Title: Field Notes on Love
Author: Jennifer E. Smith
Release Date: March 5th 2019
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Having just been dumped by his girlfriend, British-born Hugo is still determined to take his last-hurrah-before-college train trip across the United States. One snag: the companion ticket is already booked under the name of his ex, Margaret Campbell. Nontransferable, no exceptions.
Enter the new Margaret C. (Mae for short), an aspiring filmmaker with big dreams. After finding Hugo’s spare ticket offer online, she’s convinced it’s the perfect opportunity to expand her horizons.
When the two meet, the attraction is undeniable, and both find more than they bargained for. As Mae pushes Hugo to explore his dreams for his future, he’ll encourage her to channel a new, vulnerable side of her art. But when life off the train threatens the bubble they’ve created for themselves, will they manage to keep their love on track?
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JENNIFER E. SMITH is the author of eight books for young adults, including Windfall and The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight. She earned a master’s degree in creative writing from the University of St. Andrews in Scotland, and her work has been translated into thirty-three languages. She currently lives in New York City.
Connect with Jennifer E. Smith:
“Everyone grows up dreaming of something different, Hugo. And that’s okay. It’s what makes life so interesting.”
Jennifer Smith never failed to make me swoon for her Contemporary Romances. She’s one of my fave romance authors so I expected a lot from Field Notes on Love. Fortunately, it did not disappoint!
I loved the MCs! They’re Mae and Hugo. Both have their own dreams and are looking for an adventure.
Mae loves making films and wished to study a film program at USC. Unfortunately, her application was rejected and she has no idea what’s wrong with her film.
Hugo, on the other hand, is part of a sextuplet. He comes from a big family and his mother blogs about them. He’d always been a part of the group and he wants to know how it’d feel to do things on his own. Having been recently broken up with his girlfriend, he decides to still go on a train trip organized by his ex, Margaret Campbell.
Both of the characters’ backstory was told which were very adorable. I loved the family connections and relationships. One of the things I loved in this book is how families were featured. Each of them is so nice, I wanted to hug them all!
I’m also glad that Smith didn’t miss out on character development. The book talks about dreams. Hugo’s and Mae’s. I enjoyed reading how they both worked on them. I’m actually so proud of them, especially Hugo for discovering what he really wants.
Seeing how Hugo and Mae also found their way to each other really made me feel warm and fuzzy! Their interactions made me internally scream because of excitement and the butterflies in my stomach! Though I know that if it were me, I would never meet up with someone like that, haha. BUT I’M SO GLAD THEY’RE NOT ME. Yaayy for adventures!
“I’m starting to realize that a lot of people don’t put much stock in dreams. They think of them like these faraway planets they never really expect to reach. I was only supposed to step out of my life for a week, but that’s another thing nobody tells you: that once you get there, it’s never enough. There are always more planets to see.”
Setting & Storyline
Having most of the story set on the train, I have this sudden urge to go on a train ride but not on our railways, LMAO. I wanted to travel like how Mae and Hugo did. It seemed magical even though this isn’t a fantasy read. I mean, the whole book was magical.
The vivid descriptions of everything they went into made me feel like I was part of their adventure. I blame Smith for making me crave for waffles and pizza!! The whole setting screams aesthetic! Imagining the train ride and their travels, it’s just so relaxing and refreshing. I also happen to picture everything in pastel colors because of the vibes this book is giving out (cover love!).
While this is a romance, I’m so happy to tell you that it also focused on self-discovery. Like what I’ve said before, dreams. It made me think of what I really wanted to do in my life. I definitely relate a lot to Hugo and maybe that’s why I loved him more.
You can clearly see how passionate they both are when it comes to their goals and that’s kind of inspiring. Seeing their path to self-discovery and love, was like watching a movie. Their romance was slow-burn but not the type that will bore you. Their romantic interactions were so cute, it woke up the hopeless romantic in me that’s been craving for a nice romance read. Craving satisfied! I swear from the bottom of my heart that the Team Hugo-Mae is absolutely adorable.
“You ran away and fell in love with a boy on a train,” he says, his voice full of wonder. Then he laughs. “Nana would be so proud.”
Pacing & Writing Style
As always, Jennifer Smith’s writing style gives off this comfy and chill feeling. It was easy to read. The words flow naturally. It was just the right pace.
The story was told into two POVs that worked out and really complemented each other. Field Notes on Love resurrected the fast reader in me. I devoured the pages, wanting more of Mae and Hugo.
Having read other of Smith’s books, I know how she ends them. While I was nearing the end, I’ve thought to myself that once again, this author will leave me wanting for more. And alas! She did. I was like, WAIT WHAT THE HECK YOU LEFT ME HANGING. But even though I complain like that every time I finish her books, I know that it was the best way to end the story. You get to decide what happens next. You get to have your own conclusion and that’s my favorite part in Jennifer Smith’s writing.
Though the story is a bit unrealistic for me in some ways because one, I’D TOTALLY NEVER GO ON A TRAIN RIDE TOGETHER WITH SOMEONE I’VE NEVER MET BEFORE. And my parents would definitely NOT LET ME GO OUT OF THE COUNTRY BY MYSELF for a few days, LMAO.
Wrapping it up,
I’m so glad I get to read another one of Smith’s awesome books. It definitely satisfied my craving for a romance read and now, I’m ready to get back to reading Fantasies. I totally recommend this for someone who loves adorable contemporary books. I think it’d also make a good palate cleanser.
Over all, I rate Field Notes on Love by Jennifer E. Smith, 4 out of 5 stars!
“Love is… I don’t know. Something bigger than that. It’s like the sun.”
“In that you can get burnt by it?”
“No,” she says wearily, but already, her eyes have that starry quality they get whenever she’s thinking of Alex. “In that it makes everything brighter and happier. And it warms you from the inside out.”Field Notes on Love by Jennifer E. Smith
I received an E-ARC for this book in preparation for the #FieldNotesPHBlogTour.
Prize: 3 winners for a proof copy of Field Notes on Love!
Enter the giveaway via rafflecopter here.
- Have you read this book? Or are you planning to? Tell me what you think of it!
- Do you enjoy long trips?
- Are you open to the idea of a trip with a random stranger?
- What are your dreams?