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Tell Me Three Things

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Everything about Jessie is wrong. At least, that’s what it feels like during her first week of junior year at her new ultra-intimidating prep school in Los Angeles. Just when she’s thinking about hightailing it back to Chicago, she gets an email from a person calling themselves Somebody/Nobody (SN for short), offering to help her navigate the wilds of Wood Valley High School. Is it an elaborate hoax? Or can she rely on SN for some much-needed help?

It’s been barely two years since her mother’s death, and because her father eloped with a woman he met online, Jessie has been forced to move across the country to live with her stepmonster and her pretentious teenage son.

In a leap of faith—or an act of complete desperation—Jessie begins to rely on SN, and SN quickly becomes her lifeline and closest ally. Jessie can’t help wanting to meet SN in person. But are some mysteries better left unsolved?

332 pages, Kindle Edition

First published April 5, 2016

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About the author

Julie Buxbaum

10 books3,024 followers
Julie Buxbaum is the New York Times best selling author of Tell Me Three Things, her young adult debut, What to Say Next, Hope and Other Punchlines, and Admission (pubs 5/5/20). She’s also the author of two critically acclaimed novels for adults: The Opposite of Love and After You. Her work has been translated into twenty-five languages. Julie’s writing has appeared in various publications, including The New York Times. She is a former lawyer and graduate of Harvard Law School and lives in Los Angeles with her husband, two children, and more books than is reasonable. Visit Julie online at www.juliebuxbaum.com and follow @juliebux on Twitter.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 10,002 reviews
Profile Image for Angela.
634 reviews1,334 followers
November 28, 2020
I've never given a contemporary book 5 stars before (as far as I can remember... Is John green contemporary?!?! If so sorry I lied).

"Perfect days are for people with small, realizable dreams. or maybe for all of us, they just happen in retrospect; they're only now perfect because they contain something irrevocably and irretrievably lost."

I'm finding this review hard to write... That typically happens when I'm so angry at a book that I can't even see straight. This isn't the problem I'm facing with TMTT. I liked it so much that there is so many things I want to say. I've truly never faced this issue before with a contemporary book before. It's my least favorite genre to read. Not including John Green books, I don't think I've ever been excited to finish a contemp book before this... I really thought about it too and nothing comes to mind.

I'm going to do this review a little different and stick with the common theme that TMTT and I'm going to tell you the three things that made me love this book.

1) The "Dear Reader" note. It really isn't often I read these. This time I figured why the heck not. So glad I did. Julie explains why this book means so much to her, and why it was this book was so easy and so hard for her to write. She talks about the loss of her mother and how it really changed her whole life. This personally meant so much to me because I too lost my mother way before her time. What really hit home for me is when she quotes her main character Jessie. "She will never see who I grow up to be-that great mystery of who I am and who I am meant to be-finally asked and answered". This hit way to close to home. It's such a selfish/non-selfish reason to think this, but it is so very true. It took me years to realize that my mother wouldn't be there for events and that's when everything really hits you.

2) Jessie. She is an outstanding lead. She is the perfect combination of raw real human emotion and comical teenage girl. She gives the right emotions at the right time and talks to her age. She is beyond relatable and will completely pull you into her story. When Jess struggles, loves, gets lost you feel like you're right there with her. The funny dialog she manages to keep up through out this story is just great. Julie also hit the nail right on the head with how teenage girls think. Jessie's life has so many typical YA tropes in it that it could have easily taken this down a mundane path that would have ultimately lead to me having the same issues that I do with others. However Julie makes the typical something new and fresh. Jessie is a breath of fresh air along with all the other side characters.

3) The mystery. When you read the synopsis of the book you figure out right away that there is basically a "who done it" style plot. Jessie starts receiving emails from an anonymous sender going by the username Somebody/Nobody (SN). This style would normally annoy the crap out of me. I've read plenty of books that have done this and almost 100% of the time I find myself skipping ahead, not caring about the story, getting bored, just not caring, and sneaking to find out the answer. With TMTT this wasn't at all the case. I was so interested in the story and going through things with Jessie that I didn't want to find out until the last possible second. The mystery as you can tell is all about who is SN. You, like Jessie, will go back and forth about who you think it will be. I will say that I had a pretty good idea about who it might have been, but I often found myself second guessing. Second guessing made reading this book so much fun. Warning: Julie will leave you guessing until the last second. The only thing I will suggest is that you keep maybe a little scrap piece of paper to write down the names of the guys in this book. Once all the key players were introduced once or twice I had to stop and remind myself who was who and who had what traits. When I jotted it down I was right back on track. Also kind of made me feel like I was playing a game of clue or something.

Tell Me Three Things will without a doubt be my favorite contemporary all year. So thankful to have gotten an early copy of this, and am excited for others to get to read it too. This book has so much heart, so much fun to read, and left me with a huge giddy grin on my face.

Profile Image for jessica.
2,535 reviews32.7k followers
November 8, 2018
let me tell you three things:

1. this story is the ultimate meet cute of all meet cutes that have ever existed
2. my cheeks received a world class workout from all the smiling reading this made me do
3. this book was everything i could have hoped for and more

nothing puts me in a better mood than YA contemporary. nothing. its all the fluffy feels, the comedic romantic mishaps, the easily relatable characters, and the heartfelt messages that warm my cold heart. and this book was no exception.

it really surprises me that julie buxbaum is such an underrated author - more people need to jump on her fan train because the woman can craft a story. it also probably helps that im a complete sucker for the whole ‘secret letters’ trope. but regardless, this book could cause type 2 diabetes, its that sweet.

and i love that this story also talked about really deep and meaningful topics, but did so in a very approachable way. and it didnt lessen the adorableness of the book by any means. if anything, it only made it feel more genuine. i would recommend this to anyone looking for a great YA contemporary to easily fall in love with!

5 stars
Profile Image for Emily May.
1,964 reviews294k followers
May 12, 2016
I don't think I'll write a full review for this. It seems that all my GR friends loved it and I don't want to be that one party pooper who writes a negative review (again).

I'll just say that I made it about halfway before I couldn't take anymore of how almost every single girl but the special narrator is blonde, skinny, nearly naked, flirtatious and mean. Jessie is clearly supposed to be special and different from all of the “mostly blond, vacant-eyed Barbies and Kens.”

And the constant L.A. stereotypes were more annoying than funny. Maybe I don't have a right to be annoyed by this just because I've lived out here for a while, but some of them are just so blatantly untrue that it feels like the author knows nothing about the city. Everyone is definitely not skinny. Girls do not always wear skimpy dresses (in fact, L.A. is super casual compared to the U.K. and most people wear jeans and baggy tees). No, people do not always watch movies instead of reading. Girls are definitely not all blonde (high Hispanic and Asian population, actually). No, the grass is not always bright green just because it's always summer (sun + drought = not a good recipe for green grass).

All of the humour relies heavily on melodrama and stereotypes, which is something that's never really appealed to me. I like more subtlety, and humour based on truth - because, if you ask me, there ain't anything funnier than reality. Tell Me Three Things was too heavy-handed to make me laugh.

I kept trying to make excuses for it - that it was just supposed to be a lighthearted, funny book, but I couldn’t get past it. Guess it's a personal thing. I might just be wearing my grumpy pants today.

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Profile Image for emma.
1,823 reviews48.7k followers
May 8, 2018

So the situation is this: i'm out of contemporaries. Well, not completely, but I'm really close. The thing about that is that summer just started for me, and it's warm out and I have free time, and when the above information is true I WANT TO READ A LOT OF CONTEMPORARIES.

So I've been rereading.

