March 25, 2022

BLOG TOUR: It's the End of the World and I'm in My Bathing Suit by Justin A. Reynolds

I am thrilled to be hosting a spot on the IT’S THE END OF THE WORLD AND I’M IN MY BATHING SUIT by Justin A. Reynolds Blog Tour hosted by Rockstar Book Tours. Check out my post and make sure to enter the giveaway!

About The Book:

Title: IT’S THE END OF THE WORLD AND I’M IN MY BATHING SUIT

Author: Justin A. Reynolds

Pub. Date: April 5, 2022

Publisher: Scholastic Press

Formats: Hardcover, eBook, Audiobook

Pages: 304

Find it: GoodreadsAmazon, Kindle, Audible, B&NiBooks, KoboTBD, Bookshop.org, Libro.fm

*Please note - this post contains affiliate links, from which we may earn a commission (at no additional cost to you) if you make a purchase

Twelve-year-old Eddie Gordon Holloway has concocted his most genius plan ever to avoid chores... especially the dreaded L-A-U-N-D-R-Y. If he can wear all the clothes he owns, he'll only have to do the laundry once during his school break.

On the day of the highly anticipated Beach Bash, Eddie's monstrous pile of dirty laundry is found by his mom. And Eddie's day has just taken a turn for the worst. Now he's stuck at home by himself, missing the bash, and doing his whole pile of laundry. But mid-cycle, the power goes out!

With his first load of laundry wet and the rest of his stuff still filthy, he sets out to explore the seemingly empty neighborhood in his glow-in-the-dark swim trunks, flip-flops, and a beach towel. He soon meets up with other neighborhood kids: newcomer Xavier (who was mid-haircut and has half his head shaved), Eddie's former friend Sonia (who has spent her entire break trying to beat a video game and was mid-battle with the final boss), and siblings Trey and Sage (who are dealing with major sibling drama).

As they group up to cover more ground and find out what happened, they realize that their families aren't coming back anytime soon. And as night falls, the crew realizes that they aren't just the only people left in the neighborhood, they might be the only people left... anywhere.

Book Trailer:


Justin talks about IT’S THE END OF THE WORLD AND I’M IN MY BATHING SUIT




REVIEW of It's the End of the World and I'm in My Bathing Suit by Justin A. Reynolds
Rating: 4 Stars
Release Date: April 5, 2022
Format: ARC (From Publisher and Rockstar Book Tours)
Publisher: Scholastic Press

If you’re on the hunt for a genuinely fun read where you don’t have to think too much and can just enjoy it, then Justin A. Reynold’s It’s the End of the World and I’m in My Bathing Suit is the book for you. The book’s main character, Eddie, faces a problem most children have faced at some time in their life. How to best optimize summer vacation, and avoid C-H-O-R-E-S. The bane of Eddie’s existence is laundry, and his master plan is to use every single article of clothing he owns to put it off as long as possible. Things don’t go quite as smoothly as Eddie had planned, and he must race against the clock (and an apocalypse of all things) to save the day and make it to the long-awaited Beach Bash. 


Simply put, this book is hilarious. There were multiple moments where I was cackling while reading. I love how the author set out to make this a love letter to childhood and the stories that never took themselves too seriously. Mr. Reynolds stirred up fond memories of my own childhood while reading. I wholeheartedly empathized with Eddie’s distaste for laundry - I hated doing it too at that age (now, I still dislike it, but I recognize it as a necessary evil required to be an “adult”). His master plan to only have to do laundry once the entire summer is something I wish I had thought of at that age (though, he probably could have come up with a better plan than shoving it all in his closet and risking the avalanche of clothes that inevitably occurred). I was shocked that a twelve-year-old somehow had enough underwear to last him an ENTIRE SUMMER - I don’t even have that many as an adult (I eventually reminded myself to stop dissecting the book and just enjoy the read, which for the most part worked). 


In addition to relating to Eddie’s distaste for chores, I also related to his ADHD (having the condition myself). Some people see ADHD as a burden. Other people see it as a superpower (as Eddie is told in the book). But the line I connected to the most was “Seriously, I can’t tell you how many people learn about my diagnosis and start treating me like I’m some ticking time bomb, you know, instead of like an actual person who’s trying to be his best, same as anyone.” If there’s ever been a line that’s made me feel seen and heard as someone living with ADHD, it’s that one. 


