Long Story Short by Serena Kaylor ~ 336 pages ~ to be published July 26, 2022 by Wednesday Books
Growing up homeschooled in Berkeley, California, Beatrice Quinn is a statistical genius who has dreamed her whole life of discovering new mathematical challenges at a school like Oxford University. She always thought the hardest part would be getting in, not convincing her parents to let her go. But while math has always made sense to Beatrice, making friends is a problem she hasn’t been able to solve, so her parents are worried about sending her halfway across the world. The compromise: the Connecticut Shakespearean Summer Academy and a detailed list of teenage milestones to check off. She has six weeks to show her parents she can pull off the role of “normal” teenager and won’t spend the rest of her life hiding in a library.
Unfortunately, hearts and hormones don’t follow any rules, and there is no equation for teenage interactions. When she’s adopted by a group of eclectic theater kids, and immediately makes an enemy of the popular—and, annoyingly gorgeous—British son of the camp founders, she realizes that relationships are trickier than calculus. With her future on the line, this girl genius stumbles through illicit parties, double dog dares, and more than your fair share of Shakespeare. But before the final curtain falls, will Beatrice realize that there’s more to life than she can find in the pages of a book?
What I Thought:
*I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. Thank you so much to NetGalley and Wednesday Books for this ARC!*
Upon first reading the synopsis of this book, I thought it sounded pretty cute. A nerdy, math-oriented girl being forced to act at a Shakespeare camp for the summer? Sign me up! This book ended up having more depth than I was expecting, and I am always here for being pleasantly surprised.
Beatrice was an unusual character for a YA romance, in the best way. She is very statistically and logically minded. She doesn’t really let her emotions lead her (at least she thinks so 😉 ) and tends to say exactly what is on her mind, regardless of the social consequences. I really enjoyed seeing her try to navigate traditional American teenager-dom. It was like watching a socially awkward alien attempt to figure out how the youths of earth talk to and interact with one another.
I loved the side characters in this book. I felt like the friends were well developed and I loved seeing Beatrice start to trust them and lean on them more and more as the story progressed. Her friends Mia and Nolan were precious little weirdos and I loved how quickly they accepted Bea into their friend group. Her romance with Nik was so cute, and awkward, and will they, won’t they, and I was here for it!
I thought the list that her parents gave her (and that Mia and Nolan added to) to help her achieve key points of being a teenager was so cute and such a great plot addition. It really helped to hammer home the fact that Bea needed structure in order to achieve abstract concepts. I feel like the author hinted heavily at Bea being on the autism spectrum, without ever coming out and saying it. I could be wrong about that, but I enjoyed seeing this kind of personality celebrated in a YA romance novel.
This was a really cute read, and I absolutely think you should pick it up ASAP!
I gave Long Story Short 4 Stars!
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What are some of your favorite contemporary romances? Are you a fan of the enemies to lovers trope? Let’s chat in the comments!
Love and happy reading,