Review: Changes in Latitude by Jen Malone

Collaborative feature with Alexa. We read ARCs together and post our reviews on the same date.

Changes in Latitude by Jen Malone
pub 7/25/17 by HarperTeen
Young Adult - Contemporary
Received from pub via Edelweiss
Plot • Since Cassie's parents have gotten divorced, all she wants to do is make summer plans with her friends and some have sense of normalcy. This notion is thrown out the window when her mother decides to take her and her younger brother Drew on a four-month sailing trip from Oregon to Mexico. Not only is her summer shot but she'll also miss the start of senior year. Basically this is the opposite of normal and her fury is exactly everything you'd expect from a teenager, especially when said teen blames her mom for ripping their family apart. Cassie misses her dad, "hates" her mom, wants to have fun with her best friends and the last thing she wants is to be stuck on a boat for months a time. Naturally, this is when a guy shows up and a very cute, flirtatious one at that. But Cassie is still torn between holding onto the past and opening up to the new possibilities in front of her like adventure, love and maybe even a little forgiveness.

Characters • I haven't been in Cassie's exact shoes but I remember fights with my mom in high school quite vividly and I certainly had my moments of digging my heels in just like she did. So I understood why she fought the trip and her mom as long as she did, despite how frustrating it was to read at times. But her life has been turned upside down and normal is an obvious thing to want. I do wish we had seen more progress between her and her mom throughout the book though. However, I was a huge fan of Jonah, the deckhand who joins their sailing crew. If I were going to be a stuck on a boat for that long, I'd want someone like him around. Their relationship, from how they met to how they get to know each other, was really cute and I wouldn't have minded a few more pages spent with them either.

Writing • It's weird because I felt like a lot didn't happen, although as I write this review it's clear a lot did. If I had to pinpoint it, I'd say that while the romance happened quickly, everything else in the background did not until the very end, which was a bit rushed.

Overall feelings • It's a fun book! When I think of travel books, I picture getting on a plane, taking the train or a road trip with friends. So I enjoyed reading about sailing instead and picturing myself on a boat!

What's an experience that derailed your plans but turned out to be worth it in the end? • I immediately knew my answer would be Barcelona. My plan this year was to go to Iceland with my travel buddy and we had been talking about it since early 2016. When that fell through, I knew I had to travel somewhere this year and I landed on Barcelona. It all worked out in the end!


  1. This sounds like a cute read! It seems like it might work well on a list with books like Unbreak My Heart which also featured a sailing motif.

  2. I really liked this one, even though I did feel the same way about the 'action' in it! I thought it was fun to read a book about sailing (since that doesn't happen very often in YA), and the family/friend/romantic dynamics were pretty solid too.


with love,