ARC Review – Only Mostly Devastated by Sophie Gonzales

Title: Only Mostly Devastated

Author: Sophie Gonzales

Publication Date: 3 March 2020

Genre: Young Adult Contemporary Romance

Number of Pages: 288

Only Mostly DevastatedSummary: From Goodreads: Summer love…gone so fast.

Ollie and Will were meant to be a summer fling—casual, fun, and done. But when Ollie’s aunt’s health takes a turn for the worse and his family decides to stay in North Carolina to take care of her, Ollie lets himself hope this fling can grow to something more. Dreams that are crushed when he sees Will at a school party and finds that the sweet and affectionate (and comfortably queer) guy he knew from summer isn’t the same one attending Collinswood High.

Will is more than a little shocked to see Ollie the evening of that first day of school. While his summer was spent being very much himself, back at school he’s simply known as one of the varsity basketball guys. Now Will is faced with the biggest challenge of his life: follow his heart and risk his friendships, or stay firmly in the closet and lose what he loves most.”

Review: I received an advanced copy of this book from the publisher, Wednesday Books, through Net Galley in exchange for an honest review.

Only Mostly Devastated follow Ollie, a love-struck teenager who thought that after summer was over, he would never see his fling, Will, again. When Ollie’s parents tell him that they aren’t going back to the West Coast and that they’re going to stay in North Carolina to be with his aunt, his world is flipped upside down. It’s flipped upside down again when he sees Will at a party, and he starts to wonder if their summer romance meant anything to Will at all.

This book was a lot of fun to read, and I thought the romance was super cute. I loved Ollie and I enjoyed reading about his struggle between following his head or his heart. I thought that he was super caring, and I loved his relationship with his family, especially with his two younger cousins. I loved how the girls, Juliette, Lara, and Niamh, accepted him into their group, and I love that these three girls all had their own personalities that actually added to the story.

One of the things that I loved about this book was the flashbacks to the summer and the romance between Ollie and Will. I thought that these moments were super cute, and they helped explain why Ollie was so hurt and confused by the Will he was experiencing in high school. Throughout the book, I felt bad for Will because he was juggling so many things and expectations, and it was clear that he was struggling to juggle it all.

I also liked that even though this book was cute and romancey, it also tackled a lot of serious issues. Some of the heavier topics that this book deals with is coping with a serious illness, grief, homophobia, and body image issues. I especially liked how this book dealt with grief, and I thought that some of the scenes dealing with this topic were quite moving.

Finally, I want to talk about the romance between Ollie and Will. They had their share of cringy moments together, but I think most romances have their share of cringy moments. The whole time I was rooting for them to get together publicly, and when they had their moment, I literally started clapping and squealing for joy because I was so happy for them.

This book has been pitched as Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda meets Clueless, and Grease and I can say that if you’re a fan of Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda you’ll probably like this book. Unfortunately, I can’t make any comments on the Clueless and Grease comparisons because it’s been eons since I’ve watched either of those movies, but if you like books that have a summer romance and a couple you can root for, check out this book.

Rating: 4/5 Stars!

 

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