In Case You Missed It – If He Had Been with Me by Laura Nowlin



If He Had Been With Me by Laura Nowlin is pitched as YA’s answer to Colleen Hoover, and after reading the book, I think it’s a good comparison. Following former childhood best friends Autumn and Phineas (or Finny as most in the book call him), If He Had Been with Me is a sweet coming of age story about what it means to grow up and fall in love–even if that love is with someone you aren’t sure you’re supposed to be with. This is Autumn’s main dilemma If He Had Been with Me: 9781728205489: Nowlin, Laura: Booksut the book. She’s in love with her longtime boyfriend Jaime, but she can’t get over her former best friend, Finny. Will they or won’t they? You have to read to find out.

If He Had Been with Me follows a recent phenomenon in the publishing world wherein this book was once self-published, then picked up by a publisher once they saw how well it was doing in the independent space. While it’s not a new book by any means, it’s seen massive success recently due to social media such as TikTok. As of the writing of this post, it is the 6th bestselling book on Amazon. 6th!

This made me extremely curious to read the book, so I decided to pick it up. Once I started reading it, I couldn’t put it down. Nowlin’s writing is comparable to Jenny Han’s. A little sparse but extremely accessible. It’s easy to get lost in the story of Autumn and Finny and all their friends. Starting from freshman year of high school onward, this book shows all the messy things about adolescence–and all the wonderful things too. It’s highly emotional–this is where I think the Colleen Hoover comparison comes through–and can be a real gut punch, especially towards the end. I won’t spoil it here, but have some tissues at hand.

Autumn and Finny are both great characters, and I love how they have so many friends surrounding them. While this book may be “boring” to some readers who are looking for an action-packed story, but for all you Colleen Hoover fans out there, you’ll absolutely devour this one.

You can check out If He Had Been With Me at the Oreana Library today!

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