Review: Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Abertalli| oreos, boys, and wonderfulness

Okay, guys, I might have a bit of a problem. As I’m writing this post, it is July 9 (crazy pre-scheduling yeah) and I bought it five days ago. Since then, I have read it three times. I think I’m in love. ❤ (links to goodreads, no spoilers until warning)

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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.

let’s talk about why this book is beautiful.

As Tim Federie wrote in his review (on the back cover), “Are we absolutely certain Becky Abertalli didn’t just steal the diary of a hilariously observant teenage boy?” That is exactly what this book feels like. The dialogue flows naturally, the characters feel ridiculously real and teenager-y, and there are just so many little details that make it come alive, such as:

[Nick] smiles quietly into his fist the entire time.

I mean, I do that. I know people who do that. I think everybody does that. And also:

Bram looks at me and laughs. “Simon, your face.”

I CANNOT COUNT THE NUMBER OF TIMES I’VE SAID THAT TO PEOPLE. It’s books like this that remind me what really good writing is– the books that draw you in with things you didn’t even realize, little details that worm themselves into your head and make you notice how realistic and GOOD a book is.

It also happens to be what reminds me that ack what if I’m never that good of a writer

Now, we can’t do a review of this book without talking about the characters:

  • Simon: is such a dorky awesome ball of… dude, for lack of a better word. He’s realistic. He makes stupid mistakes without even thinking they’re stupid, messes up, is a friend and boy, is loyal and caring and just a good guy. He’s crazy realistic and I loved his narration. It was witty and smart, telling the story beautifully.
  • Martin: was a complete slimeball and annoying little git. But he pulled through as well, I guess, in the end. HONESTLY THOUGH. THAT DUDE.

  • Abby: Abby was cool, I liked her. She was there for Simon, she was funny, and she advanced the story. My only irk with her was that she was kinda perfect. Perfectly likeable, sure, but also had almost no flaws.
  • Blue: ARGH BLUE WAS JUST THE MOST ADORKABLE THING EVER LIKE DUDE. I was shipping him and Simon by their first email. He was just sweet and shy and just asdfghjkl
  • Nick: I don’t know…Nick was a character, and he was nice and all, but he didn’t have much personality. He felt a lot more side-character-y than I thought he would be. I still liked him, and he and Abby were the cutest things ever.
  • Leah: Same as above. However, she did have some added conflict with Simon about (highlight for spoiler): how he came out to Abby before her and I felt that made her a lot more 3-D. She had faults, she got jealous, but like everyone else she pulled through.
  • Simon’s family: they were awesome. Nora was the exact little sis I expected: totally not willing to deal with her brother but also there for him. Alice was super cool as well, and the parents were just hilarious. They also didn’t have the whole missing-parent-syndrome, which was a relief. I like parents, contrary to belief. They can be helpful.

Also, the relationships.

Mrs. Albertalli managed to get me hooked on all of them. Am I not a teen romance fan? True. Did this book manage to make me completely forget that?

Basically, read this asap. It is beautiful. Also, queer representation. JUST READ THE BOOK.

Rating: 5/5 smilies

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Have you read “simon”? Did you love it? Any other LGBTQ+ book recommendations?

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13 thoughts on “Review: Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Abertalli| oreos, boys, and wonderfulness

  1. YES! The characters, relationships, and realism was what made this book so lovable for me. The writing is laid-back but it still has a beautiful quality. Not to mention, the story itself is compelling and so cute. I totally agreed with everything you said. Lovely review, Evi! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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