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Whenever I'm with You

3.46  ·  Rating details ·  300 ratings  ·  65 reviews
A missing boy.
A road trip into the Alaskan wilderness.
A week that will change everything...

After Gabi’s parents’ divorce, she moves from California to Alaska with her dad. At first, it feels like banishment—until she meets Kai. He welcomes her into his life, sharing his family, his friends, and his warmth. But as winter approaches, Kai pulls away for seemingly no reason at a
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published January 3rd 2017 by Scholastic Press
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Lydia Sharp Hi Tara. :) The target age group for this book is 12 & up, and grades 7 & up. I think it would be okay for a 6th grader as well. The romance…moreHi Tara. :) The target age group for this book is 12 & up, and grades 7 & up. I think it would be okay for a 6th grader as well. The romance goes no further physically than a kiss. There is no harsh language, only a few instances of "hell" or "damn." And while there are some dangerous survival situations that create suspense, there is no physical gore or graphic details. I have heard from several parents and grandparents of teens and pre-teens that they are comfortable giving their child this book after they read it themselves.(less)

Community Reviews

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Average rating 3.46  · 
Rating details
 ·  300 ratings  ·  65 reviews

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jv poore
Gabi’s natural grace is fascinating. Poise, pragmatic manner and confidence rarely coexist in mere human beings; but this 17-year-old possesses all three. Of course, she doesn’t realize that. Her Alaskan acquaintances see only the novelty of a “rich Latina from L.A.” and they don’t even have as much information ‘about’ her as the tabloids do.

Kai is not like that, but he isn’t living the typical teen-age life either. When Gabi and her father moved in next door, Kai’s father had been g
Lydia Sharp
Dec 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
While writing WHENEVER I'M WITH YOU,
I listened to Rachel Platten's "Stand by You"
My favorite color is blue.
I like pink and purple too.
This is not a review,
but every sentence is true.
And rhymes. Except these two.
Jan 24, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
An Alaska Native reader who is Tlingit wrote to me (Debbie Reese, at American Indians in Children's Literature) to share concerns with Sharpe's book. As regular readers of AICL may recall, I get email from people who prefer not to be identified. Some worry about backlash on them or their children. I respect their requests and am grateful for their careful readings of children's and young adult books.

The Tlingit reader's concerns are as follows:

(1) Ambiguity of Native Char
"Not that I'm not enjoying the view of his lean, muscled body- all those square inches of bare skin in a shade that more closely resembles his Canadian mother than his Tlingit father- but this is not the scenario in which I imagined seeing him next to naked for the first time." pg 5-6

Not that I'm not liking this book. I HATE THIS BOOK ALREADY! How did this rubbish get published?! What color skin do Canadians have?

I would suggest looking at Debbie Reese's review for a more
Sarah Reese
Dec 27, 2016 rated it it was ok
Shelves: arc
While the story moved decently and was interesting enough, it seemed like it was forcing itself to be some sort of deep revelation about how people cope and need to move past their demons.
Also, they were in the Alaskan wilderness yet somehow these twin teenage boys are able to survive so easily. The way they hunt and make fire so easily just seems too fake. Yes, they had basically trained their whole lives to be able to do those things with their father, but it's the ALASKAN WILDERNESS. Not eve
Britt Blythe
Mar 09, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
Eh. This story had a wonderful premise, but the overall plot kind of lacked for me. I've never been to Alaska, but I have a hard time believing this journey was as simple as this story made it. Sure, things kept going wrong but there was always a convenient solution to make sure everything was quickly resolved. It just wasn't realistic. Also, I felt this story attempted to be diverse with the mentioning of various minorities (I mean, how cool would it have been to go into the Tlingit culture?) b ...more
Amena  (Nerd in New York)
What I was expecting (based on cover): A cute swoony story about two teenagers falling in love, while on a journey to save someone.


