In this book author Mette Bach offers a believable portrayal of an LGBTQ teen who has always identified as a lesbian. When she finds herself attracted to a South Asian boy, she comes to a new identity for herself as bisexual.
17-year-old Freyja is outspokenly lesbian and politically active about LGBTQ issues at her school’s Gay-Straight Alliance. When her girlfriend Rachel breaks up with her, she suspends her work on the online video blog they created together to celebrate their pride. Instead she starts volunteering at the local food bank. But she can’t figure out why the team leader at the food bank, a guy named Sanjay, doesn’t seem to approve of her.Freyja learns about food justice, and becomes attracted to Sanjay’s passion for the cause. As her friendship with Sanjay grows, she realizes that they connect in a way she never did with Rachel. But can Freyja be in love with Sanjay if she identifies as a lesbian? When members of her school’s GSA assume that Freyja has “gone straight” and oppose her leadership of the group, Freyja has to choose between sticking with her old idea of herself — and taking a chance on love.
Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for sending me a free advanced copy in exchange for an honest review.
Rating: 4 stars
Okay. So this is a very cute, fluffy, GOOD representation of sexuality and its fluidity.
BUT. Let’s talk downers quickly. This is an insanely fast read, which makes for very quick pacing. There is very little character development here, aside from Freyja realizing that, 1) she can be a bit overbearing when it comes to the GSA, and 2) she is bisexual (whereas she identified as a lesbian before). Things go by extremely fast and sure, you can keep up just fine, but the story feels very rushed. So that was the downer for me.
NOW! On to more important things, like the content!!
This had a lot of good in it. I honestly love that the author took the time to make Freyja normal, with normal teenage relationships. Sometimes whenever authors pen characters who exist in the LGBTQ+ spectrum, they tend to overdue it. They over-represent these characters as overly loving, not loving enough, too sharp, too softspoken, etc etc. I know that it may seem hard to get it right there in the middle, but the beautiful thing about these characters is that they are JUST like the straight characters!! There is no need to write them any differently, besides their sexuality. And Mette Bach clearly knows this, because she wrote Rachel and Freyja’s relationship so normal and relatable. She wrote Freyja’s every day actions and thoughts like anyone else’s, and that was a nice change. Gay people are still normal people (I can’t believe I even have to say this).
One of the big struggles for Freyja in this story is learning about just how fluid her sexuality is, and I’m so, so, so glad that Mette Bach let Freyja’s character follow her heart and desires instead of making her turn against what she wanted for the sake of labels (we hate labels here).
Overall, I think that this is the type of book that anyone struggling with their sexuality, no matter what the conditions may be, would relate to. It could benefit to have more length so that the pacing doesn’t suffer quite so much, but the message and the content really are worth the read.
Also wanted to share this little tidbit from the book that made me actually Laugh Out Loud: “North American’s aren’t afraid of dictators. But they’re afraid of spiders.” Gladys popped OFF.