This Is What It Feels Like (Hardcover)
This tender story of friendship, music, and ferocious love asks: what will you fight for, if not yourself? You Don’t Know Me But I Know You author Rebecca Barrow’s next book is perfect for fans of Katie Cotugno and Emery Lord.
Who cares that the prize for the Sun City Originals contest is fifteen grand? Not Dia, that’s for sure. Because Dia knows that without a band, she hasn’t got a shot at winning. Because ever since Hanna’s drinking took over her life, Dia and Jules haven’t been in it. And because ever since Hanna left—well, there hasn’t been a band.
It used to be the three of them, Dia, Jules, and Hanna, messing around and making music and planning for the future. But that was then, and this is now—and now means a baby, a failed relationship, a stint in rehab, all kinds of off beats that have interrupted the rhythm of their friendship.
But like the lyrics of a song you used to play on repeat, there’s no forgetting a best friend. And for Dia, Jules, and Hanna, this impossible challenge—to ignore the past, in order to jump start the future—will only become possible if they finally make peace with the girls they once were, and the girls they are finally letting themselves be.
Rebecca Barrow writes stories about girls and all the wonders they can be. A lipstick obsessive with the ability to quote the entirety of Mean Girls, she lives in England, where it rains a considerable amount more than in the fictional worlds of her characters. She collects tattoos, cats, and more books than she could ever possibly read. You can visit her online at www.rebecca-barrow.com.
“A realistic, impassioned portrait of young women coming into their own in all their messy glory.” — Kirkus Reviews
“This is a story with a diverse cast of young women taking charge of their own destinies... A fun girl-power novel for teens who like their rock hard and their main characters tough.” — School Library Journal
“This Is What It Feels Like is real, raw, and explores a much-needed narrative: black girls who rock. Rebecca Barrow is a writer to watch.” — Brandy Colbert, author of Little & Lion
“Bold and bighearted and so much fun, This is What it Feels Like is the smartest, most honest look at female friendship that I’ve read in a long, long time. This book made me want to call all my best girls and tell them how much I love them.” — Katie Cotugno, New York Times bestselling author of 99 Days and How to Love
“This is What it Feels Like is a poignant and heartfelt exploration of friendship and love. Rebecca Barrow perfectly—and poetically—captures that spark inside that challenges us to be brave and dares us to be happy.” — Courtney Summers, author of All the Rage
“A luminous story about friendship, first love, and learning how to stand on your own. Rebecca Barrow’s This is What it Feels Like left me not only inspired but empowered to dream boldly and love deeply.” — Ashley Herring Blake, author of Suffer Love and How to Make a Wish
Praise for YOU DON’T KNOW ME BUT I KNOW YOU: “[Barrow] steadily resists cliché and tired tropes all the way to the novel’s deeply felt, unflinching conclusion. This compelling, closely observed debut charts its appealing characters’ difficult journey with clarity and honesty.” — Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“It’s unfair to call this simply a book about teen pregnancy... Barrow has crafted soulful, complex characters who will resonate with readers who’ve had to contemplate the weight of their decisions upon their futures and themselves.” — Booklist
“Audrey’s emotions swing wildly; she candidly portrays the all-consuming and delicate nature of her situation and the choice she faces. Debut author Barrow opts for realism over a scared-straight approach to teen pregnancy, which readers will appreciate.” — Publishers Weekly
“In both its humor and in its aching, You Don’t Know Me but I Know You is the most honest book I’ve read in ages.” — Emery Lord, author of The Start of Me and You and When We Collided
“Both relentlessly honest and relentlessly hopeful, You Don’t Know Me but I Know You stands out as a book that cares profoundly about the power of friendship and the thrill of getting to know yourself. Above all else, it’s a testament to the bravery, brightness, and beauty of teenaged girls.” — Corey Ann Haydu, author of OCD Love Story and Life by Committee
“You Don’t Know Me but I Know You is a heartfelt, powerful examination of family: the one we’re born to, the one we choose, and the one that chooses us. Rebecca Barrow’s novel feels all at once heartbreaking, hopeful, and true.” — Janet McNally, author of Girls in the Moon
“Honest, nuanced, and achingly authentic, You Don’t Know Me but I Know You is both sensitive and unflinching in its portrayal of life-shattering choices and their aftermaths. It’s populated with strong female friendships that feel more like a sisterhood.” — Laurie Elizabeth Flynn, author of Firsts