Do you ever read a book that you think is a really good book, but it just doesn’t do it for you? That was the case for me and One Last Stop by Casey McQuiston.
For cynical twenty-three-year-old August, moving to New York City is supposed to prove her right: that things like magic and cinematic love stories don’t exist, and the only smart way to go through life is alone. She can’t imagine how waiting tables at a 24-hour pancake diner and moving in with too many weird roommates could possibly change that. And there’s certainly no chance of her subway commute being anything more than a daily trudge through boredom and electrical failures.
But then, there’s this gorgeous girl on the train.
Jane. Dazzling, charming, mysterious, impossible Jane. Jane with her rough edges and swoopy hair and soft smile, showing up in a leather jacket to save August’s day when she needed it most. August’s subway crush becomes the best part of her day, but pretty soon, she discovers there’s one big problem: Jane doesn’t just look like an old school punk rocker. She’s literally displaced in time from the 1970s, and August is going to have to use everything she tried to leave in her own past to help her. Maybe it’s time to start believing in some things, after all.
Casey McQuiston’s One Last Stop is a magical, sexy, big-hearted romance where the impossible becomes possible as August does everything in her power to save the girl lost in time.
Oh, how I wanted to love this book. Like so many, I really adored Red White & Royal Blue and have very much been looking forward to Casey McQuiston’s next book. But unfortunately, this one just fell short for me. I don’t think this is a problem with the book so much as my expectations and what I wanted out of the book, versus what it actually was.
What I wanted was a fun, fluffy, feel-good romance like I’d gotten in Red White & Royal Blue. What I got was a book that very much focused on an early 20s coming-of-age/finding yourself, a LOT of queer history, and a light sci fi story about a young woman thrown out of time, with a side dish of romance. And ultimately, I wanted the romance to be the main course.
That said, it definitely felt like McQuiston was trying to do too much in one book, and as a result it was hard to get sucked into the main plot. There were side characters and side plots I found more interesting, and other parts that dragged on for me. The romance between August and Jane is sweet, but I never felt super invested in it, either.
I think for the right readers though, this book could be not only beloved, but even important. (And a hearty cheers for seeing a mainstream f/f romance getting so much buzz!) So like I said, this is more a case of what the book WAS versus what I wanted it to be. Because it IS a good book; it just wasn’t the book for me at this time.
Thanks to the publisher for a digital review copy. One Last Stop comes out June 1st.