Book: Simon Vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
Published April 2015 by Balzar + Bray|303 pages
Where I Got It: I borrowed the hardcover from the library
Genre: YA Contemporary
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 liked Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda! It was cute, fun, funny, and there was a lot of heart to this book.
I really liked Simon, and I liked watching him and Blue fall in love even more. I loved seeing their emails back and forth, and when they met in person…I was so happy that they finally got to meet each other. Their romance is definitely cute, and it’s a good cute. I really do think it’s because they’re emailing each other, and you get to see it unfold.
It just made me happy to see Simon surrounded by people who support him. I really liked his relationships with his friends and his family, and yes, there are people who aren’t so supportive, and seem to be generally stupid, it was also nice to see that people have his back, and won’t put up with homophobia. It’s (overall) a happy book, and I liked reading something so happy.
I will say, Martin…not a good guy. Especially with how he blackmailed Simon. And that other thing he did? Not cool. Not cool at all. You don’t do what he did…it really wasn’t for him to tell, just because he didn’t get the girl. He really did take something away from Simon. I get why Martin did what he did, and he did seem to feel bad about it, in the end, but it doesn’t mean I have to like it one bit.
And while I’m not a big quote person, I loved this quote a lot.
“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 also this one:
“White shouldn’t be the default any more than straight should be the default. There shouldn’t even be a default.”
It really got me thinking (for a few minutes) about how there are defaults, especially with sexuality, and how there’s a certain default until proven otherwise. Those two quotes are part of why I like Simon so much. And he references Harry Potter a lot, which was also pretty awesome. It’s just cute and funny, and that’s really all I have to say.
Actually, I really like the title. It makes a lot more sense after reading the book, and when it clicked, I actually liked the title a lot more. I’m not a big fan of the cover, but it fits with the book pretty well, and honestly, I’m not sure what would make a better cover.
4 stars. I didn’t like the whole thing with Martin (hence 4 stars, instead of 5), but overall, Simon is a great book for everyone who likes cute, sweet, light books.