I’m a wee bit loopy. You’ve been warned. And now I start with this: fjkaljfksd;jfkdsajfs;. <– That’s how I feel about this book. It was just… magical. ELtY was one of those books that from the very first page – from that first paragraph – you jus know you’re going to fall in love with. By page 20, I was hooked. There isn’t anything negative I can say about this book, so this is going to be less of a review and more of a time for me to talk out all my feelings.

1) I hesitate to call this a romance book. There is a romance, and I really did love that bit (that last line? TEARS. HAPPY, JOYOUS TEARS), but it’s so much more than just a romance. It’s about seeing people for who they are, who they truly are inside, and not the images or expectations that people place on themselves or have projected onto them by others. About seeing past all the exteriors and just loving someone at their most basic level. And I think that’s why I love this book so much: when Emi stopped seeing things as they “should be cinematographically” (I just need to let you all know that I spelled that right the first try, and at this late at night *not a speller*) and just started seeing life and people as it is, I just had this huge sigh of relief (followed by happy tears), because YES she got it.

2) The setting and background stuff. Set decorating – I never even KNEW there was this whole world like that. I mean, it makes sense now, but I just hadn’t considered it before. Emi’s talent was so unique and so vividly described that even in her picking out a couch, I learned more about her character. LaCour infused every part of Emi’s personality into her hobby and job that it never felt forced or cliche at all.

3) The friendships. Everything starts as a friendship, even the ones that later blossom to romance. It was so organic and I never questioned it at all. And – they were healthy relationships. Charlotte was the best – she straight up told Emi when she was being an idiot, and didn’t hold back from the truth. If there was something Emi needed to hear, Charlotte said it. But it was in the most loving way possible – not in spite or anger but in the purest love.

I could go on and on about this book and nitpick each little thing and go on for paragraphs about why I loved it, but I think I can sum up my adoration in one sentence: Everything Leads to You made me believe that magic can exist in the world – even in the quietest moments. Like not everything is hopeless, no matter how it seems in that moment. That there’s something really important about living, and grabbing life with both hands and just running ahead until you find yourself somewhere you’ve never been before.

I plan on buying both of LaCour’s novels and reading them very soon, but I’m pretty sure I can say that she’s become one of my auto-buy authors. Everything Leads to You was that good.

My Final Rating:

Six stars

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Weekly Recap 35 (July 13) – The Birthday Book Haul (Part TWO!)

Well hello Sunday my old friend. I can’t believe another week has passed again! Yet another busy week at work, but at least it makes the time pass quickly! But I get Friday through Tuesday off, so I spent all Friday being a general waste of society and marathoning Netflix shows. But hey – I’ve got a bunch of posts scheduled for next week and I read some really great books, so really what is the downside here?

Stacking the Shelves

And the book ban breaking continues! Some of the books I preordered, or ones that didn’t show up till this week, finally came in, and I think I may be excited more than last week??

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Aren’t they pretty??? After I fell in love with Nina LaCour’s writing in Everything Leads to You, I had to get her other two books, Hold Still and The Disenchantments. And after Jo’s rave review, I had to get There Will Come a Time by Carrie Arcos. BRING ON THE FEELS. And to satiate the sci-fi/fantasy/paranormal side of me, I preordered three books that were released on the 8th: Four (Veronica Roth), Midnight Thief (Livia Blackburne), and Where Silence Gathers (Kelsey Sutton). I NEED MORE TIME IN MY WEEK TO READ ALL THESE BOOKS. IT’S A SERIOUS PROBLEM.

In other news…

  • It’s still blazing hot in California. Though it was nice (nice meaning like 90F with a breeze) on Friday – at like 8 in the morning. I didn’t go outside after that. I think I need to start carrying around a cup of ice with me wherever I go.
  • Last Sunday, in my never-ending attempts to manage the thyroid issue my doctor won’t quite call hypothyroidism because it’s “on the border”, I’ve started the Paleo diet. Lots of veggies and fruit over here! I had already gone gluten-free, so it wasn’t horribly painful, but OH MY GOD I MISS DAIRY. SPECIFICALLY MILK. But other than that, I actually don’t miss sweets all that much. Sometimes I want a chocolate chip or two, but it’s easy to ignore that. And I have a lot more energy, and I’m sleeping better. So – week one is a success! Oh, and I lost four pounds since I went gluten free, so now adding the Paleo thing I’m pretty sure I’ll finally start seeing some progress.

In case you missed it, last week I…

What’s coming up this week?

  • Monday – Review: Plus One by Elizabeth Fama
  • Tuesday – Top Ten Tuesday: Favorite Movies and TV Shows
  • Wednesday – Saturated Reads: Faking Normal by Courtney C. Stevens
  • Thursday – Discussion: I’m a Forgiving Reader
  • Friday – Review: Everything Leads to You by Nina LaCour

Hope you all have a good week!