Hello (from Here) By Chandler Baker

2.75 Stars Rounded Up

“Conventional wisdom suggests that, when the world finally does begin to fall apart, love will be the only thing left that really matters. Petty grievances will fall away. You won’t remember who called you Maxi Pad for the entirety of sixth grade (Logan Bennett) or how much money is in your bank account or the hours spent studying for that one calculus exam you almost failed. Instead, you will spend time with loved ones. Hold them close. Be present. Let them know that you care.”

California had just started it’s quarantine lockdown following the beginning of the CoVid Pandemic and Max and Jonah are both out shopping for supplies. Jonah is seeking toilet paper for his older sister who desperately needs it for her Crohn’s Disease. Max is working as a part time personal shopper and she seems to have the last bulks of toilet paper needed to fulfill her orders. Jonah will do anything to get his hands on a pack of TP including negotiating with the cute but prickly stranger, tempting her with the last of the Sparkling Water and Disinfectant Wipes as a trade. After going their respective ways Jonah, with some help from Olivia, hatches a plan to see Max again. He tracks her company down with some google digging and then requests an online grocery delivery. Cancelling and reordering until Max is his designated personal shopper.

What follows is a carefully cultivated friendship/love story between the two. Through the difficulties of not really being able to see each regularly (because of Olivia, Jonah’s sister being high risk and Max more susceptible with her public job) and when they do they must be masked up and 6 Feet apart. On top of the CoVid restrictions they have good old fashioned obstacles such as money and mental health issues. Jonah has the luck of living in a high income neighborhood but has challenges with depression and severe anxiety. Max is very self assured for the most part but money is not taken for granted in her tiny apartment with just her and her mom. Max is working to save for her college fund on top of trying to help her mom with their barely hanging on dry cleaning business.

Can Max and Jonah really last with all their social and economical issues as well as the pandemic working against them?

Hello (From Here) is a difficult love story that starts out at the beginning of the CoVid pandemic. And while presently our world is not as bad off as before life is still a bit different. This book brought back a lot of memories of the early days of the pandemic, some good but a lot bad. My youngest son in fact got CoVid twice. With all the vaccinations and everything. It was a very scary time.
I remember going to the grocery store and I couldn’t find any cleaning products or toilet paper (thank god I was a bit of a bulk buyer (aka hoarder 😁)). But before the toilet paper came back in stock my supply was dwindling extremely low and I started to get a little panicked, to the point that I was worried I would have to go hunting for leaves and such..lol. I can’t imagine trying to start a relationship during this time in our catastrophic world. That’s what made this so interesting to see how it might possibly work.

While this wasn’t a book I would consider fascinating, it was in fact very middle of the road. Pacing was ok. Nothing spectacular stuck out to me. Ok let me back that up. One thing, really animal, stuck out to me. Yes this is another book where a dog took center stage over the humans. I adored Chester the bow tie wearing dog! Jonah was too self wallowing and Max was fine, but that was the depths of my feelings..just fine. I don’t regret reading it though. There were bits of snarky banter that cracked me up. And of course with a book that is centered around CoVid there were some heavy parts. I don’t always mind heavy parts though. In fact before you even get to the first page there is a warning: Please be aware that this story touches on topics such as parental death, COVID-19, AIDS, generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder, and racism.

Thank You Penguin Teen and NetGalley for my gifted copy in exchange for my honest review. 9780593326121 In this collaboration between YA authors Chandler Baker and Wesley King, two teens develop a connection as the world goes into COVID lockdown.

Jonah and Max have a fairly unique meet-cute: he tries to negotiate with her to get some toilet paper out of her shopping cart (she shops for people), since the grocery store is mobbed. And while she gets the upper hand in their negotiations, both are intrigued by the other, so Jonah does the (logical? stalkerish?) thing and tracks her down.

What ensues is a budding relationship of sorts, conducted mostly over FaceTime, and via calls and texts, along with some clandestine (and masked) meetings along the way. Both have been hurt before and both have their own issues—Jonah suffers from anxiety and is dealing with unresolved grief over his mother’s death, while Max worries about her workaholic mother and their financial status as everything shuts down for COVID.

When I read 56 Days earlier this month I wasn’t affected by its being set during COVID, but reading Hello (from here) definitely was a little soon for me. It very accurately depicted the anxieties of the early days of the pandemic, where no one knew how it could spread and there was so much worry about infecting those you loved with weaker immune systems.

Beyond that, though, I just didn’t love these characters. Their banter was cute but their behaviors at times (particularly Jonah’s) weren’t very redeeming. I enjoyed a subplot about one of Max’s customers and would’ve liked more of that.

