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Summer’s coming to a close and I’m gearing up for cosy season but I still have a few more fun book reviews to share with you all before the season’s over!
Today I’m reviewing one of my most anticipated reads of this year: One Last Stop by Casey McQuiston. I read Red, White and Royal Blue last year and fell completely and utterly in love. So it’s fair to say I was a little nervous going into this one that it wouldn’t quite live up to my expectations.
Of course, Casey McQuiston completely proved me wrong. But let’s save all that for the review…
“From the New York Times bestselling author of Red, White & Royal Blue comes a new romantic comedy that will stop readers in their tracks…
For cynical twenty-three-year-old August, moving to New York City is supposed to prove her right: that things like magic and cinematic love stories don’t exist, and the only smart way to go through life is alone. She can’t imagine how waiting tables at a 24-hour pancake diner and moving in with too many weird roommates could possibly change that. And there’s certainly no chance of her subway commute being anything more than a daily trudge through boredom and electrical failures.
But then, there’s this gorgeous girl on the train.
Jane. Dazzling, charming, mysterious, impossible Jane. Jane with her rough edges and swoopy hair and soft smile, showing up in a leather jacket to save August’s day when she needed it most. August’s subway crush becomes the best part of her day, but pretty soon, she discovers there’s one big problem: Jane doesn’t just look like an old school punk rocker. She’s literally displaced in time from the 1970s, and August is going to have to use everything she tried to leave in her own past to help her. Maybe it’s time to start believing in some things, after all.
Casey McQuiston’s One Last Stop is a magical, sexy, big-hearted romance where the impossible becomes possible as August does everything in her power to save the girl lost in time.”
Usually I make notes on a book I know I’m going to review while I’m reading it, so everything stays fresh in my head. If you’ve read One Last Stop, I’m sure it’s no surprise that I have very few notes on this book, because I just could not bear to put it down.
This book captured my heart from the very first page and held me completely throughout.
I was so excited for the LGBTQ+ representation in this story (I cannot speak completely on this, so would recommend reading a review from someone within the community for full understanding) and it went above and beyond what I was expecting. It celebrated queerness in the most accepting and non-judgmental way and I am so here for that!
I was nervous when I first read the synopsis of One Last Stop. If you know my reading tastes, you’ll know that I’m always a little wary of sci-fi (it’s just not for me!). So I was a little skeptical about the the idea of a contemporary romance with time travel.
I shouldn’t have worried. The time travel didn’t take away from the characters or cute romance at all- it was woven through the story in such a unique and fun way.
I never found myself getting bored while reading this book. In fact, I had to stop myself from accidentally skipping ahead a few times. Even when nothing was happening, something was, and that made the story so fun and enjoyable.
“The older she’s gotten, the more she prefers thinking of love as a hobby for other people, like rock climbing or knitting. Fine, enviable even, but she doesn’t feel like investing in the equipment.”– one last stop
One Last Stop captured the bustling atmosphere of New York so well. It felt so visceral from the very first page, and August’s love of the city just made the description come alive even more. From the diner where August worked to the underground Q train that a lot of the story revolves around, I felt as if I was there every minute of the story (and that’s really saying something seen as I’ve never been to the US!).
“New York takes from her, sometimes. But she takes too. She takes its muggy air in fistfuls, and she packs it into the cracks in her heart.”– one last stop
Firstly, August was the cutest MC ever and she was so fun and so human. Casey McQuiston completely captured her feeling of being unsure about where her life is going. When we meet August, she feels as though she’s wasted the first 20 years of her life. She’s cynical about where her life is heading and feels like she’s running out of time to decide. This feeling is definitely something a lot of people can relate to so I always love when a book challenges it and inspires hope for the future.
Jane (our love interest) was mysterious, sweet and bubbling with character. One of the sweetest things in this story was the addition of forum posts/news articles at the start of each chapter with ways in which Jane had touched people’s lives or helped them on the Q train.
“Jane is spun sugar. A switchblade girl with a cotton-candy heart.”– one last stop
August and Jane’s relationship was paced really well and it was so nice to see a main character exploring her sexuality in her early twenties without it being a big deal.
But it was the side characters that completely made this story for me; August’s roommates were so cute and weird in their own ways. I absolutely adore a found family trope so my heart exploded several times whilst reading. They were also totally diverse and I just loved to read about happy and complex queer, black, trans, bi-racial characters living their happy and complex lives.
It’s so rare that I read a book where I love and root for every single character and their side plots, but this book really pulled it off.
Also, the dialogue was the most fun thing ever; it absolutely brought the characters alive and I found myself wishing I was their roommate so I could join some of their conversations.
“But, you know, that feeling? When you wake up in the morning and you have somebody to think about? Somewhere for hope to go? It’s good. Even when it’s bad, it’s good.”– one last stop
I’m going to wrap up this post by saying I would recommend this book to almost anyone. I think you’ll especially love it if you’re looking for happy LGBTQ+ exploration or just a book that’ll make you feel really hopeful and excited about the future!