Title: Leah on the Offbeat
Author: Becky Albertalli
Date Started: July 6
Date Finished: July 10
Format: Hardcover from my shelf
When it comes to drumming, Leah Burke is usually on beat—but real life isn’t always so rhythmic. An anomaly in her friend group, she’s the only child of a young, single mom, and her life is decidedly less privileged. She loves to draw but is too self-conscious to show it. And even though her mom knows she’s bisexual, she hasn’t mustered the courage to tell her friends—not even her openly gay BFF, Simon.
So Leah really doesn’t know what to do when her rock-solid friend group starts to fracture in unexpected ways. With prom and college on the horizon, tensions are running high. It’s hard for Leah to strike the right note while the people she loves are fighting—especially when she realizes she might love one of them more than she ever intended.
My summer of conflict continues. Leah on the Offbeat has been on my Most Anticipated Reads list since I finished Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda and The Upside of Unrequited last year. And when I started this book I was devouring things like nobodies business. This was a sort of sequel to Simon, only from the point of view of his best friend Leah. So we still got to see all the characters we fell in love with in Simon – Simon, Bram, Nick, and Abby – just from a different side of things. And I was really enjoying myself catching up with the clique that I fell in love with.
But then…Leah’s snarkiness really started to get on my nerves a little bit. She was so down on everything when it went wrong that she…kind of reminded me of myself a little bit and one of my worst character traits ever. Then there was also the problem of the relationship in this one. And no I’m really not talking about Garrett’s obvious crush on Leah. I’m talking about *spoilers ahead* Leah’s crush on Abby that apparently is kind of returned? I mean, normally I would probably be jumping for joy for this couple because they do work together. But I’m just not a fan of the whole dating other members of the friend group thing. I saw that a lot on my favorite shows, and eventually they just work their way through the friends and things are awkward for months or years afterward. And sure, they’re seniors in high school/freshman in college. But still.
Final Rating: 4 out of 5 stars. Despite my complaints about Leah’s negativity and the pairing in this novel, I still loved the world that was started in Simon. It was fun catching up with all these characters and I really liked the Sailor Moon references too!
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