Title: Love and Other Foreign Words
Author: Erin McCahan
Publisher: Dial Press
Publish Date: May 1, 2014
Source: BookSparks Summer Reading Challenge
What's the Story?:
From Goodreads.com: "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."
My Two Cents:
In "Love and Other Foreign Words," Josie's life is turned upside down when her sister, Kate, decides to marry a guy that Josie just doesn't understand why she wants to marry. Geoff is rude and a know-it-all. He insults people at every turn and yet Kate really loves him. It forces Josie to confront her own ideas of love and what she wants in a boyfriend for herself. Sometimes love seems like a foreign language to which Josie doesn't own a dictionary for.
Josie was really a stand out character for me. She is whip smart and incredibly precocious. She is the type of person where if she doesn't like something, you are going to be told very clearly what she thinks about things. She is really, really book smart (and obsessed with languages like I am, which was really cool to see) but when it comes to street smarts, she is a little lacking, which is what the book focuses on. Sometimes it's not a good idea to say every single little thing that you're thinking about without thinking about your audience!
The story itself was okay. Josie confronts a lot of the things that other teens in other books face. Her quirkiness puts a different spin on things though. I wanted a little more closure from the ending as it felt sort of abrupt to me but all in all, this was a really fun book!