Book Review: Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda
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. You can visit her online at www.beckyalbertalli.com.
It was the movie trailer that drew my attention to the book, Simon Vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda. That and because I follow practically everyone involved in the TV series The Flash on Instagram, I was clued in about the movie being made. But like I have said so many times before, I am a huge fan of Young Adult literature and I will read all kinds of new authors who can give me a shred of evidence that this will be an unique story.
Becky Abertalli doesn’t disappoint. Simon is a closeted struggling gay kid who has always loved boys. But he’s caught between the world in which he has always been a certain way and the world beyond that. Something every single person can relate to. And the reason we need to have friends who allow us to grow into ourselves.
A lot of people I met later on in life where far more accepting of who I was choosing to become than the ones who had known me forever. You see the problem with knowing people forever is that you think they are a certain way and take it personally when they don’t act exactly as you had predicted. Even though the only constant thing in life is change, human beings do not deal well with it. And often times some of the strongest friendships fall apart because of them couldn’t accept the other.
Simon has a closely knit group of friends who despite being the nicest people in the world, doesn’t make him feel comfortable enough to share his secrets. At the heart of the story, Simon is being blackmailed by a fellow student to help him score a date with his friend, Angela. Because the guy had chanced upon his secret emails to Blue – the guy who Simon has developed a crush on!
Although it is a well written story and Simon does bring up the whole “why does straight have to be the normative?” From what I have seen of the trailer (movie hasn’t come to India yet), it is a far cry from what is depicted. Honestly, I was actually a little disappointed with the book. I was thinking it would have a little more drama and Simon would be a little more assertive. But that’s just my opinion. I am sure the book has a lot of fangirls and fanboys. Somehow, I just don’t see myself jumping onto the bandwagon. But, I will definitely read more books by the author. After all, if we shouldn’t judge a book by its cover – we definitely shouldn’t judge an author by one book.