Together, Apart by Erin A. Craig, Auriane Desombre, Erin Hahn, Bill Konigsberg, Rachael Lippincott, Brittney Morris, Sajni Patel, Natasha Preston and Jennifer Yen. Delacorte Press, 9780593375297
Rating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 4
Genre: Short stories
What did you like about the book? Nine stories by various authors shine a light on the effects of Covid-19 on teens during the first months of the pandemic. Each story shows how love will find a way, despite social distancing, masks and staying at home. I like that there is a variety of pairings, including gay and straight, with characters of different races and ethnicities, and urban and suburban settings. There is a dog-walking romance, several romances taking place on high rise balconies, and love fueled by Tiktok. The stories are light, but with some serious themes, like coming out, food insecurity and depression. And they all have happy endings! This is a fun collection which may spur readers to check out the authors’ longer work.
Anything you didn’t like about it? No, but it’s funny to me that some of the evocations of early lockdowns almost seem quaint now that we have vaccines and schools are reopening. Maybe this will find a place as historical fiction in a decade or two!
To whom would you recommend this book? For ages 12-18. For fans of realistic short stories or romance. Nice to offer to teens who don’t read a lot, since the stories are so fresh and short.
Who should buy this book? High school and public libraries
Where would you shelve it ? Teen short stories
Should we (librarians/readers) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? No
Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City and State: Stephanie Tournas, Robbins Library, Arlington, MA
Date of review: April 4, 2021