The Quantum Weirdness of the Almost-Kiss

Abrams/Amulet. Jan. 2021. 368p. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781419739729.
Gr 7 Up–Parks’s YA debut is a romantic comedy about brainy women, romance, and lovestruck boys mixed with mathematics and physics. Seventeen-year-old Evie Beckham has never been interested in dating until she meets Leo, a handsome, blue-eyed, floppy-haired, soccer player who is a new transfer to Newton Academy. With the help of her best friend Bex and her therapist, Anita, Evie conquers her anxiety and starts dating Leo. Caleb Covic, Evie’s childhood friend who is in love with her, becomes dismayed when he finds out about Evie’s relationship with Leo. Desperate, Caleb creates Milo, an online persona to capture her interest. Parks introduces a strong female lead who deals with drama from her parents when she is chosen to present at a prestigious physics competition. Told in the alternating voices of Evie and Caleb, who are white, the characters cover the topics of math, physics, and mental illness. Fans of YA rom-coms will have a new favorite.
VERDICT A heartwarming tale of two childhood friends facing challenges in their platonic relationship...and maybe more. Recommended for young adult collections.

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