I read this in summer 2016 and three-starred it. I remember it as being fun/fluffy/fine/cute/easy/etc. Good contemporary words.

Guess the hell what????


What it was:
- a three hundred page ode to girl hate
- that's it, literally.

Let's do some quotes, gang!



It literally became a pain to transcribe all the examples of girl hate in this book. Like, I firmly believe that I spent roughly as much time one-handed typing these examples into my phone's notes app as I did actually reading and ingesting said vitriol.

Friends, don't we love us some girl hate!!!

A recurring theme in the girl hate of Tell Me Three Things - and it's one I've seen none too often let me tell you - is that teenage girls, in their entirety, like as a species, are unbelievably loud. None more so than in main character Jessie's new hometown in the Valley: “the girls here are even louder, as if they think there’s a direct correlation between volume and male attention”. Ah, yes, that combination of noisiness and male fixation we all associate with the female teen.

And: “There is something about her tone, quiet, like mine, that’s inviting. Not overly loud, not that teenage-girl voice that everyone else seems to use to demand notice.” Now we're awarding merit based on low volume??? YOU'RE TELLING TEENAGE GIRLS TO BE QUIET????? Come the f*ck on.

We're also granted the prize of some fun, descriptive phrases, like "a revolting group of too-loud giggling girls" (there's that loudness again!)

Even the teachers get in on it: “And I hate to say it, but girls in particular can be really cruel at your age.” Really? Are you serious? Have you ever spoken to a teenage boy?? I don't wanna just flip gender roles here, but adolescent males have f*cked me over waaaaaayyyy more times than teenage girls have.

Wait wait wait, before I forget - you know that thing of how all women want to have bulimia? No? Well this book sure does! “According to Crystal, Gem’s out with a stomach flu and is ‘like, you know, puking her guts out, hashtag jealous.’”

And just the slightest argument against women being in control of their own promiscuity: “So my sister goes to UCLA, and she’s like this huge hobag there, right? And she says that sleeping with all these randos is her way of owning her sexuality.” HA! Ridiculous! She thinks she can sleep with however many people she wants? She thinks it's her body? Hilarious!!

Sometimes, it's just...weird: “I quickly snap a selfie of me alone on a bench with my half-eaten peanut butter and jelly sandwich. I smile instead of pout, though, and label with the hashtag #Day14. Those blondes would pout, turn it into an I’m so sexy picture, and then Instagram it. Look how hot I am not eating my sandwich!" Or, “So it turns out Blond and Blonder did have an audience after all. Of course they did. Girls like that always have an audience.” Uh, okay, Jessie. Take it down a notch. Especially with the blonde thing - we're sensitive, you know.

But mostly, this girl hate comes with constant, incessant, unrelenting use of the word "bitch" (“bitchy girls” and “She’s high with a vicarious bitch thrill” were two I transcribed before I stopped writing them down, like, 20 pages in). But it's okay, because one time after Jessie uses the word - “Have they always been so, you know, bitchy?” - it's with a caveat. “I hate the word ‘bitch,’” Jessie promises. “I do. Using the B-word makes me feel like a bad feminist, but sometimes there is no other word.”

Oh, so even though you use the word bitch more times than I can count, you really hate it? You do? You promise? Oh, you call yourself a feminist in the midst of 300 pages of hating other women? Okay! All better!

Plus, there's that typical “type of girl” line (along with its close relative, “one of those girls”). They say don't mess with the classics!!!

Jessie pretty much explains all the toxicity goin' on within that little hate-filled head of hers: “Whenever I meet someone new, I silently ask that inevitable catty girl question: is she prettier than me?” If every girl is competition for your desperate insecurities, yeah, it makes sense that you'd develop a touch of a complex!



A lot of the girl hate in this book is combined with another, less common but still thrilling type of hate: Californian hate/rich people hate/hippie hate??? I don't really know what to call it, but our main gal Jessie had to move from Chicago to California and she is so mad about it, you guys. Examples!

“So far, that’s the number one difference between LA and Chicago: all the girls here are thin and half-naked.” Whaaaaat??? Half-naked???? (This came after a description of girls in sundresses with - gasp - dare I even say it? - spaghetti straps.)

“I thought the kids here only got excited about clothes and Us Weekly and expensive trips to pad their college applications.” Hey, that one is just too far. Unsubstantiated. NO ONE likes Us Weekly.

“The women in LA all have taut skin, the kind pumped full of injectables that render them ageless, just as believably forty as seventy.” This antifeminist manifesto just wouldn't be complete if we didn't touch on some plastic surgery-shaming.


I'm done with hate-filled quotes, so I'm just going to leave you with a cringe to end the night: “You know what I heart? Nutella. And pajama pants. And an awesomesauce book.”

Bottom line: I liked the ending of this book, and literally nothing else about it.
Profile Image for Christy.
3,819 reviews32.4k followers
January 19, 2017
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Tell Me Three Things is a charming YA read that has the perfect amount of friendship, humor, emotion, and a touch of romance.

Lets start with Three things about this book:

1- There are three boys- and although they all have different good qualities, only one will be worthy of rooting for ;)

2- There are some feels in this book, but it also made me laugh a good bit!

3- The end will leave you with a permagrin!

Jessie is in her junior year of high school and is forced to move cross country from Chicago to LA after her dad suddenly remarries. Her first day of school is rough. Then she gets an anonymous email. Somebody/Nobody AKA SN. This random and unknown person helps her through hard times, points her in the right direction when it comes to friends, and becomes a confidant of sorts. Even though Jessie has never met him (at least as far as she knows) they become close friends.

Eventually, life becomes a little easier for Jessie. She also starts to seriously wonder who SN is. There are three guys that she thinks could be it. The guy I liked best and had guessed was SN... well, it wasn’t much of a surprise for me. Regardless when I found out for sure I was grinning from ear to ear. I thoroughly enjoyed this YA read. I listened to the audiobook and the narration was good. I wish it wasn’t quite as predictable, but still a fantastic read!
Profile Image for Jennifer Kyle.
2,379 reviews4,627 followers
November 18, 2016

”Tell me three things I don’t know about you.”


This a delightful, funny, solid, read that I highly recommend to friends who love a well done YA book. The story hit all the right buttons for me and left me with a huge smile on my face.


Two years following the death of her mother, Jessie’s father springs the fact that he has eloped on her. Jessie has to leave everything she knows in Chicago to move in with her new stepmother and her teenage son. Things aren't going so well for Jessie it appears that her step brother seems completely disinterested in her. The kids in her new school seem to have known one another forever. While her father is just too happy to notice how hard this all is on her. It’s simply the new girl in school scenario done to perfection.


Jessie’s struggling to fit in at Wood Valley High School, she meets so many wonderful characters and with each male one she encounters she wonders if he could possibly be her SN. Who is SN? Well, out of the blue she receives helpful emails which later turn into text messages from “Somebody Nobody”. He seems to be perfect and definitely goes to her school. Yet she’s not sure which great guy he could be and is almost scared that he's not who she wants him to be.


While Jessie acclimates to her new school and town she keeps contact with her best friend from home and slowly starts to make friends and find a job here in L.A. Her relationship with her stepbrother was well done as was her feelings and struggles to cope with the loss of her mom and this fancy home she now lives in.

”Perfect days are for people with small realizable dreams. Or maybe for all of us, they just happen in retrospect; they’re only now perfect because they contain something irrevocably and irretrievably lost.”

Through the new friends she has made and her chats with the mysterious SN Jessie makes her own way in L.A. I adored how the author gifted Jessie the one thing everyone wants which is to feel truly seen and to feel known and that’s exactly what she has with SN. The reveal of SN had me on the edge of my seat. It is predictable yet I was terrified that he wasn't who I wanted him to be.