Overall, it’s been a blast reading such a lighthearted book, and I would happily recommend it to readers young and old who are looking for a fun, humorous, slightly dystopian kid-lit book. This is the first book I’ve read by Justin Reynolds, but it definitely won’t be my last! I’m looking forward to checking out the other books he’s written sometime in the near future. 


Thank you to the author, Scholastic Inc, Jaime at Rockstar Book Tours, and Edelweiss for providing me with a complimentary review copy of the book. I appreciate the opportunity to read and review It’s the End of the World and I’m in My Bathing Suit immensely. Please note - I voluntarily read and reviewed It’s the End of the World and I’m in My Bathing Suit. All opinions expressed in the review are my own and not influenced in any way. 



EXCERPT

On the third day of summer vacation, I devised THEE perfect three-month plan.

It all started when I lost that entire first weekend (and half a Monday!) to more chores than should even be legal.

Including THE CHORE I HATE MOST …

Also known as The Chore That Shall Not Be Named.

Tuh, fine. I’ll spell it.

L-A-U-N-D-R-Y.

Yep, the bright red cherry atop my dirty clothes pile.

Listen, I know what you’re thinking: What’s the big deal with doing a little laundry, Eddie? The washer and dryer do all the work, right?

WRONG!

Okay, technically, you’re right; the machines are a lifesaver. Mom made me watch this boring documentary where this kid my age—twelve, if it matters to you—is hand-scrubbing clothes against a block of wood for hours, which, ugh, brutal.

And you wanna know how you determined the clothes were clean enough?

When your arm fell off.

So, yes, it could be infinitely worse.

Buuuut even still, laundry isn’t simply pushing the start button and kicking back.

Nope. It’s a whole process.

First, you sort—whites, colors—and if you have my mom—reds and pinks, partial whites, pastels, earth tones, delicates, etc.

Next, you load the washer, which always, alwaysALWAYS leads to a trail of dropped socks and underwear along the way.

Then while you wait for the “your clothes are ready” buzzer, you try not to get too caught up playing Basketball Ballers 3K.

And the dryer—sheesh, you better select the right temperature.

Choose wrong and your favorite T-shirt shrinks to a washcloth.

And can someone please tell me the point of folding and stuffing your clothes into drawers if you’re only gonna wear them again the next day?

Yep, that’s why I devised THE PERFECT PLAN—and here it is:

I’m only doing laundry ONCE this ENTIRE SUMMER!

But, Eddie, how is that even possible? you ask.

I’ll tell you how, my friends:

I’d wear every piece of clothing I had. That’s right, all of it. That ugly Christmas sweater despite the fact that it’s been hot enough to fry an egg on the sidewalk? Didn’t let that stop me. Nope, I rolled up those scratchy green sleeves and did what needed to be done. That awful T-shirt my uncle got me with the dancing hippo sporting a backwards Kangol hat and Adidas shell-toes that says “I’m a Hip-Hoppopotamus” in huge gold letters? Rocked it last Thursday—The Bronster’s still laughing about it. Those palm-tree Bermuda shorts that I stuffed in the back of my bottom drawer because they’re wide enough to be a parachute? Um, wore those Tuesday—and the wind nearly carried me away. But it would’ve been worth it. Seriously, I could’ve floated to the moon and I’d still have zero regrets. Because if the plan’s gonna work, well, I’ve gotta do whatever it takes, wear whatever it takes, end of story.

And according to my careful wardrobe calculations, all these necessary combinations would get me halfway through summer, with one last outfit:

My swim trunks. Just in time for Beach Bash.

After that, I’d throw everything into the wash and be good until school started back up.

Kinda brilliant, right?

Feel free to borrow it.

But, you know, only if you want to minimize your chores and maximize your fun.

I know what you’re thinking: But, Eddie, why would your parents let you get away with this?

That’s easy, because we made …

… the deal.

If I agreed to take care of myself for the whole summer—making my own sandwiches for lunch, cleaning up after myself, and we’ve already discussed doing my own stinking laundry (pun intended)—I’d be granted complete and utter freedom.

How could I pass that up?

It was the perfect setup.

A win-win situation.

My mom got to worry about me less all summer, and me—I got to be worried less about.

Everyone got what they wanted.

Everyone was happy.

I mean, with a deal that sweet, what could possibly go wrong, right?

Forty days later, I had my answer:

It’s everything, guys. Everything’s gone wrong.

Except not even that kinda-wrong-but-still-not-horrible way.

