Move over Rainbow Rowell, John Green, and Sarah Dessen. There is a new YA author in town — Becky Albertalli.
Becky Albertalli is the author of three wonderful books — all of them intertwined. They are: Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda, The Upside of the Unrequited, and the latest, Leah On The Offbeat.
The book is the sequel to Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda. And, it was an amazing sequel.
It was told in the point of view of Leah Burke, who is the best friend of the protagonist of Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda, Simon. Leah is different than many of her friends. She was raised by a single mom, and as a result, doesn’t have the same amount of money as they do. And, as prom and college grow closer, it becomes a reminder of that.
With that being said, Leah is also hiding a secret from her friends — that she is bisexual. Of course, she would be accepted by them. After all, she is best friends with Simon Spier who has been madly in love with Bram since the first novel.
But, that’s not the only secret that Leah is hiding. Leah has a secret crush on someone. At first, she thinks that this is only a friendship, but over time, it blossoms into something more than Leah could have ever anticipated.
And what does this turn into? One of the greatest young adult novels to portray the end of high school in a long time.
First off let me say this: I love, love, loved reading this book — so much that I ended up reading it in two days flat. The characters were amazing. They all were easy to fall in love with, and were relatable — even as a 20 something. Furthermore, they were realistic — some of them were queer while others were straight. Definitely a good portrayal of a modern high school.
I loved how it realistically portrayed Leah’s friendships — especially as she fought with a friend over a comment made. I found myself cheering for her as she stuck up for Abby.
However, what I really loved reading about was Leah’s relationship with Simon. It was very similar to my relationship with my gay best friend and it reminded me so much of that.
Nostalgia factors aside, what I also loved about the book, is the ending. It was cute and very swoon worthy. I am a huge fan of cute endings that tie up nicely, and Albertalli did an amazing job with that.
All in all, this book was wonderful. The only bad thing about it for me was that it ended too quickly. However, it’s a book that I do plan to reread down the line.
So, if you’re looking to read this book — or its predecessor– I highly recommend that you do so.