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Technically, You Started It

3.57  ·  Rating details ·  4,401 ratings  ·  1,129 reviews
When a guy named Martin Nathaniel Munroe II texts you, it should be obvious who you're talking to. Except there's two of them (it's a long story), and Haley thinks she's talking to the one she doesn't hate.

A question about a class project rapidly evolves into an all-consuming conversation. Haley finds that Martin is actually willing to listen to her weird facts and unusual
Hardcover, 384 pages
Published June 25th 2019 by Scholastic Press
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Lana Johnson The book that inspired this story was "Daddy-Long-Legs" by Jean Webster published in 1912. If you're looking for more contemporary sweet reads check o…moreThe book that inspired this story was "Daddy-Long-Legs" by Jean Webster published in 1912. If you're looking for more contemporary sweet reads check out Anna and the French Kiss.

But if you're looking for more Haley books...Someone else is gonna need to answer that because even I don't know why I picked that name.(less)
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Average rating 3.57  · 
Rating details
 ·  4,401 ratings  ·  1,129 reviews

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Kai Spellmeier
Feb 28, 2019 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned
Technically, my tbr shelf is laughing at my face but I WILL read this book so who's laughing NOW*

*not me I'm crying
Chelsea (chelseadolling reads)
So charming and so fun. I ate this up.
Whitney Atkinson
This book is difficult to review because it had a lot of potential but it was just.... bad. First and foremost, I think this book would have been so much more enjoyable to an actual teenager, so I might have liked this better when I was in high school. But then again, I think even a teenager would find the writing style problematic and sort of unrealistic for how teenagers talk, so it's difficult to recommend.

This book is told entirely through text messages. I think this could have been an inte
♛ may
i am disgustingly in love with this book ugh give me more fluff, im not nearly satisfied with the amount we got
Vicky Again
Jul 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
okay, i was not expecting Johnson to get it right BUT

she really knows. some teens text with all lowercase (jack) some text w/ lots of emojis (martin), some use perfect punctuation (our MC)

the only qualms i had about the texting+voice were that
1) it was unrealistic that there were THAT many periods on both sides. capitalizing i understand bc autocorrect but a lot of people just send texts off sans periods. they're so....formal
2) needed more meme culture esp. given how our MC is a Nerd, i defini
Sep 14, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
⭐⭐⭐⭐4 stars
I just love the trope where two people don't meet but start bonding through (letters/ texts/ mail). And develop friendship which later can turn into something else when they start to know each other. (I am not talking about sexting here) what I mean is the most platonic way two people start forming chemistry and if it's done well chances are I am going to rate it high.💓
This book isn't for everyone. You'll feel more connected to the plot if you are teenager (Or you like the trope I men
It has pretty great representation (main character is demisexual and love interest is bi), but the characters seemed pretty bland to me so I had a hard time connecting to them at all. womp.
I wanted to read this book because of the demisexual rep, but I had no idea the format is text messages only. This seemed like a very fun and refreshing format, so I was extra excited to read this book once I found out about this. And it was so well done! I had a lot of fun reading this, and I loved how it showed that online messaging can have a lot of depth. As someone who values internet friendships, this was lovely to see represented in a book: even if the characters technically already knew ...more
Kosoko Jackson
Sep 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Technically, You Started It is a magical, beautiful, fluffy tale that you're going to be heart eyes over and you need to pre-order as soon as you can. I'm not even joking. ...more
Sam Chase
Nov 26, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 3-stars
Rating: 3 stars

I had a really fun time reading this book! I guess I shouldn't be surprised that a book made up entirely of text messages goes by in such a flash. The format was definitely the most unique part of this book, and it kind of makes or breaks the story. Honestly, I wish they'd had Haley's and/or Martin's text conversations with other characters as well, just to get a little break from the same old relationship. I think would have broken up the story and made it even more enjoyable. I
CW (The Quiet Pond) ✨
A nice, quick, and charming read! This book is told entirely in text messages (and it kind of worked?!), this is a light and fun read.

- Follows Haley, a demisexual teen, and Martin, a bisexual teen, whose texts about a class project evolves into an electric conversation and relationship. Almost like You've Got Mail, but teens and text messaging.
- There's explicit discussions about sexuality (especially demisexuality, which we don't see often!), and the way that it was done was really authentic
Trina (Between Chapters)
This story being entirely told through text messages was wonderful via audiobook.
Might've liked it in the past. But, I'm just... maybe, too grown up now for this.