Not even that okay, okay, this is definitely bad way.

No, things got bad.

Really,

really,

really bad.

The type of bad where everything you thought you knew, you’re like, wait, now I’m not sure:

Your brain’s all screwed up like, Hold on, is up actually down?

Oh, you think I’m exaggerating?

Well, fine, how ’bout you see for yourself?

But remember, I warned you.

It’s like debating who’s the GOAT—(a) MJ, (b) Kobe, or (c) LeBron.

Let’s be real, it’s crazy easy to make an impressive case for all three. For me, it’s LeBron holding down that top spot—but the truth is, no matter how you slot them, you’re not gonna be wrong.

And you’re like, Okay, Eddie, what’s basketball got to do with anything?

Everything, my friends. Everything.

Because when you’re debating the (a) singing, (b) dancing, and (c) joke telling of Calvin Cleophas Eady III—

Also known as the man who married my mom not even six months ago. The dude I call Wanna-Be Dad. WBD for short.

—you’re gonna feel super hard-pressed to pick which of his “talents” is the best. Let me clarify: None of them are any good. Like not even good-adjacent. In fact, the easier argument is that all three are equally awful, that their levels of lousy are a major toss-up.

But I know that’s a cop-out. It’s true, we all have that one friend who never decides anything, the friend who’s always like, “Why do we have to choose? Why can’t we just appreciate LeBron, Kobe, and Jordan and what they brought to the game, instead of arguing who’s the best?”

Except if my Real Dad were here, he’d say, “Stop all that hemming and hawing and pick a side already. The best decision you’ll ever make is to be decisive.” Because the reality is: Whichever one you’re leaning toward, you’re 100 percent right.

But, Eddie, I’m still not quite following, why are we even talking about this?

We’re talking about this because off rip, at an hour far too early in the morning for human interaction, let alone an entire no-talent show, WBD hits me hard with the Terrible Trifecta—(a), (b), and (c)—all at the same stupid time.

Dude, I haven’t even picked the sleep outta my eyeball crevices yet. Like this can’t be life.

“Heyyy-ayyye, goooood mooor … ninnng, buh-ud,” sings WBD. I’ll never understand how the guy manages to stretch a few syllables into a whole verse and yet he keeps pulling it off.

Normally, I eat this up, those random unexpected moments when my annoying brother, aka The Bronster, isn’t around or is snoring in his dungeon lair. I savor each split-second morsel. But right now, I’d kill to have The Bronster here to deflect some of WBD’s attention off me. And yes, I’m from Carterville, which is only twenty minutes from Cleveland, but no, my brother’s name isn’t actually “Bron”—which, I know, shocking, right? No, The Bronster is what happens when you mix equal parts brother + monster together. He’s three and a half years older than me and basically treats me like I’m the baby troll he never asked for. Ever since Real Dad died almost two years ago, the Bronster’s been meaner than ever. Mom claims it’s just a phase, a teenager thing. But I have my doubts.

The point is, I want to not be alone with WBD bad enough to wish that my Neanderthal brother were around—which I gotta tell you, is not a wish I take lightly.

And all I really wanna say to WBD is: Dude, can you just give me some time to wake up before you hit me with all your … your … WBD-ness? Seriously, guys, I’m a creature of habit. I treat all mornings equally—which is to say, you know the day’s started when you hear me trip down the stairs. Then I’m staggering into the kitchen like a newborn giraffe getting used to its spindly legs, my eyes cracked open just barely enough to identify large blurry objects, like the fridge, the kitchen table, and most walls.

That’s the level I’m at right now.

So if this guy thinks I’m gonna be able to match his “cheerfulness” and “sunny disposition”—Mom’s words, not mine—he’s in for a rude awakening. My rude awakening, ha.

“I hope you slept welllll,” WBD sings into a spatula, as if he and the spatula have worked out a deal—

WBD: Hey, we both agree your primary job is flipping pancakes …

SPATULA: It’s what I’m best at.

WBD: Okay, but in between those flips, you’re also gonna be my microphone, got that?

And as if that’s not bad enough, WBD spins away from the food simmering on the stove, and is now gliding toward me and … wait a minute, I blink hard trying to bring WBD’s non-spatula hand into focus because he appears to be holding something that I can’t quite make out, but it looks like … oh, no. Oh, no.

It’s … that stupid slotted spoon.

