This was actually one of those “don’t judge a book by it’s cover” cases. Because I KNOW we shouldn’t do it, but it’s hard not to when you just don’t like the cover. Yet, here we are.
I can already tell this review is going to be a rambling one, because I just have that much to say about it, there’s no way I can do this coherently. So be prepared.
Let’s talk about Just Juliet!
Title: Just Juliet
Author: Charlotte Reagan
Series Status: Standalone
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, LGBTQ+
Number of Pages: 219
(Found on back cover, view different version on Goodreads)
Lena Newman is 17, her best friend’s a cheerleader, her boyfriend’s a football player, and as far as everyone is concerned, her life is sorted. But that’s before she befriends the new girl. Juliet is confident, damaged, drop-dead gorgeous and a lesbian.
Lena realizes that her interest goes beyond just friendship. She sets off on a path of self-discovery where the loyalty of those closest to her will be tested.
*I received this book in exchange for an honest review
I don’t even know where to start with this review.
I know! I’ll explain the situation of me first. Because it needs to be noted for my later reaction.
So, I’m not one of those girls who adores romance stories. Sure, if it’s in a fantasy book or something and isn’t the main storyline, I’ll probably like it, but romance books just aren’t my thing. I cringe. A lot.
Now, if you were to judge this book purely from it’s cover (which of course we bookworms NEVER do *looks around shiftily*), it’s the exact sort of thing I wouldn’t like. The cover itself makes me cringe – I don’t like models being on the cover, especially when they’re in a pose that just screams romance like that. And there’s also a stamp that literally says “1st in swoon”. I DON’T SWOON. I flick people on the foreheads and tell them to quit it.
So what made me accept this book? Well, I wanted to read some diversity. And knowing this was about a lesbian relationship, I accepted.
I’M SO GLAD I DID.
This book brought out all those cutesy emotions that I keep locked away at all times. And honestly, I think it’s because this book is generally a happy story.
Of course, there’s bad times in the book. Every story needs it’s “problem” phase. Every story has it’s dark times. But…there was just an overall feeling of happiness surrounding the characters in this book, and the characters themselves are so lovable and realistic, I couldn’t help feel happy along with them. And by the end, I was reduced to a grinning mess.
And I can’t help but feel like there’s so much to applaud this book for, diversity-wise. It was the ultimate “don’t judge anyone” book. There were different races within the friend group. Different skin colours. There were straight people, gay people, bisexual people. There were people in all different situations: a girl who was a teenage single mother, another who casually slept around a lot. There was even a point made that having sex isn’t all that important in a relationship, even as a teenager. You just have to wait until you’re ready, and that’s OK. The general feeling of “as long as you’re not harming anyone, you do you. Why would it be a problem?”is everywhere in this book, and I love it. There were just so many different situations and types of people in this book, I feel like I need to applaud for eternity. All this, in just over 200 pages. *Claps for years*
And though I don’t relate to the main character’s situation, it was so interesting to read about. To bulk out my understanding that little bit more. And not to mention, it was such an entertaining read! The teenagers in this book actually sounded like teenagers, which is surprisingly uncommon.
This is the sort of book where I want more, but I also don’t. I don’t, because it felt so complete by the end. To drag it out anymore might have ruined that bittersweet feeling it left me with.
As you can probably tell, this is close to being a new favourite of mine. I don’t really know why it’s not quite there, but it’s pretty high up on the scale anyway. And for that, I rate it…
Share your thoughts!
Have you read this book? What did you think?
If you haven’t read this book, would you consider reading it?
Let me know in the comments!
Until next time…
Come and visit me!