“They talk about ‘body language,’ as if we all speak it the same. But everyone has their own dialect.”
Synopsis from Goodreads: An anxiety disorder disrupts fourteen-year-old Audrey’s daily life. She has been making slow but steady progress with Dr. Sarah, but when Audrey meets Linus, her brother’s gaming teammate, she is energized. She connects with him. Audrey can talk through her fears with Linus in a way she’s never been able to do with anyone before. As their friendship deepens and her recovery gains momentum, a sweet romantic connection develops, one that helps not just Audrey but also her entire family.
Feelings: I’m going to be straight with you…this book made me laugh out loud many, many times. One time, in fact, was during silent reading in my 7th grade English class. I did that thing where I tried to silently laugh, but it ended up coming out like a weird snort…basically, my students thought I was losing my mind. I LOVE British humor, I love the terminology and the dry wit. This was the first Sophie Kinsella book I’ve ever read, and now I want to read everything she’s written.
I was surprised that Audrey’s past wasn’t ever revealed to the reader. Whatever happened to her at her school that led to her extreme anxiety just wasn’t important anymore. It’s like when my students read a book about the Vietnam War, but all they could focus on was who the main character’s real father was. That’s not the point! There are deeper issues.
My step-brothers were super extreme gamers many moons ago, so there were so many aspects of this book that I could relate to. I could picture all of the gaming drama in my head perfectly.
Another part I was SO in sync with was the anxiety that Audrey was battling. While I never had to quit school or anything because of it, I do have some pretty serious anxiety issues (mostly when the weather gets bad…it’s a thing.) I thought the sessions with Dr. Sarah were really powerful and the whole idea of lizard brain made so much sense to me.
Characters: This is a great family. There’s so much love and support. There’s a lot of drama and yelling, yes, but there’s also a lot of heart and togetherness. I love the dynamic between Frank and Audrey, then with the mix of Felix’s little boyishness.
I was a little surprised that Frank was cool with his friend, Linus, chatting with his younger sister…then coming by to visit her. I just kept expecting Frank to at one point be all What are your intentions with my sister? but he never did. He let that happen without a fight. Come on, Frank!
Final thoughts: If you’re looking for a funny, easy read…this is the one for you. It’s so relatable, especially if you suffer from any level of anxiety. The writing is captivating, the romance is adorable, and it’ll leave you in stitches.
Pick this up if you liked:
Confessions of a Shopaholic by Sophie Kinsella
Emmy & Oliver by Robin Benway
Dumplin’ by Julie Murphy
Goodreads rating: 3.82/5
Amazon.com rating: 4/5
My rating: 4.5/5
Happy reading! – Caitlyn