This is a very well done YA that goes on my favorites of the year list. All the characters were developed, the pacing perfect, and the ending is smile-inducing.

”For real, It’s you?”


Profile Image for Faye, la Patata.
492 reviews2,116 followers
January 23, 2016


The deepest smile on my face, the lightest feeling I've had for the longest while, a warmness surrounding my heart... these were the things I've felt while AND after reading this book. I went from "Hmmm, this is interesting!" to "OMFG THIS IS THE CUTEST!!! MY HEART!!! ASDFGHJKL;" in like a fraction of a second once the book reeled me in its grasp. And trust me, it didn't even try. It was just absolutely, 100% effortless. 

In other words: this book is a bloody gem.

I've loved so many books in the past years, a fair amount of them contemporaries. And many of the contemporaries I've super enjoyed - like Faking NormalEmily and Oliver, What We Saw - the best I could give them were4 stars. The 5 stars that I've awarded is reserved for books like Anatomy of a Misfit books with such amazing narration that feels not only real but also so very authentic to the point that the teenage me of yesterday comes out of her hidden depths just to cry out, "This character is so me. Her feelings, her fears, her insecurities are so me. SHE IS ME!"

Tell Me Three Things is that, in a nutshell. I love this book so much like you all wouldn't believe. I honestly was a little hesitant at first, but then, as I read 5 pages, the narration made me chuckle. Then I started enjoying it, nodding my head and giggling every few minutes and going, "Holy heck, this narration is so deep and genuine and teenagery and not pretentious at all!" Then I started feeling it, loving it, adoring it, along with my teenage self that, once again, has wished that she read this kind of book when she was still trying fit herself in a world she could hardly begin to understand. And to top it all off? It was all of these things and it was such a light-hearted and cute story, to boot. I resonated with the characters AND felt incredibly giddy about everything, too.

The romance, the character and relationship development, the hows and whys of online connections... man. How do I even begin?

I already mentioned about how the narration was top-notch (it really is. I wish I could highlight pretty much every word here because they're just so awesome), but I'd also like to reiterate and emphasize how the narration as well made the issues being tackled here so very real and authentic. There's just something so simple and yet so melodic about Jessie's voice that makes her feel like she could be your friend or your neighbor or simply yourself (I'm not even a funny person when I was a teenager [and Jessie is, effortlessly, even if her humor is more self-deprecating than anything else], and yet!!!!), talking about out her fears and concerns as you would have talked about them, too. This is the number one reason (plus her bring adorably funny) that makes this book so close to my heart, and it's so hard to find a narration like that - something that doesn't pretend to be "lyrical" and "real" but is just effortlessly is.

Imagine yourself as the new kid on the block, surrounded by people you don't know, far away from your best friend. You have a new mom who you're not yet ready to accept just yet, a new brother who wants to forget your existence, and your dad is way too busy "trying to move on" with his life without your real mom to understand the things you're going through. And then someone anonymously sends you a message, wanting to be the person to guide you through this new life you've stumbled yourself into, and as you get to know each other, you form a bond with someone you've never seen, never heard, never held. And you wonder, is this right?

Imagine that now with the most amazing narration...  ever .

The aspect with the anonymous friend over the internet was seriously so well-done. I know how there are books out there with text messaging and social media involved in their stories, but none felt so "connecting" and "right" as the one here. I love how it showed how on the internet, we can be anyone we want to be, in a sort of way. In real life, you limit yourself to the kind of person you think you can survive as (as the elusive kid who ignores everyone, for example) but once online, you're so happy-go-lucky and vibrant, because the shadow of anonymity gives us the sort of freedom to show the real us to the people we want to reveal ourselves to. And I love how this was tastefully done, and how it was a big part of the book's suspense, and how it made the story so cuter and exciting on top of being so funny, authentic, and real.


This book surprised me in the best way possible. I don't regret accepting the review request even one bit because it was so very worth it. Julie Buxbaum is now an insta-buy for me, and I have no doubt she will be an insta-buy for you guys as well once you get a dose of this beautiful, funny, cute, light-hearted story.

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Profile Image for ♛ may.
806 reviews3,796 followers
January 17, 2019
I have just one question.

Where can I find myself a SN???????

I’m pretty big on the contemporary genre. It’s my feel good genre, it’s my get-me-out-of-a-reading-slump genre, it’s my help-me-in-drowning-in-feels genre. But lately . . . it’s been letting me down.

Maybe I’m becoming one of those cynical readers who criticizes everything (*screams*) but finding a realistic, relatable contemporary that has a good message and is enjoyable to read just seems so difficult lately.

. . . .until now . . . .

My happiness has been RESTORED.


Okay, this book, this book, this book. I don’t need to tell you that you NEED to pick it up right now.


It’s so bloody cute. Tell Me Three Things is about Jessie Holmes and her messed up junior year. With the death of her mom still taking a toll on her, her dad marries some rich, fancy lady and moves them from Chicago to LA. Everything is SUPER intimidating and Jessie is seriously homesick.
. . .then SN emails her.

SN (Somebody Nobody) is the sweetest, cutest human being you’ve ever met. This is a fact.


Okay, okay quickly, let’s list all things great about this:
- relatable on SO many levels
- hilariously awkward and adorable
- all the characters are dealing with ish
- character G R O W T H
- SN
- the mystery behind SN
- text banter
- the ‘three’ things
- friendships
- family
- amazing
- cute
- super cute
- melts my heart

Now, as much as I love this book with all my heart and I was willing to sacrifice my sleep for it, I have to mention the problems.

In the beginning, there was A LOTof girl hate and of course the whole love-triangle thing BUT SURPRISINGLY THE LOVE TRIANGLE DIDN’T BOTHER ME wow im a changed person

The fact of the matter is. . .
. . . if you love yourself, read this book.

“A rose is a rose is a rose. Jessie is Jessie is Jessie.”

4.5 stars and my sappy heart!!!

Another buddy read with Pragya bc i MESSED UP WITH THE SCHEDULE damn me
Profile Image for Jenny••Steamy Reads Blog••.
987 reviews1,828 followers
December 4, 2016
Tell me 3 things

1). You want sweet. You want amazing. You want cute. How about a lot of smiling?? This is the book for you.

2). Three attractive boys. One that totally sticks out and pushes all the right buttons for you and you are completely yourself with him, but is he your secret admirer?? You get along with the other two but just don't have the right feelings for anything more, right??? I loved the banter and how easy the conversations flowed between each relationship. SN & Jessie, Jessie & Ethan, Liam & Jessie, Jessie & Theo, Dri & Jessie. Want me keep going...? It's captivating, it's easy, and it's so stinkin cute.

3). For the love of God, what happened to Epilogues??? I need more!!!!! Pleeeeeeeeease!!!!

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Profile Image for may ➹.
481 reviews1,958 followers
January 12, 2021
2.5 stars

What I expected:

a) a super cute romance
b) a very fun read
c) something to smile about
✘ d) all of the above

What I got:

a) a super cute romance
b) a very fun read
c) something to smile about
✘ d) none of the above

I love when books disappoint me!!!!!!!

(There was... so much girl hate.)
Profile Image for Bhavya .
476 reviews873 followers
June 5, 2022
Here is my Spotify Book Playlist!

“Just because you're strong doesn't mean you shouldn't ask for help sometimes. Remember that.”

