Woke Up Like This

Woke Up Like This
Age Range
Release Date
October 01, 2023
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For two high school seniors, it’s seventeen going on thirty—overnight—in a magical romantic comedy about growing up too fast and living in the moment.
Planning the perfect prom is one last “to do” on ultra-organized Charlotte Wu’s high school bucket list. So far, so good, if not for a decorating accident that sends Charlotte crash-landing off a ladder, face-first into her obnoxiously ripped archnemesis J. T. Renner. Worse? When Charlotte wakes up, she finds herself in an unfamiliar bed at thirty years old, with her bearded fiancé, Renner, by her side.

Either they’ve lost their minds or they’ve been drop-kicked into adulthood, forever trapped in the thirty-year-old bodies of their future selves. With each other as their only constant, Charlotte and Renner discover all that’s changed in the time they’ve missed. Charlotte also learns there’s more to Renner than irritating-jock charm, and that reaching the next milestone isn’t as important as what happens in between.

Navigating a series of adventures and a confounding new normal, Charlotte and Renner will do whatever it takes to find a way back to seventeen. But when—and if—they do, what then?

Editor review

1 review
delightful YA rom-com
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WOKE UP LIKE THIS is a delightful YA rom-com with a touch of magic. Charlotte (Char) has lists for everything - including what she wanted to accomplish in her senior year. Up next on her list is prom and securing a date. It seems that it may be the time to move on her crush, Clay, but she is having trouble getting up the nerve to do it. In the meantime, her spare time is consumed with working on getting everything ready for prom, unfortunately with the help from her nemesis and student body president, J. T. Renner.

Her animosity with Renner actually started out as a crush freshman year, but after he bailed on her for homecoming, things went downhill, and they have spent the last four years verbally sparring at every opportunity. So when they are hanging decorations, and he teases her by holding the streamers too far away, she over-reaches and falls off the ladder, crashing into him - and launching them 13 years in the future when they are 30. Their lives are nothing like what they would have expected, and they must work together to find their way back to seventeen.

What I loved: This was an absolutely adorable and consuming rom-com, and I was living for every minute of it. The 13-going-on-30-style premise was really well done here and worked well as they see themselves at 30 and begin to understand more about themselves, each other, and the people around them. Time has shown the ways friends and family can evolve with a focus on what is important. While the story is told from Charlotte's perspective, Renner is there every step of the way, so it definitely felt like his story as well.

Relationships are central to the story. While the romance was definitely there, family relationships and friendships were also critical to understanding themselves and others - for Charlotte, this was about how she has been treated, the ways that these have formed her, and the ways she wants to be treated. In many ways, this felt like a coming-of-age story as Charlotte reevaluates all the things she thought to be true and reflects on her life at seventeen and what she actually wants at 30.

Beyond the romance, which was slow-building with some enemies-to-lovers flair and very sweet, there were some other important themes around family, dealing with hurt feelings, and figuring out how to move forward as well as friendships and the ones that will last as well as the ones that don't (and that is okay). Themes about enjoying the present, being honest with yourself, forgiveness, and communication were also really thoughtfully done. While being a teen can be tough, particularly in terms of social situations/anxiety in those and the intense focus on the future, the story encourages embracing the moments and people who matter most.

Charlotte is a really compelling character and one that I found easy to relate to. She has a very focused and determined personality, going after her goals with everything she's got. She knows where she wants to be and she works hard to get there. Renner was also a really lovable character, and they were really great together, even when they bickered. The ending was really fantastic as well with all the smiles and good feelings you could hope for with a rom-com.

Final verdict: WOKE UP LIKE THIS is an absolutely charming and delightful YA rom-com with a sweet touch of magic. Highly recommend picking this up - it is sure to leave you smiling!
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