Title: Everything Leads To You
Author: Nina LaCour
Genre: YA, Contemporary, LGBT
Read/Not Read (my recommendation): Read.
Emi is about to graduate high school. She has always been a huge film fan and has a real shot at becoming a set designer. Due to her work perks, she gets to visit the home of a silver screen idol. There she finds a letter written by the dead star to his daughter, Caroline that nobody knew about who also apparently had a daughter, Ava. Emi and her best friend try to trace the persons mentioned in the story and after many strange encounters find Ava.
Even though at its core, it is a story about falling in love there are many dimensions to it. First, there is the film aspect. Then the mystery aspect of the letter. And the LGBTQ aspect.
Emi is such an engaging character, whom I could easily dive into. She is just so nice and extremely talented. Even though the story is narrated from Emi’s point of view and Ava is just a much in focus. Everything leads to Ava. It really does, because especially from Emi’s point of view we have to get to know Ava and fall in love with her, along with Emi.
There is a lot of personal growth in Emi’s character. She actually just graduated high school, but she has a real job. There were times when she is had to admit to herself she was wrong. And she is letting go of her first love, which is, of course, the ultimate form of growth.
The plot is interesting. Really interesting. There is this mystery unfolding and at the same time, the romance developing between the characters. However, it felt like the romance was being held off for as long as possible. Maybe, that was necessary for Emi to get over her first love.
Passion is one of the strongest emotion in this book. Emi’s passion for set designing is bleeding through the pages. I got a lot of insight into the designing of the set and realized how every little detail of a room captured on the screen meant something. Like the poster of a band, the color of a sofa, the organized desk and everything.
I was mentally making notes to notice the scenes the next time I watched any movie or series. And I totally got what she was talking about. It was so interesting how the film industry worked internally.
The surprising thing was that I got so much FEELS from this book and they were loud and strong emotions. There was barely any romantic moments only times when I wished there were because Emi just thought of the beautiful lines in her head but never said them aloud, it was as if she was waiting for something to happen. Boy, did she wait for a hell of a long time…
And I was screaming internally, why don’t you just say it out loud???
Homosexuality is not the main issue in this book. Though the tension was later revealed in a second lead’s story, it did not play a significant part in the direction of the story.
Emi and Ava finally get together at the very end and, it was like being hit with a final happy shot before the book ended. I really want to read more of them. How they fit together, how they went on dates and how they got jealous over each other.
I feel like I need more closure with how the things ended with Emi and her mom- adoptive mom. However, I guess, some things can never be fixed.
Isn’t this so beautifully written?
“We love films because they makes us feel something. They speak to our desires, which are never small. They allow us to escape and to dream and to gaze into the eyes that are impossibly beautiful and huge. They fill us with longing. But also. they tell us to remember; they remind us of life. Remember, they say, how much it hurts to have your heart broken.”
― Nina LaCour,
Then, there are dialogues like this.
“Because in the conversation beneath this one, what we’re really saying is I am an imperfect person. Here are my failures. Do you want me anyway?”
― Nina LaCour,
Overall, I loved the book mainly because of the set designing/ film industry aspect. I was not expecting to find such a passionate character, who made me wish I had her job. It was a fresh kind of read for me. I would recommend it to anyone needing anyone interested in movies or anyone who loves watching movies as well. It will give you a new insight as to the makings of it. But not so much for the romance lovers, that is just not as much a strong front of this book.