On the eve of the one-year anniversary of her best friend Lottie’s death, 18-year-old Ryn has even less desire than most travelers to spend one long day and night snowed in at the Denver airport. However, a chance encounter with a stranger with the same cell phone and case is the first in a series of events that draw Ryn out of her protective self-imposed emotional and artistic stasis. Lottie sent Ryn a text message right before her death; to Ryn’s magical thinking process, as long as it remains unread, there’s still a part of Lottie alive in her world. Charming, immediately emotional, and filled with wry observations about life, death, and the universe’s tendency towards chaos, this is a rewarding read.
“I fell hard for this story of love, loss, friendship, and bad airport food. I loved it!” —Morgan Matson, New York Times bestselling author of The Unexpected Everything
Over the course of one chaotic night stranded at the Denver airport, Ryn confronts her shattered past thanks to the charm of romance, the uniqueness of strangers, and the magic of ordinary places in this “laugh-out-loud funny, deeply stirring” (Julie Buxbaum, New York Times bestselling author of Tell Me Three Things) novel from the author of Boys of Summer.
Ryn has one unread text message on her phone. And it’s been there for almost a year.
She hasn’t tried to read it. She can’t. She won’t. Because that one message is the last thing her best friend ever said to her before she died.
But as Ryn finds herself trapped in the Denver International Airport on New Year’s Eve thanks to a never-ending blizzard on the one-year anniversary of her best friend’s death, fate literally runs into her.
And his name is Xander.
When the two accidentally swap phones, Ryn and Xander are thrust into the chaos of an unforgettable all-night adventure, filled with charming and mysterious strangers, a secret New Year’s Eve bash, and a possible Illuminati conspiracy hidden within the Denver airport. But as the bizarre night continues, all Ryn can think about is that one unread text message. It follows her wherever she goes, because Ryn can’t get her brilliantly wild and free-spirited best friend out of her head.
Ryn can’t move on.
But tonight, for the first time ever, she’s trying. And maybe that’s a start.
As moving as it is funny, The Chaos of Standing Still is a heartwarming story about the earth-shattering challenges life throws at us—and the unexpected strangers who help us along the way.
About the Author
Jessica Brody is the author of several popular novels for teens and tweens, including The Geography of Lost Things, 52 Reasons to Hate My Father, A Week of Mondays, Better You Than Me, and the Unremembered trilogy. She lives with her husband and four dogs near Portland, Oregon. Visit her online at JessicaBrody.com.
"Brody’s novel is a smart portrayal of what remains not only in the wake of a friend’s death but in the absence of one who cast a long shadow in life. Ryn isn’t just dealing with grief but defining herself post-Lottie, and watching that evolution unfold is compelling. A frozen terminal is a unique backdrop for a teen romance, but Brody (In Some Other Life, 2017) still hits all the meet-cute beats YA romance fans expect. This swoonworthy rom-com has just as much pathos as heart." -- Molly Horan — Booklist Online
"Absorbing from first page to last, Brody’s novel gradually unveils Ryn’s complicated history and celebrates her most profound moments of truth.” — Publishers Weekly, Starred Review
“This will appeal to fans of Jennifer E. Smith’s books and Nicola Yoon’s Everything, Everything.” — School Library Journal