Google+ YA Romantics: Just Finished Reading ... The Upside of Unrequited

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Just Finished Reading ... The Upside of Unrequited

The Upside of Unrequited
by Becky Albertalli

Published on April 11, 2017
by Balzer + Bray

Source: eARC for review

Synopsis from Goodreads: Seventeen-year-old Molly Peskin-Suso knows all about unrequited love. No matter how many times her twin sister, Cassie, tells her to woman up, Molly can’t stomach the idea of rejection. So she’s careful. Fat girls always have to be careful. Then a cute new girl enters Cassie’s orbit, and for the first time ever, Molly’s cynical twin is a lovesick mess. Meanwhile, Molly's totally not dying of loneliness—except for the part where she is. Luckily, Cassie's new girlfriend comes with a cute hipster-boy sidekick. If Molly can win him over, she'll get her first kiss and she'll get her twin back. There's only one problem: Molly's coworker, Reid. He's a chubby Tolkien superfan with a season pass to the Ren Faire, and there's absolutely no way Molly could fall for him. Right?
My take:  If you're a regular blog reader, you know that I prefer my stories on the streamlined side. As The Upside of Unrequited started out, it definitely didn't feel streamlined to me. Main character Molly has two moms, a twin sister and a baby brother. She's very self-conscious about her weight. Her twin sister is suddenly head over heels in love and Molly feels abandoned. Then her moms start planning a big event that causes family drama, her twin tries to fix her up with a guy, her cousin Abby (Simon's Abby!) is also in love (with Nick!) etc. etc. For me it was a lot.

I did like the fact that certain aspects of the story were presented as just a part of regular life, without a lot of fanfare. Molly has a white mom and a black mom. One mom is bisexual and the other is a lesbian. Molly and her siblings are sperm donor babies. Her twin sister's new girlfriend is pansexual. Molly's on an SSRI. While I was happy that these things weren't made out to be Big Issues, I did sometimes wanted to know more.

Another big part of the story is Molly's feelings about her body and her fears of rejection by guys because of her weight. This part of the story felt fully developed and very poignant. On a related note, because everyone around her is paired up, Molly desperately wants to find someone. When her sister tries to set her up, she tries desperately to make it work. At the same time, she's drawn to her co-worker. (This wasn't triangle-y, but Molly did spend time with both guys trying to sort out her feelings.)

When Molly's romance finally got on course, I absolutely loved this book. Watching this too-cute-for-words couple inch slowly together was a delight. And Abby, Simon, and Nick make a guest appearance in the book!

16 comments:

  1. I truly loved this one. I was a little nervous after Simon (because Simon!) but I had nothing to fear. Albertalli has such a gift with authentic teen voices. I adored Molly, loved Reid, loved all the secondary characters... this one was a huge hit for me.

    Tanya @ Girl Plus Books

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    1. I was a little worried at first but ended up feeling the same way!

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  2. I have to agree. At one point, I too felt that there Albertalli was trying to get so much into this story, but in the end, I loved Molly so much it didn't matter.
    Sam @ WLABB

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    1. I ended up feeling the same way. Loved Molly, would have loved to know more about all the stuff raised, but still a fan in the end.

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  3. Okay, okay. Now that you mentioned to number of plots and subplots in here, i'm toning down my excitement for this book. It sounds overwhelming but I'm looking forward to the challenge!

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    1. It's kind of hard to explain. The subplots weren't a huge focus, but they raised issues that I wanted to hear more about. I guess in the end the book was a little "messy" in the same way life is. Which is kind of great.

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  4. I'm so so glad you loved this one, Jen. My copy's in the mail and you just made me even more excited to read it!
    Megan @ http://wanderingsofabookbird.blogspot.co.uk/

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  5. I actually just finished this book a few days ago and I loved Molly and how realistic she was! It was so well written and cute and relatable and I personally liked it a smidge more than Simon VS! Thanks so much for this amazing review Jen and glad to hear you enjoyed it!

    xx Anisha @ Sprinkled Pages

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    1. Thanks for sharing your opinion - glad you liked this even more :)

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  6. I still need to read Simon! This one sounds interesting too!

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  7. It took me a very long time to get into this book - things went a lot better once I passed the halfway mark! I agree that the many subplots tended to bog things down a bit, initially.

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    1. Yeah, that's how I felt. Once it got going, I liked it more!

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  8. I loved this book so very much! The romance was so adorable and the diversity was really well done.

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    1. Agree - once the romance got further along I really liked it!

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  9. I loved this book, too! It was one of the cutest I've ever read.
    And I agree, sometimes I wanted to know more, too!

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