I guess I’m not really ready to read a book set fully in the COVID pandemic!! Are you?

See all of my reviews at itseithersadnessoreuphoria.blogspot.com.

Follow me on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/the.bookishworld.of.yrralh/. 9780593326121 I really wanted to like this book because everyone's love life suffered a little bit throughout this pandemic. I know mine did. The fact of the matter is that this book was maybe written a little too soon and didn't get as much help as it needed. The plot didn't feel like it was baked all the way and the characters really weren't it for me. I grew to like Max even though I didn't have very positive feelings towards her in the beginning but my main problem I had was with Jonah. He was so creepy in the beginning and just proceeded to be creepy and obsessive over Max for so long but no one seemed to raise any red flags about it? Max didn't even think twice about it and ended up making jokes about it like it was a cute way they met. It was just really unsettling because we know they're young adults but don't seem to be aware of things like this. Not even Max's friends thought it was weird or thought to tell her that Jonah was giving off sketchy vibes and I know when it seems like the world is ending, you do some weird stuff but this was just too uncomfortable for my liking. 9780593326121 2.5 stars, this felt a little too soon and some parts were just, a lot for no reason

Thank you Penguin Teen for the arc through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review!

I have to admit, I started reading this book a while before I marked it on Goodreads. I am too lazy to go back and try to find the time, especially because it felt like such a chore to read through. There was so much going on, obviously because it's about covid, but also so much extra drama that felt unnecessary. It didn't leave me with a good taste in my mouth, but that was also probably it was a bit too soon for reading considering we are still going through the pandemic. With that being said, I feel that in the future if someone reads this outside the pandemic, they will find more interest in it. There were a lot of smaller and diverse details that I really enjoyed, but it didn't make up for the bad of it.

The plot followed two high school kids, falling in love over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, via text messages and zoom calls. There was some cool rep such as; Max lives in a low-income household and she works for herself and her mom. Jonah lives in a well-off household but he has a generalized anxiety disorder (which seemed pretty accurate from my friend's comments) and his mother has died. His sister Olivia has GI issues and is chronically ill, as well as either bi or lesbian, I don't believe it is ever explicitly stated. Max delivers to an old man who becomes a side character who is also LGBTQ and he was really fun.

Because of the amazing diversity of the characters, I think someone who is reading it outside of COVID will have a better time. I recommend checking the trigger warnings at the bottom of my review because there were absolutely tons. The COVID pandemic hasn't been very hard on me in terms of losing people I know, but there was still so much stress, and as my favorite teacher put it I'm sure as teenagers you have a lot of unnoticed trauma from this ongoing pandemic that will be discovered. I agree, and reading about this was no happy story. I didn't leave with any feeling of hope or joy, maybe because we are still in the pandemic, or maybe the story. I am not completely sure.

Max was a character that I liked right from the start, I connected and related to her a lot in terms of the family situation and etc. She was really hard working and did her best to support herself and her mom. She took COVID very seriously and understood when she couldn't do something. In terms of some of the stuff that happens in her story, I am completely on her side in the matter. I preferred her over Jonah and I think I will stand by that.

Jonah was a character it took a while for me to love, he was annoying to me in the first part of the book and ended up being in the ending too. He obviously is going through a lot, he has a general anxiety disorder, and living through a pandemic is hard. But he was so ignorant of Max's financial situation, her feelings on some matters, and honestly anything she had going on. He thought she was always able to do things, that she always felt available, and that he was the most important thing in life. He did take steps to try to be a better person in that regard, but it always fell through.

Overall, this wasn't the worst and I did have joy at the diversity of the characters. But reading it during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, or rather writing it during that time too, was not the move. Jonah's character was really complicated and I didn't enjoy him to be completely honest. As well, I didn't feel a lot of romantic tension between the two characters and was left with a bad taste in my mouth. I hope someone reading it when the COVID pandemic will be over hopefully soon will find more joy in this story.

[TW: death of a friend, COVID-19 mentions and related deaths, panic and anxiety attacks, death of a family member, low-income problems, AIDs, panic attacks, cheating mentioned] 9780593326121 2.5 stars

I received an ARC from the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!

Several other reviews have said this, and I agree: a book with many COVID- and non-COVID-related triggers set during the peak of shutdowns is a bit too much, too soon. It was sweet but unfortunately not a favorite :(

I'll start with things that I did enjoy:
1. The characters were relatively likable. The two MCs were not great, but some of the side characters really made up for it *cough cough Olivia*
2. The step-parent replacing late parent trope was done pretty well here, in my opinion. Kate (stepmother) and Jonah's (MC) relationship was truly wonderful to see develop and eventually find a happy place to settle.
3. The GAD (generalized anxiety disorder) rep was pretty great in this one. As someone with anxiety, I could understand Jonah's struggles during what was one of the most difficult parts of his life.

