Hi All! It’s Becky. I just finished listening to Sophie Gonzalez’s Only Mostly Devastated. The book felt fresh and was cute. Here are my thoughts:
Title: Only Mostly Devastated: A Novel
Author: Sophie Gonzales
Note: I listened to the audiobook.
Summary: Ollie had the perfect summer romance with Will, the dreamy boy who he met at the Lake during a family vacation. Ollie was inconsolable when he had to leave Will to return to his home on the other side of the country but his whole life changes when his parents decide to stay at the Lake to help take care of his ailing aunt. Ollie dreams of reunited with his summer love but is devastated when he encounters Will on the first day of school and Will is very much in the closet. Now, Ollie must navigate a new school where the only person he knows isn’t willing to admit to their former relationship. Can Ollie find his place in his new home?
Review: I had a mixed reaction to this book. In general, I really enjoyed this book. Ollie’s experiences were, at times, adorably romcomish. Also, Gonzales beautifully explored the idea of dealing with loss through Ollie coming to terms with his Aunt’s illness and her death. It is so important that losing a loved one and coping with that loss to be featured in a YA book and I wish that it would always be portrayed as honestly as Gonzales did it. However, this exploration didn’t quite fit the tone of the book and the subplot didn’t quite feel as if it truly fits with the rest of the narrative. Another great aspect of the book is the discussion of homophobia which felt realistic and honest to the point that it made me uncomfortable which illustrates how well the storyline was crafted. Yet, I did have some issues with this book. I had a big issue with the way Will treated Ollie. At times, Will’s level of indifference or his moments of rejection were heartbreaking and I was beyond frustrating that Ollie kept going back to him. Plus, the resolution of Will and Ollie’s storyline was more than a little anti-climatic. Nevertheless, in the end, this book is worth reading because of Ollie and his unwillingness to be pushed back into the closet. Ollie’s unwillingness to be anything but completely true to himself is an incredibly strong message and is all the reason you need to add this book to your TBR list.
Final Rating: 3 out of 5
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