Book Review: When You Get the Chance by Emma Lord

Posted December 31, 2021 by WendyW in Book Review, bookblogger / 6 Comments

When You Get the Chance
One StarOne StarOne StarOne StarOne Star

by Emma Lord
Publication Date January 4, 2022
Published by St. Martin's Publishing Group
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Genres: Young Adult Fiction / Coming of Age, Young Adult Fiction / Romance / Romantic Comedy
Pages: 320
Format: ARC

A bighearted novel about falling in love, making a mess, and learning to let go, When You Get the Chance is the next effervescent novel from Emma Lord, New York Times bestselling author of the Reese Witherspoon YA Book Club pick You Have a Match.

**An Indie Next Pick**

Nothing will get in the way of Millie Price’s dream of becoming a Broadway star. Not her lovable but super introverted dad, who raised Millie alone since she was a baby. Not her drama club rival, Oliver, who is the very definition of Simmering Romantic Tension. And not her “Millie Moods,” the feelings of intense emotion that threaten to overwhelm. Millie needs an ally. And when an accidentally left-open browser brings Millie to her dad’s embarrassingly moody LiveJournal from 2003, Millie knows just what to do—find her mom.

But how can you find a new part of your life and expect it to fit into your old one without leaving any marks? And why is it that when you go looking for the past, it somehow keeps bringing you back to what you’ve had all along?


"Brimming with energy, rapid-fire banter, and affectionate theater references, this memorable Mamma Mia! retelling...thoughtfully pays homage while skillfully modernizing it for today’s readers." -Publishers Weekly (starred review)

"Chock-full of musical theater references and humor, the novel includes high-stakes emotional drama that is balanced by supportive friendships and strong, deep family connections...An entertaining personal journey with plot twists galore." - Kirkus Reviews

My Review:

When You Get the Chance by Emma Lord is a Young Adult (YA) story that is sure to make you smile. It’s just pure fun from cover to cover. That doesn’t mean it doesn’t tackle serious subjects, it does, but that the seriousness is surrounded by fun engaging characters and a lively plot that will entertain you in the best way.

Millie Price loves everything Broadway musical and is determined to make it to the stage one day. She lives in New York City with her introverted dad who has a tech job and works from home. She gets a chance to attend a prestigious arts pre-college program on the west coast but when her dad is reluctant to let her go, she collaborates with her nerdy neighbor to find her mother, who left her with her father when she was a baby. Teddy, the nerdy neighbor kid she grew up with, helps to find an old LiveJournal Millie’s dad wrote back when he was in college and the journal entries give hints as to who Millie’s mother is. They find three possible “mothers” who all live in NYC. Stephanie, a personal assistant to a high-powered agent, Beth, another theater nerd who hosts theater meet-ups, and Farah, a dance instructor.

As Millie works to become more acquainted with these three women, she continues to cross paths with her arch-nemesis, Oliver, a stage manager at her high school. Oliver and Millie got off to a bad start Freshman year and have worked to aggravate each other ever since. But, when their paths keep crossing and they have to work together, they become closer and feelings start to develop. Millie has her hands full this summer after her junior year of high school. Find her mother and get permission to go to the pre-college program in California.

I just loved this book. Millie is such a force of nature. She is unapologetically loud, dramatic, and unashamed, and I loved her. She is such a musical theater nerd and loves the stage and everything Broadway in such a passionate way, you just can’t help but root for Millie. I enjoyed the way the characters ran around NYC and I could tell the author has a love and deep knowledge of the city that shone brilliantly in her writing.

I highly recommend this book to anyone, especially anyone who loves musical theater. I received a complimentary copy of this book. The opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

6 responses to “Book Review: When You Get the Chance by Emma Lord

  1. Excellent review Wendy. Millie was an amazing character and I loved your description of her. I loved this one too and recommend it to anyone, it is more than YA for sure.