The Story of Alex, Approximately by Jenn Bennett

Bailey “Mink” Rydell is a film buff who appreciates the classics. Alex too is a film aficionado who understands why Mink loves the old era of filmmaking. Together, through their online chats, Mink and Alex bond. They develop a friendship that centers around their shared love of cinema.

Change comes when Alex decides he’d like to meet Mink, and as it would happen, Mink just might be moving to Alex’s part of the world.

But what she never tells Alex is that she is already in his part of the world, and there’s a super annoying co-worker who, for reasons she cannot explain, has caught Bailey’s attention.

Alex, Approximately Book ReviewAlex, Approximately

Sometimes there are authors you intend to read long before you actually do. For me, one of these is Jenn Bennett. Her books were on my bookworm radar before my bookshelves. Then after some conversation with another reader, I finally pulled a novel by Jenn Bennett from my shelf. The one I chose to crack the spine of is Alex, Approximately, a YA contemporary that’s a bit cuter than its cover art might suggest.

It’s always an interesting concept when two people meet in a hate-to-love scenario, and all without realizing they’re already in love. This story is the young adult equivalent to the popular rom-com You’ve Got Mail. Though there’s plenty of differences, the main gist and feel of the story remains intact which is sure to charm all of those who love the fan favorite comedy with Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks.

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Our would-be lovers in this scenario are Bailey and Porter (can we just take a moment to appreciate their unique names?). Bailey is an East Coast girl newly relocated to the West where she lives with her father. Porter is a West Coast guy whose love of surfing is dampened by an accident that forever changed his family. You can pretty much guess where things go from here.

“Bailey, I’ve BEEN yours. I’ve just been waiting for you to make up your mind.”  ― Jenn Bennett, Alex, Approximately

This story is quite adorable in a perfect young-adult-romance kind of way. The novel follows the same path as its inspiration but still tells its own version with characters the reader likes. I even like Porter despite his bad rep as an arrogant dude. He’s a teenager with issues (we all relate to this at some point in our life), but he never seems “bad.”

The love story does rush the story now and then or it might be that it’s never fully explored. Nonetheless, the end we always root for makes up for it all. With the movie trivia and cute romance, Alex, Approximately is an ideal read for those of us who want something that will make us smile.

ADAPTATION RECOMMENDATION

If you like the concept of letter-writing romance (or in this case, instant message), then, of course, you might want to watch You’ve Got Mail. Otherwise, for YA comedies, there’s the classic A Cinderella Story with Hilary Duff. I don’t have anyone in mind to cast should this ever become a film, but can say one thing with certainty. This would be a perfect fit for the likes of Netflix.

Content: There is some sexual material including a sex scene with non-graphic thoughts/descriptions. Some commonplace profanity, and a few uses of the F-word. The book would easily be a PG-13 rating.

OVERALL RATING 

Four corset rating

“Hello, Gorgeous.”

ROMANCE RATING 

four heart rating

“In vain have I struggled. It will not do. My

feelings will not be repressed. You must allow me

to tell you how ardently I admire and love you.”


 

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