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ARC Review: The Wrong Kind of Weird by James Ramos

The Wrong Kind of Weird by James Ramos

Expected Release Date: January 3, 2023

Recommended: sure
for a sweet story of figuring out what’s right for you, for healthy and balanced looks at teen / first-time sexuality, for really lovely friendships that are important as well

Summary

Cameron Carson has a secret. A secret with the power to break apart his friend group.

Cameron Carson, member of the Geeks and Nerds United (GANU) club, has been secretly hooking up with student council president, cheerleader, theater enthusiast, and all-around queen bee Karla Ortega since the summer. The one problem—what was meant to be a summer fling between coffee shop coworkers has now evolved into a clandestine senior-year entanglement, where Karla isn’t intending on blending their friend groups anytime soon, or at all.

Enter Mackenzie Briggs, who isn’t afraid to be herself or wear her heart on her sleeve. When Cameron finds himself unexpectedly bonding with Mackenzie and repeatedly snubbed in public by Karla, he starts to wonder who he can truly consider a friend and who might have the potential to become more…

Thoughts

Maybe we weren’t all into the same shit, but we were all geeks about something, so maybe we were all idiots for acting like we were so different from each other just because the object of our geekery was different.

The Wrong Kind of Weird by James Ramos (arc copy text)

What stands out to me most in this book is that there’s a boy who is hesitant about having sex because he’s unsure he’s emotionally ready for it, and a girl who enjoys sex and appreciates a partner who ensures she’s satisfied and taken care of as well. Both of these are SO IMPORTANT AND HEALTHY! I feel like these are almost complete opposites of the usual tropes, where boys are portrayed as having no emotional involvement in sex and just want sex with anyone anytime, and women are not enjoying it (or at least not supposed to talk about enjoying it) and not empowered to do anything to change that.

And look, sex is a driving plot point in a way, but it was about so much more than that. It’s the kind of story that I read now as an adult and think “man this would’ve been great to have as a teenager.” It would’ve been comforting to read about characters who assuaged some of the common questions. Anyway.

There’s not quite a love triangle in this, but it’s definitely a bit of a “who do I choose” storyline. Where it shines in that is ensuring no one is made out to be a villain for no real reason. It’s not like one person is manipulating another; it’s just a matter of being young and trying to figure out what you truly need and want when hormones are wreaking havoc on your brain at the same time.

Everyone was portrayed as a multifaceted person and had something shown about them to admire and love and empathize with. The friendships were key in this all through it and I love me a romance (or any story) where relationships with friends are not pushed to the wayside due to a romantic relationship. They are wonderful as well!

So overall, this was a sweet read with a fairly predictable plot and genuinely likable characters. They do make some stupid choices (see: human, teenager) but they also learn to own up to them and grow from them. The healthy portrayals of sex are something I’m always a fan of, and robust friendships that last and matte are icing on the cake!

Thanks to NetGalley and Inkyard Press for a free advanced copy. This is my honest review.

Author:

Reader, traveler, photographer, and always looking to learn!

3 thoughts on “ARC Review: The Wrong Kind of Weird by James Ramos

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