Sunday, January 14, 2018

Review: By Your Side by Kasie West

By Your Side
Publication Date: January 31, 2017
Paperback, 346 pages, HarperTeen
Genres: YA, Contemporary

When Autumn Collins finds herself accidentally locked in the library for an entire weekend, she doesn’t think things could get any worse. But that’s before she realizes that Dax Miller is locked in with her. Autumn doesn’t know much about Dax except that he’s trouble. Between the rumors about the fight he was in (and that brief stint in juvie that followed it) and his reputation as a loner, he’s not exactly the ideal person to be stuck with. Still, she just keeps reminding herself that it is only a matter of time before Jeff, her almost-boyfriend, realizes he left her in the library and comes to rescue her.

Only he doesn’t come. No one does.

Instead it becomes clear that Autumn is going to have to spend the next couple of days living off vending-machine food and making conversation with a boy who clearly wants nothing to do with her. Except there is more to Dax than meets the eye. As he and Autumn first grudgingly, and then not so grudgingly, open up to each other, Autumn is struck by their surprising connection. But can their feelings for each other survive once the weekend is over and Autumn’s old life, and old love interest, threaten to pull her from Dax’s side?

My Review

Kasie West is the queen of fun, cliché-but-lovable contemporaries. And By Your Side is just another addition to her collection.

Alright, so first thing’s first: I didn’t love this one as much as The Distance Between Us, but it’s still a good, quick read if you’re stuck in reading slump or just want to whip through a book pick-me-up. Autumn is a decent main character. She doesn’t make stupid decisions, and she actually talks to her family and friends. Thank you, Kasie, for writing stories where the protagonist isn’t just obsessed with her love life.

As for the boy, Dax, he’s interesting. Of course, he’s the mysterious, loner kid, so naturally he’s attractive as well. What makes this particular bit hilarious is how his loner vibe affects Autumn when they’re locked into the library together. I chuckled at some of their interactions.

The plot of the book is what’s going to get everyone’s attention. Two teenagers stuck in a library? What could be more romantic and/or adventurous?! Unfortunately, the entire book isn’t spent in the library. Actually, only about forty percent of the storyline takes place there, which is kind of a bummer. Once the characters leave the library, I feel like some of their magic fizzles out. Autumn isn’t the quirky, competitive girl, and Dax isn’t the nice, brooding boy anymore. The rest of the world gets in their way.

All in all, By Your Side is for readers who want nothing more than to smile at two teenagers in their sort of meet-cute moment. Plus, it’s a good opportunity to learn how exactly you can get yourself stuck in a library for the weekend. #lifegoals

*Note: I received a copy of this book from work. This in no way affected my opinion/review.


  1. I have this book sitting on my shelf but I am not in a huge hurry to read it. Most reviews have been pretty lukewarm. It should be great since part of it takes place in the library!

    1. Yeah, it wasn't as good as her other contemporary. I'd read that one first or even her sci-fi duology. That one was pretty good. :)


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