A review by plumpaperbacks
I Kissed Shara Wheeler by Casey McQuiston

emotional funny hopeful lighthearted mysterious medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes


I might not have the same deep love and intense attachment to this book as I do Casey’s adult novels, but I did still really enjoy it. This book is a collage of elements from other YA books I’ve enjoyed—the bittersweet feeling of high school ending from The Summer of Everything, the academic rivals to lovers slow-burn that may or may not have been simmering all along from Today Tonight Tomorrow, the self-discovery and acceptance of so many other queer stories—while still being its own unique thing.

It’s a story of ferocious girls and cinnamon roll boys and yet another iconic group of disaster queer friends, the sort of group Casey excels at writing. It’s a story of teens being messy, teens being teens, in the final moments they have before becoming adults; of all the stages of queerness and trauma and healing and love, of love in so many different forms and expressions. And it’s beautiful. It’s fun, it’s important, and it’s so very beautifully done.

It might not be a book I love with enough fervor to call a favorite, but nonetheless, I know I’ll be thinking about it for some time. Casey’s books tend to have that effect.

  • bisexual protagonist
  • sapphic love interest
  • Black gay dyslexic side character
  • Black queer nonbinary side character
  • Black bisexual side character
  • other queer side characters (includes lesbian & nonbinary rep)
  • sapphic main couple
  • lesbian side couple

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