Cover Image: Recommended for You

Recommended for You

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This is a great, quick read, mirroring the one-week time frame of the book. I think Jewish readers will love the "What is Christmastime for the Jewish kids?" vibe of this, and all readers will enjoy Shoshanna and Jake's slow-burn romance. Nothing majorly groundbreaking here, but enough fun and novelty with the characters and storylines for everyone to enjoy.
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There are lots of things to like about this book. It's a holiday romance, but it's more focused on the holiday shopping season at the mall than the usual winter festivities. This is one of the first books I've read that take place in a bookstore that doesn't come off as cliche; you can tell that the author has spent some time either working in a bookstore or has friends who work in a bookstore because the customer interactions are very true. This book has the enemies to friends to lovers trope, but the enemies section felt very short compared to the rest of the book which makes sense since the whole plot takes place over one week. Excellent, fleshed-out side characters who all have their own problems and happy endings. I also liked how not all the problems are solved by the end of the book; it acknowledges that some issues take longer than a week to manage. Even though there's an epilogue, I could still see a sequel being written for this book. My one issue is that the main character is very unlikeable at the beginning. He unlikeable traits don't go away as the book goes on, but she does acknowledge that she has these personality behaviors to work on and uses her weaknesses to her advantage towards the end. A fun, satisfying romp.
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This is an adorable ya rom-com set during the holiday season in a book store.... what could be more fun?! I really enjoyed this cute, quirky book for many reason. Yes, I worked in a mall during the holidays, so that added to my adoration if the insanity and survival of holidays at the mall.   I really love bookstores and Once Upon sounds like a magical place all book lovers would want to work at! Soshanna loves her job and her besties and her two moms, but things are a little stressful at home and money is tight. When her boss decided to throw a sales contest into the holiday mix, things get stressful at work with the adorable new guy.  This is an delightful read and I loved the pop culture references, as well as how quickly it read. I would love to see this on Netflix as a holiday film! Thank you netgalley for this arc in exchange for my honest opinion.
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"The scent of books and the quiet hum of morning customers browsing the shelves welcome me. My body lifts with contentment. I'm home."

Shoshanna Greenburg's second home is Once Upon, the independent bookstore she works at. Not only is it full of books--her favorite thing in the world!--but it's a lot more comfortable than her actual home right now, with her mothers fighting constantly. In the midst of the holiday rush, Shoshanna newest coworker seems to be too good to be true. Hot, and Jewish? How lucky could a girl get! Until he drops the bomb.

He doesn't read.

As you can imagine, his attractiveness goes down considerably. (No, it doesn't... Not at all... Curse you, Jake Kaplan!) However, Shoshanna is quickly distracted by a new competition within the store: whoever gets the most customers to buy books before the store closes on Christmas Eve gets a bonus, which is just what Shoshanna needs to save Barbara Streisand (her car, not the singer). But Jake wants that bonus just as much as she does.

Stakes are high, time is ticking, and Shoshanna and Jake are not in the game to play.

They're in to win.

"Recommended for You" is incredibly adorable, and I just adored Shoshanna. She's got a good heart, but doesn't always make the right decisions and has impulse control problems. And Jake. Oh my wonderful ball of angst with a heart of gold Jake... They are so sweet together, once they get over the 'enemies' stage in "enemies-to-friends-to-lovers". And then there's the wild cast of friends, coworkers, customers, family and more, who keep things interesting. This book is just so sweet and perfect and I want to wrap it up in a fuzzy blanket and feed it cookies and peppermint hot chocolate.

Also, I had so many flashbacks to my days of working at Books-A-Million. Because I was simultaneously Shoshanna--who loves books! Give me all the people who need books and book recommendations!--and Jake, except with coffee instead books. Yeah, I was "that" barista who hated coffee. A+ for the most realistic  way to work at a bookstore without actually having to work at a bookstore. Especially during the holiday rush. Seriously, this is book is virtual reality bookstore employee without the virtual. (And so much reality...)

