The challenge for Day 2 of the Biannual Bibliothon is to post a book review. This challenge is hosted by Miss Sassy Kassie. I am going to post a review on a book I have recently finished.
You Know Me Well by Nina LaCour & David Levithan
Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary, LGBTIA+
Published by: Text Publishing
Publication Date: June 7th 2016
Date Read: 26/07/17
Links: Goodreads | Booktopia | Book Depossitory | B&N
Who knows you well? Your best friend? Your boyfriend or girlfriend? A stranger you meet on a crazy night? No one, really?
Mark and Kate have sat next to each other for an entire year, but have never spoken. For whatever reason, their paths outside of class have never crossed.
That is, until Kate spots Mark miles away from home, out in the city for a wild, unexpected night. Kate is lost, having just run away from a chance to finally meet the girl she has been in love with from afar. Mark, meanwhile, is in love with his best friend Ryan, who may or may not feel the same way.
When Kate and Mark meet up, little do they know how important they will become to each other—and how, in a very short time, they will know each other better than any of the people who are supposed to know them more.
Told in alternating points of view by Nina LaCour and David Levithan, You Know Me Well is a story about navigating the joys and heartaches of first love, one truth at a time.
Mark and Kate are teens who happen to see each other at a gay bar in San Francisco. They immediately click. Mark and Kate’s relationship is great because they mirror each other while each being their own people.
I guess Katie and I have formed our own rainbow alliance. It feels like she’s something I’ve always wanted but didn’t know I wanted until I got it: a partner in crime.
Kate’s story is about running away. The relationship between Kate and her possible girlfriend, Violet, is heartfelt and real. Mark’s story is about wishing for something that might be out of reach. He’s in love with his best friend, who doesn’t like him back. I liked that this wasn’t a story of “boy in love with straight friend”; rather, it’s a story of a boy who’s friend doesn’t like him back, it just happens to star two guys instead of a girl and a guy. I found it really refreshing.
‘You’ve never told him,’ Violet says. It’s not a question. It’s obvious. ‘I tell him all the time—I just make sure it’s never when he’s listening. I say it when he’s in the other room, or when he’s asleep, or when the music’s really loud. Sometimes he asks me what I just said. And I tell him never mind. Or I make up something else, something that isn’t ‘I love you.’
I always struggle with the believability of books that are set in a short time frame, and You Know Me Well only happens in the course of a week. Mark and Kate bump into each other in a gay nightclub, who sat next to each other in class but never really spoke. Next thing you know, they’re practically best friends with each other, bonding over their own LGBT relationships.
To be honest, their friendship progresses a little too quickly, especially because everything happens in the span of one week only. Then again, I guess that’s the point of the story? Meeting someone whose name you barely know and instantly clicking with them. Isn’t that what we all want? To literally just go up to a person and form an instant bond with them?
There are a few things I found a bit unrealistic, but other than that, this is a great read. I thought David Levithan’s writing was a lot punchier than Nina’s here, therefore I was a lot more invested in Mark’s story rather than Kate’s. It felt like he had a lot more to learn and discover about himself, whereas Kate had that fear of meeting Violet and fighting over her best friend about it.
Overall, A great LGBT+ book that not only features coming out, relationships but also strongly focuses on Friendship. I found it easy to connect and relate to both of these characters, causing the story to mean so much more..
If you enjoy contemporary books, LGBT+ or want a quick, satisfying read I recommend this book! Two quality character arcs, tons of LGBT representation, gorgeous writing, and a developed friendship.
I hope you are enjoying the Biannual Bibliothon as much as I am. Have you read this Book? What do you think of it? Let me Know in the Comments!