Before you read this post, make sure you have read my post I Can Do Better to know how and where to donate, get informed, support, and follow the Black Lives Matter movement and people from the Black community. Si hablas español, y especialmente si vives en Colombia, lee mi publicación Puedo hacer algo mejor para enterarte cómo puedes apoyar a la Comunidad afrocolombiana.
Hello and happy Friday. I woke up early today after a very bad night, did my makeup inspired by the bisexual flag and now I’m here to tell you about a book you need to read, especially if you’re looking to read more queer books. I’m talking about In The Role of Brie Hutchens by Nicole Melleby, which was sent to me by Algonquin Books as part of a blog tour. I’d like to thank them, the author, and NetGalley for this opportunity.
I read this book between June 19th and June 22nd, 2020, and gave it four stars, but it’s more like a 4.5 rating. At the beginning of every chapter, we get these headers which are sort of like commentary in soap opera scenes. This makes sense as one progresses with the reading because Brie, the main character is obsessed with soap operas and wants to become an actress. She is thirteen years old and about to graduate middle school (is that even a thing?) and she wants to go to a performing arts high school, but her family is struggling with money, so Brie is not sure whether she could attend if she gets admitted.
There are many things I like about this novel, and even from the previous paragraph, you can sort of deduce some of them. I like Brie’s age because I think it makes the book attractive both for Middle Grade and Young Adult readers. To me, this would be great for someone who has outgrown Middle Grade and wants to start reading Young Adult. There are also so many layers to the story, like the fact that Brie’s parents are having financial issues because her dad had recently lost his job and is now working in Brie’s school. This also poses a conversation on the guilt and helplessness that children might feel when their parents are having problems of any sort.
Brie studies in a Catholic school and the depiction of her school life was spot-on. I should know because I studied in one and then worked at another. That means that I’ve been in Catholic schools for around sixteen years of my life. Religion is also an important aspect of this story because Brie is coming to terms with the fact that she likes women, but she is afraid and almost ashamed to tell her mom because she might not accept her. Brie even lies about this school event and her participation in it to hide the fact that she was looking at pictures of an actress online, all this so that her mom does not find out about what is going through Brie’s mind.
I have a lot more notes about this story, but I want you to read it first so that we can have a conversation in the comments below.
Love, Miss Camila