November 9: A Novel

Image of November 9: A Novel
Release Date: 
November 9, 2015
Atria Books
Reviewed by: 

It is November 9th, the day before Fallon is upending her life to relocate from California to New York by herself. It is also the two-year anniversary of the fire that left her face and torso permanently scarred.

Fallon is enduring lunch with her egocentric father who has just uttered yet another insensitive remark. Suddenly, the scruffy but attractive “random dude” from a nearby booth materializes at their table and introduces himself as Fallon’s boyfriend. Impulsively, Fallon goes along with him and is instantly in a “pretend dating” relationship with “Ben the Writer.”

Could this be love at first sight?

Both 18, Ben and Fallon have unfinished dreams. Ben wants to write a novel. Fallon is determined to move to New York to restart her life and the acting career derailed by her injuries and recovery from the fire. Interestingly, Fallon’s mother has counseled her to never fall in love before she is 23.

By the time Fallon’s plane takes off later that night, she and Ben have vowed to put falling in love on hold for five years. They agree to have no contact until they are both 23, except to meet each year on November 9th.

Between each November 9th real life happens, some of it tragic. At different times, both Ben and Fallon want to chuck their agreement and fall in love now. Something always intervenes.   

November 9 is segmented into sections based on each November 9th when Fallon and Ben meet, and alternates between Fallon and Ben’s point of view.

On the first November 9th, Ben ping-pongs from preoccupation over learning the color of Fallon’s panties and planting a first kiss on her that is a romance-book-worthy ten, to uttering dialogue that begs the question, Do eighteen year olds really talk like that?

Readers may mirror Fallon’s thought about the relationship budding too quickly.


"This is going too far.

Too far, too far, too far, but all I can do is suck in a wild breath and let his fingers pop open the button on my jeans, because as much as I wish he would stop, I get the feeling he’s not undressing me for the pleasure. I’m not sure what he’s doing, but I’m too immobile to ask.”


November 9 oozes new adult romantic angst, hot bods, mild heat, heart-tugging decisions, occasional lapses into sappy, a deceitful plot twist, broken trust, and a unique-enough plot. Sounds like the essential ingredients to keep new adult love story addicts turning pages.