The A to Z of You and Me by James Hannah // Was I Missing Something?

Friday, 1 April 2016
The A to Z of You and Me, by James Hannah
Publication: May 3, 2016, by Sourcebooks Landmark
Genre: Adult Fiction, Contemporary
Pages: 336
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher

He has all kinds of everyday joy in his life -- he's young, he's in love, he has friends who promise to stand by him if life ever goes wrong.
Then one day, life does go wrong.
He makes a mistake, and it's big and unforgiveable. Now time is running out, and his life is falling apart. But he's going to put it back together again. His own way.
This is a story about how far love must stretch to gather a life in pieces -- and about how a strong friendship never dies.

My Thoughts:

The A to Z of You and Me originally had the potential to become something unique, somewhat indie and fresh for an adult audience. James Hannah, a tremendously talented author, seemed to captivate me with the cover of his story and the plot. I thought that because there was a misuse of information in the summary, the actual novel would provide more clarity towards the whole situation and the story would go into more depth about the main character's issues and how he battles his own personal demons. Honestly? This was one of the strangest novels that I have ever read, to be clear. James Hannah wrote this novel with every chapter starting a different letter of the alphabet, and the main character, Ivo, uses each letter to name a body part that begins with that letter. It's pretty complex.

Why The A to Z of You and Me didn't work out so perfectly for me (and maybe for you, too):

•The confusion I felt with the plot. For me, there was no clear point to this story. Readers were just put into the life of a man who is in his 40s, and feels sad. I liked Ivo as a character, and found the variety of the adventures that he experienced prior to his hospice situation are totally relatable and enjoyable to read about. I just could not see the main point of the story. Other reviews found this to be extremely lyrical and poetic, while I plainly saw a man retell bits of his life story while feeling sad, naming different letters of the alphabet as a sort of therapy lesson. Eeek? I guess that I only enjoy stories about depression when they are YA. Not Adult. Sorry fellas!

•Confusion equals mass boringness. I wasn't too interested in this book after I realized how much it would drag and lean out of my interest zone. I liked the parts where we readers got the chance to discover who Ivo was really addressing this whole story to—and especially, the girl's name. This story has its perks, and negatives, as I have come to conclude. 

Do not suspect that this is horrible or nasty of any kind. James Hannah is a great writer—his ideas are expressed through an interesting character who has different problems than adults in other fictional stories that I have read. But at the same time, this story is real. So real. I cannot help but squirm when I think about other people in reality who have had to deal with something that Ivo had to deal with. This was great in some moments, after all!

The A to Z of You and Me is a deep story that may or may not touch the hearts of readers. I found it particularly slow and a little out of my league, you know? What was really catchy for me is the romance. It's kind of a mystery, but you'll see for yourself if you ever decide to give James Hannah's newest story a try. Beware the plot twists and weird chapter names. Other than that, I'm sure you're good. *thumbs up*

*A review copy was provided by the publisher in exchange for a honest review. Thank you so much!*

Have you ever read a story that has weird chapter names? What is the most confusing book you've read?

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