The book is all in text messages and it was nice for a while but then, it became boring for me. Could've edited 100 pages or so and it definitely would have been a 3-3.5 star read.
Apr 12, 2020 rated it it was ok
Technically, I am deceived by a book cover once again.

Reading this book felt like invading someone's inbox; however, the conversation wasn't all that intriguing so what's even the point of committing a cybercrime? Or maybe I'm just not a big fan of stories in a text message format.

Even if I did like getting a tad bit smarter about acetaminophen's soothing effects to existential dread and different types of sand, Haley and Martin just sound so bland and too alike that it's hard to believe that t
Aug 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Full disclosure, I read this book as a critique partner.

I am a Lana Wood Johnson super fan. Technically, You Started It is an absolute gem. The characters are charming and quick-witted. There is something about the quiet way these characters knot themselves together through a series of text messages that will make you fall in love just as much as I did. Even many months later, I am still thinking about this book and its characters.

Well it was an enjoyable read 💕
If you want something cute you should really read this one...i really liked the whole texting format of the book .. made it interesting 🧡
Nov 24, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2020-reads
in need of some mindless fluff + i heard this has demisexual rep so here i am
Belly (Aspiringliterati)
THIS!!! BOOK!!! IS!!! SO!!!! ADORABLE!!!!

Do you ever get the feeling that you'll love a book right from the 1st sentence or chapter ? Well that's what happened to me with this one. From the 1st text, I know I'd enjoy the hell out of it and I DID SO MUCH.

Hayley and Martin's blooming friendship moves smoothly into the "and more" territory, through a string of texts, where both characters find themselves getting more than what they expected from this relationship. It was so heartwarming seeing the
chloe yeung ♡
i'm sad,, there's something wrong with my ebook copy the formatting's all weird :( ...more
*On-page demisexual and bisexual rep!!! Also on-page for GAD*

I picked up this book at midnight thinking I’d read the first few pages and I read the WHOLE THING, feat. accidentally saying “fuck” way too loud considering my parents were asleep a few doors down, dropping the book in panic bc the moment was just Too Good™️, and getting progressively more and more invested.
Danielle (Life of a Literary Nerd)
This was a wonderfully quick audiobook that worked well with the all text message format, and I don't feel like I lost anything by not seeing it visually. But there was a kinda weird choice the narrator for Martin dig that bugged be to start with, but I got used to it. Haley and Martin have great chemistry and I really enjoyed seeing them get closer together over the course of the story. Both characters identify as a part of the LGBTQ+ spectrum (Martin as bisexual and Haley as demi sexual) which ...more
Samantha (WLABB)
The chances of meeting one Martin Nathaniel Munroe II were slim to none, but Haley happened to know of TWO Martin Nathaniel Munroe II, because their parents wanted to name them both after their grandfather. Not very original, and also, very confusing, but the situation created the perfect storm for a fun mistaken identity type romance.

I had heard this book was amusing, but it was laugh out loud funny for me. These two shared some epic banter, and both were witty and possessed a sense of humor I
Jillian Reynolds (Jillian Loves Books)

Wow. I hated this.
Jun 03, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: read-in-2019
My review for this book is now up on my blog!

Yna from Books and Boybands
THIS BOOK WAS ADORABLE. It was super fluffy, lots of cute banter, and I was smiling for (almost) the entire time!
Reading_ Tamishly
Sep 24, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
The most annoying, irritating read of the year. It's not the sms format of the book that ruined it. I am always ready for new writing style and all but this was plain annoying and the characters were like too annoying. I should have DNFED this one. Nope. It doesn't get better. ...more
Mar 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Reread Jan 5, 2021:
I still love this so much

Original review:
Apr 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Lana Wood Johnson takes a classic trope - think As You Like It, She Loves Me, You've Got Mail - and re-envisions it in a wholly unique, charming, and FUN context. And honestly, Haley and Martin are more likable than the main characters in You've Got Mail (sorry Meg & Tom).

Haley and Martin are both protagonists you'll root for throughout the story, even when you're yelling at them for making stupid decisions. Lana conquers tough subject matter areas like sexuality, mental illness, and changing re


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Lana Wood Johnson was born and raised in Iowa in the time before the internet but has spent the rest of her life making up for that. Lana lives in Minnesota with her husband and their English bulldog.

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