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1981: Jessie's Girl

(Love in the 80s #2)

3.78  ·  Rating details ·  122 ratings  ·  39 reviews
From USA TODAY bestselling author, Lindy Zart, comes 1981: Jessie's Girl --

The road trip from Minnesota to Pennsylvania and back is meant to be the final adventure before four friends go their separate ways in the fall.

Except nothing goes as intended, beginning with the unexpected addition of Catherine Tate, Jessie Keller’s new girlfriend. Sam Kent denies his attraction to
Published February 26th 2016 by WaWa Productions
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3.78  · 
Rating details
 ·  122 ratings  ·  39 reviews

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Paula  Phillips
Dec 18, 2016 rated it liked it
We all have an era that we wish we were born in or one that we love and fantasize about, for me it is the 80's and so it made sense to me to get the Love in the 80's collection. In this collection, each book is named after a popular song of that year, and each book is a year in the 1980's decade. I have to admit at first take I was surprised at this read as I am not used to the males being the lead characters in New Adult books or the fact that the males outweigh some female characters. In 1981, ...more
Becca - Wicked Quests of a BookNinja
I loved this book sooo much. Thanks for the great time, Lindy!

And noow:
Brina (Brina and the Books)
2 Stars

1981: Jessie's Girl is part of the Love in the 80s anthology and my second book in this series (the other one was 1984: Against All Odds by Rebecca Yarros).

The novella follows four friends from high school (Sam, Jessie, Hannah and Dickie) and Catherine who turns out to be Jessie's new flavor-of-the-week. The four friends + Catherine go on a roadtrip before they head off to college or start working.

I was not really satisfied with this novella. Unfortunately, the plot was not as good as t
MJ Daniels
Jan 14, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 1-míos
I have to be honest and say that when I started I thought it would be something cheesy and with the typical "I like the girl of my best friend" because that is what it seems by the title and the way it begins (or maybe just it was my crazy imagination, who knows)

“You two just met last night, and you’re dating?” I lift my eyebrows. “Yes,” Catherine answers, brackets of unease surrounding her mouth as she divides her gaze between us. Jessie gives me a thumbs up sign while nodding enthusiastically.
Char ღ Denae
4 long-time friends go on a road trip to spend time together after graduating high school. There’s the nerd, the tomboy, the jerk, and the ‘regular’ guy. The jerk brings his new, as of last night, ‘perfect’ girl friend along without asking his friends first. This causes some major issues between them to be revealed where they have to deal with some ugly truths. A ‘coming-of-age’ story that takes place between Minnesota and West Virginia in an on-it’s-last-leg, orange Renault. A little draggy but ...more
Mar 27, 2016 rated it liked it
I do love books that are set in the past few decades, so was sure I would love this newer series Love In The 80s. I picked up Jessie's Girl first as I'd not read any of Lindy's books before plus the books aren't connected I believe. Each book is relatively short, easily read in 1 sitting I felt if this one was a guide.

I just didn't connect with this one like I hoped though. I didn't have a love for any of the characters, nor related to them either. It was an ok story, but I was disappointed I ad
Ohhhhh, guys! I thought this story wasn't going to top the last one, but, man, was I wrong. I really think every story will get better and better. I'm loving everything about the 80s. Life was so simple back then.

This time around, we are 1981. When the biggest hit was Jessie's Girl by Rick Springfield and of course, in this story there would be a character call Jessie. Let me tell you, I never ever expect how everything turn out. Jessie Keller is the biggest jerk you can read about, but he is a
May 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
"In a life of uncertainties, change is always a constant." ... is definitely the motto of this story. Four friends and one tag-along head off on an adventure. A final roadtrip to celebrate the end of an era, no more school and a last hoorah before adulthood and going their separate ways. Times are changing for these teens, feelings are evolving and secrets are revealed on this rocky adventure.

Though only a short story it sure packed a punch! It delved into the characters of these five people s
Riley K.
Jessie’s Girl by Lindy Zart (Young Adult)
I seriously love Lindy Zart. In my opinion, she cannot write a bad book. The year is 1981, and five friends go on a road trip that forever changes their lives. The dynamic between the five friends is amazing and realistic. Lindy Zart always knows how to tap into making you feel what the characters are feeling and what they are thinking. She has a way of making the characters come to life in such a way that you feel like you are right there with them.