Things that I didn't enjoy:
1. The MCs (as stated before.) They were whiny, and I mean, they had some reason to be. 2020 was not a great year for anyone. However, it just got really frustrating by the end of the book.
2. The book is told from dual perspectives, and while I felt like it was an important aspect of the book to see both sides of the story, the dual perspectives added to the fact that this book is *heavily* inspired by Five Feet Apart, just set during COVID this time, instead of the two characters being chronically ill. The premise explains that this book has shades of Five Feet Apart, but it felt much more than that to me.
3. The cheating trope in this book wasn't a huge part of the story, but it just really wasn't needed in this book. At all.

Overall, this book wasn't great. It had some redeemable qualities to overlook the hiccups, but too many things just didn't set well with me.

Again, thank you to the publisher for the ARC in exchange for an honest review. 9780593326121


OK, I will freely admit if I had read this book in another time I may have felt differently about it. I feel like it is too soon to write a story about a quarantine romance especially one with lots of heavy Covid related triggers. The pandemic is not over and I feel like it is too soon for a book like this. We are literally still being traumatized, it’s not time to dive into fictional heartache. That being said I did like the characters even if their meeting (and Jonah then tracking her down stalker style) was a little intense. I also liked the supporting characters (game nights for the win). Overall this book was a little heavy in the drama for my tastes. I understand relationships need some bumps, but I felt like the infidelity piece was not needed for this story and was more of a distraction. I loved Arlo and Winter’s side story despite shedding more than a couple of tears. 9780593326121 The world has just shut down to the unimaginable: a virus.
COVID-19 is new and fresh, and the state of California is in lockdown as it tries to fight the disease.
Two of its residence, from very different sides of the city, bump into each-other at the grocery store and things change.
Now, they must figure out if it’s worth it, a relationship where you can never touch your loved one sounds hard enough- but also dealing with the chaos of the rest of the world just makes it tougher.

As many other reviews have stated: it’s so hard to read a book about COVID-19 while also still being in it. It’s like reading a history book, where you already know the ending and it effects how you think about the book as a whole.
It’s weird reading things that you went through, emotions that you dealt with, fears that you experienced and still do- the unknown of it all for the 𝑐ℎ𝑎𝑟𝑎𝑐𝑡𝑒𝑟 but the familiar of it all for the reader.
Is there a potential that this book will be used in a few years in English classes as a way to familiarize yourself with what people that lived during the COVID crisis went through? Absolutely.
That’s how realistic it is - how familiar it is and that’s hard.

All-in-all it’s a decent book. It deals with the struggles of a relationship admits a pandemic, the struggles of surviving the pandemic, mental health issues, death, and a lot of other difficult topics.
The characters were somewhat enjoyable but fell pretty flat. It almost feels as more of a plot based story than character driven, but without any real plot other than ‘remember how hard COVID is.’
But it’s still a good enough story that you’re just not uninterested enough to DNF it.

If you’re wanting to read something that you’re familiar with, the relates to the last year of chaos and hurt, then this is a great book to really detail that! 9780593326121 (TWs: death of mother, car crashes, covid-19, hospitalization, anxiety, panic attacks, funerals, death of friends.)

a lot cuter than expected but a lil bland

The world's still hanging on. Love aint the last one standing. There are grievances and bad timing and all the things that came before.

Max and Jonah are our 17 y/o mcs. max is middle class, and works as a grocery shopper & deliverer. she lives with her mom, a struggling laundry mat owner. Jonah is rich. his dad is off on a business trip to Spain, and gets stuck do to the pandemic. his step-mom is not the best, and his sister has Crohns disease, so he has to be extra careful.

stress is always up whether its financial, mental, or physical. Jonah and Max see each other as a break in the madness, something new and exciting to focus on. but with the pandemic, there are limitations. they can't go on dates, enter each other's house, hold hands, or even be within 6ft. while relationships don't need physical touch, it definitely sucks when you can't hug the person you love.

max and Jonah go through many bumps that come with their different lives. Jonah gets sit and eat chips for weeks on end in lock down, and max has to work her butt off to keep the lights on. but also Jonah has anxiety and zooming one-on-one with his therapist isn't as great compared to in person. he struggling, she's struggling.

it gives us a glimpse of how elderly people are living, and how they're at greater risk and also can't see their loved ones. there's a lot of loss present, parents, mentors, friends.