Every weekend, it’s the same WBD show. He sashays around the kitchen, belting the wrong notes into his slightly melted plastic blue spatula … and then, when he thinks he’s caught me off guard, he unleashes a surprise attack, thrusting some other kitchen utensil in my face—as if for even one second I’d pretend to sing along.

Last weekend, he offered me tongs. Today it’s a slotted spoon.

“Coooomeeee on, joiiiin meeee, youuuu knoooow you wannnaaa,” WBD croons into his poor spatula, while extending the slotted spoon toward me like a bouquet of flowers.

I duck his second “mic” and slip into the pantry.

WBD watches me from the pantry door. “Oh, hey, question for ya, when you were taking the lawn mower out of the garage the other day, you didn’t by chance rub against Betsy, did ya?”

Not this again. “No,” I grumble. “I did not hit Betsy.”

WBD smiles. “Hit? Who said anything about hit? No, I asked if you rubbedRubbed. Which is an easy incidental thing to do.”

I shake my head as I snare the box of Froot Loops, aka the best cereal ever, from the middle shelf. “Nope. Didn’t rub, either.”

“See, it’s just that …” WBD smiles harder. A thing he does when he’s upset but doesn’t wanna be. “Betsy is so special to me. The only thing I’ve got that was my dad’s, so …”

“Dude, I did not hit, rub, or even breathe on your car,” I say, squeezing past him to hit up the fridge for milk.

“I know it’s hard getting the lawn mower out. It’s tight in there. But I just … I’m just asking you to be careful, is all. Yeah? Can you do that for me, bud?”

Except there’s no milk. Not real milk, anyway.

I whirl around to face my non-dairy tormentor. “Oat milk again? Don’t you believe in regular milk?”

Oat milk’s one of the many unwanted changes that came as part of the WBD package—apparently, the guy doesn’t believe in cow milk.

“Oh, I believe, bud. I just don’t think it’s the responsible way to go if we wanna continue enjoying this planet for a long time, is all. Sustainable living and all that jazz? Sorry, bud.” But he must notice my eyes glazing over, because he stops himself mid-speech and grins at me. “Gee, I’m sorry, boss. You know talking about the environment gets me all wound up, haha. Anyway, what’s your attack plan for today? We’re going to have a blast, pal!”

And I hear you already: C’mon, Eddie, he’s just … enthusiastic. But it’s not that bad, is it?

Oh, trust me, it is.

See, part of WBD’s problem is that he doesn’t know when to quit. Whether it’s him pestering me about us doing fun bonding things together, or him insisting on raising his voice several octaves too high, making his already upsettingly pitchy “falsetto” so squeaky and so screechy that I swear he’s Alvin, ...

 

About Justin A. Reynolds:

JUSTIN A. REYNOLDS has always wanted to be a writer. Opposite of Always, his debut novel, was an Indies Introduce selection, a School Library Journal Best Book, has been translated in 17 languages, and is being developed for film with Paramount Players. He hangs out in northeast Ohio with his family and likes it, and is probably somewhere, right now, dancing terribly. His second novel, Early Departures, published September 2020. In spring 2021, he teamed up with Marvel and Graphix to release his debut graphic novel, Miles Morales: Shock Waves. You can find him at justinareynolds.com.

 

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Giveaway Details:

1 winner will receive a finished copy of IT’S THE END OF THE WORLD AND I’M IN MY BATHING SUIT, US Only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tour Schedule:

Week One:

3/21/2022

Kait Plus Books

Excerpt

3/21/2022

For the Love of KidLit

Excerpt

3/22/2022

BookHounds YA

Excerpt

3/22/2022

@jael_and_jenessa_reads

Review

3/23/2022

Rajiv's Reviews

Review

3/23/2022

Lifestyle of Me

Review

3/24/2022

Nerdophiles

Review

3/24/2022

Cindy's Love of Books

Review

3/25/2022

Eye-Rolling Demigod's Book Blog

Review

3/25/2022

The Reading Wordsmith

Review

Week Two:

3/28/2022

The Bookwyrm's Den

Review

3/28/2022

Two Points of Interest

Review

3/29/2022

Nonbinary Knight Reads

Review

3/29/2022

One More Exclamation

Review

3/30/2022

@drewsim12

Review

3/30/2022

Ravenz Reviewz

Review

3/31/2022

More Books Please blog

Review

3/31/2022

@coffeesipsandreads

Review

4/1/2022

The Momma Spot

Review

4/1/2022

fictionologyst

Review


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