Title: SIMON VS HOMO SAPIENS AGENDA
Author: Becky Albertalli
Rating: ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐
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.
I was supposed to do this an eternity ago when the movie first came out, but there’s still time for you to read the book. There’s always time. Since you probably liked (or didn’t) the movie, I decided that instead of a review, I’ll share a few reasons I think you’ll fall in love with this book.
[Warning: GIFs contain spoilers]
1. A Coming-of-Age romcom:
What’s better than a love story between two high school juniors, equally confused and new to the whole relationship thing? It’s funny, cute, and heartwarming.
2. Coming out story minus the gay pain
That’s right. Of course, the world’s still poop and we have a long way to go until we stop being so poopy, but it’s still always great to see a coming out story where the characters don’t have to face that hardship and pain. Because, “straight shouldn’t be the default” and no one should have to have a different, a lesser love story.
3. Awkward teen romance
I was getting secondhand embarrassment from Simon’s awkward attempts at figuring out who Blue was. If I want to count the times I had to pause and recover from the blushing from the awkwardness, I’ll need a few more hands.
4. New and old friendships threatened
This is one of my favorite tropes, and the portrayal of Simon’s feelings, the decisions he made between choosing friends, ending up hurting and being hurt by them, was so painstakingly realistic.
Yes, yes, yes! There are a lot of love letter exchange. Romantic feelings, secrets and insecurities awkwardly shared between Simon and Blue. And it’s in emails. With perfect grammar. So, what’s there not to love about the two?
6. Simon’s gay. GAY. Gaaaayyyy
Does this need anything more said than this?
7. High school drama
Literally. As in, drama classes and plays in theater. It was refreshing to see the settings more grounded on drama instead of sports. And I swear it’s the most fun class in HS and of course, Simon didn’t miss any of it and you shouldn’t miss out either.
8. (not so threatening) Blackmails
It all starts with Martin blackmailing Simon to out him and Blue to the entire school if he doesn’t hook Martin up with his friend Abby. And a clueless teen blackmailing another clueless teen is fun to read about, but also equally stressful.
9. Supportive family dynamics
Simon’s got the best siblings in the world, no doubt there. They’re loving, supportive, have no secrets, and would pull each other through anything no matter what. And his parents were just as great and always communicating (maybe a little too much, according to Simon).
10. Happy Endings
This might not be HEA, or we can hope it stays as HEA. But at the end of the day, it’s the perfect ending to a great love story. Of course, Simon deserved and got his love story. ❤
So go read it, see the movie, and we can fangirl about it together. Also, don’t forget to preorder Leah On The Offbeat.