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You Should See Me in a Crown Kindle Edition
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A TIME Magazine Best YA Book of All Time
A Stonewall Honor Book
A Reese's Book Club YA Pick
Liz Lighty has always believed she's too black, too poor, too awkward to shine in her small, rich, prom-obsessed midwestern town. But it's okay -- Liz has a plan that will get her out of Campbell, Indiana, forever: attend the uber-elite Pennington College, play in their world-famous orchestra, and become a doctor.
But when the financial aid she was counting on unexpectedly falls through, Liz's plans come crashing down . . . until she's reminded of her school's scholarship for prom king and queen. There's nothing Liz wants to do less than endure a gauntlet of social media trolls, catty competitors, and humiliating public events, but despite her devastating fear of the spotlight she's willing to do whatever it takes to get to Pennington.
The only thing that makes it halfway bearable is the new girl in school, Mack. She's smart, funny, and just as much of an outsider as Liz. But Mack is also in the running for queen. Will falling for the competition keep Liz from her dreams . . . or make them come true?
Praise for You Should See Me in a Crown:* "Pitch perfect romcom...The queer prom romance you didn't know you needed." -- Kirkus Reviews, starred review"Johnson's pacing is perfect as the story unwinds at dizzying speed...Readers will fall in love with this refreshing book that celebrates the beauty of individuality." -- School Library Journal"Johnson puts a fresh spin on this novel with an unlikely romance, heartwarming friendships, and the tension of being Black, poor, and queer in a small town. A feel-good title for sure." -- BooklistA Junior Library Guild SelectionA Well-Read Black Girl June Book Club YA Book Pick"Filled with humor, heart, and swoon-worthy romance." -Kristina Forest, author of I Wanna Be Where You Are"A love story worthy of a crown." -Mason Deaver, author of I Wish You All the Best"With characters I adore and a romance that brought tears to my eyes, You Should See Me in a Crown absolutely stole my heart." -Kacen Callender, author of This Is Kind of an Epic Love Story and Felix Ever After"You know when a book is like the ideal friend? You Should See Me in a Crown is that kind of book. Juicy, sharp, romantic, big-hearted, real. I loved it." -Anna Godbersen, author of the New York Times bestselling Luxe series"You Should See Me in a Crown is a powerful, absolutely relatable story that reminds Black, queer girls they have the power to do anything they want." -Camryn Garrett, author of Full Disclosure"With a refreshing voice and an unforgettable main character, Leah Johnson has written a stunning debut. Liz Lighty is smart and hilarious." -Sabina Khan, author of The Love and Lies of Rukhsana Ali --This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.
About the Author
- ASIN : B07YBTCB9F
- Publisher : Scholastic Inc. (June 2, 2020)
- Publication date : June 2, 2020
- Language : English
- File size : 15265 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Sticky notes : On Kindle Scribe
- Print length : 276 pages
- Best Sellers Rank: #371,970 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
Reviewed in the United States on August 16, 2020
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Top reviews from the United States
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As a poor, black teen, Liz Lighty as never felt as though she truly belonged Campbell, Indiana, a fairly upper-class and predominately white town. However, she has a plan to get out. She is going to attend college at Pennington, an elite school where she hopes to be a member of their orchestra while studying to become a doctor.
However, all of that crashes around her when she finds out she wasn't awarded the scholarship she needs in order to be able to meet the financial cost of Pennington.
Desperate, she decides to run for prom queen, because in her prom-obsessed community, those who earn the title of prom queen, are also awarded a scholarship to the school of her choice. But this is something so far outside of Liz's comfort zone, and she is riddled with anxiety just thinking about it.
Luckily, their's Mac, the new girl who just so happens to be running for Prom Queen as well. She makes the whole thing bearable, and Liz might just have more then platonic feelings for her. But in her town, being queer might ruin her chances of winning the crown. Will falling for Mac be the end of her dreams, or the beginning?
This story was absolutely lovely and gave me so much more than I was expecting.
I was hesitant going into this, as I thought this would be riddled with social commentary. I dislike it greatly when authors use their own characters as a mouthpiece to voice their own personal political viewpoints, especially as they are often delivered in a very surface-level fashion, not providing nearly enough context or well-rounded information. Luckily, this did nothing of the sort.
I also very much enjoyed Johson's writing, which was modern and relatable without being too over-saturated with pop-culture references (Basically, what Becki Albertalli wishes she could be.)
This book also didn't fall into a lot of holes that many stories of this kind could trip into. While there was one mean girl, the front runner for prom queen, people in her circle didn't fall to her whims. They stood up to her when she was being hideous towards Liz, and I appreciated the representation of loving, kind, female friendships.
I also love how supportive the other candidates for Prom King and Queen were, especially when Liz was publicly outed by the mean girl referenced above. They and the entire student body all came together in support of her, calling out their uptight school administration demanding they challenge the preexisting prejudices that have long existed in their school.