~ Rating- 2.5 stars ~

Content/ Trigger Warnings-
Death of a mother, Death of a father, Death of a spouse, Death of a sibling, Death of a friend, Cancer & Death because of Cancer, Self-harm (mention, and digging nails into palms), Eating disorder (mention), Unhealthy Eating (mc does not eat proper nutritious means on a daily basis), Anxiety, Loneliness, Drugs, Homophobia, Changing Schools & Moving Away, Bulling (verbal, physical), Head Injury

Note- I have tried to include all the content warnings that I noticed, but there is no guarantee that I haven’t missed something.

-Mention of some of these in the review-

✧・゚: *✧・゚:* *:・゚✧*:・゚✧✧・゚: *✧・゚:* *:・゚✧*:・゚✧✧・゚: *✧・゚:*

“Perfect days are for people with small, realizable dreams. Or maybe for all of us, they just happen in retrospect; they're only now perfect because they contain something irrevocably and irretrievably lost.”

Jessie has been grieving her mother’s death for nearly two years. After her father elopes with a woman he met online, Jessie has to move across the country to live with her stepmonster and her stepmothers pretentious teenage son. Just when she’s thinking about going back to Chicago, she gets an email from a person calling themselves Somebody/Nobody (SN for short), offering to help her navigate the wilds of Wood Valley High School. Can she rely on SN for some much-needed help?

“Not feeling like I belong anywhere has made me crave constant motion; standing still feels risky, like asking to be a target.”

✧・゚: *✧・゚:* *:・゚✧*:・゚✧✧・゚: *✧・゚:* *:・゚✧*:・゚✧✧・゚: *✧・゚:*

“Other people can't make you feel stupid. Only you can.”

Tell Me Three things, by Julie Buxbaum was a book I picked up, as Goodreads recommended it to me. GR said it was like Letters to the Lost which is my favoutite book of all time, so I was eager to read Tell Me Three Things! Unfortunately, while it has some similarities, Letters to the Lost is definitely superior.

➼This was my first book by this author, and I enjoyed it for the most part. The beginning and the premise of the book was quite interesting, but it became very typical YA romance after that.

➼I liked the writing style. The poems and discussions on poetry were fun to read.

➼The girl-on-girl hate and the not-like-other-girls got on my nerves. I've successfully avoided books with these tropes for a while (yay to that!), but it was annoying here.

Jessie was an ok character. Nothing about her made a lasting impression on me, but her perspective as a teenager was more accurate than most YA books.

➼I didn't care much for S/N, which is kind of sad as anonymous communication is my absolute favorite trope. I'd love recommendations if anyone has any! I predicted who he was early on, as it was very obvious.

➼Overall, it was an average read that kept me entertained, despite its clichés. I liked it.

“One of the worst parts about someone dying is thinking back to all those times you didn’t ask the right questions, all those times you stupidly assumed you’d have all the time in the world. And this too: how all that time feels like not much time at all.”

✧・゚: *✧・゚:* *:・゚✧*:・゚✧✧・゚: *✧・゚:* *:・゚✧*:・゚✧✧・゚: *✧・゚:*

Review written on 8/1/2022.

Storygraph Review. Storygraph. Spotify Book Playlist. Spotify. Youtube. Pinterest. Linktree.

DISCLAIMER-All opinions on books I’ve read and reviewed are my own, and are with no intention to offend anyone. If you feel offended by my reviews, let me know how I can fix it.

How I Rate-
1 star- Hardly liked anything/ was disappointed
2 star- Had potential but did not deliver/ was disappointed
3 stars- Was ok but could have been better/ was average / Enjoyed a lot but something was missing
4 stars- Loved a lot but something was missing
5 stars- Loved it/ new favourite

Gr recommended me this book saying its like Letters to the Lost and I am tempted to ditch everything I'm reading so I can pick this up, but it has mixed reviews. Has anyone read this? How did you find it? Would love to know.
757 reviews2,346 followers
August 4, 2017

3.5 stars. Rating and review to come because seriously I don't know whether to give this 3 or 4 stars and while we're on that good reads GIVE US FUCKIGN HALF STARS FUCK DAMNIT.
Profile Image for Rachel  L.
1,830 reviews2,187 followers
December 6, 2016
3.75 stars!

“Just because you're strong doesn't mean you shouldn't ask for help sometimes. Remember that.”

This book is the straight version of Simon Vs. the Homo-sapiens Agenda, and while they are very similar, it actually didn't bother me that much. I enjoyed each book for different reasons.

Tell Me Three Things is about a girl named Jessie whose mother died a couple years ago and now her father has found new love. This means selling her childhood home and moving to LA to live with her new stepmother and stepbrother and leaving everything she knows behind. A few days into her new school and Jessie gets an anonymous message, reaching out to her to help her, but never divulging their identity.

Jessie begins to rely more and more on SN, and as time goes by adjusting to her new school gets easier.

“Perfect days are for people with small, realizable dreams. Or maybe for all of us, they just happen in retrospect; they're only now perfect because they contain something irrevocably and irretrievably lost.”

I think this is a book a lot of teens (and adults) can relate to because it's all about coping in new environments and feeling like you're alone. Jessie is a very relatable character, trying to navigate a new school and a whole new family when she feels no one is on her side.

I will say I guessed who SN was fairly easily, I won't tell you how because spoilers. But even pretty much knowing who it was I enjoyed the book. I wish more had been developed in this book, like Jessie's relationship with her dad and her new family, I felt a lot of that was brushed over or quickly wrapped up. It was a huge part of her life and it seemed second to her issues in high school (which were just as bad, but still).

A quick read if you want to read something cute with a good ending.

“Other people can't make you feel stupid. Only you can.”

Profile Image for Kelly (and the Book Boar).
2,453 reviews7,563 followers
September 1, 2017
Find all of my reviews at: http://52bookminimum.blogspot.com/

There’s really not much reason to write any sort of detailed review on this. Rachel summed it up perfectly in hers when she said “this book is the straight version of Simon vs. The Homosapiens Agenda .” She’s spot on – and she’s also 100% accurate when she says it doesn’t even matter. If you loved Simon, you should love this one too and if you’re anything like me you will have your co-workers terrified and asking . . . . .

Two years ago Jessie’s mother died. If that wasn’t horrible enough, her father just eloped with a woman Jessie has never even met and moved her from the comfort of their middle-class life in Chicago to a new life which features mansions and private schools in LA. To say Jessie doesn’t quite fit in might be the understatement of the year. I mean, the poor girl is still rocking scrunchies for goodness sake . . . . .

Jessie assumes the next two years of her life will be sheer misery, until she receives an anonymous e-mail and some unsolicited advice from someone known to her only as “Somebody/Nobody.” As the two get to know each other, Jessie discovers maybe things aren’t destined to be as awful as she originally thought and we readers get to discover . . . .

“What better story is there than the girl who discovers that true love has been waiting right next door all along?”

And for the record, my idea below that the stepbrother might be Jessie’s secret admirer was totally off the mark. If I had bothered reading five pages I would have learned he was gay. Whoops. What can I say? I’m a disgusting pervert through and through . . . .

Bottom line is if you are a fan of teenage romance movies, you’ll be thinking this would be perfect for the big screen and you’ll feel like this almost the entire time you’re reading . . . .


I just started this, so I can't truly "spoil" anything, but the secret admirer has to be

Profile Image for Aj the Ravenous Reader.
1,030 reviews1,045 followers
November 24, 2017

Tell Me Three Things is one of the most relatable YA contemporaries I’ve read this year. The story line is simple, the plot not so eventful and yet it’s everything. It’s so easy to connect with Jessie, a teenage girl who just like any other girl is simply trying to figure out who she is. It isn’t easy being a teenager as it is but having to lose her mom at such a tender age and having to adjust to a new life that is very different from what she’s known- new home, new stepmom and step brother, I doubt I’d handle things any better than she did in the story.

