I Wanna Be Where You Are by Kristina Forest

I Wanna Be Where You Are

by Kristina Forest

A debut young adult rom-com about an African American ballerina who finds love on the road to an audition.

In a world where it's easy to lose faith in love, I Wanna Be Where You Are is a brilliant burst of light. A dazzling debut. -- Nic Stone, New York Times bestselling author of Dear Martin and Odd One Out

When Chloe Pierce's mom forbids her to apply for a spot at the dance conservatory of her dreams, she devises a secret plan to drive two hundred miles to the nearest audition. But Chloe hits her first speed bump when her annoying neighbor Eli insists upon hitching a ride, threatening to tell Chloe's mom if she leaves him and his smelly dog, Geezer, behind. So now Chloe's chasing her ballet dreams down the east coast--two unwanted (but kinda cute) passengers in her car, butterflies in her stomach, and a really dope playlist on repeat.

Filled with roadside hijinks, heart-stirring romance, and a few broken rules, Kristina Forest's I Wanna Be Where You Are is a YA debut perfect for fans of Jenny Han and Sandhya Menon.

Reviewed by layawaydragon on

5 of 5 stars

I Wanna Be Where You Are is a road tripping, ballet auditioning adorable friends to enemies to lovers romance perfect for YA fans. This would make a great movie like To All The Boys I've Loved Before, with less boy choosing drama.

I loved all of this and devoured it. It's sweet and funny and emotional. There's the single mom, the divorced parents, the wildly different parental expectations, nightmares, injury recovery, the badass older sister, the old best friend, the new theatrical best friend, and a smelly grumpy old dog.

I love the playlist at the end, and totally wish the rest of them created in their story was shared throughout as well.

Also, deals with the "bad boy is only bad because he's been told he's bad" wayyyy better than every white book I've read that tried it. I love how this runs parallel to her insecure mind over matter issue re: her ankle injury and ballet.

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Reading updates

  • Started reading
  • 17 November, 2019: Finished reading
  • 17 November, 2019: Reviewed