C.G. Drews's Reviews > Words in Deep Blue

Words in Deep Blue by Cath Crowley
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really liked it
bookshelves: aussie-authors, contemporary, read-2016, young-adult, read-2018, reread
Read 2 times. Last read December 12, 2018 to December 13, 2018.

READ 2 | Dec 2018

Rereading books is like coming back to old friends...and if it's been long enough, you don't remember that these olD FRIENDS MADE YOU CRY. Seriously this book both hit me harder emotionally this time (for losing things you love) but also made me ever so much more frustrated (specifically, Henry for being so self-obsessed). So it was a mixed-reunion? But still, I am a frazzled mess rn, thank you so much for that, book.

We are the books we read and the things we love.


READ 1 | Sept 2016

This is one of the most beautiful books I've had the pleasure of devouring at dawn. Actually I devoured it at midday but pfft, please let's not get caught up on the details. THE FACT IS: THIS IS AN AMAZINGLY GLORIOUS BOOK AND I LOVE IT. But then can Cath Crowley do no wrong?!? I adore her books A Little Wanting Song and Graffiti Moon and I'm sooooo glad this new book exists. IT'S BEAUTIFUL. (What do you mean I said that already??? Dude, I'm saying it a million times. Buckle up for the ride.)

The best thing about this book is: IT'S ABOUT BOOKS. I think books about books are (A) the best kind of bookish inception, and (B) doomed to capture the reader's heart because we relate! It's partially set in a bookstore that's failing and about to be sold. And it's absolutely STUFFED with references, discussions, and mentions of other books. Plus do you know how aesthetically pleasing an old second-hand bookstore story is!??? I just wanted to fold myself into this book and live here forever.

Although, the bookishness did pose one annoyance. Um, yeah. Hear me out. See the thing about books about books is....usually they're about classic books. Don't get me wrong. I have no problem with classic books. And these characters WERE NOT SNOBS about classics, which was great. The book even mentions The Fault in Our Stars! And I recognised a reference to Summer Skin (which I won and should read yeah???) But about 89% of the important books in here were classics. And it did kind of end up as a little pretentious.

(Not enough for me to stop loving the book though, clearly.)

(And, I mean, I love the idea of abusing books and writing notes in them and letters and underlining and highlighting...but I COULDN'T DO IT. NO. I COULDN'T.)

(And also having a library where people write letters and put them in books for other people to find is THE best idea in the world. Please someone make this happen. #AestheticallyPleasing)

Also the characters and the dialogue was definitely BEYOND AMAZING. It's dual narrated by Henry and Rachel who are ex-best friends and kind of are slowly becoming friends again. Henry is also hugely involved in this girl who goes out with him and dumps him again and again etc etc. But despite being an absolute LIMP CUSTARD NOODLE about this girl....Henry is still adorable. Boys with good senses of humour who like to read are just adorable. The end. And Rachel's brother just died so she's severely depressed and often rude. But she's recovering from the worst kind of heartbreak and she is learning to live again (no "romance cures all" messages btw; huzzah). And their banter is EVERYTHING.

"What?" she asks.
"Your head," I tell her, "is a very pleasing shape."
"Likewise," she says, and smiles.

And that's not even to mention all the amazing secondary characters. I just...I can't even summarise how much I looooved the secondary characters. THERE ARE NO PAPER PLATES HERE. Everyone is so dimensional that I literally will climb onto a very very tall chair and yell for a spin-off story for George (Henry's little sister). Everyone was complex and interesting and HEARTBREAKING.

Although, I mean, mini-warning: it kinda contains a love triangle. Obviously it is a PERFECT love-triangle because here I am, still enjoying it. It's also 1 boy = 2 girls, which is unusual? And I honestly knew how it'd end up, and it was a case of characters being BLIND. But there you go. Fair warning. It could be a bit irritating because it was obviously Henry needed to get smacked upside the face with a large bookshelf. But ya know...these things happen.

I also maybe nearly cried. But I didn't because #Vulcan. But there was something like A TEAR tickling the back of my eyeballs.

Also the books is actually very comfortable and calming. This feels weird to say??? BUT HEAR ME OUT. It was a cosy bookshop and lots of food and gentle banter and teenagers with excellent vocabularies and love of dusty old books. And that was just SO COMFORTABLE TO READ ABOUT. It was sad. It was beautiful. It was never never never dull. And yet it was what I'd call a "quiet book". And I'm just enormously thankful for it.


