review by Hadley, teen reviewer
A Tale of Two Besties by Sophia Rossi
Lily and Harper have been best friends since the day Lily showed up on her first day of fourth grade with a pair of tattered fairy wings and no regard for what the world thought of her. Now, it’s the last day of summer before high school starts, where the pair will attend two different schools—Lily will try out a new private school for artistic growth, and Harper will attend the go-to public school with the rest of their grade. The two make a pact to stay true to themselves and each other, no matter the distance between them.
However, things don’t go according to plan. Lily instantly immerses herself with a group of upperclassmen on her same artistic wavelength while Harper starts spiraling as middle school popularity drops away and she becomes just another face in the crowd. With Lily distracted by her sudden fame and no time for her best friend, Harper finds herself doing things she never dreamed of to fit in, and when that doesn’t work, turning to the last person she expected to find comfort in: Tim, her geeky childhood friend and Lily’s ex, who just happened to have a miraculous summer transformation.
Things only go downhill for the two besties from there. Will they learn that they’re better together?
I’ll be frank: this story was very cliché. There are many mentions of current trends like Snapchat, Topshop, bad omens, selfies, dyed hair, Tumblr, the “California vibe,” and the likes. Almost everyone and everything is a stereotype. There’s the awkward girl who finds herself magically fitting in at a new school, the internet-famous fashionista friend, the nerdy guy who suddenly becomes attractive, and his best friend who wonders how she hasn’t seen it all this time. Even the writing style gives off the feeling that the author is trying to make this story “so relatable.”
The only thing that I can praise is the focus on friendship and not romance or saving the world. It provided a refreshing break from pretty much everything else on the YA market today.
Overall, even though it was jam-packed with stereotypes, I appreciated the element of friendship. I recommend this book to those who are starting middle or high school and are looking for a story on the ups and downs of friendship. 3/5 stars. —Hadley
Thank you to the publisher for providing a free Advance Review Copy in exchange for an honest review.