Friday, September 29, 2017

REVIEW: The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli - 2.5 stars

Posted by HelloJennyReviews at 10:00 AM
Title: The Upside of Unrequited
Genre: Contemporary LGBTQ+ YA
Author: Becky Albertalli
Publisher: B+B
Publication: April 11th 2017
Cover Rating: 3/5

I have heard nothing but raving reviews about Simon, vs the Homo-sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli. I decided to pick up her most recent book, The Upside of Unrequited first to see if I liked the author and her writing style and then I would decide if I wanted to read Simon. I figured out that there was maybe some previous characters from Simon that appeared in Upside but I didn't need to read that first. Sadly, I don't think I will be reading it at all. Upside was just a weird experience for me. The authors writing style is very easy to speed through and I loved that but her story and characters just weren't for me

Characters:
Molly
Cassie
Mom #1
Mom #2
Reid - Nerdy romantic interest with VERY white shoes
Will - Hipster ginger romantic interest
Mina - Girl Molly met in a bathroom whom is now dating her sister
Abby - Female cousin
Olivia - Female BFF
Random other guys and gals

Plot:
The book was supposed to be about Molly and her 26-27-28 unrequited crushes. These crushes cannot be unrequited because she never told anyone that she had a crush on them. So there is problem number one. 

The next plot point was Cassie and her girlfriend, Mina. Not exactly sure it was much of a plot but Cassie being in a relationship changed her and it wasn't for the better. She was very reclusive and stopped talking to her sister. Then she wanted Molly to hook up with Mina's best friend, Will, and things just got very complicated very quickly. I didn't really like Cassie much.

Then we have Molly and Cassie's mom. The book happens to coincide with when Gay Marriage was announced to be legal so their mom's decide to finally get married and more than half of the book is pretty much just about them and planning their wedding. I have no problem with that being a PART of the book but it felt like the wedding took over the book so it made Molly and Cassie and all the other issues seem less important. This is a YA book and two adults and their marriage should not have taken over the book. With that being said, they were both extremely cool mothers. I loved how the raised their kids and those girls are lucky to have two amazing moms like them.

And my final problem... Molly is fat. It is stated so much throughout the book that it started taking away from the story. Like, okay, we get it, you are fat and think you will crush anyone you have sex with. Gotcha. My problem is, the author NEVER states exactly HOW BIG Molly is. This is actually very common thing among the YA authors. I, personally, would like to know exactly how the author is using this context. I need an individual, personal definition of fat from each author that writes about a FAT MC. 

OH!!! And why did Molly's parents never meet anyone else's parents?! I mean Reid's parents were Molly's boss. They could have invited them to the wedding or something. I just think that was a weird situation, Molly's parents being literally the only parental figures we got to see aside from a brief glimpse of Mina's mother and her egg ramen.

World Building:
Ehh. There really wasn't any and the parts of Maryland that the book DID take place in I didn't really recognize when the author described things. So, there wasn't much world building needed but the little bit that there was was lacking.

In the end, I found myself feeling half and half about this book. I really like the cute relationship with Molly and Reid but there were a lot of other problematic areas and that just kind of swept Molly and Reid under the rug. I did give the book 3.5 stars originally but after writing this review I will be knocking it down because I realized just how problematic this book truly was. 

Overall, I gave the book 2.5/5 stars.





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