You Can Go Your Own Way, Eric Smith

You Can Go Your Own Way, Eric Smith

You Can Go Your Own Way by Eric Smith is an original story about growth and second chances. Centred around a pinball arcade, this one contains social media battles and two narrators. While I had some issues with the story’s slow pacing, this is still a heartwarming read that would be perfect to cozy up with this winter.

You Can Go Your Own Way, Eric SmithTitle: You Can Go Your Own Way
Author: Eric Smith
Also by this author: Battle of the Bands
Publisher: Inkyard Press
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Young Adult Fiction
Publication Date: November 2, 2021
Rating: three-stars

Summary (from Goodreads):

No one ever said love would be easy…but did they mention it would be freezing?

Adam Stillwater is in over his head. At least, that’s what his best friend would say. And his mom. And the guy who runs the hardware store down the street. But this pinball arcade is the only piece of his dad that Adam has left, and he’s determined to protect it from Philadelphia’s newest tech mogul, who wants to turn it into another one of his cold, lifeless gaming cafés.

Whitney Mitchell doesn’t know how she got here. Her parents split up. She lost all her friends. Her boyfriend dumped her. And now she’s spending her senior year running social media for her dad’s chain of super successful gaming cafés—which mostly consists of trading insults with that decrepit old pinball arcade across town.

But when a huge snowstorm hits, Adam and Whitney suddenly find themselves trapped inside the arcade. Cut off from their families, their worlds, and their responsibilities, the tension between them seems to melt away, leaving something else in its place. But what happens when the storm stops?

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❃ I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. ❃

Review: You Can Go Your Own Way by Eric Smith

Adam and Whitney used to be best friends, but after the death of Adam’s father and the success of Whitney’s father’s gaming café chain, the two have resorted to trading insults through their business’s social media. When Whitney’s father sets his sights on Adam’s family’s pinball arcade, Adam is determined to do everything he can to save the only piece of his father he has left. However, when Adam and Whitney find themselves trapped in the arcade during a blizzard, they are given the chance to rekindle their friendship, and maybe even turn it into something more.

❀ Dual Perspectives

This book is told through dual perspectives, and both main characters are interesting. I enjoyed Adam’s character more than Whitney’s since the grief he experiences after the loss of his father is powerfully written, and it is easy to feel his pain as he must come to terms with the threat of letting a part of his father go. Whitney has her own struggles, especially with getting her father to recognize her hard work, but I would have like to see more development in her character. In terms of their relationship, I loved watching Adam and Whitney mend their friendship and grow together, but the romance fell flat for me. There isn’t enough chemistry to make the romance feel believable, and I found that the story would have been more effective if they had stayed as best friends.

❀ Slow-Paced

While the concept of this book has a lot of potential, I had some issues with the pacing. This one has a slow start, and the actual snowstorm doesn’t happen until over 60% through the book. Based on the synopsis, I was expecting a lot more of the story to be about being trapped inside an arcade, so I was a little disappointed to see so little space dedicated to this. The book as a whole is still entertaining, but I would have loved to see more cozy snowstorm moments.

❀ A Touching Story

You Can Go Your Own Way by Eric Smith is a touching story about grief and rekindled friendship. I loved the uniqueness of the pinball arcade, and the main character’s emotional connection with the arcade is well described. I did have some issues with the slow pacing of the story but ultimately found this to be a heartfelt read perfect for fans of the enemies to lovers trope.

About Eric Smith

Eric Smith

Eric Smith is an author and literary agent from Elizabeth, New Jersey.

When he's not busy writing books, he loves to work on (and talk about!) books by other people. He's represented New York Times bestselling and award-winning titles, and can be found talking about books on the popular HEY YA! podcast on Book Riot.

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About The Candid Cover

Olivia ❀ YA book blogger, Starbucks lover, novice New Yorker, & professional bibliophile.

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