Okay, so despite the pretty bad cover, this was a great book! If you enjoy YA, you should really pick it up – this was one of those honest-tone, diverse, true to the world and not far-fetched YAs that you know you are just going to enjoy.
So why 3.5 stars then, Evelina?..
The only drawback was that the writing style was slightly hard to follow. It kept throwing me off – it’s just not a very fluently written book. But! I still feel that the contents are worth your attention, so in this review I’m going to dwell on the positive.
#1. It’s About Friendship
Essentially, this book is about an unlikely friendship between two girls – Kat, who is extremely introverted and suffers anxiety, and Meg, who is quite an oddball and has ADHD, and also happens to be the only black girl in pretty much the whole neighbourhood. These girls chance into being friends through a science project in high school and… end up conquering the world 😀 (no spoilers.) The thing about this friendship though, as you’ll find me saying about many other things in the book too, is that it’s not far-fetched at all. It will remind you some of your own teenage or childhood friends, especially if you’re female. I was so happy about this friendship… We’d all be lucky to have a friend like Meg and Kat were to each other.
#2. It Has Realistic Parents
How many YA books have realistic parents?? That are not evil, deranged or absent? Or just unrealistically Stepford perfect? Yep. Not that many. But this one does! Meg’s parents are divorced, in fact, her dad isn’t ever her dad – he’s her stepdad, as Meg lost her own dad when she was little. She loves her second dad, but she thinks that when he and her mom got divorced, he divorced her too. Because he still keeps inviting her two little siblings to hang out, who are actually his children, but he doesn’t invite her. It’s a big source of pain for Meg, and this problem is an important theme in the book. Her step-dad isn’t evil either, by the way. All of this is resolved very realistically.
3. Realistic Girlfriend-Boyfriend Situations
How I wish I had books like this when growing up. Books that show relationships the way they are. Books that don’t make you believe the boyfriend is supposed to be your savior (like most books I grew up with??) Books that don’t sell you the stuff that your first boyfriend will be your husband, or that it should be that way. Kat And Meg Conquer The World has a very realistic depiction of a real-life teen relationship, problematic and awkward, and genuine. I loved this book for it.
4. Introversion And Anxiety
Kat suffers terrible anxiety fits. And on top of that, she’s introverted, so she already doesn’t like dealing with people too much. But when she does? She basically implodes. Reading about this has been personally very helpful for me, because although I have anxiety myself, I teeter on the edge of introversion and extroversion, but I am close to someone pretty damn introverted, so it has helped me make sense of some of the things I experience in my relationship with that person. It has helped me react in more healthy ways and understand them more.
5. Meg’s Oddball Ways + She’s Curly!
(I know I’ve used this GIF before. But it’s just so cool!)
First of all, I could count curly haired heroines on my fingers. There is no love for curls in the world! I mean, alright, there’s Meg and other similar characters, but curls should not be reserved to black girls only, authors! However, I’ll take what I can get. Maybe one day I’ll be allowed to have curly hair too with all my pasty skin 😀 Personally, what I loved the most was that it wasn’t straightened hair in this book! It was not called frizz. It did not ‘need to be tamed’. I hate it when books have that, and they have that wayyyyyy too much. But even aside from the hair bit, Meg’s such an amazing character! Her life truly is affected by her ADHD, but she deals with it well in terms of daily stuff, even though she blames herself of driving everyone away because being who she is. Her journey in the book teaches her that it’s okay to be the way she is. And I especially loved her being so different! She’s loud, she’s quick to say things, she’s, well, basically hyper. But she’s so genuine and so true! I would love to be Meg’s friend. And it definitely IS okay to be like her!
So it looks like I’ve run out of numbers here (the post says only 5!!), but I don’t feel like I’ve said it all. It’s probably obvious that the book is very diverse, so I won’t even make it into one of the points. But basically, even if this isn’t quite a 4 star read for me writing-wise, I still wish I’d grown up with books like that. I would have grown up to be more healthy inside, I think. Recommended to any teens! And to you all, really.
I thank HarperTeen and Anna Priemaza for providing me with a free copy of the book in exchange to my honest review. You can buy the book here, and buying it through that link supports my blog.
Do you sometimes read books that you wish you had in your teens or childhood? Which books are those? Share with me!
I’m Evelina and I blog about books that made an impression on me. I love middle grade, women’s, scifi and some literary too.