So support your local independent booksellers and this amazing author, and go pre-order "Recommended for  You" today!
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This book has a lot going on as far as plot and characters. 
• There are LGBTQIA+ parents as well as friends that the main character has, Jewish main as well as side characters, and a variety of other characters of all ages and walks of life. 
• This takes place during the holiday season at a retail mall which is fascinating for someone who doesn't know what it's like working during that time and somewhere that you love to work at especially for book lovers. 
• When it comes to the plot, I can definitely recommend it to a younger audience to start with the romantic comedy genre. The dislike to love aspect of things was really fun between the two characters and I enjoyed how they got to know each other especially when it came to cooking. 
Overall, this book is fantastic for the holiday season as well as for book lovers wanting to work at a bookstore. It is definitely great starter rom-com for younger audiences but also fun for older audiences. It can be a tad cheesy.
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A bookstore meet cute with endearing characters! Recommended For You by Laura Silverman creates an endearing story about two young employees, Shoshanna and Jake, at their mall's local bookstore, Once Upon. I'm a sucker for a bookstore and a sweet story, so this grabbed my attention from the very beginning.

In Recommended For You, Shoshanna and Jake both work at Once Upon where their boss has established a book-selling competition among her employees. Shoshanna lives and breathes books, Once Upon, and everything having to do with both of them while Jake, the new hire, doesn't even read. Shoshanna thinks she has this competition in the bag, but with things happening in her personal life, it's not as cut and dry as she assumes,,,and Jake is just as determined as Shoshanna to sell the most books and win the prize. In a spirit of competition, the two who, on first interaction seem like polar opposites, learn they may actually have more in common than they thought. 

Shoshanna's character is high energy with stream-of-consciousness tendencies and the desire to help everyone, which doesn't always turn out well. Jake is more reserved, but business and people-savvy. Watching these two navigate working together, helping their bookstore, and also learning about themselves was so sweet; I found myself rooting for Shoshanna and Jake the whole time while they were learning about themselves and about each other--giving each other the benefit of the doubt, a second chance and a peek behind the proverbial curtain. 

While it took me a bit to buy in at the beginning, this wholesome story was truly delightful and just what I needed to kick off my Summer reading!
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This was a sweet young YA romance contemporary romance book. I loved the bookstore setting and the competition plot. Pitting these two teens against eachother who eventually fall in love was fun to see. 

And I really love this cute cover! Soshanna’s the bookworm so of course she has a stack of books. And Jack the non-reader is slouching, side-eyeing her so she won’t think he’s actually interested in reading a book. And the “Author Appearance” sign is clever.
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I think this book might be my new favorite. It combines all of my favorite things: books, food, love and bonus (my favorite movies). This book has the romance and gushy feels of my two favorite movies as a teen- You've Got Mail and Sixteen Candles. The book store love and feel of the plot just reminds me so much of Kathleen Kelly and her awkward cuteness- more importantly vast love for books. There are definitely some really adorable romantic scenes that rival the birthday scene from Sixteen Candles- also, the main male's name is Jake (coincidence- I think not!) Now to the actual book. 

I Loved this book- it was cheeky and delicious to read. The type of book that just makes you curl up in a blanket with your coffee and enjoy all of the warm and fuzzys it gives you. It makes you say the statement "I love love" so much you almost want to just smother your family and significant others with all of the love and affection you feel you have been missing. This book is a coming of age story with a Bad ass Jewish girl with two moms and zero qualms about how much she loves her life. Until she notices that things have been a little off in her house- much more hushed fighting and closed doors. Then when she goes into work, Once Upon a local bookstore, she meets the Joe Fox to her Kathleen Kelly. The non-reader to her bibliophile. With her stress mounting and having no where to call her safe place anymore, she starts making some rash decisions that she might regret. 

Shoshanna might make some regrettable and miraculous decision in this book- but if you read it, I promise you will do anything but regret it! That is if you love cheesy romances like I do! 

