Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda
Received from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Cover image and synopsis from Goodreads:
Sixteen-year-old and not-so-openly gay Simon Spier prefers to save his drama for the school musical. But when an email falls into the wrong hands, his secret is at risk of being thrust into the spotlight. Now Simon is actually being blackmailed: if he doesn’t play wingman for class clown Martin, his sexual identity will become everyone’s business. Worse, the privacy of Blue, the pen name of the boy he’s been emailing, will be compromised.
With some messy dynamics emerging in his once tight-knit group of friends, and his email correspondence with Blue growing more flirtatious every day, Simon’s junior year has suddenly gotten all kinds of complicated. Now, change-averse Simon has to find a way to step out of his comfort zone before he’s pushed out—without alienating his friends, compromising himself, or fumbling a shot at happiness with the most confusing, adorable guy he’s never met.
I feel like one of the last people to read this book! It came out in 2015 and the movie adaptation came out this year. I don’t know why it took me so long to get around to reading this, because it was so good!
This was such a fun, charming book. I loved Simon. He had such a great voice, and he was funny and intelligent. He was also a typical teenager, dealing with self-discovery, family drama, and friend drama, which was super relatable. On top of that, he was being blackmailed by someone at school who has read Simon’s emails and knows he’s gay.
There’s a little mystery to the story too, because Blue, the boy Simon is emailing with (the emails that are discovered by the classmate who blackmails him), is someone who goes to his school but they are keeping their identities a secret from each other. I was trying to guess who Blue really was throughout the book. Their emails are flirtatious and then as they start to open up more to each other and write honestly about things they are both going through, they started to really fall for each other.
I was really excited to learn that Becky Albertalli has written another story set in this world, about Simon’s friend Leah. It’s called Leah on the Offbeat and comes out this month, and I can’t wait to read it!