My reaction: wut.
Mary Fan
May 05, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fun read! An adventure through the Alaska wilderness in search of the truth behind a man’s disappearance... but it’s the ones uncovered about the teen characters inner selves that really matter. There’s fish-out-of-the-water Gabi, who moved to Alaska from SoCal to escape the scandal of her movie star mother’s divorce. And her boyfriend, Kai, a survivalist with a twinkle in his eye. And Kai’s more somber brother, Hunter, who doesn’t say a lot but knows what matters. This trio is full of feels, an ...more
Book reviewer Debbie Reese has already addressed some of the cultural concerns that plagued me when I was reading this book, set in Alaska. In some respects, it seems to me that the author has gone to great pains to show just how naive and culturally unaware the book's protagonist is. Not only is she unaware of her own culture and her feelings, but she is disdainful--not deliberately so, but still, it is there--of anything that is different from the familiar world with which she has surrounded h ...more
Feb 21, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kate (The Bookaholic Blurbs)
Full review over at The Bookaholic Blurbs!

Whenever I'm With You is likeable. But it would have been an unforgettable one if the execution isn't that of a let down. Giving it three stars for the attempt to show different sides of relationships which I appreciated and for the potential of the characters to see more of the world than just themselves.

Thank you, Scholastic Asia (Philippines) for the galley!
Jul 13, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
You probably know this, I don't like romance that start before the book has begun like I just don't feel we know the full relationship and this is why I didn't fully love this book.
Jie Jie
Sep 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book. Might be my favorite :)))
Mar 03, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
That was an amazing read. 4.5 stars. A wonderful adventure story PACKED with suspense and intrigue. Oh my gosh, so good.
Laura's Book Addiction
"Remember how it takes your breath away- remember that this is how I felt the first time I saw you, and how I've felt every day since then, whenever I'm with you. This is my version of heaven."

Whenever I'm With You is a quick read which features love and loss and how everyone copes differently and what they need to heal and move forward. I loved trekking though the Alaskan wilderness with these characters, the descriptions were vivid and I imagined myself there too. I'm excited to see what Lydi
Steve MC
Jan 29, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The cover shows a girl and her boyfriend sharing a milkshake while planning an adventure in Alaska, but it does the story injustice in that in the actual scene in the novel, the girl’s boyfriend has disappeared and she’s sitting up late in his kitchen, talking to his brother. They figure out he took off into the wilderness, heading to where his father died at a remote cabin the year before, and they plan how they’re going to track him down at dawn. To reach him before a blizzard comes in.
Jan 31, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017-read
I enjoyed this book. It was a cute and adventurous kind of book.

Gabi is hiding from the life her mother has thrust upon their family. Kai refuses to admit the truth that his father is dead. When Kai goes in search of the truth Gabi and his twin brother head out to track him down before the big storm hits. Along the way everybody gets to know each other better, danger ensues and truths come out. Will these teens survive their journey? Will they turn back and go home without learning the tr
May 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A beautiful story about the journey Gabi goes on to save her warmth, her true love! It tells the story of a teenage girl who loves her Mami and Papi.
Jan 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Such a fun story. Genuinely loved the characters, and the adventure plot was superb. But there could've been more kissing. :)
Jennifer Collins
This is a fast-paced contemporary YA read filled with adventure, romance, and life lessons, and the pacing and writing are all on-point... but at the same time, I have to think maybe it was all a bit too much and a bit too little in different ways. It tries to pack a ton into a small book, but probably because of that, the larger and more serious 'life lessons' and issues feel like they get glossed over, and offered somewhat too easily. The fact is, it's the emotion (of the romance, specifically ...more
Jul 16, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: my-library
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 06, 2019 rated it it was ok
I really am not sure what to say about this book. while reading, there were some points where I was like wow and there were some points where I was second-guessing my decision to read it. before reading it I looked through the reviews on this book. there was one review that stood out a lot to me.