Recommended For You comes out September 2020! It will be on my list for this years purchases- I would think it will be for you too!
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The narration of the main character Shoshanna was hilarious and adorable. I loved the way she spoke about her crush, it was so true to how it feels to be a teen and be falling for someone and struggle with those feelings. This novel was fantastically diverse! Although to be honest, it did feel forced sometimes - like the author was trying to cram as many different social messages into the book as possible. However, the diversity was still appreciated! A LOT happens to this poor girl in a week, almost too much. The book could arguably have shined more if she had cut down on the amount of plot points, but I feel like the author laid events out nicely to set up for a perfect storm in the MC's life. Shoshanna was written as a true teen and her growth as a character is not a new personality. She stayed exactly who she was - but was just helped by those who love her to become a more mature and balanced version of her passionate, over-zealous self. I think a lot of readers will be able to relate to various aspects of Shoshanna's personality and struggles. The transition from enemies to "lovers" between Shosh and Jake was natural and felt realistic. Their relationship was very innocent and based on an earned admiration for each other. It is almost hard to classify this as a romance novel as there is literally so much else going on, and their relationship doesn't become truly romantic until the very end. But their dynamic was fun to watch as it grew, and I cannot express enough how CUTE the MC's inner commentary about her crush is. On a personal note, as someone who is not Jewish but who also doesn't celebrate Christmas, I super enjoyed the humor and relatableness of being someone who doesn't celebrate Christmas during the insane holiday rush. Them going out for Chinese food on Christmas day made me feel SEEN and laugh so hard - it is so real life for a lot of us! I think people of a lot of nationalities and beliefs could enjoy this book. To me, it would have made a lot more sense for the publisher to release this book in December instead of September. All in all, the length of time we got to see the main couple in a relationship was lacking a little bit, but it is a funny and sweet book in which a lot of young readers will be able to relate.
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Recommended For You is an adorable young adult romance. Jake and Shoshanna are such cute characters. The story was great and I flew through this one quickly. This was a hit and I loved it.
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I wanted to like this book more than I actually did. It sounds like such the perfect concept - rom-com at the book store between two sales people? sounds fun. I loved working at a book store. Unfortunately, I found that Shoshana's character was annoying and judgmental. The issues that she had with her family and friends, not thinking before she acted, was a big problem and the amount of times she did it was unrealistic. I enjoyed Jake's character, but it wasn't enough of a draw.
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Thank you to Netgalley and Simon and Schuster for the eARC in exchange for an honest review.

Recommend for You was an adorable, fluffy, fast-paced read. 

The story follows Shoshanna Greenberg, who works at Once Upon, her favorite local bookstore. Her car needs to be fixed, and her moms are fighting at home, and the bookstore has become her happy little escape. When her boss announces a holiday bonus to the person who sells the most books, Shoshanna is thrilled and determined. That bonus will help fix her car. Except the new hire who doesn't even read, Jake Kaplan, makes that complicated.

I really enjoyed the characters and plot. A bookstore setting was a cherry-on-top. There were important messages throughout this story, a ton of representation including POC/LGBTQ+ characters, and an adorable romance. Shoshanna and Jake had great chemistry and banter throughout the story.

I really liked this book!
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An adorable YA romcom! Shoshanna is a fun, likeable protagonist. The book teaches of friendship, standing up for causes you believe in and opening yourself up to new experiences. A fun, easy read - perfect for lovers of Nora Ephron movies.
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At it's core, this is a story about a girl falling in love with a fellow bookstore employee. Beneath the surface, Recommended for You is much more than that, fearlessly addressing some tough issues that many teens could relate to. I enjoyed the dynamics between our main characters and their parents, and I loved that this story approached the many different types of families. The main character was lovable, although a bit too over the top throughout most of the story, and the romance between the main characters felt earned and authentic. Furthermore, as a former bookstore employee, the author really nailed the work environment and customer interactions! While I did enjoy this book overall, I felt that there was just a little too much going on for it to feel like a cohesive story. Between the family strife, friend drama, work struggles, and rivalry turned romance, it felt like I was reading several different plot lines that tried, but didn't quite, intersect in a fulfilling way. This was a sweet romance that I will definitely purchase for my library, but it is far from a perfect story.
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I really enjoyed reading book to take my mind off of reality. It was a sweet, light hearted YA romance. There are few things that really set this book apart from other YA romances. The main character (Shoshanna) loved books and worked a book store, this will really connect with teens who love books and feel safe in a library, bookstore or at home reading their favorite book. It reminded me of myself and many students I have taught over the years. Shoshanna was also dealing with her two moms having issues with their marriage. It showed a very realistic view of what it feels like to have your parents having marital issues and wondering if they will stay together. I liked that she had two moms and that was just part of the story, not an issue for her but just a normal thing. The author did a great job showing kids that this is a normal situation. Shoshanna was working in an independent book store that was struggling to get by, it was a realistic struggle and maybe reading this book will encourage some young people to buy their books from small book store. The book was set at Christmas but the main characters were Jewish, it was really a good part of the book. It was also such a funny book! I found myself laughing at Shoshannas jokes and just the situations. She is a great character. The romance was sweet and I could see how some people might thing it went to quickly or wasn't realistic but that is likely because are looking at it with a adult perspective. It was perfect for teens. I can't wait to recommenced this book to my students when it comes out.  I hope this becomes a series.
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A cute premise but the characters never felt fully developed. Shoshanna’s actions felt annoying rather than sincere and made her character a little unlikeable. There were so many plot points thrown in without real development.
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What an adorable book!  Shoshannah just wants the best for her Moms, friends, and "second home" Upon a Time bookshop. Despite her best efforts, things do not go as planned. To top it all off, the new guy Jake is really grinding her gears. Will Shoshonna fix everyone before it is too late?
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Light-hearted YA romance set in a bookstore - the perfect read! Shoshonna, the main character, was qirky goodness in this fun take on a workplace romance.
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**Disclaimer: I was given a free e-ARC in exchange for an honest review from NetGalley.**

