I Kissed Shara Wheeler
Chloe Green has survived almost four years in her ultra-conservative high school, focused on the one thing that’s kept her going: winning valedictorian. Her fiercest rival is Shara Wheeler – it-girl, prom queen, practically perfect. But a month before graduation, Shara kisses Chloe – and vanishes.
Searching for answers, Chloe discovers that she’s not the only person Shara kissed. Chloe has nothing in common with Smith, Shara’s quarterback boyfriend, or Rory, the bad boy next door, except for their connection to Shara and the cryptic letters she’s left behind. Determined to unravel Shara’s cryptic clues, Chloe and her unlikely allies follow the trail and begin to suspect that there is more than they thought to Shara – and their small town.
Every page of this story is fierce and honest, written with a deep understanding of what it’s like to be a teenager in those more painful moments, and to feel fenced in by those around you. Combining irresistibly likeable and complex characters with the classic “rivals to lovers” trope, copious amounts of queer positivity and tight plotting, McQuiston delivers perfectly on the “com” of this rom-com, with witty, pitch perfect humour.
This is an uplifting and memorable coming of age story that’s a worthy addition to the LGBTQI+ romcom library. It’s impossible not to feel like you’re along for the ride with real people – messy, uncertain, but compellingly natural and realistic. This is charming from start to finish.