Title: Alex, Approximately
Author: Jenn Bennett
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Publication Date: April 4, 2017
Summary (from Goodreads): In this delightfully charming teen spin on You’ve Got Mail, the one guy Bailey Rydell can’t stand is actually the boy of her dreams—she just doesn’t know it yet.
Classic movie buff Bailey “Mink” Rydell has spent months crushing on a witty film geek she only knows online by “Alex.” Two coasts separate the teens until Bailey moves in with her dad, who lives in the same California surfing town as her online crush.
Faced with doubts (what if he’s a creep in real life—or worse?), Bailey doesn’t tell Alex she’s moved to his hometown. Or that she’s landed a job at the local tourist-trap museum. Or that she’s being heckled daily by the irritatingly hot museum security guard, Porter Roth—a.k.a. her new arch-nemesis. But life is whole lot messier than the movies, especially when Bailey discovers that tricky fine line between hate, love, and whatever-it-is she’s starting to feel for Porter.
And as the summer months go by, Bailey must choose whether to cling to a dreamy online fantasy in Alex or take a risk on an imperfect reality with Porter. The choice is both simpler and more complicated than she realizes, because Porter Roth is hiding a secret of his own: Porter is Alex…Approximately.
Alex, Approximately has everything that I look for in a summer read: a cute and amusing concept, some witty banter, and a gorgeous California setting. While I enjoyed this book, I became frustrated with how predictable and obvious the ending is and all the weird coincidences, so I didn’t end up loving it. However, I would still recommend it, as it is so adorable.
I really enjoyed the concept of this book. It is all about a girl who ends up moving to the same town as a close online friend of hers, but doesn’t tell him. She tries her best to hunt him down, but she doesn’t know his real name. I loved watching Bailey scour the town for Alex while also working at a museum. The conversations between her and her arch-nemesis co-worker are also hilarious. This is such a quick read that is so adorable and perfect for summer.
The setting in Alex, Approximately is absolutely perfect. The book takes place in a town in California, complete with surfers and delicious food. Bailey also works in a museum, which is more like a giant mansion with themed rooms. This town is so developed that I actually felt like I lived there. Bailey gets the chance to explore a lot, and the reader can experience all the newness along with her. I honestly want to visit this town, as the museum and all the attractions sound so incredible!
While I enjoyed this book, I didn’t love it as much as I could have. My main issue with it is how predictable it was for me. I get that the reader is supposed to know who the mysterious Alex is before the main character does, but around twenty pages in, I had already figured it out. It was so frustrating reading about Bailey trying so hard to figure out who Alex is when it seems so obvious from the start. There were also so many weird coincidences that ended up being too much. I really wish I could have loved this one as much as I enjoyed The Anatomical Shape of a Heart.
Alex, Approximately is a hilarious story about a girl who moves to California. The setting is so beautiful and extremely well developed. However, the predictability became too frustrating for me, and I didn’t enjoy it as much as I could have. Although this book is enjoyable, I feel like it was lacking somewhat.