Wednesday, June 1, 2016

The Inside of Out ~ Jenn Marie Thorne (earc) review [@juniperjenny @penguinteen]

The Inside of Out
Dial Books
May 31, 2016
400 pages
add to Goodreads/buy from Book Depository/or Amazon

Meg Cabot meets Glee in this breezy, hilarious, deceptively smart YA about privilege, pretense, and realizing that every story needs a hero. Sometimes it's just not you.

When her best friend Hannah comes out the day before junior year, Daisy is so ready to let her ally flag fly that even a second, way more blindsiding confession can't derail her smiling determination to fight for gay rights.

Before you can spell LGBTQIA, Daisy's leading the charge to end their school’s antiquated ban on same-sex dates at dances—starting with homecoming. And if people assume Daisy herself is gay? Meh, so what. It's all for the cause.

What Daisy doesn't expect is for "the cause” to blow up—starting with Adam, the cute college journalist whose interview with Daisy for his university paper goes viral, catching fire in the national media. #Holy #cats.

With the story spinning out of control, protesters gathering, Hannah left in the dust of Daisy’s good intentions, and Daisy's mad attraction to Adam feeling like an inconvenient truth, Daisy finds herself caught between her bold plans, her bad decisions, and her big fat mouth.

There's something I like about a book where I  really cannot decide if I like the main character or not - and whether or not I should, whether I am supposed to like them. Daisy's character did a great job skirting that line between endearing and irritating.

Daisy screws things up sometimes - a lot, lately. Sometimes it is because she didn't fully think things through, sometimes she did think them through but didn't correctly predict the outcome. What she intends and what actually transpires aren't matching up very well.

After her best friend comes out to her, Daisy wants to show Hannah just how much she cares, how much she loves and supports her so she decides they should join the school's GSA. So, maybe Hannah doesn't actually join with her, that's not going to deter her.

Neither is, oops, everyone thinking Daisy's gay.

How that conclusion is reached and what Daisy decides to do about it was more natural than I expected. It fit with not only her character and her feelings for Hannah, but also her past, the other characters involved and the different events that happened along the way.

While I did get annoyed with Daisy at different points, I really liked her character, overall, along with the family (her hippie mom and a dad playing video games for work), her friendships and her lack of friendships. I think she was the perfect character - lying, grandiose promises, good intentions, and missteps included - for this story.

The Inside of Out has some smart things to say about gender, sexuality, class, friendship and family and a humorous, often unexpected way of saying them.

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