BOOK REVIEW: SIMON VS THE HOMOSAPIENS AGENDA
This, this bloody amazing book is one of the best books I have read all year and it has reinstated my faith in YA literature. A stunning debut by Becky Albertalli, this book chronicles the life of one junior Simon Spier who also happens to be gay.
This is my very first book with a gay protagonist and I am more than pleased it was this particular one. The abundance of puns in this made my heart sing and the plot was lovely. The ‘Hollow Wieners’ pun at Halloween and the Freudian Slip costume had me laughing out loud and that is a feat few books accomplish. Naming the dog ‘Beiber’ could have gone down the road as cliché and crass, but it comes off as cute.
Simon is quite a complex character and the book seems to have done his personality justice the way it’s been written. I love some of the ideas explored in the book, especially the one about how you can absolutely loathe and hate a person, but how sometimes you can’t help but like them – Martin and Simon’s reluctant friendship is a testament to that, even though Martin is being a prat and blackmailing Simon.
Puppy love is explained very nicely in the perspective of today’s teenager. The way Martin makes a fool out of himself, in front of Abby and others to be liked is something we have all seen or done in our lives. The book is very relatable. Taylor, the over-achieving nerd who likes to show off way too much is someone we all know in our lives or have known. The character development is very well-thought and brought about. One of the quotes that I really, really liked was:
“Why is straight the default? Everyone should have to declare one way or another, and it shouldn’t be this big awkward thing whether you’re straight, gay, bi, or whatever. I’m just saying.”
And the book honestly isn’t about gays being better, or a pride march fitted inside a novel, it is simply a book which looks inside the mind of a young boy who likes boys instead of girls. The writing and the imagery used bring the book to life when you read read. Albertalli’s writing is fluid and smooth, not too much thrown at you in a sentence or a chapter. I got a bit confused at times though that was just me reading too quickly. You know how it is – you want to savour a good book and at the same time rush towards the end.
Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda is a wonderful read and I would recommend it to anyone blindly, but I would recommend it mostly to those who think a gay protagonist would think and act any different than any other teenager. Five stars to this novel and I look forward to the next read by Becky Albertalli soon, which will hopefully be as adorable and poignant as her first novel.
This book releases on the 7th of April, 2015. I do think you all should read it.