Basically I love this book an exuberant amount. Obviously. Take a peek at my 5star shouting. The beautiful words, the book-appreciation, the amount of dumplings, the complex characters, the heartbreaking letter-writing, ALL. THE. BOOKS = completely won my little bookworm soul.

Bye. I have to go HUG MY BOOKSHELF NOW.

*** QUOTES ***
Note: quotes taken from an eARC from Netgalley. Be aware that they may not be final.
Second-hand books are full of mysteries, which is why I like them.

The Letter Library is a section of books that aren't for sale. Customers can read the books, but they can't take them home. They idea is that they can circle loved words or sentences on the pages. they can write notes in the margins. They can leave letters for people who've read and been there before them.

Last night I collected all the books I thought I'd need before I took to the counch, so they're all piled up around me -- there's some Patrick Ness, an Ernest Cline, some Neil Gaiman, Flannery O'Conner, John Green, Nick Hornby, some Kelly Link, and if all else fails, Douglas Adams.
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Reading Progress

September 25, 2016 – Started Reading
September 25, 2016 – Shelved
September 25, 2016 –
20.0% "This is basically about old abused 2nd-hand books which is VERY AESTHETICALLY PLEASING but omg they're writing in books and i'm dead on the inside just thinking about it."
September 25, 2016 –
64.0% "Everyone is hopelessly in love with books and this makes me in love with them. #bookwormlogic"
September 25, 2016 – Shelved as: aussie-authors
September 25, 2016 – Shelved as: contemporary
September 25, 2016 – Shelved as: read-2016
September 25, 2016 – Shelved as: young-adult
September 25, 2016 – Finished Reading
December 12, 2018 – Started Reading
December 12, 2018 –
page 101
28.69% "it's been 2 years since I read this and I just...felt like revisiting this world of old books and wry characters !! rereading is truly like being with old friends"
December 13, 2018 – Shelved as: read-2018
December 13, 2018 – Shelved as: reread
December 13, 2018 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-20 of 20 (20 new)

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Amber McMahan-Godwin Sounds like my kind of book adding to my TBR mountain

message 2: by Meredith (new)

Meredith Durfy Sounds good

Annie-JoElizabeth I have to read this, Cait! I mean SECOND HAND BOOKSHOPS AND LETTERS !!

message 4: by Charlotte (new)

Charlotte This actually sounds amazing, I need to get my hands on this asap

Melissa Souza Great review. It has gone on my TBR list :)

message 6: by Firefly (new) - added it


message 7: by Kaiti (new) - added it

Kaiti People do do the leaving notes thing; Google the nerdfighters

message 8: by Lisa (new) - added it

Lisa Aiello Just reading your review made my heart happy. Take away the fact that you loved the book and all that - you just exude joy in the way you write and express yourself. I was smiling - literal smiling - as I read this. Oh yeah - and I have to add it to my TBR!!!

message 9: by Kristin (new) - added it

Kristin Hahaha, loved the #Vulcan part!

Samantha (WLABB) This book was stunning, and I did cry.

message 11: by Amy (new)


Zenki the Hermit Oh, Cait, you're hilarious! I enjoyed reading your review! XOXO

message 13: by renee ella (new) - added it

renee ella I definitely want to read this book and you've made me want to read it even more!!! It sounds like such a beautiful story!

message 14: by C.G. (new) - rated it 4 stars

C.G. Drews @Reneeella: It's SO GOOD!! I mean I read it 2 years ago now but I'm desperate for a reread.❤️

message 15: by K.A. (new) - added it

K.A. SOLD! Also love that this book could make a solid Vulcan sense a tear behind their eyeballs somewhere. :)

message 16: by C.G. (new) - rated it 4 stars

C.G. Drews @K.A. 😂😂 It really is an excellent one for all book lovers!!

message 17: by K.A. (new) - added it

K.A. C.G. wrote: "@K.A. 😂😂 It really is an excellent one for all book lovers!!"

I can't wait!

message 18: by Kelly B (new)

Kelly B Great review! Putting this on my tbr list!

Bubbles I love this book, so glad you did too

message 20: by Sky (new) - rated it 5 stars

Sky I've been nodding at the screen while reading your review. THIS BOOK GOT MY BOOKWORM SOUL SO BAD

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