I like the story a lot because even though one of the main themes of the story is about grief, it doesn’t overpower the plot. In fact, it wasn’t a sad read at all. If anything, grief was just a platform for the main characters to influence each other to move forward. The main narrative devices used are e-mailing/IMing/ texting and well, it’s not difficult to enjoy it especially because of this mystery guy guiding Jessie navigate her new intimidating prep school via email/text. Of course, the mystery was quite predictable but still, I enjoyed trying to figure out who it is. The friendship bit is quite commendable too.

Although at first I thought Jessie was an annoying, whiny teenager, it wasn’t long before my heart warmed up to her. I was a lot like her when I was younger- too insecure, too unsure of herself, too much whiteheads. The whiteheads are still there actually. Lol. But sometimes even when we think too little of ourselves, there are people who see, appreciate and acknowledge good things about us. Sometimes it takes an outside POV to make us appreciate what we have both inside and out.

All thanks to Ms. Kelly’s super review for convincing me to read the book. <3
Profile Image for Anniebananie.
539 reviews401 followers
November 9, 2020
4,5 Sterne

Wow. Einfach nur wow. Wie toll war denn dieses Buch bitte?!
Ich hatte ja mit vielem gerechnet, aber nicht mit so viel Emotionen. Es kommt wirklich nicht oft vor, dass mich ein Buch so sehr emotional abholen kann, und erst recht nicht wenn die Protagonistin erst 16 ist.
Aber allein die Ausgangssituation, in der sich unsere Protagonistin befindet ist so super traurig und dann kommt noch das Mobbing in der Schule dazu. Der einzige Lichtblick ist da der anonyme E-Mail-Verfasser, der es gut mit Jessie zu meinen scheint. Man muss sich einfach in ihn verlieben. Ich habe auch verhältnismäßig lang mit Jessie gerätselt wer denn nun hinter SN stecken könnte.
Auch die Entwicklung der Beziehungen zu verschiedenen Nebencharakteren wie Theo, Rachel, Dri oder Agnes fand ich so toll!
Einziger Kritikpunkt war für mich, dass das Ende mir zu schnell kam und ich gern ein wenig offenes Ende für Dri gehabt hätte.
Ansonsten habe ich alles an diesem Buch und dieser Geschichte geliebt. Vom Schreibstil bis zum Plot! Absolute Empfehlung, ich konnte - offensichtlich! - nicht mehr aufhören zu lesen und habe es an einem Abend von Anfang bis Ende verschlungen.
Profile Image for mollusskka.
245 reviews131 followers
October 19, 2016
Tell me three things I don’t know about you.

Jessie is having the worst time of her life. At least, that's what she thinks. She's (still) been dealing with her mom's death since the last two years and her father remarried with a rich woman who lives in L.A. So, without even having a chance to speak her mind, she moves to this new, strange and luxurious house. Yes, you read it right. LUXURIOUS and Jessie don't feel good about it. (Well, clearly she's not me. I get it) And she's having a hard time adapting with her new school and she's bullied. Until one day someone with an alias Somebody Nobody/SN sends her an email. Since then they become online friends. And of course they finally meet in real life.

And now let me TELL YOU THREE THINGS about this book:

1. I hate how it started with numbers. I suck at numbers and the author already made me count the days. It confused me already. But after these numbers stuff, the writing style is good. I had a good time reading this novel. It's cute and all that. And there's something deep about it. As I wrote above, it's about losing someone you really love and how it leaves you with pain on the inside. And it stays there even when you're living your life like everything's okay. And that "Dear Reader" note did touch my heart. So it's real that it takes years to let go. But somehow I think the author didn't deliver it very well. It just went in the wrong way and not so gripping. That I thought Jessie's sometimes so hard to believe. Are you serious about your grief? You need one example? Okay. Here: I don't understand how Jessie could be so randy about boys, especially Ethan, (she wants to kiss his ear lobe) and thinking about dating a boy name Caleb just at the first time she saw him. And the way Jessie narrated the story... She's too cheerful to be a girl in sorrow. Thank God she loves reading and works in a bookstore that I didn't turn to dislike her. And instead of Jessie, I like Agnes and Dri more.

2. I don't understand the fact that Liam, Ethan and Caleb are parts of the band yet they never seem to hangout together. They often walk on their own. and it made the uncovering of mysterious SN in the end is lame. So lame. Because honestly this mysterious SN is my main interest in this novel that kept me going. And how did Theo, not play a bigger part in this story? He's her stepbrother and they kinda hated each other. There should've been a better explanation about their lives together.

3. I don't understand Scarlet. (And she has Korean blood! I mean, really?! Enough with the K-pop thing, please!) She and Jessie texted in a good vibe but when Jessie came to visit her, suddenly it was like she didn't want Jessie there. What is wrong with these people? And when Scarlet said Jessie only whined about her life while they were texting, that wasn't true. Jessie did asked about her life too, like how's she doing with Adam and all that. Yes, I'm on Jessie's side here. And what happened to Jessie at her visit did make me sad (And I think this is the best part of the story) How could two besties be like that? And they only two months separated, not years. So, come on! Grow up!

I'm done with my three things. Now how about the ending?

I like the ending. Everything's solved. Not so special, but at least it has something to say to people dealing with loss and having a hard time adapting with a new life. And I hope you'll have a good time reading this novel if you decide to read it. See you ^^

Profile Image for Darcey.
930 reviews194 followers
January 28, 2021
sooooo cute!
i really enjoyed this!! the story was cute, the romance was adorable and felt believable and i LOVED Theo. was the MC the single most oblivious person to ever exist since i thought Russia was in Europe? yes, yes she was. but i still loved her! she was super sweet and i loved her opinions and thoughts.
overall a super fun and cute book, thanks to Az for recommending it to me!
Profile Image for Larry H.
2,484 reviews29.4k followers
March 15, 2020
Somewhere between 3.5 and 4 stars.

If only we could say the things we most need and want to, to those who most need to hear it.

"...I will continue to power through it—all the stagnant, soul-crushing grief—but it will never be okay that my mom is not here. That she will not be at my high school graduation; that she will never give me the lecture, and I won't be able to play along and pretend to be embarrassed and say, Come on, Mom; that she will not be there when I open my college acceptance letters (or rejections); that she will never see who I grow up to be—that great mystery of who I am and who I am meant to be—finally asked and answered. I will march forth into the great unknown alone."

In Tell Me Three Things , Jessie’s life has been totally uprooted. Her mom died, her dad has gotten remarried to a woman he met online, and has moved them from Chicago into her fancy Los Angeles home with her sullen, disapproving son. And perhaps worse than that, she has to start her junior year at a private high school where everyone is rich and confident and looks like a model.

On her first day of school already in the midst of embarrassing disaster after embarrassing disaster, insult after insult, she gets an email from someone calling themselves “Somebody Nobody,” or “SN.” They claim to be a fellow student and offer to help Jessie navigate the wilds of the high school, anonymously of course.

Little by little, Jessie starts to depend on SN, like him even, but she’s desperate to know who he is. She's finding it difficult to build her own life in California without him. And as she deals with bullying and self-confidence crises and unwanted attention from a friend and issues with her dad and the new life he’s dropped her in, she wants SN in real life more than ever, even as she’s fighting her IRL attraction to a classmate.

This is a sweet book with a lot of poignancy, and as with many YA novels, the characters are funny and far more erudite than typical teens. Julie Buxbaum knows how to tug at your emotions without getting maudlin. (Her latest book, Hope and Other Punchlines , really blew me away.)

