'The most riveting, rewarding, refreshing novel I've read in years' - Barbara Delinsky, bestselling author
What if you had a second chance at first love?
Annika Rose likes being alone.
She feels lost in social situations, saying the wrong thing or acting the wrong way. She just can't read people. She prefers the quiet solitude of books or playing chess to being around others. Apart from Jonathan. She liked being around him, but she hasn't seen him for ten years. Until now that is. And she's not sure he'll want to see her again after what happened all those years ago.
Annika Rose likes being alone.
Except that, actually, she doesn't like being alone at all.
The Girl He Used to Know is an uplifting novel full of surprising revelations that keep you turning the page. Perfect for fans of Jojo Moyes, Gail Honeyman, Jill Santopolo and Sliding Doors.
'Tracey Garvis Graves has crafted an incredible story with a unique premise and characters you'll want to root for. The last thirty pages had me on the edge of my seat. This book is beautiful.' - Colleen Hoover, #1 New York Times bestselling author of It Ends with Us
'I adore Tracey Garvis Graves' work.' - Sarah Pekkanen, New York Times bestselling coauthor of The Wife Between Us
'The Girl He Used to Know is unlike any book I've read. I loved every page.' - Camille Pagán, bestselling author of Life and Other Near-Death Experiences
The solid latest from Graves (after White-Hot Hack) follows the romance between a high-functioning autistic woman and her college flame. In August 2001, Annika Rose and Jonathan Hoffman run into one another at a Chicago grocery store 10 years after they ended their relationship. Jonathan went to New York to pursue his dream of working in finance and was heartbroken when Annika decided not to follow him. Now back in Chicago, Jonathan's wary of their mutual spark and has yet to deal with their unresolved past. Largely homeschooled before college, Annika is lonely and finds solace in caring for animals, reading books, and playing chess. With the help of Jonathan and her friend Janice Albright, she navigates the overwhelming stimuli that has always aggravated her anxiety. As their relationship evolves, Annika wants to prove that she's changed for the better and won't give in to the urge to hide when things go wrong. The narrative builds to a life-or-death situation that puts Annika to the test. Graves does a good job of putting readers in Annika's shoes and setting up the foundation for the book's ending, though the narrative often gets mired in lengthy lovey-dovey scenes. Readers who don't mind the over-the-top emotional element will find a solid story here. This review has been updated to remove a spoiler.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Surprisingly good read. Nothing hugely exciting but the writing and the characters were so good I just kept reading and thoroughly enjoyed it.
The Girl He Used to Know
The Girl He Used to Know by Tracey Garvis Graves
This book was a really special one, full of awkwardness and heart and utterly endearing characters.
Annika and Jonathan meet in college at chess club in 1991. While others look at Annika and see an oddity, Jonathan sees her in quite a different light and is one to appreciate her as she is. For reasons you’ll have to read about, there is a heartbreaking breakup and the two don’t see each other until ten years later in Chicago.
The book skips back and forth between the then and now, between 1991 and 2001 and is written so beautifully that we get to experience every feeling, uncertainty, anxiety Annika and Jonathan go through. Every heartache and every heartbreak. I don’t want to say too much but I will say that I adored this book and the characters - ALL of them. Annika captured my heart and Jonathan just stole and ran away with it.
*I voluntarily read an early copy of this book.
**Reviewed by Melinda for Joandisalovebooks Blog.