“If you don’t love yourself how in the hell you gonna love somebody else?”
Overweight and unhappy at home, Emmy gets sexually involved with a popular classmate so that people will think that she is worth liking. When she realizes that he is just using her, she decides to leave her home in Winnipeg to stay with her uncle’s family in Vancouver. Emmy has always been intimidated by her perfect cousin Paige and Paige’s cool friends, so she is surprised to find that the coolest of them is transgender. Emmy is instantly attracted to Jude (who used to be Judy), and starts hanging out at the coffee shop where he works. She even performs at the poetry slam Jude hosts there.
Emmy is never sure where she stands with Jude, and can’t believe that such a confident, charismatic guy might actually be interested in her. Both her mother back in Winnipeg and Paige warn her away from Jude, saying that he will just use her and she will get hurt. But it’s not until she almost falls again into the trap of casual sex to boost her self-esteem that Emmy realizes it’s worth it to put your true self out there for real love.
When I first saw this book on NetGalley I immediately knew I wanted to read it from the title alone. Love is Love is a YA LGBTQ book about an overweight girl who moves to live with her Aunt and Uncle and her relationship with Jude, a transgender male who is friends with her cousin. There are a lot of things I liked about this book, it doesn’t shy away from any potential awkward conversations or situations, instead it tackles issues head on in an easy to follow way. There is also a fair amount of diversity as it shows the struggles of multiple characters going through their own individual struggles. The characters are fairly developed throughout the book and the plot moves at a reasonable pace.
Some of the things I struggled about in the book however was some of the negativity, not the negativity aimed at Jude, although there was definitely some of that, but the negativity towards Emmy, her appearance and to her love in general. This was usually directed from Emmy herself and at times I could see why she felt how she did but after awhile I felt it was detracting from the story itself. Another problem I had was the insta-love between the characters, sure it was pretty obvious it was going to happen from the blurb but no where throughout the book did I feel they had any real connection. Also I feel like it’s worth noting that I have no idea who is on the cover of the book as they don’t match the description of either of the main characters. In the end while I did enjoy the book and if you are looking for a YA LGBTQ read I would definitley recommend you have a look at this, there was enough niggly things to bring it down those few stars.
Thank you to NetGalley for providing me with a free copy in exchange for an honest review.
Would I read again: No
Would I Recommend: Yes
Would I read another book from this author: Yes