As Many Nows as I Can Get (Hardcover)

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(Young Adult)

Staff Reviews

The big national debut by Farmington author Shana Youngdahl  is an absolute tour de force. Am I biased in the book's favor because I know Shana? No! The book has such a dynamic immediacy, a skillfully intricate narrative structure, and a challenging, open ended engagement with its protagonists, that any positive personal  bias I came in with was subsumed in the obvious and true excellence of the book.

The story is narrated by Scarlett, a big fish in a small Colorado town, with a passion for physics. The book’s power partially derives from the reader’s strong attachment to a character who embarks on a string of incredibly painful bad decisions. Scarlett is a subtly unreliable narrator. Her perception of herself as a careful person who doesn’t ordinarily make impulsive mistakes, the reader comes to realize, is slightly off center. Another exceptional element of the book derives from Scarlett’s adherence to Einstein’s understanding of the simultaneity of the past, present and future, an illusion of linear progression but in fact a perpetual series of nows. Shana takes Scarlett’s notion of time to create a narrative whose constant temporal shifts accentuates the power of the story. This is a book which will speak strongly to most anyone from fifteen to adult.

— From The Holiday Twenty


A Seventeen Best Book of the Year
A New York Public Library Top Ten Best Book of the Year
A Kirkus Best Book of the Year

"A daring, inventive story about love and loss and longing, reminding us that every choice can be a new chance. A dazzling, not-to-be-missed debut." --Kathleen Glasgow, author of Girl in Pieces

In one impulsive moment the summer before they leave for college, overachievers Scarlett and David plunge into a brief and irresistible swirl of romance, particle physics, and questionable decisions.

Scarlett and David have known each other all their lives in small-town Graceville, Colorado, where David is just another mountain in the background, until, one day, he is suddenly so much more than part of the landscape. Magnetic, spontaneous, David is a gravitational force. And Scarlett, pragmatic, wry, eye on the future, welcomes the pull he has on her even as she resists it.

Moving between the present and the past, this is the story of a seemingly grounded girl who's pulled into a lightning-strike romance with an electric-charged boy, and the enormity of the aftermath. Smart, bold, and emotionally deep, Shana Youngdahl's debut explores grief, guilt, and reconciling who you think you need to be with the person you've been all along. It's an aching, transporting reminder that between the past that shapes us and the unknowable future, we have only the present to forgive ourselves and forge ahead.

"A story you won't forget." --Huntley Fitzpatrick, author of My Life Next Door
"Mystery...Heartbreak...Hope...Readers will not be able to put this one down."--SLJ
"You'll speed read through [it]" --PopSugar
"John Green-like, intelligent and peppered with witty repartee" --Booklist
"Heartbreaking, exquisitely crafted" --Estelle Laure, author of This Raging Light
"Deeply authentic...Marvelously complex...Readers shouldn't miss [it]" --Kirkus, starred review
"A complex, compassionately written love story" --PW
"A definite purchase and must read."--VOYA
"Perfect." --Book Page

About the Author

Shana Youngdahl is a poet and author who teaches writing at the University of Maine at Farmington and directs the Longfellow Young Writers' Workshop. One of her greatest joys is helping people embrace the stories they need to tell. Shana lives with her husband, two daughters, and two cats in Maine. As Many Nows as I Can Get is her debut novel.

Praise For…

“A daring, inventive story about love and loss and longing, reminding us that every choice can be a new chance. A dazzling, not-to-be-missed debut." —Kathleen Glasgow, author of Girl in Pieces

"You'll speed read through [it]." —PopSugar

“Plot twists and surprising emotional connections . . . John Green–like, intelligent and peppered with witty repartee. Recommended.” —Booklist

“Real relationships, timeless loss, and a story you won’t forget.” —Huntley Fitzpatrick, author of My Life Next Door

"Vivid." —

★ "Grief, addiction, first loves, and traveling an unplanned road are among the many themes explored in this debut novel. . . . Heartfelt yet often sardonic . . . deeply authentic [and] marvelously complex. [A] smart, poignant story [that] readers shouldn't miss." Kirkus (starred review)

"Mystery . . . Heartbreak . . . Hope . . . Readers will not be able to put this one down." SLJ

“A complex, compassionately written love story.” —Publishers Weekly

“Time is relative in this unique blend of romance and drama. . . . A definite purchase and must read.” —VOYA

“This heartbreaking, exquisitely crafted story captures the moments of intersection between choice and regret, the circular nature of grief, and everything that is nuanced about being a person.” —Estelle Laure, author of This Raging Light

"YA literature, some say, is about the moments when one state of being changes to another. In its structure and its story, As Many Nows as I Can Get is a perfect example of this sometimes bumpy, sometimes poignant transition." —BookPage
Product Details
ISBN: 9780525553854
ISBN-10: 0525553851
Publisher: Dial Books
Publication Date: August 20th, 2019
Pages: 432