This was a really cute and feel good book that tackled some hard subjects. When Ben de Backer comes out to their parents as non-binary, they’re thrown out of the house. With nowhere else to turn, Ben calls their estranged sister, Hannah, who takes them in. Struggling with anxiety and their parents’ reaction to their coming out, Ben tries to keep a low profile at their new school by staying closeted. But this is thwarted by gregarious Nathan Allen, who constantly tries to get Ben to come out of their shell.
The one thing that I was kind of curious about was the fact that while Ben sees a therapist to deal with their coming out to their parents, their anxiety isn’t talked about as much. Ben has several panic attacks throughout this book, and while there is no quick fix to anxiety, I kind of expected it to come up more at Ben’s appointments with their therapist.
Ben was a wonderful character. They were not perfect by any means, but I loved them regardless. I wish I could see Ben’s paintings especially, the way they were described was magical and I love art. Ben also has to deal with the fact that they haven’t seen or talked to Hannah in ten years. I loved seeing these two bond even more and the lengths Hannah would go to protect them. Siblings relationships like this are everything.
And then there’s Nathan!! Omg he was so adorable! I loved his personality and how he was always joking and playing with Ben trying to get them to come out of their shell. I related a lot to Nathan and his extrovert-ness. Ben had a lot of support in this book, even if they didn’t always take advantage of it. I loved Mariam especially. They were such an amazing friend to Ben, even when Ben would shut them out. I loved all the diversity and queerness of this story!!