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Opposite of Always

4.32  ·  Rating details ·  155 ratings  ·  57 reviews
Jack Ellison King. King of Almost.

He almost made valedictorian.

He almost made varsity.

He almost got the girl . . .

When Jack and Kate meet at a party, bonding until sunrise over their mutual love of Froot Loops and their favorite flicks, Jack knows he’s falling—hard. Soon she’s meeting his best friends, Jillian and Franny, and Kate wins them over as easily as she did Jack.
Kindle Edition, 464 pages
Expected publication: March 5th 2019 by Katherine Tegen Books
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Justin A Reynolds In a word, heartache. I was coping with the loss of my best friend and still grieving an aunt who'd passed far too soon, and I was struggling with…moreIn a word, heartache. I was coping with the loss of my best friend and still grieving an aunt who'd passed far too soon, and I was struggling with their absence. I couldn't wrap my brain around a world without either of them. But they were such vibrant, happy, often hilarious people. And so this story became a celebration of life, a way to embrace their memories, and travel back in time.(less)

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Noura Khalid (theperksofbeingnoura)

Thank you Edelweiss and Katherine Tegen Books for sending a review copy in exchange for an honest review

"Remember me, remember us, as a time of day."

Okay, I haven't read many contemporaries but oh my goodness you have no idea how much I loved this!!

Jack Ellison King is absolutely my favorite character in this entire book. More than anyone else. The sweetest most brilliant person to ever exist. He was funny, lovable, caring and just downright amazing.

Now I probably should move on before I write
Tucker (TuckerTheReader)
*4.5 Stars
Well, it's almost midnight but I did it. I finished it. Oh my gosh, you guys it was so amazing! Full review to come
Jack doesn't have any plans for love. But then Kate steps into his life. Over the span of six months, Jack & Kate fall in love. Then Kate dies. Jack is suddenly shot back in time to the day he met Kate. Every choice he makes has a different outcome. If he saves Kate, he Will be able to escape the loop. Will he be able to? Find out March 20
Oct 27, 2018 marked it as anticipating
Shelves: 2019-release
O Williams
Jun 26, 2018 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Do you mean to tell me that this author has written a contemporary YA romance sci-fi novel featuring black main characters AND hosting those beautiful black characters on the cover? SO MUCH YESSSS
Justin A Reynolds
Sep 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
I heard this was good, but I know the author (we hang out in the same coffee shops!!) so I don't think you should take my review seriously. I guess just read it?


I stopped hanging out at the same coffee shops; he always beats me to the power outlet and then stays FOREVERRRRR...ARGHHHH RUDE!
Alana • thebookishchick
I read the synopsis and got major Looking for Alaska vibes.
I don't think I've ever hit "want to read" so quickly in my life.

Thank you Katherine Tegen books for a review copy in exchange for an honest review!

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Sara➽ Ink Is My Sword
First 2019 release I am waiting for, but who can blame me? LOOK AT THAT CUTE COVER! And that synopsis! And it's contemporary! I NEED THIS.
Elise (TheBookishActress)
Jul 02, 2018 marked it as releases-2019
Shelves: coverporn
it's like groundhog day, except with death, and I'll probably be broken by the end of it all
Jun 25, 2018 marked it as anti-library
Shelves: arcs
I was ready to read it because of the amazingly illustrated cover alone but then I found out there are time-loops in this which I'm incapable of resisting. Like this book 'follows a boy who falls in love with a girl and repeatedly loops back in time at the moment of her death, returning to the moment they first met.' She dies repeatedly? Thanks, can't wait to have my heart broken repeatedly
Kosoko Jackson
Jul 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book is going to knock your socks off. I mean, look at the cover. And Justin's skill with words? Whew. You all are NOT ready. Mark this now. This is going to be THE BOOK of 2019.
Jul 25, 2018 marked it as to-read
Wow.. That synopsis, with that cover, I want it now.
mahana ✭
full review also on my blog

ARC kindly provided by Katherine Tegen Books in exchange for an honest review.

I wish I could’ve loved this! It had a great message and made a lot of great social commentary, but it needed to be 100 pages less than it was. If there was some further editing condensing the plot – particularly the slow beginning – then I would’ve adored this. I’m excited for others to read this book and hopefully see themselves as the hero of a story for once. Which is definitely what
Jenny Chou
Jul 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
I had a chance to read a pre-ARC - more like a bound manuscript - of THE OPPOSITE OF ALWAYS & I have much to say, but 1st this: Justin Reynolds can write snappy dialogue that is laugh out loud funny & irresistibly adorable. You will be charmed! Longer review to follow.

UPDATE: Jack doesn’t believe time travel is real until he becomes caught up in a seemingly endless loop of meeting his girlfriend Kate for the first time - starting over and over the moment she dies. Doesn’t take long until
Kelli Gleiner
Aug 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I was breathless a number of times when reading this book. We all want to save a friend, a lover, a family member and would do anything to do so.
Very well written, loved all of the characters, even when they were in their darker timelines.
Sep 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
When I see Justin A. Reynolds’ name on a cover in the future, I can assure you I will pick up a copy of his book because he has excellent voice full of humor and thoughtfulness.

