Happy book birthday to You Say it First by Katie Cotugno! I don’t usually love politics in fiction, but I have honestly been so insanely excited about his book. I’m sure that You Say It First is going to be a book that I either love or hate, with no in between, but I’m looking forward to checking it out.
Meg has her entire life set up perfectly: her boyfriend Mason is sweet and supportive, she and her best friend Emily plan to head to Cornell together in the fall, and she even finds time to clock shifts phonebanking at a voter registration call center in her Philadelphia suburb. But everything changes when one of those calls connects her to a stranger from small-town Ohio, who gets under her skin from the moment he picks up the phone. Colby is stuck in a rut, reeling from a family tragedy and working a dead-end job—unsure what his future holds, or if he even cares. The last thing he has time for is some privileged rich girl preaching the sanctity of the political process. So he says the worst thing he can think of and hangs up. But things don’t end there.… That night on the phone winds up being the first in a series of candid, sometimes heated, always surprising conversations that lead to a long-distance friendship and then—slowly—to something more. Across state lines and phone lines, Meg and Colby form a once-in-a-lifetime connection. But in the end, are they just too different to make it work? You Say It First is a propulsive, layered novel about how sometimes the person who has the least in common with us can be the one who changes us most.