Contemporary Young Adult
Available March 26th
Received for review via NetGalley
THE STORY (from Goodreads)
boyfriend, Jeremy, cheats on her with an online girlfriend, Mallory
decides the best way to de-Jeremy her life is to de-modernize things
too. Inspired by a list of goals her grandmother made in1962, Mallory
swears off technology and returns to a simpler time (when boyfriends
couldn’t cheat with computer avatars). The List:
1. Run for pep club secretary
2. Host a fancy dinner party/soiree
3. Sew a dress for Homecoming
4. Find a steady
5. Do something dangerous
simple proves to be crazy-complicated, and the details of the past
begin to change Mallory’s present. Add in a too-busy grandmother, a
sassy sister, and the cute pep-club president–who just happens to be her
ex’s cousin–and soon Mallory begins to wonder if going vintage is going
Going Vintage is an extremely cute contemporary read, one that explores not only our current addiction to technology, but also how various relationship dynamics are affected by the online world in a humorous way that keeps us laughing and nodding our heads in agreement with Mallory’s quest to return to what’s she’s sure was a simpler time. Her realization that a simpler time in terms of technology does not necessarily equate to an easier life–free of challenges or heartache–is a joy to follow as the light slowly dawns, illuminating aspects of her family that were previously kept secret as well as aspects of herself that aren’t altogether complimentary.
Mallory is an absolute delight of a protagonist, her dry sense of humor drawing us in immediately even as her boyfriend’s online activities temporarily bring her world to a screeching halt. Her voice as she tells her story is beautifully conversational in nature, setting us immediately at ease and making us feel as though she’s sitting across from us relaying her experiences complete with animated hand gestures and a rich tonality to her storytelling. While she may take her shunning of modern technology a bit far after Jeremy’s betrayal, she approaches her family’s minor dramas and her budding relationship with Oliver maturely and logically, never allowing herself to get so swept up that her emotions override rational thought.
While lovers of romance (like me) may be a tiny bit disappointed that things with Oliver don’t progress all that far, the realist in us can’t help but appreciate Mallory’s approach to the fledgling relationship. She refreshingly opts to take her interest in Oliver at a snail’s pace, wanting to learn more about who she is first instead of quickly jumping into the arms of someone new and allowing herself to be defined by a life other than her own. This story is not about Mallory and Oliver but rather Mallory individually–her strengths and weaknesses and how they affect the decisions she makes moving forward–and we’re by her side every step of the way as she becomes both teacher and student in a lesson about herself.
Overall, Going Vintage is a quick and entertaining read full of witty banter and small dramas that has us watching the number of pages remaining dwindle with a frown as we don’t want our time with Mallory to end.