After reading Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda I was in the mood for another cute book. And similar to Simon this book is about a gay teen coming out to their friends and family.
This book was definitely cute and contemporary, but the story wasn’t as intriguing as I hoped. I loved Leila, a gay Persian teen, and her sweet but dorky personality. Lisa was definitely my favorite character though, and by far the most well-written and complex. Some of the other characters, not so much (like Tomas who was awful but was supposed to be likable).
I think the main two things that kept this book from being amazing is that the story didn’t feel real to me despite how diverse it was and the secondary characters (specifically Leila’s classmates) felt so stereotypically high school. I get that high schoolers are childish and stupid at times, but it was just too much for me.
But Farizan did do a great job explaining how difficult it is for Persian teens to come out to their parents, since homosexuality is a crime in Iran. Leila’s fear and struggle felt more real here than any other part of the novel.
I think with more development, especially to character voices, this would have been a more satisfying read.
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