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Publisher's Summary

Leila has made it most of the way through Armstead Academy without having a crush on anyone, which is a relief. As an Iranian American, she’s different enough; if word got out that Leila liked girls, life would be twice as hard. But when beautiful new girl Saskia shows up, Leila starts to take risks she never thought she would.
As she carefully confides in trusted friends about Saskia’s confusing signals, Leila begins to figure out that all her classmates are more complicated than they first appear to be, and some are keeping surprising secrets of their own.
©2014 Sara Farizan. Published by arrangement with Algonquin Young Readers, an imprint of Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill, a division of Workman Publishing, Inc. (P)2014 HighBridge, a division of Recorded Books
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Critic Reviews

“Both personal and universal, this is a compelling story about high school, family and owning up to who you really are. Farizan is just the voice YA needs right now. Trust me, you’ll be glad you listened.”(Sarah Dessen, author of the New York Times bestseller Along for the Ride)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Me & My Girls on 11-03-14


This is an excellent work of coming out/ coming of age YA fiction. The protagonist is an Iranian American girl Leila, who has realized that she's gay and is trying to deal with it. Afraid of life and herself she's never had any experience with a girl; indeed her best friend Greg keeps asking her out. Leila manages to avoid crossing that Rubicon without ever leaving her closet.
Then Saskia enters the picture and the private academy that is Leila's high school and the title of the book now makes sense. Thus she's faced the difficulty of steering her way through the emotional mine field that is high school while living in two cultures while hiding who she really is. Ms Farizan is able to take us through it with hardly a stumble; much less a fall.
This audiobook is more than capable of standing alone. However if you have a child dealing with issues of sexual identity this can be one of the ways your child approaches you in their process of coming out. I worked in the mental health and substance abuse fields for close to a dozen years and the damage I saw from kids rejected by their parents was heartbreaking. The manner in which fictional parents can act as a guide if you let them. These are the same children they were before you found out; don't throw them away.
Whatever relationship path you ultimately take I love you H and I'm always proud to call you my child.

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3 of 3 people found this review helpful

4 out of 5 stars
By janine b. on 10-26-17

A New Taste on the Coming Out Novel

This book wasn't perfect, but it's definitely worth picking up and recognizing as a successful LGBT+ YA novel. I was able to whip through it in less than a day, and would recommend this book to readers who want to laugh out loud with the humorous bits. "Tell Me Again How a Crush Should Feel" is about Leila, a girl who's struggling to cope with her own sexuality, especially after smoking hot Saskia comes to school. But what sets this story apart from others is that the plot is not suck on just LGBT+ struggles (i.e. loss of loved ones, healthy vs. unhealthy friendships, mental health, intersectionality, diverse cultures).

Other than that, I thought the narrator did a great job. Voice was clear, and pleasant to listen to, but I can see how sometimes it can be confusing to distinguish Leila's thoughts from what's she's saying out loud (a comment that another reviewer noted).

Overall, this book was well worth the time and money to dive into!

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