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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at SBU chapter.

… And I am, once again, emotionally unwell. Why I thought I could handle the story of Em and Dex, Dex and Em again, I’m not really sure, but it’s a small price to pay for the literary gold I have struck since first watching the Netflix series back in February. 

Something I have thoroughly enjoyed about reading the book after watching the TV show (a theme that rarely transpires in my life; the book comes first always, duh) is basking in the mountains of detail that a film adaption is simply incapable of portraying. It was the same, but oh was it different. And now, after completing yet another emotional ordeal that will likely haunt me and my Tik Tok search history for weeks, here are my greatest takeaways.

To avoid any spoilers for those of you who have somehow managed to avoid them on Tik Tok and still plan to watch/read One Day, I’ll keep my descriptions of events quite vague. However, this is your official warning to stop here (though I think I do a pretty good job, so maybe keep reading if it’ll encourage you to finally buy the book and/or watch the Netflix series). 

Internal Monologues

All I can say is, wow. Obviously, a major difference between novels and their film adaptations is the amount and deliverance of the details. There were so many times throughout this book where I found myself analyzing a scene completely differently than I had while watching the show. Suddenly, a scene I had found to be quite heart-warming and sweet became unsettling. A comment I had previously thought to be cheeky and charming was now immature and piggish. Though I love how real David Nicholls is able to portray his characters through their thoughts, I also found myself growing quite frustrated and rather annoyed with a certain main character. But, I can’t complain. I wanted to read about realistic characters, so it just makes sense that they would have flaws that don’t readily change, flaws that cannot be fixed within the span of a year, as the novel and TV show permit. I’m just glad I was able to restrain myself from chucking my book or nearby stuffed animal at the wall, as I often felt inclined to do at many parts of the novel. 


Something I greatly appreciated about both the novel and the TV series is the portrayal of time. I feel like something I often struggle with is feeling as if the clock is ticking: to figure out a career path, to make friends, to meet the one, start a family, build a home… it gets quite overwhelming, and I feel as if I’ve already wasted so much time. However, both the versions of One Day that I have now consumed have really helped to put things into perspective. Both Em and Dex, Dex and Em, struggle to find their ways in the world; each struggles through crappy jobs and financial difficulties, each grapples with finding their happily ever afters, and they each do this throughout their twenties and even most of their thirties. Through my reading and watching, I’ve allowed myself to take a step back, to take a breath, and realize that though life is short, we are still quite young, and will remain so throughout our twenties, and even thirties isn’t really that old to still be figuring out our lives. So, thank you David Nicholls for what was basically an $18 therapy session (until the very end, for which I demand emotional reparations). 


Ah, love, one of life’s greatest pleasures and pains. Though one always hopes that the prior will be in excess while the other in deficiency, it is also true that we don’t always get what we want. And I’ll leave it at that. 


This is your sign to watch and/or read One Day. Seriously, I’ll lend you my copy. 

From Buffalo, New York, Sofi is a sophomore transfer student at St. Bonaventure University and is a new Her Campus member. After changing her major for the dozenth (but hopefully last) time, deciding to pursue studies in English, Sofi joined Her Campus to share her passions for music and reading. When she is not watching Outer Banks or making yet another new Spotify playlist, Sofi loves to hangout with her friends, snowboard at Holiday Valley, and post her entire camera roll to her VSCO. She is also an avid reader and loves to catch up on her To Be Read list when she is not reading for a class. Sofi has too many favorite musical artists to list, so just know that if you can think it, she probably likes them (and she is open to new music reccs at any time). She also dabbles in graphic design, creating scrapbook-style Instagram posts when she feels it’s time for a camera roll dump. A known optimist, Sofi can’t wait to see where life takes her. She plans to live wherever her sister decides to settle down, and even though that may mean leaving Buffalo, she will forever remain a resilient Bills fan.