I se
Elle's Book Blog
Apr 23, 2016 rated it really liked it
:: 4 Pretty Little Stars ::

Another great addition to the Love in the 80's series. I love the 80's, so when I saw that an entire series was going to be published dedicated to this amazing era, I knew I HAD to read it. This is the second one I have read and once again, I really enjoyed it. These novellas are light, fun, and really cute. Each novella is dedicated to an awesome 80's song too so that makes the series even better. YAY. Just so much fun! Highly recommend this cool little series :)
Maria's Book Blog
Feb 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This short read packs quite an emotional punch! Don't let the length fool you, from beginning to end you get a complete story that's full of humor, drama, nostalgia, love and so much more. Jessie's Girl is a tad more serious that the previous book, but still manages to embody the classic 80's feel. I can't wait to see what else this series has in store for us, and look forward to discovering more authors I've never read before.
Alicia Huxtable
Feb 28, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great story about love and friendship

5 friends, 4 whom have known each other since diapers, head out on a road trip but after a few days things get tense as truths come out. But instead of destroying everything, it makes the group tighter.
Great story, well written
Brenda Thompson
Feb 21, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A great story about friendship.
Feb 26, 2016 added it
Shelves: dnf
DNF at 28%. I don't care about any of the characters and it isn't funny.
Wendy Leonard-Richardson
Jul 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book follows the Rick Springfield song Jessie's Girl from the 80's (if you were not around in that era it really doesn't matter you will still enjoy this book-you can always YouTube it). The author did a great job at bringing this song to life. The novel follows four friends plus one on a road trip right after high school and just before they strike out on their adult life. While it is set in the 80's it can probably be any era with a road trip and older teens as the themes of finding onese ...more
Feb 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Love your best-friend
Feb 20, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I received an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Jessie's Girl is a part of a Love in the 80's book series.

The year is 1981. The music is on point and the feel of the book is nostalgic.

I was born in 1981, so I don't remember the specific details of that year firsthand, but as a child born in that era, you tend to learn quickly as you're growing up. From the mention of Air Supply to the bold choices of color combinations... the eighties are alive and well in this book.

Putting the
Nicole Sullivan
So I thought I'd set the mood while reading this shortish story. I put on my Breakfast Club soundtrack, grabbed a pair of really thick socks that I scrunched down. You know what I'm talking about. Found an insanely old scrunchie and put my hair up in a wild ponytail. My daughter said I looked kinda freaky. I said this was all the rage back in the day. She was unimpressed. Anyway, I love all things Lindy. Her stories suck you in & make your heart sing. She has this way of making you NEED to k ...more
Lisa (Remarkablylisa)
May 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Okay guys.

This is it. This is one of those books I wasn't too sure of when I first started but Lindy Zart did an amazing job to turn me around and make me love it.

It starts off with Sam being interested in his friend Jessie's girl named Catherine. She's cool, pretty, and this natural goddess that captures everyone's attention. However, we get to know more about Hannah--Sam's best friend since childhood. We start to see Hannah struggling to cope with how all the boys are falling for Catherine's
It begins with a road trip. The four friends will go their separate ways in two months. Four different lives, four different journeys. The dynamics between these four friends shifts while on a road trip together. They disclose information about each other that had not been revealed before.

Story's told from Sam's POV. It's a short story consisting of five chapters. Four friends set out on a road trip before heading off in different directions. During the trip everyone is acting differently and st
S.M. Lowry
Feb 26, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

Jessie’s Girl by Lindy Zart took me back to the days of watching ‘80s movies. Jessie’s Girl has the coming-of-age trip and the sweet teen romance so prevalent in the ‘80s. The story tugged at my heart with its bittersweet plot of one last road trip for the friends (plus one tag-a-long girlfriend) before they would all be parting ways for college and adult life. Zart’s characters always hook me, and this story was no different. The characters are
Apr 27, 2016 rated it liked it
I didn't like this one as much as the previous one in the series. I think it was because of the single character POV. Still, I do understand why it was needed. If we got the perspective of the other characters, like Hannah, for instance, a lot of the plot would be spoiled early on. Also I really disliked the character of Jessie, even after he admitted that a lot of his behavior was wrong.

