ARC Review: Odd One Out by Nic Stone

Title: Odd One Out
Author: Nic Stone
Publisher: Crown Books for Young Readers
Rating: 3/5 Stars
Hardcover, 320 Pages
Published October 2018

Summary: Courtney "Coop" Cooper: Dumped. Again. And normally I wouldn't mind. But right now, my best friend and source of solace, Jupiter Sanchez, is ignoring me to text some girl. Rae Evelyn Chin: I assumed "new girl" would be synonymous with "pariah," but Jupiter and Courtney make me feel like I'm right where I belong. I also want to kiss him. And her. Which is...perplexing. Jupiter Charity-Sanchez: The only thing worse than losing the girl you love to a boy is losing her to your boy. That means losing him, too. I have to make a move...One story. Three sides. No easy answers.

I received an advanced copy of Odd One Out at BookExpo this year, and meeting Nic Stone was a really great part of the event, because she was super nice and friendly and funny. Not to mention the fact that she put a totally inspirational message in my ARC when she signed it (Reign on, Queen!), and she complimented my hair, and then I complimented her was just one big compliment-fest, and it was really self-confidence boosting, and I loved it! But now, let's talk about the book itself. Onto my review!

As the summary explains, there's a bit of a tricky love triangle going on here -- Coop loves Jupiter, who loves Rae, who loves both of them, but nobody wants to tell the that definitely leads to some messy things going on. The book takes you through their whole situation, dedicating a segment to the point of view of each of the three. And what you learn while you're inside of their heads gets super messy and complicated, pretty quickly. So you're definitely taken on a dramatic journey of love and friendship (as well as its struggles) when you read this book.

I enjoyed reading this book, particularly the fact that there were so many funny little inserts that made me snort or laugh out loud. Coop's perspective in particular was really funny to me, so I'm really glad that the first third of the book is told from his point of view. He definitely had some hilarious little quips sprinkled throughout his section that kept me laughing and sending funny Snapchats to my friends. It was also really sweet and touching to see how much he loved Jupiter, both romantically and as a friend -- it made my heart really warm and happy, but it also made me really sad for him when she wasn't reciprocating those feelings, because Coop was just this big squishy ball of emotions and adorableness that I wish I could keep safe and protect from the whole world.

My favorite character in this book was definitely Coop. Like I just said, he was really sweet and adoring and funny, and he was also a good friend to everyone else around him, so it was clear to see why everyone in his life seemed to love him so much, to the point that things got a little bit tense when more than one person liked him at once...*cough cough* But you'll just have to read the book yourself to figure out how messy that gets.

On the other hand, I absolutely did not vibe well with Rae's character. Before any of her romantic feelings even came into play, I thought she was really snobby, and there was just a vibe I was getting from her that kept me from being her biggest fan. Even when I was reading the perspective from her point of view, I wasn't fan of her character, particularly her little quips. As opposed to Coop's, I thought hers sounded just really pretentious, so it was hard for me to like her as a character. Especially later on in the book, the way she acted around Coop just made me more and more frustrated every time she showed up, so I was over her pretty quickly.

(Spoilers here! Skip to the next paragraph to avoid them!) Another thing that I wasn't that happy about with this book was Jupiter's behavior in the way she treated Rae and Coop, especially toward the end. She basically went behind Rae's back to sleep with Coop just so she could lay claim to his "first time" -- even though it turns out she really does love him and have those feelings for him, before they actually did the deed she didn't know that, so what she did was pretty selfish and vindictive and really not cool. I was a fan of her throughout the entire book until that part came around, because that jealous, petty act was something that had the potential to have some serious repercussions -- if she hadn't ended up having those feelings for Coop, she would've just slept with him as a way to beat Rae to the finish line, and she would've taken Coop's first time away for nothing more than petty jealousy. I'm glad that things worked out for them in the end, because otherwise that would've been a really crappy thing for Coop's supposed best friend to do, no matter how much I wasn't a fan of Rae.

Overall, Odd One Out was a quick read that made me laugh at times, and sometimes cringe at the characters' behaviors during others. Before picking up this book, I had also seen a lot of stuff floating around about there being a lot of bi erasure that takes place in this book, and now that I've read it for myself, I can definitely see it, and that's something that was really problematic for me as a reader. However, I encourage readers to pick up the book for themselves and check it out to have their own experiences with it, and perhaps you might pick up on something that I (or other readers) may have missed.

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