I pretty much predicted how this would resolve itself early on, and while I wasn’t disappointed with that resolution, I thought it took a little too long for the payoff. But the book was still fun and a quick read.

Check out my list of the best books I read in 2019 at https://itseithersadnessoreuphoria.blogspot.com/2020/01/the-best-books-i-read-in-2019.html.

Check out my list of the best books of the decade at https://itseithersadnessoreuphoria.blogspot.com/2020/01/my-favorite-books-of-decade.html.

See all of my reviews at itseithersadnessoreuphoria.blogspot.com.

Follow me on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/the.bookishworld.of.yrralh/.
Profile Image for *TANYA*.
1,002 reviews290 followers
April 15, 2017
4.25 stars. Adorable teen book. Sigh!!!!
Profile Image for ambsreads.
656 reviews1,395 followers
January 22, 2018
DNF @ 20%

the girl on girl hate is ridiculous, i can’t suffer through more omg. the main character is meant to be praised because she’s not blonde and super skinny? idk just seems kind of ridiculous to me
Profile Image for Jaime Arkin.
1,422 reviews1,326 followers
February 1, 2016
Tell Me Three Things:
1. I will definitely be reading more of Julie Buxbaums YA stories.
2. I kind of read this whole story in just one day.
3. I absolutely adore Jessie.

If you don’t have this book on your radar yet, please make sure you add it to your to read list immediately.

I was pleasantly surprised by Buxbaum’s debut YA novel and I think that a lot of people are going to fall in love with her writing and this story once it’s out.

Jessie has had her life flipped upside down over the last few years… the death of her mother two years ago was just the beginning. Now her father’s suddenly met someone new and married her of all things. But that’s not the only surprise. They’re selling the house she grew up in in Chicago and moving to L.A. for her junior year of high school and she gets no say in the whole mess.

Leaving her best friend Scarlett behind, she’s forced to navigate the crazy that is Wood Valley High School, but someone is willing to offer her some guidance … anonymously. SN (Somebody/Nobody) is a mystery and while this person knows exactly who she is, Jessie is at a loss and trying to figure out who he/she just might be.

So yes, part of this story is following along with Jessie and trying to figure out who this kind soul is. I have to admit that I pretty much had the person pegged pretty early on, that said, I was still pleasantly surprised with how much I still enjoyed it.

I really loved Jessie. Her grief for her mother is heartbreaking and having to give up everything familiar without any thought to how it will affect her had me wanting to pull her father aside and say “really?” I loved that eventually she and her father had it out and when she said she was allowed to be angry… I seriously wanted to hug her and say yes… yes you are!

Being that Jessie is now in an exclusive private high school so of course I was expecting the mean girls that she experiences. I wish we had a bit more reasoning behind the way Gem and her friends all treat her so horribly. (Is it because she’s not like them?) I will say that I loved the bond she had with Dri and Scarlett and ultimately Agnes though I was sort of confused about her role in the book, possibly to show that Dri wouldn’t be replacing Scarlett in any way (I believe she says at one point that Agnes is Dri’s Scarlett?)

Can I also say that I wanted more Theo? I love the bond that formed between him and Jessie despite the way things may have started (temper tantrum anyone?). They were good for each other and it was lovely to see the way their relationship develop.

Buxbaum is definitely going to be an author to watch in YA. She manages to tell a story filled with depth and sadness and yet it’s light and funny and sweet. The story never overwhelmed me with sadness even though there was sadness within it. A quick paced story with a bit of a mystery will have readers turning pages quickly and finding a story of love, friendship and acceptance that fans of Rainbow Rowell and Becky Albertalli will definitely enjoy!
September 7, 2017
Perfect days are for people with small, realizable dreams. Or maybe for all of us, they just happen in retrospect; they’re only now perfect because they contain something irrevocably and irretrievably lost.

I’m going to be frank with you all: I never had any intentions of reading this novel. Nope. None. And then…and then I got on this kick where I’m obsessed with online romance types (or even love letter/pen pal types *see Punk 57/Letters to the Lost*) where two people are completely anonymous and know each other in real life-but they don’t realize it. And it’s so funny because I didn’t even realize I was gravitating to this type of book until I had read a handful.

Me: So…
Scarlett: If you must know…
Scarlett: My hymen is intact.
Me: Surely you could have told me in a less graphic fashion.

So there I was, posting a review on GR and my blog for one of these types of books, then one of our followers on the blog commented on my review and said they had read this and liked it (THANK YOU, BEAUTIFUL PERSON, THANK YOU). So, naturally, I immediately switched over to GR, marked TM3T ‘to read’ and bought it immediately. And I must tell you: It was love at first page.

I don’t know. Maybe it’s my new, beautifully hectic life or maybe my mind needed a break-who knows? But finding and attaching to this trope came at the best time. And I can’t necessarily pick a favorite out of the pile of cyber/letter books I’ve read in 2017, but each one always gives me the absolute best feelings. Where Punk was hot, dirty, hate-to-love romance, TM3T was sweet, exploratory, one-sided, slow-build romance. It was fun, flirty and made me smile so many times I can’t even count. I won’t lie-even though I’m living the dream, at the moment, I still have dark or heavy times. I don’t have all good days….so this book was just-It was such a fun, beautiful, shining light of a story and I gobbled up every page of it.

He just nods again, like I’ve said yes. Like he asked and I answered a question. Right. Maybe not so nice after all. “But—” But what? I was looking forward to being your partner? I like your serial killer eyes?

I think the most amazing parts of these online romances are the secrecy. There is just something so fun about one person knowing who you are and the other being totally oblivious, but still falling in love that makes me all screechy and fangirlish. Don’t ask me why. I don’t know. I SAID don’t ask why! I just love ‘em. I do. Shh.

Ethan: From Merriam-Webster: Tuber: “a short, thick, round stem that is a part of certain plants (such as the potato), that grows underground, and that can produce a new plant.”
Me: Huh. Kinda makes sense. The whole feeding a new life part of the poem.
Ethan: But why are they dried?
Me: No idea.
Ethan: I like the word “tuber.” Makes a good insult.
Me: ??? Example, please.
Ethan: Gem and Crystal? Total tubers.

Now, it seems so odd that all these books always have one person who knows what’s going on and they lead the person they are crushing about on. I get that-but I think that’s my favorite thing. Is that weird? Whatever. Eliza knew about Wallace. Declan knew about Juliet. Misha knew about Ryen. Bailey and Porter knew about…well. They were oblivious way too long-ask my Frenchy Bug about that (SHUT UP. IF YOU DISS ON THE ONLY BOOKS I HAVE LOVED THIS YEAR I WILL END YOU [squish you like a], BUG). And, in a lot of these, there is anger. Betrayal. Hurt. Why didn’t the [secret] significant other admit they knew who the other was? Why keep up with the charade? And this proves to be an interesting plot point for me.

All the authors handle the anger/betrayal/hurt differently, and I just always seem to love how it’s handled. It adds a layer of diversity to each book that makes me all giddy and weird-but, in the end, always incredibly happy. Because A) Wouldn’t you be pissed if someone you were falling for kept their identity a secret from you? And B) A lot of times, it’s the guy who knows first and he doesn’t like the girl in real life he thought he knew so well online. I LOVE THIS. Animosity from a broody man boy anyone? No takers? I’m the only weirdo? Cool. More Misha [etc.] for moi.

But, that’s where TM3T differs-it’s clear from the beginning. The guy states he doesn’t want to be known and that he knows who she is and he just wants to help. They build a friendship, they grow closer, and they begin to fall in love….all the while she’s guessing/wishing/hoping about who it could be. See? All these books are so different…but the same. They all make me feel good and I truly think, for me, that’s what makes me feel so alive.