Title Recommended for You

Author Laura Silverman

Description from Amazon

Shoshanna Greenberg loves working at Once Upon, her favorite local bookstore. And with her moms fighting at home and her beloved car teetering on the brink of death, the store has become a welcome escape.

When her boss announces a holiday bonus to the person who sells the most books, Shoshanna sees an opportunity to at least fix her car, if none of her other problems. The only person standing in her way? New hire Jake Kaplan.

Jake is an affront to everything Shoshanna stands for. He doesn’t even read! But somehow his sales start to rival hers. Jake may be cute (really cute), and he may be an eligible Jewish single (hard to find south of Atlanta), but he’s also the enemy, and Shoshanna is ready to take him down.

But as the competition intensifies, Jake and Shoshanna grow closer and realize they might be more on the same page than either expects…

Release Date September 1, 2020

Initial Thoughts

I was approved for this book in NetGalley, and, of course, I wanted to read it right away. It sounded so cute and who doesn’t love a good holiday story?

Some Things I Liked

Shoshanna is my spirit character. I just loved her. She was quirky, outspoken, and unafraid to be herself. I want to channel my inner-Shoshanna more often because she was phenomenal. I don’t often relate to contemporary characters so strongly but she was just a treasure.
Comedy. This book was hilarious. I adored the way Shoshanna called the Christmas celebrators, “the gentiles” and more than just her Jewish humor, the scenarios were so funny. I found myself laughing so much while reading.
Realism. This book has several themes that are no laughing matters. Shoshanna’s moms are going though a difficult time as well as Jake’s father not being in the picture don’t make for a picture-perfect, Hallmark, ending for this book. I thought the realistic problems gave the story a richness and made the hopeful note at the end that much more satisfying.

Series Value

I enjoyed the characters in this book and can easily see Laura Silverman expanding on them in future books. However, I can also see this as a stand alone novel. The ending was open-ended and hopeful but I think that openness is an important part of the plot. Shoshanna and Jake have uncertain futures, as we all do, so this ending felt fitting.

Final Thoughts

I really enjoyed this book. I didn’t know I was in the mood for a holiday book until I read it. This book just made me happy to read. There were some sad themes and a lot of uncertainty, but I really enjoyed the hopeful, holiday vibes.


Recommendations for Further Reading

What I Like About You by Marisa Kanter – if you enjoyed the themes of books, Hanukkah, and laugh-out-loud comedy, try this April 2020 release.
Tweet Cute by Emma Lord – if you like cute rom-coms with a sort of enemies to lovers vibe, try this book by Emma Lord.
The Art of French Kissing by Brianna R. Schrum – if you liked the enemies to lovers vibe mixed with a competition, try this cooking-inspired rom-com.
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3.5 stars, rounded up because of good rep

This was a sweet read. Some of the writing could’ve been tightened up for my liking, but overall cute. Plus, who doesn’t love a plot based in a bookstore? 

Thanks to Netgalley and the publishers for an ARC in exchange for an honest review
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