Book Review: Tell Me Three Things by Julie Buxbaum


Title: Tell Me Three Things

Author: Julie Buxbaum

Published: April 5, 2016

Pages: 328

Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance

Amazon / Barnes and Nobles / Goodreads

Goodreads Description: Everything about Jessie is wrong. At least, that’s what it feels like during her first week of junior year at her new ultra-intimidating prep school in Los Angeles. Just when she’s thinking about hightailing it back to Chicago, she gets an email from a person calling themselves Somebody/Nobody (SN for short), offering to help her navigate the wilds of Wood Valley High School. Is it an elaborate hoax? Or can she rely on SN for some much-needed help?

It’s been barely two years since her mother’s death, and because her father eloped with a woman he met online, Jessie has been forced to move across the country to live with her stepmonster and her pretentious teenage son.

In a leap of faith—or an act of complete desperation—Jessie begins to rely on SN, and SN quickly becomes her lifeline and closest ally. Jessie can’t help wanting to meet SN in person. But are some mysteries better left unsolved?


I picked this book up because I was in the mood for a light, contemporary read and I heard good things about this particular one. I will say that I figured out who SN was right off the bat, but that didn’t hamper my reading experience. In fact, it only added to my squealing during the falling action.


Jessie was relatable, especially when it came to relationships. She wasn’t comfortable with sex, was afraid of rejection, and knew that she had a long way until she felt grown up (same, Jessie, same). I personally found the idea of a relationship and having sex daunting during high school and felt like I was falling behind my peers (which I now realize is silly). It would have been comforting to read about someone like Jessie then.

I found myself looking forward to SN’s messages along with Jessie. Their banter was comical and had me chuckling out loud. Although I thought they came off as a bit too pretentious at times, I liked the fact that I learned a lot of new words (did you know that “listicle” is an actual word??).

Also, the supporting characters:

  • Theo irked me at first, but I soon came to love and accept him.
  • Adriana was too pure for those highschoolers (I just want to put her in my pocket and protect her from the world).
  • I would want to be Scarlett and Ethan’s friend if they were real people (but we wouldn’t bebecause they’re too cool for me).


I had a couple problems with Jessie:

  1. She was quite judgmental. It seemed like anyone who was blonde, rich, or popular was a dense person in Jessie’s book (or maybe I’m the judgmental one).
  2. I thought Jessie was too hard on her dad. The first time she blew up at her dad, I could understand that she had a lot of pent up feelings. But when she did it a couple more times, I had trouble empathizing with her. Those scenes were just really cringey for me, perhaps because I can’t imagine acting that way with my own parents.


Jessie had her flaws, but she (along with the supporting characters) were likable overall. The relationship between Jessie and SN was executed well, which is good because that’s what I wanted to read about when I picked up this book. Although the ending was predictable, I wouldn’t have had it any other way.


i really liked it


Have you read Tell Me Three Things? What did you think of it?

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