I love love love the inclusion of boys with anxiety and mental illness! in ya there's a lot of books catered to girls about mental illness, but not boys. its one of those things society has said no to in the name of toxic masculinity. and some side characters that are jock-himbos but understand that Jonah is going through something hard. its nice to have that support.

my favorite thing: the banter. the banter is TO DIE FOR. its great! its spaced out well! not too much that you can tell its just for comic relief, but what a normal teen would say! there's a lot of texting, which is to be expected with the pandemic, and its not bad! it's pretty realistic when you consider each character. that's usually the thing that makes me cringe the hardest, but Baker handled it well.

it has a very open ending, which I think is perfect. even now, the pandemic isn't over, it never will be. we'll just figure out how to deal with it in day-to-day life, like with the flu. no one really knows where its headed, and with that what Max and Jonah would do. she ended it at the right time in their relationship for the readers to make up how it will go next.

a song i associate with this book: Things Are Different- Picture This 9780593326121 2.5 rounded up 🙄

I’m really frustrated with this book. I cannot stand Jonah and didn’t like him from the start. He’s a moron, he’s not careful, and acts like he’s entitled to things. When he asks out Max and she says no, he won’t stop. He’s insistent until he wears her down. Not a cute look. And he continues the pattern of pressuring her into things she’s uncomfortable with throughout the WHOLE BOOK. The relationship makes no sense. The dynamic is super off. Am I supposed to be invested in this?

All I cared about the whole time was Max being okay and Olivia staying safe. Max and Jonah are in completely different places in life. Max is doing anything she can to keep herself and her mom afloat. And Jonah is complaining about eating chips in his room at 3am because his affluent upbringing gives him nothing else to worry about. While Max is constantly aware of their differences, Jonah chooses to completely ignore everything and insist on living out his make believe romcom life. He needs a reality check.

If I weren’t so stubborn, I would have DNF’d at the boat incident. I was so mad. Unforgivable honestly.

No thanks! 9780593326121 3.5/5

I really wanted to like this book as it was just such an interesting premise, but unfortunately, I just think this book was written too soon. Everyone was affected by COVID in one way or another, and I want to say this upfront if COVID was especially hard for you, please please please be prepared for this book because, personally for me, even after reading the trigger warnings, this book was a lot to process and very triggering.

This book transports you right back into the beginning of the pandemic, March 2020, and starts with a meet cute in the grocery store. Max and Jonah meet in the grocery store and start up a virtual relationship. However, I was put off by how pushy and almost creepy Jonah was in pursuing Max, so I didn't love their relationship. Individually, I liked Max and Jonah as characters and thought they were written well in the different ways they both reacted to the pandemic. I particularly related to Jonah's anxiety and some of the cyclical thoughts he had sounded like they could have come right from my head.

I feel like where this book fell short was that it tried to tackle too much all at once. There were some really important and good themes and issues brought up in this book; however, it seemed like the authors didn't have the bandwidth to dive sufficiently into each one. I really wish we had gotten more about Arlo and Winter.

Additionally, apart from one character hitting the whoa move and some terrifying pop culture references, I would say Max, Jonah, and their friends actually felt like teenagers which is always a plus.

Overall, I am excited to read this book again in a couple of years when, hopefully, COVID is well and truly behind us.

age rating: 12+
tw: parental death, COVID-19, AIDs, generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder, panic attacks, vomiting

Thank you to penguin teen and netgalley for providing me with a digital arc of this book. 9780593326121

Chandler Baker Ï 7 DOWNLOAD

A witty and thought-provoking YA love story set during the COVID-19 quarantine, written by two NYT bestselling authors, with shades of Five Feet Apart and Anna and the French Kiss .

Maxine and Jonah bump into each other in the canned goods aisle of the grocery store just as the state of California is going into lockdown, when everything changes completely. Could there be a worse time to meet? Max's part-time job at a supermarket is about to transform into a hellish gauntlet. Jonah's preexisting anxiety is about to become an epic daily struggle. As Max, Jonah, and their friends live together but apart through hijinks, humanity, and heartbreak, Hello (From Here) cuts across urgent matters much bigger than a teenage crush. Differences of class, privilege, mental health, and sacrifice are thrown into stark relief by the profound and personal stresses of the COVID-19 pandemic. As thoughtful, probing, and informed as it is buoyant, romantic, and funny, Hello (From Here) looks at the first two months of the quarantine and adds falling hopelessly in love to the mess. Hello (from Here)