Review: Love and Other Words by Christina Lauren

Love and Other Words by Christina Lauren
Release Date: April 10, 2018
Publisher: Gallery Books 
Genre: Women's Fiction
Source: ARC provided by publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review
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The heart may hide, but it never forgets.

The first women’s fiction novel from New York Times and #1 international bestselling author Christina Lauren (Autoboyography, Dating You / Hating You).

Macy Sorensen is settling into an ambitious if emotionally tepid routine: work hard as a new pediatrics resident, plan her wedding to an older, financially secure man, keep her head down and heart tucked away.

But when she runs into Elliot Petropoulos—the first and only love of her life—the careful bubble she’s constructed begins to dissolve. Once upon a time, Elliot was Macy’s entire world—growing from her gangly teen friend into the man who coaxed her heart open again after the loss of her mother…only to break it on the very night he declared his love for her.

Told in alternating timelines between Then and Now, teenage Elliot and Macy grow from friends to much more—spending weekends and lazy summers together in a house outside of San Francisco reading books, sharing favorite words, and talking through their growing pains and triumphs. As adults, they have become strangers to one another until their chance reunion. Although their memories are obscured by the agony of what happened that night so many years ago, Elliot will come to understand the truth behind Macy’s decade-long silence, and will have to overcome the past and himself to revive her faith in the possibility of an all-consuming love.


I never expected this book to ripe my heart to pieces; however, that's exactly what Christina Lauren's  Love and Other Words managed to do. 

At its heart, Love and Other Words is a book about second chances as well as growing up. It's split between two timelines - then and now - and Christina Lauren did a fantastic job of making each timeline rich in emotion as well as purpose. With books like these I tend to have a favorite timeline; however, I can't say that occurred here. I loved both equally, and never once did I feel that the story would've been better without one or the other. It's quite the opposite in fact: the two timelines are what made Elliot and Macy's story so developed, so three dimensional. I adored seeing them find each other as teenagers and then re-finding each other as late twenty-somethings. It was messy and heartfelt. 

Macy and Elliot aren't perfect by any means. They had their flaws back in their youth and they still have their flaws in present day, but that's what makes them relatable as well as lovable, in my opinion. I loved seeing them get things right as well as wrong, seeing them succeed as well as crumble, because it showed that life isn't always perfect, that sometimes outside forces are beyond our control, that sometimes you just have to believe that what is meant to be will find its way. 

Macy is fiercely independent; however, over the years she's managed to twist being independent into also being incredibly closed off. She likes being in control, because when she hasn't been in control in the past, it's only managed to hurt her. My heart broke for Macy. Over the course of her life she suffered so many losses. While I wanted her to open up to Elliot, I could also understand why she would be so reluctant. It is hard to open yourself up to potential heartbreak. 

Elliott is similar to Macy yet so vastly different at the same time. He starts the story off as a timid, quiet preteen, finding refuge in his books and favorite words, but by his twenties he turns into this thoughtful, passionate individual, one who wears his heart on his sleeve. I adored Elliott. I loved how he was with Macy, how willing he was to put everything on the table for another chance. He made me swoon too many times to keep count. 

Together, Elliott and Macy have an easy, natural bond. There's incredible chemistry between them, and I adored just seeing them interact with each other. No matter how many Macy pushed, they always came together like magnets, never resisting the ever-present pull. Throughout Love and Other Words, I was dying to know what had dragged them apart. I had my theories, but I never imaged it would affect me as much as it did. I sobbed for the last few chapters, but honestly, I don't think I would've wanted it any other way. It's what made the journey so memorable. I'll be thinking about Elliott and Macy's story for days to come. 

Overall, Love and Other Words is an emotional roller coaster of a read. It's heartbreaking as well as romantic. It's smile including as well as swoon-worthy. It will make you shed some tears, and I'm not talking about pretty tears. Nope, if you're anything like me there will be A LOT of ugly crying. It's just fantastic, and honestly, I can't suggest it highly enough. It's taken me a long time to finally read a Christina Lauren book, but I can now say I'm here to stay. I can't wait to read their past and future books. 

4.5 stars!! 


  1. Oh the “ugly”cry, I did a lot of that while reading this too. Wasn’t it just amazing, I loved Macy and Elliot! Great review!

  2. Yes, and emotional roller coaster, but a ride I don't regret. Here come the tears again. Gosh, I loved this books so much!

  3. Everyone seems to be loving this book! I really want to read Christina Lauren soon. Glad you enjoyed this one.


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