This book gave me a heavy sense of déjà vu while reading it, and I figured out why after I finished it—I’ve read it before, but I don’t remember when I read it. But, the book itself was a nice read, and the words flowed like rain droplets running down the side of a windowpane.
Nevertheless, Albertalli’s placement of each character in the book was, if I must say, nicely placed? I don’t know, but the characters each contributed to Simon “coming out” in a way. His group of friends are the typical friends you would find together in high school where everyone hangs out with whomever, and no one really cares that your group of friends have different personalities—bold, goofy, sarcastic, bubbly, loving, snarky, shy, etc. There is no judgment in your cycle of friends because everyone knows about each other; Simon’s friends were obvious as well as his family, but they still accepted him.
Personally, I loved how Albertalli made Simon’s character relatable to readers. I don’t know how many books there are that have main characters who are relatable to readers, but this book can be a primary example of that (especially for the LGBT community). The book doesn’t dwell too much on Simon being gay either, which I appreciated, and it focused more on the fact of how someone who is different is accepted—by peers, family, and strangers. This book can help those individuals who are afraid of being comfortable with themselves and their sexuality, and it can open doors for people to be more accepting of their identities.
The story may focus on Simon and the emails between him and Blue, but it focuses on the people around him too—his friends and family, and his school life. Each character, from Abby to his sister Alice, helped Simon with being comfortable with his sexuality. We see him become intoxicated off of one drink (which was funny by the way), and he has a fun night with a group of college kids. I can admit that this was one of my favorite scenes because we get to see Simon in a different light. He’s no longer held hostage by the pressure of losing his choice to come out; his mind is set free from everything for a short moment. To me, this was where Simon unknowingly fully accepted his sexual identity.
Can we talk about the ending? Like, wow. I was giddy and blushing for Simon even though he isn’t real, but I was happy for him. I don’t understand how Simon didn’t know it was Bram because he mentioned earlier in the text that Bram seemed shy, and awkward (that was a dead give away, Simon!). In the end, I think everything played out how it was suppose to play out. Sometimes things happen in order for something more important to take the center stage.
“It’s the little details that are vital. Little things make big things happen”.—John Wooden