Title: Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda
Author: Becky Albertalli
Genre: Contemporary YA LGBT
Summary (from Goodreads)
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.
This has been the perfect antidote to my inability to get into any book recently. Light, humorous and sweet, it was full of feel good factor, while also exploring some key YA themes, like identity, coming of age, first romance and sexuality. I really like it when books manage to be light and fluffy whilst also having the depth of a few good themes.
Really, I’m never going to be able to beat whoever described this as the love child of John Green and Rainbow Rowell. Because that’s exactly what it is. It’s witty, with realistic characters who also manage to be a little larger than life, and full of so much heart that it’s impossible to read it and not smile.
I loved Simon’s awkwardness. I remember all to well those online relationships that were easier to have because they gave you that blanket of security you needed when talking about the big stuff like sex and sexuality, hopes and fears. Simon and Blue are altogether far too articulate and witty for your average seventeen-year-old, but then they are exactly as articulate and witty as most seventeen year olds (and I include myself at seventeen in this) think they are, so it works. They are the exaggerated reality of teenagers, and they are adorable.
It’s not a difficult or challenging book, and I probably won’t remember it beyond a general feeling of fuzzy warmth past next week, but sometimes you need a good pick me up, and this was certainly that. Feel good and just so cute, without being vapid or empty, it was exactly the sort of teen romance I needed to make me fall back in love with reading again.