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You Should See Me in a Crown by Leah Johnson

TW- anxiety, panic attacks, death of a parent,chronically ill loved one, homophobia

About the Book

Publisher: Scholastic Inc.

Release Date: June 2, 2020

Genre: Y/A Fiction 

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Synopsis

Liz Lighty has always believed she’s too black, too poor, too awkward to shine in her small, rich, prom-obsessed midwestern town. But it’s okay — Liz has a plan that will get her out of Campbell, Indiana, forever: attend the uber-elite Pennington College, play in their world-famous orchestra, and become a doctor.

But when the financial aid she was counting on unexpectedly falls through, Liz’s plans come crashing down . . . until she’s reminded of her school’s scholarship for prom king and queen. There’s nothing Liz wants to do less than endure a gauntlet of social media trolls, catty competitors, and humiliating public events, but despite her devastating fear of the spotlight she’s willing to do whatever it takes to get to Pennington.

The only thing that makes it halfway bearable is the new girl in school, Mack. She’s smart, funny, and just as much of an outsider as Liz. But Mack is also in the running for queen. Will falling for the competition keep Liz from her dreams . . . or make them come true?

Review

I was pretty excited for this one and God this was such a fun ride. It had all the elements for a perfect YA Contemporary and that too with a LGBTQ+ Rep. From the very start I was hooked to Lizzy’s story. It had the perfect blend of romance and comedy along with addressing the problems Liz, a black, queer girl faced. I loved the high school setting, with all the hype about prom. I have always wanted to attend one and this book made me want to run for prom queen all the more 🥺🥺. And trust me, Liz and Mack together couldn’t have been any cuter! Also, the relationship Liz shared with her grandparents, brother, friends and especially Jordan was extremely warm heartening. I appreciate that the author gave us a friendship which had an equal if not more amount of love as a romantic relationship does.

The writing is not at all complicated but it does manage to make the reader feel a lot of emotions and trust me when I say, they all are positive ones. There were so many times I smiled while reading this. If you are looking for some feel good reads, I’d totally recommend this to you. 

Talking of the characters, Liz and Mach are just adorable. I like how both of them are written to be opposites and yet to fit together so beautifully. Liz is someone who has always lived in shadows but she channels her inner power and eventually stands up for herself along the course of the book. Mach though doesn’t follow the rules and boundaries Liz set for herself and she’s not afraid to do her own thing. Also, all of Liz’s friends were written to be so supportive and loving and how they made it their priority to make her win the title of Prom Queen is something which I loved. Again, I can’t thank the author enough for the complicated yet heartwarming relationship between Jordan and Liz.

Another thing I’d like to mention is that this book will be just perfect for a movie/tv show adaptation and I can’t just wait to see this story on screen!

In the end, I’d just like to ask you all to do yourselves a favour and read this amazing book which, according to me, totally lives up to its hype. This will make you feel really proud and appreciative about yourself and it wouldn’t matter if you have won the crown for prom queen/king or not because you have always had it on!

Thank you HearOurVoicesBookTours for having me on the book tour and providing me a free copy of this awesome book!


About the author

Leah Johnson (she/her) is an editor, educator, and author of books for young adults. Leah is a 2021 Lambda Literary Emerging Writers Fellow whose work has been published in BuzzFeed, Teen Vogue, Refinery29, and Autostraddle among others. Her bestselling debut YA novel, You Should See Me in a Crown was the inaugural Reese’s Book Club YA pick, and was named one of Cosmo’s 15 Best Young Adult Books of 2020. Her sophomore novel, Rise to the Sun is forthcoming from Scholastic in 2021.

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