The Inside of Out - Jenn Marie Thorne

For fans of Stephanie Perkins, Meg Cabot, and Glee comes a hilarious, romantic, whip smart young adult novel about your best friend finding love before you do, and the lines you'll cross to stay part of her life.
When her best friend Hannah comes out the day before junior year, Daisy is all set to let her ally flag fly. Before you can spell LGBTQIA, she's leading the charge to end their school's antiquated ban on same-sex dates at dances—starting with homecoming. And if people assume Daisy herself is gay? Meh, so what. It's all for Hannah, right? It's all for the cause. What Daisy doesn't expect is for “the cause” to blow up—thanks to Adam, the cute college journalist whose interview with Daisy for his college newspaper goes viral, catching fire in the national media. With the story spinning out of control, protesters gathering, Hannah left in the dust of Daisy's good intentions, and Daisy's attraction to Adam practically written in lights, Daisy finds herself caught between her bold plans, her bad decisions, and her big fat mouth.
A Clueless or Emma for the modern age, this is a breezy, charming, incisive tale of growing up, getting wise, and realizing every story needs a hero—sometimes it's just not you.

 
Overall, this book was a well-intentioned read that raised interesting topics, but my dislike of Daisy and her portrayal of asexuality made it hard for me to really enjoy it.

 

I really can't get over the portrayal of asexuality in this story. This is a very personal problem as I myself am asexual and am crazy about awareness; as such, I expect that most others wouldn't notice that anything was at fault and would enjoy the book nonetheless. However, a very 2D portrayal of asexuality was made, and the main character at some points pretends to be asexual. At another point, she admits that she is crushing on a boy and apologises to asexual community for appropriating their title. This is a complete misportrayal. She was claiming to be /asexual/ not /aromantic./ Contrary to popular belief, it's entirely possible for asexuals to be heteroromantic (or homoromantic or panromantic or anything) and her complete dismissal and her complete lack of desire to even learn about what the identity meant just really angered me. She uses the label for her own good without even thinking about the challenges that asexuals might face or what it would mean to be ace. I'm sure this is unintentional and maybe the author is unaware of the extent of the asexual spectrum, but I detest the information this could spread and wish that she had taken a few paragraphs to clear it up.

 

Other than that, the author did a good job of having Daisy clear up most of the appropriation she did. I really appreciated that there was a bit of talk about privilege and how even without realising it, people may have privileges they're unaware of or take for granted. I also adored Daisy's dad, and the theme of not having to be the hero of a story. I loved Daisy's friends and the members of the Alliance at her school--from a wannabe lawyer to a sweet girl who has trouble expressing anger, they were a bundle of delight to read about. I wanted to hear more about Adam, his experiences moving from New York to down south, and why the hell he was hanging around a high school junior and not out socialising with his new college friends.

 

I mainly didn't like Daisy. At all. She irked me entirely for many reasons. She has commitment issues and is horrible at following through, which just makes me antsy. She's assumptive and kind of imposes her visions of people onto them. And she doesn't stop to ask others what they think. Maybe without these traits there wouldn't have been a story; however, by the end I was ready to punch her.

 

I also felt like the plot, especially the ending, was really hard to buy into. This is set in South Carolina, which is one of many states known for being more conservative, so I doubt the whole entire country would get really enthused about one alternate homecoming when it's something very common across the country. The ending--well, I won't spoil it, but I don't buy it.

 

The topic dealt with was a very important one--a lot of people struggle with how to act as an ally and even if they're completely okay with someone belong to the "quiltbag" as Daisy's friends put it they want to express that they're okay with it and really prove it. I also found Hannah to be a really believable character in that she just wanted to be normal, something that resonated to past personal experiences.

 

There was a lot of high school drama in this book and I think if you're willing to put aside political correctness and suspend your disbelief, this could be an enjoyable read.

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.