Love and Other Foreign Words
written by Erin McCahan
published by Dial Books
Why did I pick this book: I participated in the blog tour hosted by BookSparks as part of their Summer Reading Challenge. (I received a copy of this book for review purposes.)
Did I enjoy this book: I loved this book. It is funny, fast, sweet, exasperating. Wonderful.
This is a book that I wanted to just sit down and read. I didn’t want to do anything else while I was reading it. I just wanted to enjoy it. The dialogue reminded me a lot of Gilmore Girls. I imagined Josie and Stu and her parents speaking rather fast and always quick with a retort.
I love Josie. She is funny, witty, crazy intelligent, loving, caring. There were quite a few times that I laughed out loud because of what she said. At times, I had a hard time believing she was 15-almost-16. Sometimes I thought she was 12. Other times, 30. But I think that fit her character beautifully. I also enjoyed the fact that although she is a genius, she wasn’t a stereotypical nerd. She has friends; she plays sports; she’s not a complete math/science geek. (And there is nothing wrong with being a math/science geek. I love math!) She does have some quirks. But all-in-all, she is a fantastic character with a great voice.
All of the other characters added to Josie’s world. Some really understood her. Others tried to. Kate kind of bothered me for most of the book. I thought she acted more like a spoiled teen than a woman in her late twenties. Some of things she did rubbed me the wrong way. But, that’s Kate. I think it fit her as well. (I know that sounds strange, but that’s the best I can do.) Geoff bugged me for most of the book. Stu was a sweetheart. I liked him from the beginning. Josie’s parents cracked me up. They just rolled with Josie. They were really funny.
My favorite thing about this book was the dialogue. I could hear it. I laughed with it. Just fantastic.
Would I recommend it: Absolutely. I think I will be purchasing my own physical copy Love and Other Foreign Words. I know I will definitely reread this one.
About the book: Sixteen-year-old Josie lives her life in translation. She speaks High School, College, Friends, Boyfriends, Break-ups, and even the language of Beautiful Girls. But none of these is her native tongue–the only people who speak that are her best friend Stu and her sister Kate. So when Kate gets engaged to an epically insufferable guy, how can Josie see it as anything but the mistake of a lifetime? Kate is determined to bend Josie to her will for the wedding; Josie is determined to break Kate and her fiancé up. As battles are waged over secrets and semantics, Josie is forced to examine her feelings for the boyfriend who says he loves her, the sister she loves but doesn’t always like, and the best friend who hasn’t said a word–at least not in a language Josie understands
About the author: Erin McCahan is the author of the YA book I Now Pronounce You Someone Else (Scholastic, June 2010). Erin’s debut novel was a 2010 Cybils Award finalist. She grew up in Michigan and worked extensively with teenagers before beginning her writing career. She lives in Columbus, Ohio.