When You Get The Chance

Author: Emma Lord

My rating: 4.3

Millie is a talented singer-actress, thrilled to receive an acceptance into a pre-college theatrical program. Only problem, it’s located on the opposite coast, costs partial tuition, and her dad doesn’t understand how important this program is for her future. Determined to attend at all costs, Millie decides to find her birth mother. If one parent doesn’t agree with her, there’s got to be another one out there who will pave the way for Millie’s golden future.

Millie is such a driven character. She knows exactly where she wants her future to lead, and she won’t shirk from sweating her way to the end goal, be it the lead role on stage, competing with her nemesis for an internship position, or in doggedly searching for her mother. I loved Millie’s spunk and fierce vivacity. She practically leaps off the page and drags us into the drama that’s her life.

The story is set in modern day NYC. It was so much fun to read NYC love, from its theaters and their star studded world, to quieter places like the Highline and Hudson River walkways that are practically backyards to everyone living on or near the island. The local haunts and characters introduced were all a major part of NYC life. I was able to relate to a good number of places that popped into the story, and I wish that her aunt’s milkshake place was real. I can half imagine hopping onto a train to check it out and to meet the characters. 

I learned a lot about theater life from this book. It’s not my dream life, but Millie’s excitement and love for it all was contagious. I know that the next time I watch a Broadway show or even pass by a theater, I’ll appreciate it a lot more.

I really enjoyed this book. Millie was a fantastic drama queen character, with awesome friends, and lots of roller coaster emotions. Most of all, I loved her strong presence and confident way of bulldozing through all obstacles. There was a great enemies to friends subplot, and a really good Mamma Mia based overall mother search plot. I like how Millie, a high school senior, showed how it’s possible for a teen her age to relate to and have friendships with older women as both mentors and as friends. Best of all, there were lots of happily-ever-afters for everyone.

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