Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli – Book Review
If there’s something I think there can never be enough of, it’s great LGBT representation in both books and films. Here are a billion trillion books and films with heterosexual characters in comparison to the smattering of LGBT ones, and we need more.
That’s one of the reasons I absolutely adored Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli.
Straight people should have to come out too. And the more awkward it is, the better.
Simon Spier is sixteen and trying to work out who he is – and what he’s looking for.
But when one of his emails to the very distracting Blue falls into the wrong hands, things get all kinds of complicated.
Because, for Simon, falling for Blue is a big deal…
It’s a holy freaking huge awesome deal.
Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli:
Simon vs. follows Simon, a closeted gay teen who has regular email conversations with an anonymous person called Blue. All Simon knows about Blue is that he goes to the same school, and… that’s it. They both remain anonymous to each other, and that’s the way they like it – until the day Simon realises he’s actually pretty in love with this stranger on the internet. But they’ve been talking for so long and about their most intimate secrets that they feel like they’ve known each other for their whole lives.
Simon is happy, for now, having complete control over who knows about his secret… until Martin, a kid in his class, logs on to a public computer Simon forgot to log out of, and reads every single one of his emails. He threatens to send them to the whole school if he doesn’t help him get with Simon’s friend Abbey.
I think the biggest reason I loved this book is because of how fun and lighthearted it is! Apart from the whole blackmail situation, there’s nothing overly dramatic or crazy; it’s just about the pretty average, straightforward life of a gay teenage boy. Those are sometimes my favourite kinds of stories.
Something I especially adored was how people reacted to Simon telling them that he’s gay. There isn’t a single over-reaction, and it made me want to pick up the book and hug it and then visit the author and hug her too. It’s one of the first books I’ve read where being gay isn’t a life changing event that changes the course of history forever. It’s just about Simon, his family and his friends, and his (not-so-simple) coming out story.
As an LGBT person myself, it was so lovely to read this book and I want to recommend it to absolutely anyone! Most of all, it shows that being gay is not important at all; it doesn’t change anyone’s lives, it isn’t weird, it isn’t a massive deal… it’s just a thing that’s as big as somebody having brown hair. But the way the story is told is heartfelt and warm, and I loved it.
Recommended for: Anyone who is LGBT themselves and wants a lovely coming of age, ‘coming out the closet’ story; anyone who knows somebody LGBT and needs some help understanding how they feel and the hardships they might be facing, even under the surface; or anyone who just wants a nice, heartwarming story that is fast and easy to read.
The film adaptation is out in cinemas NOW! My review of the film will be up soon, and I’ll be comparing it to the book. (Spoilers: it’s pretty freaking close to the book, it’s crazy.) There’s also a sequel coming next month called Leah on the Offbeat*, which focuses on Simon’s best friend who features a lot in this book. I can’t wait!
Have you read Simon vs.? What did you think of it, especially if you’re LGBT yourself?
Click the links below to buy a copy of Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda* or read about it on Goodreads:
*Note: Affiliate links used – click here for details. 🙂