An example of everything we hate about YA books: The book review of “The Upside of Unrequited”

The Upside of Unrequited

Becky Albertalli

Balzer + Bray, 2017


Geek Rating: Aeolus worthy (1 out of 5 stars)

“Sometimes I feel like I’m the last alone person. Like maybe there aren’t seven and a half billion people in the world. Maybe there are seven and a half billion and one. I’m the one.”

30653853From the author of the hyped book-turned-movie “Simon vs. Homos Sapiens Agenda” comes the story of a girl Molly who suffers from self-deprecation and a pro pinner with 26 crushes and counting, but with no boyfriend (so far).

Honestly, we’re not a fan of Becky Albertalli, and this book is an example of everything we hate about YA books. It was full of overflowing cheesiness from an adult author who has little appreciation and respect of the millennial culture with phrases mocking teens (incidentally or not) it borders on being a crime, or at times reeking with corny, over the top lines coming from an author who clearly has no idea what a millennial thinks, how he/she acts or even what makes them vomit.

In fairness with this book, it covers everything from diversity (Koreans and Jews), to sexual equality (two moms, lesbians). In Molly, Albertalli conjured a real person, a contrast to so many perfect girls in YA books. The book is not so much a love story but a story about sisterhood, family relationship and the definition of friendship.

Lie any YA books, it is a light read with a predicted ending but an enjoyable read nonetheless. Unlike “Simon vs. Homos Sapiens Agenda”, The Upside of Unrequited has a clear story, not one that will leave readers scratching their heads on the last page, though the wedding scene lasts forever, like a tragic 90’s Filipino movie.

The title is catchy but does not reflect the depth it promises (or the lack thereof). There are good YA books out there but sadly The Upside of Unrequited is not one of them.

About the author:

Becky Albertalli is the author of the acclaimed novels Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda (film: Love, Simon), The Upside of Unrequited, and Leah on the Offbeat. She is also the co-author of What If It’s Us with Adam Silvera. A former clinical psychologist who specialized in working with children and teens, Becky lives with her family in Atlanta. (

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