First & Then by Emma Mills

Goodread’s Summary


This was my first Emma Mills book and I was blown out of the water! I really liked her writing style and how she made her story and characters funny and inspiring. Right off the bat in the first chapter she had me laughing and smiling. This was a trend throughout the whole book! Her characters are amazing by themselves but put them all together and you get this great story about friendship, love, and loss. Devon was extremely likeable and I felt deeply connected to her. We are both seniors trying to navigate applying to college and what we want to do with our lives, we are both located in Florida, and come from small towns, and we both have a love for Jane Austen! I mean she could be me in fictional form! One thing I do think the author could have improved on was the relationships. I loved seeing Devon and Foster together, and Devon and Ezra, and Devon and Cass, etc. but sometimes their relationship didn’t feel quite real. For the most part it was fine but then there would be these little moments that I would think “That wouldn’t have happened” or “That’s not realistic.”It seemed to me that she only focused on the positives and seemed to sugarcoat the negatives in the relationships. It didn’t bother me too much while I was reading but looking back now I can see where something could have been added in to fix this. I had really high expectations going into this book because of other people’s reviews and the gorgeous cover of this book. What? I’m not immune to judging a book by it’s cover! If it looks good it must be good right? Anyway, I have found that it is hard to continuously entertain me throughout a book and Emma Mills did just that! I usually count chapters and am constantly doing the math for when I will finish a book, but halfway through this book I realized I hadn’t even glanced at the chapter numbers at all. After this first experience with her writing I wanted to jump straight into her other book I own, Foolish Hearts! (sadly it isn’t on my BookTubeAThon TBR). This book really felt too short, I WANT MOOORREEEE!!!


“‘Why are any of us friends with the people we’re friends with?’ Jordan went on. ‘They’ve got qualities we like -maybe some we see in ourselves. Maybe some we want to see in ourselves.'”          ~Jordan

“When you love something, you can’t be happy all the time, can you? Like, that’s why you love it. It makes you feel all kinds of things, and not just happy. It can hurt, it can make you f*cking mad, but… it makes you feel something, you know?”          ~Ezra


Adding on to some of what I said above, I kind of wanted more of the family relationships. Yes, Dev and Foster finally made it to the brother/sister bond, but what about the parents? They weren’t a part of the story as often as I think they should have. I also feel like the whole Ezra/Marabelle sibling thing was thrown in there, I don’t know why because it didn’t really add anything to the story. I also didn’t like where Dev and Cass’ relationship went. It started out really good and then they just seemed to go downhill from there. And of course my favorite character is Jordan! I want to be called champ by someone *Hearty eye emoji* He was such a good friend and an amazing supporting side character that was super funny. My favorite scene and really the only one that made me tear up was when Dev was driving Foster home after the funeral and he told her that she was his role model. AWWWWW I just wanted to cry for a second because it was so sweet and endearing and I hope my brother looks up to me that way one day.

Which Emma Mills book is your favorite?

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2 thoughts on “First & Then by Emma Mills

  1. I’m currently reading Foolish Hearts (my first Emma Mills book) and it really is so good!! I’m already debating which book of her to pick up next, because I’m also really curious towards her second book

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