November 14, 2014 • Cee • Reviews

sara zarr:tara altebrando - roomiesRoomies by Sara Zarr & Tara Altebrando
December 24, 2013
Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Sarah Zarr’s Twitter | Tara Altebrando’s Twitter | Goodreads
Amazon | Barnes & Noble |  The Book Depository

*Courtesy of Jessica @ Crazy Red Pen

It’s time to meet your new roomie.

When East Coast native Elizabeth receives her freshman-year roommate assignment, she shoots off an e-mail to coordinate the basics: television, microwave, mini-fridge. That first note to San Franciscan Lauren sparks a series of e-mails that alters the landscape of each girl’s summer — and raises questions about how two girls who are so different will ever share a dorm room.

As the countdown to college begins, life at home becomes increasingly complex. With family relationships and childhood friendships strained by change, it suddenly seems that the only people Elizabeth and Lauren can rely on are the complicated new boys in their lives . . . and each other. Even though they’ve never met.

National Book Award finalist Sara Zarr and acclaimed author Tara Altebrando join forces for a novel about growing up, leaving home, and getting that one fateful e-mail that assigns your college roommate.


I tried, and I tried, but Roomies ended up as a DNF.

I was excited about the idea of reading about roommates. I never had the college experience of having a roommate, so I wanted to see how the characters got along.

And oh boy, the two main characters frustrated the hell out of me. I wonder if it’s because I couldn’t relate since I never had a roommate, thus making me not understand their situation, OR because I related to the emailing bit too much since I’ve felt that frustration when the other person didn’t seem engage in what I have to say. Maybe it’s a mixture of both?

Yeah, the characters do get along quite nicely at times, but their frequent misunderstandings was a constant source of annoyance. It stood out to me even though I didn’t want it to. Misunderstandings happen a lot in real life, especially in emails since you’re sometimes unable to read the tone of the writer. Elizabeth and Lauren experience this, and as I read through their thought process, I felt like I was looking in the mirror. I could see their thinking as something that would go through my mind, and that was a little too close to home for me. Maybe, one of these days, I’ll be far removed from relating to these characters so that I can actually enjoy the book.


3 Responses to “(DNF) REVIEW | Roomies by Sara Zarr & Tara Altebrando”

  1. Jillyn says:

    I wonder if I’d relate to this, I’ve had some NIGHTMARE roommates.

    Sorry to hear this one wasn’t for you!

  2. I did finish Roomies and I thought it was okay, but not nowhere near as good as I thought it was going to be. I can see how feeling to close to the characters can make the read less enjoyable.

  3. Yah… I had a nightmare roommate situation so I dont know if I’d want to read this. Plus your trouble with it solidifies my wariness.

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