Still, I enjoyed parts of the story. It had the feel of a John Cusack movie. I really liked the character of
Marie Mckenney
Mar 07, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Love this book.

This book is a cute reminder of my younger days. I loved this song back then. Love all the reminders of young love and the things we did without cellphones and such. This road trip is fun and hilarious for all the characters. This group of id's is a mix of every type of personality. Jessie it in and wild and doesn't want to grow up. Hannah and Sam have known each other as friends but don't see what is between them. Dickie is the shy quiet geek and Cat is the blonde cute type. The
Apr 30, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: blogged, reviewed
I enjoyed Jessie's Girl. This is a fun, 80's-set novella filled with fun adventure and great use of era dialogue. Zart doesn't waste any space with this one, as it is far shorter than her other books at around 30,000 words. All of the characters in the book are so exceptionally diverse in personality and looks, but somehow have a dynamic friendship with one another. The inclusion of Jessie's new girl, Catherine Tate, throws a wrench in the core group's plans for a road trip.

The only thing I wou
Sue M. Van
Feb 25, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Another winning story from Lindy Zart. I will say that I am not always an enthusiast about short stories just because the ones I have read felt like more should have been said. However, as those who are familiar with Lindy Zart's writing, this short story left nothing to wonder about behind. Once again her characters are well developed, the plot of the story is clear, and the details are enough that the reader is getting a complete picture of what is happening during the story. Although I am a c ...more
Katie (Leave Me Alone I Am Reading)
I loved this story!

I was born in the 80's but I do remember most of the things that were talked about in Jessie's Girl. It was fun to be transported back in time that was before texting and Facebook and instagram (and goodreads.. lol).

The story was a tale of friends to lovers. These friends had feelings for each other for so long but neither one acted on them until it was almost too late. They found out they liked each other during the summer between high school and heading off to higher educa
My Bookbag by Karen
This second book in the New Adult Mix is a very good read. I love the author’s take on the Jessie’s Girl writing prompt. It is well imagined.

The foundation of the story is built on a post high school road trip. The rest of the story is character driven. Four unlikely, life-long friends (plus one) discover things about themselves, and each other, as they travel together. Although all of the characters drive aspects of the story, it is told through only one point of view. It is impressive that aut
Jan 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing
The book from the beginning is beyond obvious. Look past that, I'm sure you didn't start reading because you were looking for adventure or action but a flashback of our youth in the eighties. The vocabulary makes me cringe. Did we really say those sayings back then? Mind you, I was a kid, not a teen but still. With the overly hairspray teased hair and the Maimi Vice look I can picture how Sam and Jessie look. It is a very fast read, adorable, cute book that will make you reminisce. Love this ser ...more
Aug 10, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

This was a great short read! I loved how the characters started as one thing and we got to see them learn life's lessons and grow into young adults. Its a beautiful thing when friends can evolve into something more and even more beautiful when a group of friends can find acceptance and love in trying situations.
Amber Eckstein
Mar 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I did not see the ending coming! Wow!
I loved all the characters. Dicky was one of my favorites of them all. The nerd. Jessie was a douche bag but after everything is explained its understandable.
Lindy did good making a song come to life. I love how she put her own personal touches into it as well!
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Lindy Zart is a USA TODAY bestselling author that has been writing since she was a child. Luckily for readers, her writing has improved since then. She lives in Wisconsin with her family. Lindy loves hearing from people who enjoy her work. She also has a completely natural obsession with wine, coffee, peanut butter, bloody marys, and pizza.

Other books in the series

Love in the 80s (10 books)
  • 1980: You Shook Me All Night Long (Love in the 80s #1)
  • 1982: Maneater (Love in the 80s #3)
  • 1983: Cruel Summer (Love in the 80s #4)
  • 1984: Against All Odds (Love in the 80s #5)
  • 1985: Careless Whisper (Love in the 80s #6)
  • 1986: Why Can't This Be Love (Love in the 80s #7)
  • 1987: (How Do I Get You) Alone (Love in the 80s #8)
  • 1988: Need You Tonight (Love in the 80s #9)
  • 1989: Once Bitten, Twice Shy (Love in the 80s #10)