It was about how the author used some references to the natives in Alaska and how it was offensive. and then the review talked about how the Gabi sounded very snobby and that was not a good t
Sep 17, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I don't normally write reviews but there are so many things wrong with the book. As someone who has lived in Anchorage as a transplant it is clear the author has never lived there. The saying "write what you know" is popular for a reason. The author's main character acts like living in Anchorage is for people who are poor to middle class (while she is rich and so stands out due to her wealth) and all the kids do rural things like jump in ponds, fish out their backyard, and hunt. Kids in Anchorag ...more
Janie Bachmann
The book Whenever I'm With You by Lydia Sharp is about a teen girl named Gabi Flores. Gabi moved from California to Alaska with her father because of her mother's scandalous affair, Gabi and her father kept their wealth a secret. One day Gabi met Kai, Kai was a sweet and handsome boy who never let anyone do anything for him, eventually the two of them fell in love and had been together for a couple of months. Soon after Kai was acting weird around Gabi, she wanted to know what was going on, so she ...more
Nov 14, 2017 rated it it was ok
Gabi's mother is a famous actress and when her parents get divorced, her father takes her to Alaska. Gabi has an unlimited credit card, and can buy anything she wants. She has a boyfriend Kai, who seems to be pulling away from her. Kai is searching for his lost father and decides to go find him in the Alaskan wilderness. With out telling anyone, he takes off. His twin brother Hunter and Gabi go after him. Gabi is no survivalist, but fortunately, Hunter knows what to do. They meet Vicki at a rest ...more
Michelle Wrona
This review can also be found on A Thousand Lives Lived, check it out for more!

Whenever I'm With You seemed like a great, quick read that would surely impress me, as I predicted that it would be similar to the style of Kasie West. However, this was a true disappointment. I did not enjoy it. When reading the summary on the back of the book's cover, I expected this to be a unique, unpredictable read as it takes place in Alaska. ALASKA. A setting we've all never read about. I found this to be super boring as it inc/>Whenever
Jul 06, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Gabi is the daughter of a famous Hollywood actress. To get away from the paparazzi she and her father move to Alaska. Near Anchorage, her new home, she meets Kai a boy who seems wonderful, but who is just as broken as she is. He decides he has to go on a cross country trek to find his father at the end of November. Gabi and Kai's twin brother try to find him before he gets killed by the elements or wild animals. Once they find him, they realize they need to complete Kai's quest and they have to ...more
Dec 07, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a great book. I would recommend it to kids in middle school. It kept me turning the pages and my eyes wide open. Gabi Flores and her father gave up sunny Los Angeles for Anchorage, Alaska, to escape Gabi's famous mother. When her boyfriend, Kai, takes off unexpectedly in search of his father, Gabi braves the wilderness alongside Kai's twin brother, Hunter, to rescue him. There are challenges ahead though, including blinding snowstorms, hypothermia, and terrifying animals. When she and H ...more
Dec 08, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: covers-i-love
I happened upon Whenever I'm with You while browsing bookshelves at the book store. At first glance, it gave off a Christmas-y vibe (or the cover did, anyways). After reading the synopsis, I was intrigued. It didn't exactly play out as I thought it would, though. Overall, I'd say I'm disappointed.

I thought the inner struggles Gabi, Kai, and Hunter go through and how they respectively deal with them were interesting and thought-provoking. However, everything that happened throughout thei
May 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
in this book Whenever I'm with you, there's a boy who disappeared and they think that he's following in his dad footsteps. the boy's name is Kai he has a twin brother and a girlfriend he left them to go follow his father's footsteps. when he goes missing his girlfriend and twin brother start out to find him and see where he went. he pulled away from his friends family and girlfriend. while the 2 kids are on there trip to find Kai they were having trouble looking for shelter. the book is really g ...more
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Lydia Sharp writes young adult novels with lots of kissing and adventures.
“Remember how it takes your breath away- remember that this is how I felt the first time I saw you, and how I've felt every day since then, whenever I'm with you. This is my version of heaven.” 1 likes
“It's like he's stuck in the denial phase - that's stage ONE of grief. It's basically shock. Until he gets past that and lets reality sink in, he own't go through the other stages and heal. I've been through all of them already. So have Mom and my brothers and sisters who are old enough to grasp the situation. This past year has been hell for all of us. Grieving sucks. I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy. But it's also normal" - Hunter” 0 likes
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