Genres: LGBT, Love & Romance, Young Adult
Published by Harper Collins on 2015-04-07
Amazon, Barnes & Noble , The Book Depository
Sixteen-year-old and not-so-openly gay Simon Spier prefers to save his drama for the school musical. But when an email falls into the wrong hands, his secret is at risk of being thrust into the spotlight. Now Simon is actually being blackmailed: if he doesn’t play wingman for class clown Martin, his sexual identity will become everyone’s business. Worse, the privacy of Blue, the pen name of the boy he’s been emailing, will be compromised.
With some messy dynamics emerging in his once tight-knit group of friends, and his email correspondence with Blue growing more flirtatious every day, Simon’s junior year has suddenly gotten all kinds of complicated. Now, change-averse Simon has to find a way to step out of his comfort zone before he’s pushed out—without alienating his friends, compromising himself, or fumbling a shot at happiness with the most confusing, adorable guy he’s never met.
“Sometimes it seems like everyone knows who I am except me.”
I don’t even know how to start my review without sounding like a total mess.
I mean this book was, for lack of a better word, amazing. It wasn’t a “gay” book. And what I mean with this is that it didn’t include a LGBT protagonist for the sake of “diversity”, but because DAMMIT a gay character is not always the stereotyped character we see in movies and tv.
“Why is straight the default? Everyone should have to declare one way or another, and it shouldn’t be this big awkward thing whether you’re straight, gay, bi, or whatever. I’m just saying.”
It showed us how normal it is to be a gay person in a (mostly) straight high school. How they don’t need to be overly eccentric or how there is literally nothing that makes them look different from non-gay people.
I loved that this book tackled everything from romantic relationships to family relationships, to even platonic relationships. Not to mention Simon most definitely would take the award for my favorite male protagonist. He’s so unflinchingly honest and clever, he likes Harry Potter, he’s nonchalantly cool and collected, he has almost-perfect grammar! I love Simon. I actually wish he were my best friend. Reading this book is much more than just reading about something that’s happening to some boy. It’s about being there with your best friend and supporting him on his journey.
I loved the little email exchanges between Simon and Blue. We never know who Blue is until the end of the book, but we get to know him almost as well as we do Simon. We get to see how Simon and him slowly fall for each other, and how their friendship slowly grew into something more.
This book isn’t all about the normal-ness and acceptance of gay people, but it also shows that there’s a nasty side. There’s mocking, name calling, stereotyping, and hurtful language. Becky Albertalli makes us feel genuinely hurt as we see that things like this still exist. We see homophobia in a different light; we see it as something that could honestly happen to anyone, anyone we love like a brother or a best friend, and seeing our best friends or brothers being treated like that seriously sucks.
“People really are like house with vast rooms and tiny windows. And maybe it’s a good thing, the way we never stop surprising each other.”
I honestly love this book. I don’t know how my review can bring it justice, but if I even made you just a little bit curious about it, please check it out. This is a brilliant debut by Becky Albertalli, and I cannot wait to see what else she comes up with.
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