Opposite of Always was not always an easy book to read with the inevitable ending, but Jack had so much hope, and his hope was contagious. I found myself liking the repetition as it brought a familiarity to the story. And, I also liked the exploration of time travel and its relation to parallel universes (that was a real
Dec 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
*I received a copy via the publisher via NetGalley in return for an honest review. This in no way affected my opinion of the book.*

Jack meets Kate. They bond over their love for cereals and films. Jack falls in love, and it should be happily ever after. That is until Kate dies, and Jack returns to moments just before he meets Kate, again. Here, Jack faces multiple choices as he’s continuously thrown back to the past when Kate dies. He aims to stop Kate from dying, but that doesn’t come without c
Things happen in threes--happy to give my third 5-star rating of 2019 to this book, which almost made me cry in public three times today!

Review to come closer to pub date.
Dec 10, 2018 marked it as definitive-tbr
🌑"Everything, Everything meets Groundhog Day"
🌑humour + horror + contemporary


Ten 2019 YA Debut Novels You Need To Add To Your TBR Right Away!

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London Shah
Jul 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Just finished OPPOSITE OF ALWAYS and wow, you aren't even ready❤💔😭😂. Adam Silvera and Becky Albertalli fans especially, get ready for this very beautiful and very realistic debut❤😭! Jack King's story is movingly and hilariously told and I absolutely LOVE it🙌🏽. The heart-stopping emotions and laughs and joy are all aplenty. It's incredibly well written, with such a strong, authentic voice. Amazing stuff––looking forward to what Reynolds comes up with next! :) ...more
Natasha Diaz
Jul 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I am prematurely giving this book 5 stars ++++ I am only 76 pages in, but Justin's command of voice is nothing short of incredible. OOA is an absolute joy to read and I cannot wait to turn the page every time I get to the bottom of the one before. This book is adorable and heartbreaking and perfect and I love it so. Get ready 2019, make way for Justin Reynolds.
~ Althea ~  ☾
Oct 27, 2018 marked it as priority-to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: contemporary
I'm waiting for you
Eloise Mae
Jan 15, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Jack is a wonderfully believable main character; with each repetition of time he learned and changed, sometimes for the best and sometimes for the worst, but each time his personality and sparkling narration of events made it fresh once more. This book truly presents a heart-wrenching portrayal of what would you do if you had the chance to repeat a stage of life.

Each time Jack travelled back in time to his first meeting with Kate everything changed. Sometimes it was his friends, or his parents,
Sep 08, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Remember me, remember us, as a time of day."

This book (well, ARC) was really very cute! Despite the copious amounts of heartbreak and the strange giddiness, and sometimes pure stupidity and/or selfishness, of first love, this book was surprisingly funny. Like, laugh out loud funny. Justin Reynolds has a real skill for funny banter and the conversations between just about everyone are full of humor, intentional or unintentional, subtle or overt, and I really enjoyed it. It helped to balance ou
Sophie Kean
Jan 20, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was such a wonderful read. I absolutely loved the concept from the get-go but worried it could get too repetitive. It was far from it, and I was completely hooked the entire way through. Jack is such a loveable main character, and I loved reading about his realationship with Kate, and his friendships with Jillian and Franny.

Another brilliant YA novel for 2019, and a fantastic debut from Justin.
Ms. Yingling
Jan 09, 2019 rated it liked it
E ARC from Edelweiss

Just a bit too YA for my crowd, and the whole idea of time travel to reunite with someone who has died was just... sad. Definitely would purchase for high school, but my middle school students prefer their romances to be a bit less angst-y.
Kristen Beverly
Super cute story. Great story of what it means to be a friend - and in the least cheesy way possible. I really enjoyed reading it & fell in love with Jack and Kate.
Jason Williams
Jan 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
More YA with POC narrators! Especially black young men, please and thank you! It’s vitally important that our going men see themselves in a book, especially in books that celebrate love and comedy and friendship! Books that offer hope and not make everything tragic or despairing!

I’m glad that Jack’s parents were happy and in love, too. It was beautiful to see black love so well represented.

Plus, this cover is radiant!
Clover Adams
Jan 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
All of the characters were very well written.
The author clearly has an ear for dialogue.
But the best thing was: I freaking heart Franny!! He reminds me of so many brown boys that I grew up with; beautiful and sad and happy and desperately needing someone to love him wholly and completely. I want another book about him.
Jan 08, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I loved it.
Amanda Sanders
Dec 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
It took a long time for me to get images in my head of the characters in "Opposite of Always". It's something that made the book more interesting. Characters should be about personality and not looks. The character development and dialog were great. They remind me of Richard Peck. The plot was "Groundhog Day"-like but with more intensity. Jack meets a girl and gets several chances to make things right/wrong with her and his best friends. It was a fun read.
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justin a. reynolds has been a pest control operator, night security guard, steel mill janitor, NASA intern, salesman of high-end faucet fixtures, and carpet-flooring installer. He was most recently a registered nurse, before trading his stethoscope for a pencil, but likes to think both instruments reveal the heart. He lives in northeast Ohio, home to snow, Lake Erie, and the Cavaliers.