Me: Do you think college will actually be better? For real?
SN: hope so. but then again, I just read about a guy who lost a ball in a frat hazing incident.
Me: Seriously? What is wrong with people?

But deeper than that, I love that these characters feel ‘less than’ because, in the end, they learn they don’t have to hide who they are-they don’t have to hide or change themselves to impress anyone else. And isn’t that why most people do the online thing? Because they are ashamed of themselves and don’t want people to know who they really are? It’s not necessarily a good message up front, but it always circles back to make it clear we should be proud of who we are. Maybe that’s reaching-but I like to think that’s the overall message in these books.

But, again, this story differs in that way. This story is more about grief and getting past it-bonding over it and eventually finding out someone understands you and is there for you. It’s about friendship and healing and, finally, seeing there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Again, I’m reaching.

All in all this is a super cute, fluffy contemporary that had me biting my lip and praying that Somebody Nobody was indeed who I hoped he’d be-and I was very pleased, thank you very much. SN was the unlikeliest of people to reach out and lend a virtual lending hand to help navigate the jungle of a new school when someone needed it most, and what followed was a story that had me hooked from the start and became possibly one of my favorites of the year. I finished in record time (since that’s now becoming two weeks for every book I read!!!) and devoured every word. I laughed and swooned and my heart went into overdrive. What else can you ask for?

SN: you know what I think about sometimes?
Me: What?
SN: you know that piece of hair that always falls into your eyes—the not-quite-a-bang piece? I want to be able to tuck it behind your ear. I want to be able to do that. I want to meet you when I feel comfortable enough with you to do that.

And I am SO SICK of people saying ‘just another young adult contemporary borrowed from books before it’ and that books are ‘nothing new’ and how they’ve ‘seen this before’. SO? Don’t all ideas come from somewhere? I am so sick of hearing this. Maybe this makes me naïve-but I LIKE reading similar books to those I’ve loved before. People need to chill. I’m sorry. But they do. All books can be said to be similar-just get OVER it. Seriously. All the books I love have this label from other reviewers yet they like books IIII find cliché-so who is in the wrong here? I don’t know. But what I do know? EVERY book builds on ideas other great authors have established years ago…no idea can be wholly unique, yet book after book gets pegged for being cliché and similar to others before it. But certain books are claimed to be so new and innovative, etc….I ain’t buyin’ it. I find those stories almost MORE generic. So. Meh.

Oops. Ended my review on a rant-not my intention. But, as it were, I felt the winds of defensiveness on the tip of my tongue for my love of YA Contemporary. So take that as you will. I’ll just start yet another wonderful, not-so-new type of YA Contemp book. Come at me-because, frankly, I’ll probably love it, too. Shocker.
Profile Image for Jeannine Allison.
Author 13 books507 followers
June 21, 2020
I need to start off by saying that I LOVE this trope. It's random, but I love the whole secret admirer plot. So I had a strong feeling I was going to love this, and I did.

Even though there were a few *minor* things that I didn't love... like Jessie's attitude sometimes (she did grow throughout and since it'd be stupid of me to expect a perfect MC, once she started changing I wasn't bothered by her) and , those were easy to overlook because of how much I loved the overall plot.


The storyline was fairly predictable, but I still felt invested and I found that I didn't mind that it was easy to figure out what was going to happen. I still really, really enjoyed this book. :) I loved watching all the characters change and grew and mend, and I kept reading for the character development as much as the satisfying conclusion. If you don't enjoy predictable storylines or this particular trope, you probably wouldn't enjoy this. But if you're like me, and you don't mind and/or you're as obsessed with secret admirers as I am, I'd definitely recommend it :)
Profile Image for Sharon.
506 reviews259 followers
January 6, 2017
Two minutes into the book, and I already laughed, smiled like an idiot, and snorted. All I was thinking was, "Why is this book so adorable????"
...And then it went downhill after 5 minutes.

-I'm a sucker for romance-before-first-sight where somehow the girl and guy start sending each other secret messages (in this case, email/IM)
-Some very cute bantering such as:
"I have been watching you at school. not in a creepy way. though I wonder if even using the word “creepy” by definition makes me creepy? anyhow, it’s just…you intrigue me."

^^^This is the most cute-creepy thing I have ever read. LOL.
-The friendships are nice. I like that Jessie had Scar as her original best friend from her old school. I also like that there is this moment where Jessie realizes that Scar has been listening Jessie struggling without Scar, but Jessie is too self-absorbed to realize that Scar is lonely too. In addition, Jessie's best friend at her new school is cool too. Overall, nice friend support system.
-Theo. Jessie's stepbrother is such an asshole in the beginning, but he actually turns out to be incredibly honest, funny, and supportive. He is one of my favorite aspects about this book.
-I like the way the family conflict is resolved. Jessie and her dad learn to start talking and communicating again. They were struggling after Jessie's mom died, but it was good to see them finally find a place where they can communicate and be a family again. Also, the stepmother isn't as bad as she originally appeared, and I like that she and Jessie are willing to try to be better by the end of the book
-Ending: Pretty damn cute. It is just well-done and immensely adorable.

-The antagonist is the cliché "mean, popular, pretty" girl who bullies the protagonist for things that don't matter. I'm just not a fan of the trope where girls get petty and hate on other girls, especially out of jealousy FOR A GUY. Perhaps this is "realistic," and yes, many movies, books, plays, etc. love the theme of female jealousy and pettiness for a guy, but it's still not enjoyable.
-I don't like the comments Jessie make about other girls she sees at her school. Some skinny-shaming, slut-shaming, girl-hating-on-girls, etc. There are also some stereotyping.
-Cliché and predictable plot. Every conflict and resolution that happened in this book is not anything really new. I was rather bored for most of it, except for the very beginning and end.
-A lot of silly, cliché attention on popularity/not-being-cool and mean girls being mean just for funsies or because of a guy. Some people may argue that this is realistic - and I can somewhat see that. Yes, most (if not all) high schools have some form of popularity contest and of course, people being bullied in high school for no fuckin' good reason is a real thing (sadly). It's just not fun reading a book that focuses on this stuff for me personally. High school drama such as "being cool" and "mean girls" are just so... insignificant, in my opinion. It's realistic, and it makes sense for a 16-year-old to not be secure enough to not care about these things, but still, for my preference - not fun to read. (I like YA contemporary but not when it has too much emphasis on stuff like this)
-Misunderstanding trope. I don't even know how Jessie misunderstood that a certain guy was her secret emailer. She somewhat just assumed, and she didn't even bother clearing up, like "Hey. That was you in the shop today, right?" *facepalm*

Overall, I'm giving Tell Me Three Things 2 stars. I really do like the very beginning - it's funny and unbelievably cute. I was SO SURE I was going to adore this book with how much I smiled and laughed right off the bat. The ending is also on point. Unfortunately, I did not enjoy the book much throughout. I was bored and I didn't like a lot of the plotting and the "mean, pretty popular girl picks on the protagonist" trope. It's a mixed bag, but I'm sure some people would still enjoy it for some of the cute bantering.

Things that you might want to know (WARNING: Spoilers below)
Is there a happy/satisfying ending?
Love triangle? Cheating? Angst level?
Favorite scene?
What age level would be appropriate?

I haven't read a YA Contemporary/Romance in a while and I am quite excited. That cover is simply adorable <3
Profile Image for Eliza.
594 reviews1,375 followers
February 16, 2019
3.5 / 5 ~

A perfect Valentine’s Day read; that’s what Tell Me Three Things is. It’s filled with relatable characters, a realistic main character, and funny banter. And although much doesn’t happen (in terms of action, drama, and all that jazz) and I found everything predictable, others might enjoy this book more than I did — especially if they don’t figure out who Somebody Nobody is around chapter two.