Ultimately, this story was filled with many beautiful messages and I will definitely be on the look for more from Leah Johson in the future
CW: pre-book parent death, illness mentions, panic attacks, anxiety, an instance of vomiting from a panic attack, hospitals, some medical procedure talk
You Should See Me In A Crown quickly drew me into the life of Liz Lighty, a hard-working high school senior whose dream is to become a doctor and also attend the university her late mother to pursue a further education in composing. From the beginning, I had to root for Liz and loved how she succeeded despite the hurdles life threw her way. Many Black women and girls go through hardships without a solid support system and I love love love that Liz has a loving family she’s close to and can count on, even if she forgets that for a little while and thinks everything is on her shoulders alone.
This book made me laugh and tear up. For Black readers like myself, it’s relatable and comforting to see someone like us going through it, but also gearing up to be gay and fall in love, but also have a bitchin prom experience! It was very feel good while also touching on some deep topics like racism, mental health awareness, poverty, self-identity, toxic friendships, and having family members with chronic disease.
While Liz’s world is turned upside down trying to fund her dream, she falls in love. I think Johnson did a wonderful job giving us a sweet wlw romance for the Black queer audience. It wasn’t insta-love, but Liz and Mac have obvious chemistry and I loved their relationship! Even when there were mistakes or someone didn’t show up for their girlfriend how they should’ve, it wasn’t ignored and they actually had to talk about their feelings! I really loved that and think it’s super important for younger audiences to know it’s okay to say what hurt you and not keep it locked up inside.
Overall, I loved reading this book. It has a happy gay end for the lead couple and has tons of Black girl magic! I couldn’t stop thinking that Black kids are so so lucky to be growing up in an era where YA books are starting to show more and more stories with us in the forefront. It went right on my favorites shelf and I’ll be keeping an eye out for Leah Johnson’s future works.
Top reviews from other countries
It was inclusive and representational and I loved every minute of reading it.
This book focuses on Liz Lighty, a young, Black bisexual woman growing up in Indiana. Her family are not wealthy but Liz has big dreams of attending university and training to be a doctor. When her scholarship dreams fall through, she realises that to be in a chance of attending her dream university, she needs to become Prom queen as the prize will help fund her education!
From page one I loved Liz. She was such a likeable character, and despite facing so many challenges in life, she was positive and loveable. We see her face racism, homophobia, struggles due to family finances, the health of her family, and so much more. The author not only explored all of these extremely important themes and issues, but she also focused on Liz’s anxiety and mental health. It handled this so well also.
I loved seeing her relationship blossom with Mack, and her friendship reignite with Jordan. This book had such a cute f/f romance with Liz and Mack, but I was also full on loving the friendship / support vibes. This book just had everything I wanted from it and more.
I highly recommend this book and will be keeping my eyes peeled for more books by Leah Johnson - definitely one to watch!
Jordan seems like the guy you want around in a pinch and their revived childhood friendship is cute to witness.
Mack reads like chaos incarnate and must be the biggest fear for a small regressive town come true. She is out and proud and stands up for her beliefs.
Even with the cheerleaders and jocks only the main bitch, Rachel, feels flat.
Issues: No answers to some questions. There is never a resolution for Rachel or an actual conversation between her and Liz, which didn’t bother me too much, sometimes you just don’t get answers from bullies about their why and that’s okay. In a similar vein, you never get to hear about what actually happened with Jordan’s girlfriend, even after she turns up for prom and talks to Liz. Which I found annoying, it was alluded at in form of rumours throughout the book but then you are left hanging. I’m fine with not getting answers for Rachel or in real life, but here I feel like the book dropped the ball.
Some of the pop culture references feel more like they come from somebody in my generation than a teenager in 2020.
Some points you can see from a mile away. Liz drops a line about another characters which is not so subtle foreshadowing for one of the last things to happen in the story.
Same for the pointless argument Liz and Mack have at a party, just to add some drama to it all.
While I didn’t enjoy the many drop ins of pop culture references, and felt the end was just rushed in the last 20 pages (as in prom was that long, it was all leading up to prom and then it just kinda ended quite quickly!).
It touched on topics of the toxic need for popularity, racism, homophobia and anxiety which I feel are all things that happen in high schools even in 2020 and they need to be addressed and need to be put into books because of this and I’m so glad Leah Johnson wrote this book to show them from a teens point of view. I did feel the bully got off too lightly but also she got reprimanded and the story is about Liz not the bully so why waste more time talking about them!
Liz was so likeable, and she had character development!! CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT THAT FLOWED AND WAS POSITIVE AND SHE DIDNT HAVE TO CHANGE HERSELF! I was so happy and the f/f romance was so FRICKING CUTE. I loved it, I loved Mack and how she just owned her self.
This is a book that was needed when I was growing up, and I’m so glad it’s here, it’s beautiful and really shows about how you should stand up for your beliefs and yourself! 👑