Read: 3rd May 2018 – 4th May 2018
Spoilers in review: No
I’ve been anticipating this book’s release since before I finished Radio Silence, because that quickly became one of my favourite books ever and I didn’t want another year-and-a-half delay between one of Alice Oseman’s books being released and me actually reading it. I started reading this the morning it came out, and had finished it by the time I was halfway home from school the next day. That’s 400 pages in under 48 hours. So clearly I enjoyed it.
I loved nearly all of the characters! I think that, yet again, Oseman’s done a brilliant job at creating characters that feel real, which I appreciate a lot. (Of course, when I say ‘nearly’ it’s not because any of the characters were bad characters because they weren’t, but that I just didn’t like them much as people. It’s rare to find a work in which you like everyone) She’s done a great job of portraying characters who are gay, bi, trans, poc, and/or have mental illnesses. Neither of the main characters are white or straight.
The main themes of this novel are fame, fandom, and friendship, which were all really interesting to read about. The fandom featured in this novel is a rpf, of which I have significantly less experience with than with fandoms of fictional works, so some of this was less relatable to me than I know it will be for others. One thing that this novel discusses in depth is how some people ship real people together. I have a personal policy of Not Doing That, and this book touches on a lot of the reasons why. I’m glad that someone could put it in words, in a format that will reach a wider audience than any blog posts or discussions of mine will ever reach.
I didn’t rate this 5 stars for a couple of reasons. One is that it was a emotionally intense at times, which while good was still draining. The other reason is that it felt like it was missing a couple of chapters at the end. Angel left off thinking that something was going to happen, or not happen, as the case may be, but I disagree with her, and I ended up feeling kinda unsatisfied because of it. Which was a shame, but ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ not everything can be perfect.
In short, I really enjoyed this book, and while it wasn’t the best thing I’ve ever read ever, I still think that most people could benefit a lot from reading it.
Review originally written in 2018