And right at this very moment, for maybe the first time ever, I feel like I’m in my own story.The Summer of Jordi Perez (and the Best Burger in Los Angeles), pg 106
Okay y’all, this is the book I needed to read at this moment. After not enjoying Girls With Sharp Sticks as much as I anticipated (check out my Bookstagram post to learn more), this one was a breath of fresh, cute AF air. If you haven’t read my August TBR blog post, you may have missed my quick summary of this one, so I’ll include it below:
Seventeen, fashion-obsessed, and gay, Abby has always been content playing the sidekick in other people’s lives. She takes her first step in the fashion industry by landing a prized internship at her favorite local boutique, but she doesn’t expect to fall for her fellow intern, Jordi… then again, nothing is going as expected this summer. She’s competing against the girl she’s kissing to win a paid job at the boutique, and she’s making friends with people she’d never imagine; is it possible Abby’s finally in her own story? Can Abby find a way to reconcile her positive yet private sense of self with the image that other people have of her?
So what did I think of this one? I LOVED IT! Here’s why:
This was the fat/body positive main character I needed as a teen. Heck, even the main character I need now.
Abby is so unabashedly and wholeheartedly herself. She loves fashion, and she isn’t afraid to take risks and pursue her love despite the obvious bias against plus size people in the fashion industry (which come on, the average size for women in America is between 14-18 so stop trying to sell me a mumu or shapeless dress and call it ~fashion~ – it’s just lazy and bad business to be honest). Also Abby’s ability to find things to express herself through the way she dressed was incredibly admirable and inspiring!
Abby, like all teenage (and even adult) girls, deals with insecurities about her body/size, as well as her validity as a love interest in her own life story. Seeing her go through this inner (and outer) struggle was painfully real for me, because I had the exact same thoughts as a plus size teen growing up in American society (and if I’m honest, I still have them…it’s a work in progress!). Abby wasn’t a “before” character (aka the “before” to the weight loss “after” that is incredibly prevalent in many stories involving plus size characters and is the ACTUAL worst). Basically, I just want to be Abby…*shoulder shrug*
It was a perfect summer read.
Are you looking for a light-hearted summer romance? Look no farther– Amy Spalding transports you to summer in Los Angeles, and you too will want to be watching a movie in Hollywood Cemetery with your friends on a warm summer night (while basking in the love glow with your SO) or grabbing a tasty burger at In-N-Out in your favorite summer dress.
Abby and Jordi are relationship goals.
Point blank period. I have to be honest, I haven’t read much F/F romance books (because usually I use my romance picks as escapism and daydreaming fodder, and I haven’t had many legit girl crushes-yet), but the relationship in this book is INCREDIBLY CUTE while also being COMPLETELY REALISTIC for teens (you know, the target audience of this book….you’d honestly be surprised how often this isn’t the case for adult authors writing YA). They were perfectly imperfect, and I wanted more of them! I’m definitely adding some more F/F romance books to my TBR because it’s clear I’m missing out on some amazing stories.
Also there definitely needs to be special shout out to the friendships and side characters in this book, who are also treasures in and of themselves!
All in all , I genuinely recommend this book for lovers of light contemporary read, those looking for a happy LGBTQ+ romance, and those who enjoy coming-of-age stories about finding oneself! Check out this book at your local public library, or buy it from your local bookstore (come on, Amazon doesn’t need your money) today- you won’t regret it!
Readalikes if you enjoy/enjoyed this book:
- Dumplin’ by Julie Murphy
- Everything Leads to You by Nina Lacour
- Leah on the Offbeat by Becky Albertalli
- The Way You Make Me Feel by Maurene Goo
- The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli
- Final Draft by Riley Redgate
- Ramona Blue by Julie Murphy
Until next time!