I didn’t expect to read another book in January, but I devoured almost 200 pages of Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda yesterday and finished it in the early hours of this morning – it was that good – making it my 5th book of the 2016 Reading Challenge.
Title: Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda
Author: Becky Albertalli
Favourite character: Simon Spier
Category: #3 A YA bestseller
“As a side note, don’t you think everyone should have to come out? Why is straight the default? Everyone should have to declare one way or another, and it should be this big awkward thing whether you’re straight, gay, bi, or whatever. I’m just saying.”
Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda is a bestselling Young Adult novel, written from the perspective of seventeen year old Simon Spier. Simon is gay, and the only person he is out to is his cyber friend, Blue, who just happens to be a student at his school, but neither Simon (codename Jacques) or Blue know the other person’s identity. When Jacques and Blue’s personal emails are hijacked, Simon is blackmailed. To keep his sexual orientation and his relationship with Blue a secret, Simon agrees to the demands of the blackmailer.
Despite the serious undertone of the novel, it is actually incredibly witty and charming. The main character is well fleshed out, and his thoughts and desires are believable. Simon’s friends and family also play interesting and pivotal roles in this contemporary romance and mystery novel. Ultimately it’s a story of self-discovery, first love and true friendship, and it’s delightful.
This book was so cute, funny and realistic. I loved that it was a 21st century situation, showing the negative side of social media, and that it had some dark themes. However, I found it initially difficult to get into as there were so many characters introduced, but this wasn’t a problem once the story itself had begun unfolding. All in all, this book is an incredible debut, and I can’t wait to read more books by Becky Albertalli.
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