Leah Burke is great at keeping on beat - at least when it comes to drumming. With senior year in high school, smooth sailing proves just a little too difficult. She has always been the outsider of the group, the daughter of a young, single mother in a neighborhood that perhaps isn't as posh as the rest of her peers. While Leah knows who she is, she finds it harder to broadcast that fact to the rest of the world, whether it be her body-image, her artistic talent, or even her sexuality. When her friend group begins to fracture in a way she couldn't have imagined - so close to senior prom and graduation - everything feels just a little offbeat. As one of her friends tries to come to terms with their discovered sexuality, Leah must face feelings she thought she had buried long ago.
I did thoroughly enjoy this book. The style in which the author wrote, using first person and appropriate vocabulary for the age of the character, accurately helped me as a reader get into Leah's head, and it was almost as if I could hear her voice reciting her thoughts to me. It made the story engaging and fun to see the events unfold from the perspective of the high schooler. It's lighthearted tone makes it a good read for those simply looking for a fun summertime book and accurately describes the melancholy feeling that comes with friendships and relations drifting apart and evolving.
However, the language used in this book, as it is being narrated by a senior in high school, tends to utilize quite a bit of vulgar language and also includes underage drinking. Although there are no explicit or implied sexual scenes, the kissing and makeout descriptions tend to be rather thorough, including conversations containing sexual references. Despite these few shortcomings, I believe that this novel serves to effectively educate readers on bisexuality and LGBTQA+ youth culture, specifically the journey of coming out and coming to terms with yourself. It also provides some insight into body-image issues and the drama and emotions around getting into college. It is a great book to read when you are looking for something humorous and easy, and I would certainly read it again.