Book Review

ARC Book Review: Never Vacation with Your Ex by Emily Wibberley and Austin Siegemund-Broka

Rating: ★★★★
Audience: YA Contemporary Romance
Length: 336 pages
Author: Emily Wibberley & Austin Siegemund-Broka
Publisher: Viking Books
Release Date: April 4th, 2023
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads


Forgetting Sarah Marshall meets Crazy Stupid Love in a YA second chance romance from fan-favorite author couple #Wibbroka!

Seventeen-year-old volleyball star Kaylee Jordan lives a life of player rankings, constant training, and a carefully curated social media full of followers watching to see if she’ll go pro out of high school like her famous mom. Her one refuge, and the thing she looks forward to every summer? The vacation her family spends in Malibu with the Freeman-Yus. This year, there’s only one problem: Kaylee and their son, Dean, dated for the past three months, and Kaylee just unceremoniously dumped him. Hoping to spare them the worst summer ever, Kaylee comes to Dean with her unconventional solution: she’s going to walk him through her rules for getting over an ex. When Dean grudgingly cooperates, Kaylee’s got her work cut out for her. But helping Dean follow her own rules starts becoming difficult when the pressures of Kaylee’s family legacy and perfect life start to feel less like a plan and more like a prison…and amid warm California nights and stolen laughs, Kaylee feels herself falling for Dean for the same reasons and some new ones. With their trip coming to an end, Kaylee has to make the complicated choice between doing what’s expected and taking a (second) chance on love.

Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for an eARC.


I feel kind of surprised by this one. Initially I didn’t know what I would think about it all, but in the end, I think it has a pretty good message and is set up really well for the audience (young adult!).

The pressure of perfectionism, especially in teens, was a big theme and WOW did I resonate with that. Kaylee struggling with trying to be the best volleyball player out there with the best image and everything else truly hit home. Everything in this vein was well written.

Now the otherside of that is the romance. I LOVED Dean. He was fantastic. Swoony, sweet and full of feelings. I love seeing his emotion and commitment to getting Kaylee to express some raw feelings. Kaylee though, I don’t love how she handled the whole situation. She didn’t come off in the best light and I wish she had been a little quicker to sensitivity.

Perfect beach, summery setting. Made me wish I was on a beach right this second. OH, lets talk about the PARENTS. I LOOOOOVE that there were present and active parents in this book y’all. It’s not seen enough. Even better, we saw that they weren’t perfect and made mistakes too. It was a great contrast to the young adults in the book making decisions too. A great cast all around.

Overall audience notes:

  • YA Contemporary Romance
  • Language: a little
  • Romance: heated make-outs

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