I Hate Everyone But You
Dear Best Friend,
I can already tell that I will hate everyone but you.
(That brunette who won’t leave you alone)
We’re still in the same room, you weirdo.
So begins a series of texts and emails sent between two best friends, Ava and Gen, as they head off to their first semesters of college on opposite sides of the country. From first loves to weird roommates, heartbreak, self-discovery, coming out, and mental health, the two best friends will document every moment to each other. But as each changes and grows into her new life, will their friendship be able to survive the distance?
I Hate Everyone But You, the debut novel by two emerging major talents in YA, Allison Raskin and Gaby Dunn, is a story about new beginnings, love and heartbreak, and, ultimately, the power of friendship.
I’ve been getting into certain audiobooks lately. My fiancé and I are in the middle of a huge renovation and move, so it’s been very hard to balance my free time to allow reading for pleasure. Then I get dragged down and feel stressed, and while at work I feel even worse. I turned to audiobooks as a middle-ground: I’m not getting to hold a physical book in my hand, but I do get to listen to a story while I accomplish my other tasks.
A few weeks ago I promised a review of the audiobook of The Sin Eater’s Daughter but…that never happened. I still want to because I LOVED it, but honestly speaking I might not get around to it. Sorry! Instead, let me share with you my review of the best audiobook I’ve ever listened to, which I had the pleasure of enjoying this past week. It’s I Hate Everyone But You performed by the authors, Allison Raskin and Gaby Dunn.
If you’ve never watched the YouTube channel Just Between Us and you identify as feminist, I’d recommend you head on over to YouTube and take a look. Allison and Gaby play versions of themselves where their quirks and/or flaws are ultra-heightened and the result is hilarious. They are a great comedy duo, their writing is qualitatively spot-on, and so I knew when I heard they were writing this book that it would be great. Then I picked it up in stores, discovered that it was a novel composed of texts and emails…and was promptly put off. I can’t stress enough that I hold a strong disdain for diary, letter, or text-style novels. I can’t stand them. So I didn’t pick it up. But then I learned that there was an audiobook and that Allison and Gaby perform it together. I thought, this might work. AND IT SO DOES!
Gaby voices the character Gen, who I imagine to be a younger version of the Gaby portrayed in Just Between Us. Likewise Allison voices Ava, a younger version of JBU’s Allison. However, both Gen and Ava are toned-down versions of the characters in JBU. The listener follows along as the two characters part for their first year at university on opposite sides of the country, navigate self-exploration, expression, and romance, and, like an old married couple, work out the kinks in their newly long-distance relationship. Allison and Gaby’s performance is imbued with warmth and a genuine care for the characters and each other that I think would be, potentially, missed in the printed versions. They both have excellent comedic timing and perform the novel in such a way that I truly believe the audiobook is the only way this novel should be experienced. I loved it so much that I plan on listening to it again and again until the disk breaks. The story is timeless, relatable, and genuine. I can’t recommend it enough.