Turning The Pages: ‘Emergency Contact’ Review and Contest

Emergency Contact
By: Mary H.K. Choi
Publish Date: 3/27/2018

Disclaimer: Simon Teen is partnering with me for a giveaway! My review is my own, but the giveaway is in partnership.

Synopsis: For Penny Lee high school was a total nonevent. Her friends were okay, her grades were fine, and while she somehow managed to land a boyfriend, he doesn’t actually know anything about her. When Penny heads to college in Austin, Texas, to learn how to become a writer, it’s seventy-nine miles and a zillion light years away from everything she can’t wait to leave behind. Sam’s stuck. Literally, figuratively, emotionally, financially. He works at a café and sleeps there too, on a mattress on the floor of an empty storage room upstairs. He knows that this is the god-awful chapter of his life that will serve as inspiration for when he’s a famous movie director but right this second the seventeen bucks in his checking account and his dying laptop are really testing him. When Sam and Penny cross paths it’s less meet-cute and more a collision of unbearable awkwardness. Still, they swap numbers and stay in touch—via text—and soon become digitally inseparable, sharing their deepest anxieties and secret dreams without the humiliating weirdness of having to see each other.

Overall Thoughts: I love when I read something that invokes emotions. I admit that I was interested in this book because I was told that it was “Rainbow Rowell-ish” and I love everything that she writes. But the truth is, it’s not. It’s different. It’s sad. It’s actually kind of sad, but that’s okay. Because this book makes you take a second look at life, the thoughts that you have, and the way you feel.

Yes, yes, I love a good contemporary novel. But even more than that, I love a novel that forces me to take a look a life in a new way.

Two completely different people drawn together. Sure, it’s a trope, but it is one that I love. Why? Because it opens our eyes to the way we are all different, but also the way that we are all the same.

The way Sam and Penny find their way to each other and the way that they interact is so natural and unforced. Choi writes flawed characters who are flawless. They feel like they are relatable.

But it’s not your typical love story – they are typical millennials and they have a connection online. Sometimes it’s not easy to be in person (which I will admit that it’s something that we have lost and need to find the personal connection with people again) but the way that their vulnerability comes across is absolutely flawless.

What I love so much about this book is that it addresses real life. It addresses our connection to social media, online, technology and the way that it is our connection to others, but also the potential problems with it.

It addresses stereotypes and the way that we think of things. It makes us have to look past the superficial.

I will tell you this – that I had to get past the first 75 pages and then I fell hard and couldn’t put it down.

Emergency, Contact is a great book that will make you think about falling in a different way. Filled with many things that you think you know and many turning points… it will captivate. It’s definitely a book worth reading.

CONTEST: We want you to win your own copy of Emergency Contact.


Penny Lee and Sam are just waiting for a tough phase of life to hurry past! (1) winner receives:

  • copy of Emergency Contact
  • branded pop socket
  • and a Herschel Supply Co. backpack to be ready for whatever phase is next!

How do you win?

  • Option 1: Leave a comment on here with the social media platform that you use the most.
  • Option 2: Tweet us “I want to win #EmergencyContact from @Fangirlishness
  • Option 3: Leave a comment on our Facebook Page post about this contest.

We will choose a winner on 4/6/2018.

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