Phoebe thinks love is stupid. She thinks that falling in love is stupid. She thinks being in love makes you stupid. Basically, she’s over the whole love thing and wishes people would get on her level.
Phoebe’s mom works as a doctor and goes abroad often to help people around the world who desperately need medical help. At the start of this story, her mom comes home and announces that she’s going to be leaving yet again and this time for months. So now Phoebe is back to staying with her mom’s best friend Kate. Good think Phoebe likes Kate, but there’s no denying how Phoebe feels about her mom going away all the time. She has all this energy and time to travel to far off places and save people, but she has no time for her daughter. This effects Phoebe more than she lets on.
Kate encourages Phoebe to volunteer at Kate’s charity shop, and, reluctantly, Phoebe does. While working there she makes friends with Alex, a young man with Down Syndrome, after an initial rocky start. She also meets Emma, a sixteen year old who volunteers there as well. Emma is pretty, funny, smart, and nice. All of these things makes Phoebe feel angry and weird. Why is she reacting this way? Why does she even care? Hmmm… I wonder… After a while, Phoebe starts to enjoy her time at the shop, enjoys spending time with the other volunteers some old, some young. She gets this little found family that helps her with the hurt of her mom not being there. Plus, there’s a cute girl and Phoebe likes hanging out with her.
This is told in a diary format which I know not everyone will get on with. I personally didn’t have a problem with it, I’ve read books like that before and it’s not something that takes me out of a story. It’s also told with a very teenager attitude which like… good? This is a ya novel. It’s for teenagers. I think that it will appeal to its target audience really well. I also think the love story of this book is really sweet and has a unique journey to most ya contemporaries that you read. I enjoyed Phoebe’s humor, I really loved Kate and her relationship with Phoebe. I also really love the positive Down Syndrome representation. It’s really nice to see a book include DS without making it a “how sad” storyline. Honestly, if it sounds interesting, I say pick it up, but go in knowing that Phoebe is not super fluffy and lovable. She’s got an edge to her, something I really enjoy, but I know some people didn’t really connect to. I want you to read this though so go read it.