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I Belong

Review: The Distance Between Us by Kasie West

Title: The Distance Between Us

Author: Kasie West

GenreYA Contemporary


Publication Date: July 2, 2013

FormatPaperback, 320 Pages

ISBN-100062235656 (Harper Teen)

ISBN-13: 978-0062235657 (Harper Teen)

Reviewed by: Bridget


Seventeen-year-old Caymen Meyers studies the rich like her own personal science experiment, and after years of observation she’s pretty sure they’re only good for one thing—spending money on useless stuff, like the porcelain dolls in her mother’s shop.

So when Xander Spence walks into the store to pick up a doll for his grandmother, it only takes one glance for Caymen to figure out he’s oozing rich. Despite his charming ways and that he’s one of the first people who actually gets her, she’s smart enough to know his interest won’t last. Because if there’s one thing she’s learned from her mother’s warnings, it’s that the rich have a short attention span. But Xander keeps coming around, despite her best efforts to scare him off. And much to her dismay, she’s beginning to enjoy his company.

She knows her mom can’t find out—she wouldn’t approve. She’d much rather Caymen hang out with the local rocker who hasn’t been raised by money. But just when Xander’s attention and loyalty are about to convince Caymen that being rich isn’t a character flaw, she finds out that money is a much bigger part of their relationship than she’d ever realized. And that Xander’s not the only one she should’ve been worried about.

Quick & Dirty: Very entertaining contemporary filled with sarcastic humor, cute romance, and great characters.  I would highly recommend this book to fans of YA contemporary.

Opening Sentence: My eyes burn a hole in the page.

Excerpt: Yes

The Review

Caymen Meyers is not your typical 17 year old.  She lives with her mother on top of their doll shop where Caymen works constantly.  They have always just got by and Caymen has had to live a very simple life.  Her father abandoned her mother when he found out she was pregnant so Caymen has never even met the man.  She knows that he comes from money and a baby just wasn’t something he wanted at a young age.  Caymen has lived a happy life, but a simple one.  She is used to rich people because all of their customers at the shop usually have a lot of money, but she has never interacted with any of them outside of work.  Then she meets Xander.

Xander Spence goes to the doll shop to get a gift for his grandmother.  Caymen can instantly tell he comes from money by his attitude and the way he dresses.  Of course he is cute but Caymen knows that boys like that never date girls like her.  But Xander keeps coming around and for some reason he likes Caymen’s dry since of humor.  The more time she spends with him the more she starts to fall for him, but her mother would never approve.  They come from two very different worlds but sometimes their worlds collide and it can create something beautiful.

I totally adored Caymen.  She has this wonderful dry sense of humor and everything she says is filled with sarcasm.  I thought she was hilarious and I honestly couldn’t wait to read what came out of her mouth next.  She has always been content in her life, but in a lot of ways she was bored.  It was wonderful to see her grow and become a better rounded person.   She is very loyal and has a really big heart.  She is also a very honest person and she has no problem telling you exactly what she thinks. The more I got to know Caymen the more I liked her.  She is an amazing character and I instantly connected with her.

Xander is a total sweetheart.  He has that total rich boy confidence going on, but Caymen keeps him on his feet.  He never quite knows where he stands with her and its cute to see him drop hints that she totally misses.  His relationship with his parents is rough; they want him to become someone that he’s not sure he wants to be.  He finds Caymen refreshing and she brings him a lot of happiness that he has never had before.   I really loved Xander and I thought that his character was really well written.

This was such a fun book.  This was actually the first book I have ever read by Kasie West and her writing was amazing.  The dialog was full of witty banter which was really entertaining, but there was also a lot of depth to the story.  The characters were really engaging and well developed.  The romance was sweet and full of heartwarming moments. There were a few twists in the plot that really surprised me, which I loved.  Overall, this was a wonderful story that I really enjoyed.  I would highly recommend this to anyone that enjoys YA contemporary, it is a must read.

Notable Scene:

He leans back and takes a bite of his muffin. “So, Ms. Observant, what was your first impression of me?”

“When you came into the store?”


That’s easy. “Arrogant.”

“Really? What made you think that?”

Does that surprise him? “I thought it was my turn to ask a question?”


“Isn’t that how the game works? We each get a question?”

He looks at me expectantly. I realize I have no question. Or maybe I have too many. Like why is he really here? When will he realize I don’t play with his crowd? What exactly made him interested in the first place? … If that’s what it is. “Can I go finish getting ready?”

“No. Okay my turn. What made me come off as arrogant?”

I stare at the crease on the sleeve of his T-shirt-a clear indication it had been ironed.  Who irons T-shirts? “You beckoned me,” I say, remembering that first day.

His brown eyes flash to mine.  Even his eyes with their gold flecks remind me of his wealth. “I what?”

“You stay there. I’ll be you.”  I walk to the far end of the stockroom and pretend to come in a door, holding a cell phone to my ear.  I swagger a few steps, stop and stare at the wall, then hold up my hand and beckon him.  I wait for him to laugh, but when I glance over he has a mortified look on his face.

“I may have exaggerated it just a bit.” I say even though I didn’t.

FTC Advisory: Harper Teen provided me with a copy of The Distance Between Us. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.

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