Book Review: First & Then

Posted May 5, 2016 by booksbeautyandcoffee in Book Reviews / 4 Comments

Book Review: First & ThenTitle: First & Then
Author: Emma Mills
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)
Published: October 13th 2015
Pages: 267

Devon Tennyson wouldn't change a thing. She's happy watching Friday night games from the bleachers, silently crushing on best friend Cas, and blissfully ignoring the future after high school.

But the universe has other plans.

It delivers Devon's cousin Foster, an unrepentant social outlier with a surprising talent for football, and the obnoxiously superior and maddeningly attractive star running back, Ezra, right where she doesn't want them: first into her P.E. class and then into every other aspect of her life.

Pride and Prejudice meets Friday Night Lights in this contemporary novel about falling in love with the unexpected boy, with a new brother, and with yourself.

My Review

I don’t think I’ve ever been this happy after reading a contemporary book in my entire book reading life. It’s not a secret that I’m not the biggest fan when it comes to contemporary reads, I much prefer an entirely fictional world with mythical creatures and magic, but I’m really starting to move to love contemporary books! I think 2016 might be the year that I actually start reading the same amount of contemporaries, if not more, than I do fantasy books and I’m genuinely excited.

First & Then was the epitome of what I love in these cute, cheesy romance YA novels. It’s got a romance that doesn’t just start right off the bat, *cough* instalove *cough*, it’s got a brooding, but not too brooding love interest, and it’s written so well that I blew right through it. Plus, the cute scenes are so cute.

“You okay?” i asked, finally, without letting go.

“Uh-huh.” I could feel his voice resonate in his chest.

“You sure?”

“No.” A pause. “Maybe we could just stay like this for a little while longer.”

Did I mention it’s a Pride & Prejudice retelling?


I mean, guys, the white shirt scene is in this thing. Granted, it’s a high school football version of it, but it’s the shirt scene nonetheless and I just about squealed when I read the scene.

I watched as Ezra pulled off his jersey and shoulder pads, and I dwelled on that last thought for just a moment. He was wearing a white T-shirt underneath that clung to him, and his hair was damp with sweat.


Its not in a lake, and it’s not as intense or as dramatic, but I’ll take it. This is the first Pride & Prejudice retelling I’ve read before and I already know this is going straight to my favorites shelf on Goodreads.

Another thing that I totally loved, aside from this high school version of Darcy, was the friendships and family relationships in this book. We didn’t really see a whole lot of the relationships between the parents and the kids, as is the case in a lot of YA novels, but it was enough that it made me smile and feel like the characters were real. And the friendships were just hilarious.

“Champ,” Jordan said. “Been looking for you.”

“What’s up?”

“I, uh, wanted to see if you had the notes for German today.”

“I take Spanish.”

“Ah.” Jordan bobbed his head and then said, “Well, that’s all. See you later.” And he walked away, leaving Ezra and me standing there.

This actually made me laugh out loud, which is exactly what it was meant to do. Everything that the author meant for her words to do, it did. And Jordan was totally Bingley, there’s no denying it. He was the perfect Bingley.. But I really want to know who his Jane was. I need to know!

I think the only thing wrong with this book is the fact that wasn’t more for me to read, or even a sequel. Hell, I would take a second book solely based on Bingley Jordan and his mystery Jane love interest.


I hope everyone has a fantabulous day/evening/morning/whenever you’re reading this and happy reading!

My Rating

five pumpkins cats