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November/December 2021 Kids Indie Next List
“You’ve Reached Sam is absolutely poetic, and deals with how one balances ‘duties’ to someone who has passed away and one’s own grief, and how one deals with the grief of having a life path set out that is completely destroyed by a chance act of fate.”
— Brad Krautwurst, Second Star to the Right Children's Books, Denver, CO
An Instant New York Times Bestseller!
If I Stay meets Your Name in Dustin Thao's You've Reached Sam, a heartfelt novel about love and loss and what it means to say goodbye.
Seventeen-year-old Julie Clarke has her future all planned out—move out of her small town with her boyfriend Sam, attend college in the city; spend a summer in Japan. But then Sam dies. And everything changes.
Heartbroken, Julie skips his funeral, throws out his belongings, and tries everything to forget him. But a message Sam left behind in her yearbook forces memories to return. Desperate to hear him one more time, Julie calls Sam's cell phone just to listen to his voice mail recording. And Sam picks up the phone.
The connection is temporary. But hearing Sam's voice makes Julie fall for him all over again and with each call, it becomes harder to let him go.
What would you do if you had a second chance at goodbye?
A 2021 Kids' Indie Next List Selection
A Cosmo.com Best YA Book Of 2021
A Buzzfeed Best Book Of November
A Goodreads Most Anticipated Book
About the Author
Dustin Thao is a Vietnamese-American writer based in Southern California. He graduated from Amherst College with a B.A. in Political Science, and is in a PhD program at Northwestern University. He writes contemporary young adult fiction. You’ve Reached Sam is his YA debut.
"I knew full well that I was signing up for a tragic love story, and that's exactly what I got. So now I am here to warn you: This book will absolutely make you cry. Make sure you've got a box of tissues handy, and I mean a full box."
"This young adult novel’s enthralling premise and gorgeous, manga-style cover art promise an emotional ride. Thao does not disappoint. You’ve Reached Sam punches directly in the chest during countless moments that hit right on target." —Associated Press
“You’ve Reached Sam is a hauntingly remarkable debut. Dustin Thao gently weaves grief, regret, second chances, and the honestly beautiful moments we carry from a first love. Every tear you will shed reading this book will be worth it." —Julian Winters, award-winning author of Running With Lions
"If you like your contemporaries with a tiny piece of magic, this emotional YA is perfect for you." —BuzzFeed
"Thao skillfully marries a quiet, elegiac novel about grief with a provocative sf conceit. A poignant and moving read." —Booklist
"Have your tissues at the ready when you dive into Dustin Thao's emotional novel You've Reached Sam."
"The writing is captivating and beautifully done, immediately drawing readers into imaginative and well-developed scenes. [A] beautifully written exploration of grief... You’ve Reached Sam is an impactful debut. The question at the center of the book and the paranormal premise combine to create a narrative full of heart." —The Young Folks
"A heart-breaking story of grief and loss, You've Reached Sam is a YA magical realism read about healing and moving on." —Young Adult Books Central
"...this debut novel will draw readers in and shatter their hearts in the best way." —Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
"A heartfelt story about love, loss, and grief, Dustin Thao’s bittersweet novel You’ve Reached Sam will likely make you shed some tears." —Culturess
"A touch of magic, first love and loss, this is the story of romance and heartache." —SheReads
"You’ve Reached Sam is a quiet exploration of grief and the ways in which we cope with losing the ones we love too soon. If you’re in need of a good, cathartic crying session, this one’s for you!" —The Nerd Daily