A review by ashleysarra
Meet Cute Diary, by Emery Lee

emotional lighthearted medium-paced
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

2.0

Emery Lee's debut novel Meet Cute Diary strongest attribute in certainly in its representation. In the story, we have a trans and multi-racial protagonist with friends and family that love him. There is a Cuban supporting character who is genderqueer and asexual. The protagonist's best friend is a lesbian. Minor characters in the story are also shown to be a part of the LGBT community. The amount of casual questioning and embracing of pronouns and identity is a joy to see in Young Adult literature today. 

Noah Ramirez runs a popular blog dedicated to giving trans people everywhere hope for their "happily ever after." Only a few people know his secret, like his best friend Becca. When Noah decides to spend a summer in his brother's college town while his parents get their new home set up in California, he secretly hopes that finally, one of his fictional "Meet Cutes" can become the real deal. The premise of this book is very sweet, and is a relatable theme for teenagers everywhere learning to handle changes in their lives. This book discusses a range of relationships and the main character must learn for himself what it truly means to be in a healthy and dedicated relationship with another person.

At times, the book can be frustrating due to Noah's self-centered and dramatic nature. Many opportunities to provide support for friends and loved ones with dialogue are often exchanged for venting sessions and rants. Noah is a judgmental person with a quick temper, and none of these things change by the end of the book. Early on, opportunities for genuine connection are brushed aside for fantastical blog ideas. By the end of the book, Noah does learn some things about what it means to recognize others' needs (and his own), but there is a feeling that it is "too little, too late" to make a fully satisfying ending. 

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