Body-positivity, Unbearable cuteness and Wonderful diversity / The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli




Author:  Becky Albertalli

Publisher: Balzer & Bray/Harperteen

Format: Hardcover, 352 pages

Published: April 11th 2017 


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Seventeen-year-old Molly Peskin-Suso knows all about unrequited love. No matter how many times her twin sister, Cassie, tells her to woman up, Molly can’t stomach the idea of rejection. So she’s careful. Fat girls always have to be careful.

Then a cute new girl enters Cassie’s orbit, and for the first time ever, Molly’s cynical twin is a lovesick mess. Meanwhile, Molly’s totally not dying of loneliness—except for the part where she is. Luckily, Cassie’s new girlfriend comes with a cute hipster-boy sidekick. If Molly can win him over, she’ll get her first kiss and she’ll get her twin back.

There’s only one problem: Molly’s coworker, Reid. He’s a chubby Tolkien superfan with a season pass to the Ren Faire, and there’s absolutely no way Molly could fall for him.

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adri's review

This book was just so adorable and warm and PERFECT! Definitely one of the best contemporary novels I’ve ever read.

Cuteness level :


  • Molly, the main character, is like the sweetest cinnamon roll ever. Like, can I be your friend?? She’s so relatable; her awkwardness, her anxiety issues and the 25+ unrequited crushes speaks to me on the highest level. I loved that the whole book doesn’t revolve around her being fat. Aside from the self-image issues and insecurities any teenager would feel, the book doesn’t linger on that fact, because Molly owns it and I loved this book for it.
  • Diversity aspect = A+  I think this book might’ve ruined me for other contemporaries. The diversity and inclusivity was so on point that it felt like real life. The main character has two moms who are an interracial couple and her twin sister is a lesbian. There were pansexual, gay, POC and Jewish characters, too. And it didn’t feel like they were token ‘diverse’ characters, it felt like the most true depiction of reality.
  • Features close family and friend relationships. The sister relationship between Molly and Cassie was sweet, infuriating and a bit sad -as most sibling relationships really are tbh. I got close to drowning from adorableness whenever they teased or cheered each other through their respective pursuits of a romantic relationship. We see a lot of their moms and the dynamic in this family is just… *squishes an innocent plushie to obliteration* I love seeing the long-standing friendships Molly has and the new one she forms throughout the awkwardness of first meetings and the painfulness of parties. Becky Albertalli is a master of conveying the authentic teenage experience through the pages.

In this book, you follow Molly as she and her sister try to score her at least one requited crush, but there is so much more to this book than you could expect and it’s just such a fresh, feel-good read. Her long-standing relationships are tested and some of the new ones she forms grow or take unexpected directions; all while she learns to fully embrace herself and find her place. So many hilarious, awww-inducing and tear-jerking moments and so much cuteness. I can’t recommend this book enough. Whether or not you’ve read Simon Vs. The homos-sapiens agenda, whether or not you love YA contemporary, PICK THIS BOOK UP!! You will not be disappointed. 

Have you read the other book by Becky Albertalli (Simon Vs.)? Did you already add The upside of unrequited to your TBR? Let me know down below! 😀

about author

Becky Albertalli

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3 thoughts on “Body-positivity, Unbearable cuteness and Wonderful diversity / The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli

  1. I haven’t read any of this author’s work, as I don’t seek out YA. However, in 2017 I am on a quest: read fiction by and about fat women that is positive. The book doesn’t have to focus on the character’s size, but it MUST not end in her being happy because she got thin or a entered a relationship. Just fat women as human beings. So far, the search has been mostly disappointing. I’m thinking I have to read this book, though as it is the second positive review I’ve read!


    1. That’s great! I’m also very much in search of body-positivity in YA novels and this book was a good find in that aspect. The focus of this book isn’t solely on the fact that the protagonist is fat and even if she has some insecurities, she doesn’t magically lose weight to find happiness. She is gorgeous and happy the way she is.

      Liked by 1 person

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