The Power of YA | Simon Spier and the rise of LGBT+ stories

simon vs. the homo sapiens agenda becky albertalliOne of the things I love most about reading, is how it can literally change someone’s life. Books have the power to change things, even if they’re minor things. They can. In this (hopefully) monthly series on my blog I am going to talk to you about the impact and the power YA books have. I’m going to include not just my own thoughts but also other people’s opinions and if I can find them, stats and figures.

This first post will be about Simon Spier (Simon Vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli), who has quickly become one of the most iconic LGBT+ YA characters and will probably only gain popularity once the movie (Love, Simon) is released over the world. I have sadly not been able to see Love, Simon yet because it’s not released where I live, but I have seen the impact it has had on many others.

This post does not include any spoilers about neither the book nor the movie it is simply a discussion of the effects Simon’s story has.

Continue reading “The Power of YA | Simon Spier and the rise of LGBT+ stories”

The Upside of Unrequited Review

General Rating: ★★★★ (4 stars)
Diversity rating:  ★★★ (3 stars: POC: Asian, Korean-American, LGBT+: pansexual, bi, gay, minority: Jewish)

I have heard a lot about Simon vs The Homo Sapiens Agenda but I have not yet read it, this book is by the same author and is highly anticipated by a lot of people!

The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertallicover-reveal-the-upside-of-unrequited-large

Seventeen-year-old Molly Peskin-Suso knows all about unrequited love. No matter how many times her twin sister, Cassie, tells her to woman up, Molly cant stomach the idea of rejection. So shes careful. Fat girls always have to be careful.

Then a cute new girl enters Cassies orbit, and for the first time ever, Mollys cynical twin is a lovesick mess. Meanwhile, Molly’s totally not dying of lonelinessexcept for the part where she is. Luckily, Cassie’s new girlfriend comes with a cute hipster-boy sidekick. If Molly can win him over, she’ll get her first kiss and she’ll get her twin back. 

There’s only one problem: Molly’s coworker, Reid. He’s a chubby Tolkien superfan with a season pass to the Ren Faire, and there’s absolutely no way Molly could fall for him.


I just feel like writing a bunch of quotes instead of a review, because this book is so very quotable.

My favourite character was by far Molly, she’s just amazing and here is why:

  • She’s an introvert

“Molly Peskin-Suso: disoriented introvert, alone in the wild.”

“Either way, I am clearly unfit for human company right now.”

  • She’s an antisocial, socially awkward cinnamon roll.

“We walk up Maple, and I feel tongue-tied. Not even tongue-tied. I mean, my tongue isn’t the problem. It’s my brain. It’s like this: Me: Hey brain. Let’s think of something cool to say! Brain: UHHHHHHHHHHH. Me: Okay, it doesn’t have to be cool. Just something semi-coherent… Brain: UHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH. Me: COME ON, BRAIN, GIVE ME SOMETHING. Brain: *white noise*.”

  • She’s a chubby girl and is very self-conscious of her body.

“I hate that I’m even thinking that. I hate hating my body. Actually, I don’t even hate my body. I just worry everyone else might. Because chubby girls don’t get boyfriends, and they definitely don’t have sex. Not in movie – not really – unless it’s supposed to be a joke. And I don’t want to be a joke.”

Reasons not to love Molly.

  • She is very determined to get a boyfriend, for the sake of having a boyfriend. And I don’t like that. I think that the story is very much focused on her wanting to have a significant other, and I think that I would have loved it much more if it wasn’t.
  • That’s it.

The other characters are great too, and I really liked the dynamics of the group of friends. And despite that I didn’t like the whole idea that Molly needs to have a boyfriend or at least kissed someone, I did really like the romance in the book. I think that this book talks about topics that are very important, such as sex and sexual orientation, family, relationships, and more.

The writing style was funny and relatable and overall I really liked this book. It didn’t mesmerise me as much as I’d expect, but that is probably because I’m a little tired of the idea that you’re not good enough if you haven’t had a boyfriend at a certain age. I would like to give you my sincere apologies for this very short, messy and incoherent review, but I did really love it I just don’t know how to express it.

I give this book 4 stars because it was very relatable, funny, cute, realistic and also very diverse! At least half the characters are either POC, LGTB+, or are part of a minority or a combination of those. I would definitely recommend this book!