I loved reading through Jessie’s eyes (is that how you say it?). She’s honest, not perfect, has insecurities, anger, and is hilarious. This books grabbed my attention because of her bluntness and realness from page one. Honestly, it was that fast.

Somebody Nobody, the guy who sends Jessie an anonymous email telling her she’ll make it in the new prep school she’s going to, hit up an online friendship/relationship. The whole intrigue of the book is trying to figure out who this guy is — only I immediately knew who they were. I just knew. And I was right when it was revealed. But I won’t spoil that, because I think it would be fun for people to wonder who he is.

All in all, there isn’t much of anything that happens that is inherently original or fascinating — it’s just a fun read. So if you’re looking for something romantic and relatable, I would definitely recommend this.
Profile Image for destiny ♡ howling libraries.
1,662 reviews5,148 followers
September 25, 2017
When Jessie loses her mother to cancer and her father uproots their lives to move cross-country for a woman she's never met, she's plunged into a world of silicon, mountain climbing, bullying, and $10 minimums on snack machines. Enter Somebody Nobody, a mysterious email correspondent who offers to guide her through her new world, to teach her that home isn't always a place.

5 ⭐️! This book was adorable, sad, funny, and sweet. I loved Jessie and her nerddom, and totally would've been friends with her (and Scar, Dri, and Agnes) at 16 - and I could've used a Somebody Nobody a time or two in my life.
Profile Image for Alyssa.
1,069 reviews839 followers
January 8, 2016
4.5 stars. 5 stars?

NO TRIANGLE. Or any kind of geometry. The synopsis is purposefully misleading - and for good reason!

Check out a swoony excerpt !

***Review posted on The Eater of Books! blog***

Tell Me Three Things by Julie Buxbaum
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Publication Date: April 5, 2016
Rating: 4 stars
Source: ARC sent by the publisher

Summary (from Goodreads):

Everything about Jessie is wrong. At least, that’s what it feels like during her first week of junior year at her new ultra-intimidating prep school in Los Angeles. Just when she’s thinking about hightailing it back to Chicago, she gets an email from a person calling themselves Somebody/Nobody (SN for short), offering to help her navigate the wilds of Wood Valley High School. Is it an elaborate hoax? Or can she rely on SN for some much-needed help?

It’s been barely two years since her mother’s death, and because her father eloped with a woman he met online, Jessie has been forced to move across the country to live with her stepmonster and her pretentious teenage son.

In a leap of faith—or an act of complete desperation—Jessie begins to rely on SN, and SN quickly becomes her lifeline and closest ally. Jessie can’t help wanting to meet SN in person. But are some mysteries better left unsolved?

What I Liked:

I took a chance with this book; I'm not a YA contemporary person, and I knew that the romance in this book could go in several different directions. Obviously we all want her to end up with her secret emailing admirer (even without reading the book, you're rooting for him!), but we also know that the person emailing her might not be someone she likes away from the screen. So, I was worried about a love triangle or something of the sort. I am very happy to report that there was a very linear romance, and the story was beautiful and heart-wrenching and lovely!

Jessie's mother died two years ago. Her father remarried, and now she and her dad are living in L.A. with his new (rich) wife Rachel, and Rachel's son Theo. Rachel is paying for Jessie to attend a very fancy and preppy private school, Wood Valley High School. Jessie's first week is a disaster, and most people noticed - specifically, an anonymous person referred to as Somebody/Nobody, who emails Jessie, encouraging her and telling her details about Wood Valley High. Jessie is wary at first, but finds herself chatting online with SN more and more. She wants to meet her peer, who knows who she is, and has been a friend throughout the rough transition. But what if the person behind the screen isn't someone she likes in real life?

This book was absolutely stunning, inside and out. Can we just talk about the cover for a second? I thought it was interesting, when I first saw it, and that was one of the reasons why I accepted the book for review. But now that I've read the book, I can appreciate the cover even more. "Waffle" is Jessie's favorite word, and it has another significance in the book (several, actually). Love!

Oh Jessie. Her pain and anger and frustration and numbness felt so real and tragic. I could see myself reacting exactly as she did, in terms of the big move, her father ignoring her feelings, her new stepmother, her new stepbrother, her new school. I love Jessie so much - she is someone to whom I can relate, someone real, someone likable. Even if you aren't entirely like her, you can relate to her on some level. Jessie is down-to-earth (especially compared to these snobs in Wood Valley High), intelligent, determined, hard-working, smart with money, humble... someone that I would be friends with, in real life.

I LOVE how real all of Buxbaum's characters seemed to me! Wood Valley High is very different from my high school, yet the high school experience is (for the most part) is at least similarly and generally understood by most. This high school is filled with rich snobs, with perfect hair, model good looks, weird organic food... I've never been to L.A., but I can stretch my imagination and believe it.

Anyway, secondary characters. Jessie's new friends Dri and Agnes are so sweet. Agnes is a little strange at first, but I liked her. Theo, Jessie's stepbrother, seems like a tool at first, but I warmed up to him quickly. He's actually a nice guy (though I still refuse to think of him as a "decent" guy).

We have our potential SN guys: Caleb, a rando who doesn't really play a big role throughout the book, but is very convincingly like SN. Liam, a senior, who plays a larger role in the book, and has been nice to Jessie from the start. And Ethan, Jessie's English partner for a project, who is good-looking but also a bit cold. Distant? He plays a huge role in the book, especially as Jessie's partner for the English project.

I'll just say it - there is no love triangle. Or square. Or pentagon, pyramid, rhombus, whatever. No geometry whatsoever, except for a straight line. The romance in this book is VERY linear. I love the romance, honestly. Jessie falls for this certain guy in real life, and she also develops a strong connection to SN. Whoever is behind the screen is someone that understands and cares about her, and by the climax of the book, Jessie is convinced that it's one of those three boys. I really like how the romance turned out. TRUST ME when I say that there is no love triangle. There is emotional and physical interaction only with one guy... the right guy. *wink*

So that's the romance. And I mentioned the characters. I also loved the "tough-issue" story, how heartbreaking and inspiring the story is. Loving a parent, and then the other (to a stepmother), moving cross-country, starting over in a school filled with people that look down on you... nothing comes easy, for Jessie. I love her strength of character, and how she grows as the story continues. This book isn't so gritty and difficult to read that a non-contemporary person like me would stop reading. No, this book was beautiful and achingly sweet to read.

I am so pleased with this book. The story is incredible, the heroine is so strong and inspiring, and the romance is really sweet, without having any physical intimacy (which is so great, in its own way). I kind of love how Jessie is able to connect with someone so powerfully, in this age of technology and behind-the screen interactions. I really adored this book!

What I Did Not Like:

I know I just said how I loved that this book had no physical intimacy in it (like the only kiss comes at the very end, in the "reveal" scene). BUT I also personally find this to be a negative because I looove physical interactions in a book that has such a great romance in it! However I can see how that wouldn't really fit, in this book. But still.

Would I Recommend It:

I so recommend this book! I'm not even a YA contemporary person, and I'm recommending it. Have you seen the amount of positive reviews on Goodreads? This book is so worth the buzz that has been floating around. Give it a chance! I tend to stay far away from YA contemporary - especially those dealing with "tough issues", but this book was really worth the read.


4.5 stars -> rounded down to 4 stars (I'm not really sure why I'm rounding down, but it doesn't quite feeling like a five-star read to me). Such a wonderful book, and a fast read, too! I'm glad I took a chance on this one.
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