Review Detail

Young Adult Fiction 237
Heartfelt story about what it means to love and to be loved
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
Felix has never been in love, but he wants to be. He wants the experience of opening your heart, having it broken, and opening it again. But while he is happy with who he is, Black, queer, and trans, he fears that might be too much for a potential partner. When an anonymous transphobic bully starts attacking him, Felix prepares a plan to get revenge. In his journey to find love, exact vengeance, and finish his art portfolio for a summer program, Felix will find that sometimes love isn’t what we expect.

What I love most about Felix’s story are the multitudes of love presented. All types of love are treated as important and not in competition with each other, from family love to friendship to romantic to self-love. Each can be complicated and messy but also uplifting and joyful. And similarly, love doesn’t happen in a vacuum. Felix’s relationship with his dad, and his dad’s difficulty fully accepting Felix, directly impacts Felix’s relationship with himself.

While there are many parts to praise about FELIX EVER AFTER, I found myself drawn to the strength of the setting again and again. Felix lives in NYC and is doing a summer arts program. Callender made the city come to life in sensory details all throughout the story. I’ve personally only been to NYC once, many years ago, but Callender made me feel like I was right there with Felix. I love when contemporary books bring this strength of setting.

FELIX EVER AFTER is a must-read for readers looking for a sweet and messy love story, a journey of self-discovery, and those who could write love letters to painting and to NYC.
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