[Review] “It Starts With Us” by Colleen Hoover is a drama-filled, powerful young adult romance


Caitlyn Acosta

“It Starts With Us” written by Colleen Hoover is a best selling romance novel. This is a tragic love story between Lily and her first love, Atlas.

Dana Masri, Social Media Editor

“It Starts With Us” by Colleen Hoover is the well-anticipated sequel to the New York Times number one best seller, “It Ends With Us.” Although “It Ends With Us” was published in 2016, the book has gained significant traction in the past two years. Hoover has become a very popular author, with other top selling books such as “Verity” and “Ugly Love.” Hoover is known for writing romance and young adult fiction novels while also mentioning prominent and serious topics such as domestic violence.

In the epilogue of “It Ends With Us,” we saw the main character, Lily, re-enter into a relationship with her first love from high school, Atlas. Readers had mixed reactions to this ending because the last chapter ended with Lily choosing herself over a boy when she decided to divorce her husband, Ryle, who abused her. This had a symbolic meaning to readers, just to be followed by her beginning a new relationship. On the other hand, Atlas became a fan favorite throughout the book because of his humble beginnings and immense amount of care for Lily, making most readers excited about their new relationship.

“It Starts With Us” resumed right at the end of “It Ends With Us,” but begins with Atlas as the narrator instead of Lily. The book is structured by alternating Atlas and Lily as narrators, swapping them by chapter. This allows us to get a closer look at Atlas’s life and the struggles he faces, while maintaining the consistency from the first book by keeping Lily as the narrator.

Lily and Atlas have to navigate through their relationship with the barrier of Lily’s jealous ex-husband, Ryle, who was physically abusive with Lily. Ryle blames Atlas for ruining his marriage and will always be jealous of him. Meanwhile, he still believes Lily loves him and will come back to him. To make matters more complicated, Lily and Ryle have a child; therefore Ryle is not going anywhere. The book follows Lily and Atlas as they try to pursue their relationship.

This book mentions sensitive topics, such as domestic abuse and rape. Readers should be made aware of this before furthering their reading.

Fans had positive reactions to Atlas becoming a narrator. In the first book, we were able to see his origin story through diary entries Lily had written as a teenager. However, we get to hear Atlas tell his story about his beginnings, and what happens to him in the seven year gap in which he and Lily lost contact.

This book is perfect for young adults who want a quick read. The book is very easy to follow and is filled with romantic moments, while also stirring up drama. Hoover is brilliant at making readers feel so much emotion with every word she writes. I think this novel was very powerful, and was constantly interesting to the point where I did not want to stop reading.

You can purchase “It Starts With Us” at local bookstores, such as Barnes and Noble, general stores such as Target and on Amazon. The book is selling for $12.98.
If you are somebody who is not very into reading, I recommend Hoover’s books as a way to get into reading. The book got overall positive reviews, most claiming that it is very engaging and they want to know what happens next.

Overall, “It Starts With Us” is a powerful book referencing serious topics, while also being a swoon-worthy romance with characters to fall in love with. The novel is perfect for readers who want something easy to read, but will also keep you on the edge of your seat wanting to read more.