I first heard about Maureen Johnson and this book back when it was all a-being banned over the summer, and I thought to myself, “Banned book? I like reading banned books. Give it here!” and then I requested it from the library and then I got it and then I didn’t read it for, like, three months and then I suddenly had a craving and I read it! Good job, self.
And in the first few pages, I was like, “Oh, no. This book is overdescriptive and overexpositive and if this keeps up I am going to just throw its hefty self¹ across the room because I can’t deal with that again for a long time.
But it did not keep up, thank goodness, because I might have dislocated my shoulder in trying to heave it, and it was actually a very fun read!
The eponymous “triangle” is three high-school-senior girls who have been bffs(aeae) for some relatively long period of time. The summer before senior year, Nina goes off to a pre-college thing at Stanford, meets a guy, has a great time, and comes back to upstate New York ready to get her party on with Avery and Mel. Except that while Nina was gone, Avery and Mel met… each other, and now it’s all sorts of awkward-pants up in this triangle. Nina tries to figure out how to deal with her two best friends dating, Avery tries to figure out why a straight girl like herself is dating a girl, and Mel sort of gets left out in the process.
Obviously, the whole book-banning thing is on account of the lesbians , but except for the fact that Avery and Mel are girls, it’s pretty much your basic high school story of one or more friends finding significant others and totally ditching Friend One. And even more so the story of two friends hooking up and then trying to figure out how to make the relationship work. And doing these things all while trying to graduate from high school, because that stupid homework never stops coming.
I thought this book was delightful, and I recommend it if you’re in the mood for a reality-infused tale of love and friendship.
¹ As you can see from the image of the book cover I’ve included, the copy I ended up with is a “splashproof beach read!” with 100% waterproof cover and ridiculously stiff pages that must have been printed on, like, sixty-pound paper. It’s intense, and I’m not sure that I would be willing to lug this thing to the beach anyway. But someone must have!
Pass me yours, if you’ve got ’em.