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The Universal Laws of Marco

3.93  ·  Rating details ·  103 ratings  ·  24 reviews
Told through the lens of a guy in love with the cosmos (and maybe two girls), The Universal Laws of Marco explores the complicated histories that bring us together and tear us apart.

In the summer before eighth grade, Marco Suarez kissed his best friend Sally Blake. This was his first spark.

And since then, whenever he’s thought about that moment, he’s traveled through a wor
Hardcover, 432 pages
Published March 19th 2019 by Simon Pulse
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Average rating 3.93  · 
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 ·  103 ratings  ·  24 reviews

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Rating: 4.5 Stars: ★★★★ 1/2

The Universal Laws Of Marco is probably one of the MOST underhyped YA Books I've read so far this year! Its a fantastic YA Contemporary (also Latinx YA) that focuses a lot on friendship, family, life and the decisions we make that change who we become!

The Universal Laws Of Marco is a character-driven and thought-provoking YA Contemporary! Told through past and present POV, we follow Marco Suarez whose life becomes a bit more complicated when his first love, Sally Blake
Feb 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
Antoinette Trentham
Mar 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Told in the past and future, senior Marco Suarez is torn between two girls. As Marco and his friends navigate the final days of high school, they reminisce about the past and plan for their futures. Marco’s first love returns and his family situation worsens causing him to rethink his carefully laid out plans.

I want to join this tribe, I mean family of friends! This was one of those books that I didn’t want to put down. I love it when I read a book that I thoroughly enjoy and
Jun 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya, wishlist
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Devon H
Mar 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The Universal Laws of Marco struck me as yet another coming of age story about some High Schoolers, and I wasn't sure I was in the mood for it. However, not too far into the book, my opinion began to shift. Rodrigues gives us a dual perspective, but not from different characters, but rather from the Eighth Grade and Senior Year versions of Marco.

The entirety of this book is Marco processing his own trauma and choices and the trauma and choices of his friends. I love character development, so th
Feb 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
The Universal Laws of Marco takes readers through the middle school and high school journeys of a diverse group of five friends as they navigate family dynamics, relationships, and futures. Thanks to being privy to both their middle school and high school stories, the reader forms a bond with the characters and gains true insight into their lives with a rare depth not often found in books of its kind. The book is anchored by Marco as he takes the readers through the lessons in his life and the w ...more
Jeffrey G
Mar 07, 2020 rated it did not like it
Wow, this book slowed down my reading by a lot! After I put it down, I just didn't want to pick it up again. The narrative is very sparse. This is mostly an interior monologue by the main character. He is a very likeable fellow, but he doesn't do very much. Another neutered teenage male protagonist, he doesn't think about sex very much...or at all. The author tries to be funny, but the jokes fell flat for me. She inserts a few short episodes of politically correct posturing that bring what littl ...more
Sally is back after four years of moving to North Carolina and completely breaking contact with her friend group and her then-new-boyfriend, Marco, who was crushed. When she left, Marco was broken- his father recently sustaining a Traumatic Brain Injury, his friendships tested. But he met Erika and they became friends and recently started dating. Marco picked up a job to help with the bills and studied hard to prepare for college. Everything was going to plan.
When Sally returns though, everythin
Tara Weiss
Dec 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
Sometimes we forget how much is going on outside of a school day. And sometimes we forget that each of us is responsible for our own lives - as much as we try, we can't take responsibility for the actions of others. The nuances and life lessons that shape this story create an arc of storytelling that's mystical but grounded in the beauty of the everyday. There is so much hope, even in the presence of difficult choices that ripple around, twisting with the witty banter and contemplations of wormh ...more
Aug 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Everyone NEEDS to read this book, I'm not sure who my favorite character is because they're all amazing but Diego, Jade & Marco are my top picks. The way that the story unravels and the details that go into understanding & seeing the magic of each character is phenomenal. The use of multicultural characters & each coming from such different family lives made everything 10x better. The inclusion of so much science made it so much better & interesting. Thank you, Carmen Rodrigues for this masterpi ...more
Alison Harney
Mar 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I’ve enjoyed all of Rodrigues’s books and this is no exception. I found the time shifting from middle school to senior year compelling, showing us how this gang of friends change and grow. Marco is a lovable character, learning as we all must that sometimes you can’t make everyone else happy and make yourself happy all at the same time. Rodrigues takes us into a community in Miami and brings to life its ups and downs, hardships and strengths. Rodrigues knows how to tell a story and isn’t afraid ...more
Martina Urbanová

Knihu som otvárala s tým, že absolútne netuším, čo by som mala očakávať. Ale bola som viac ako len milo prekvapená. Kniha bola ako pohladenie duše. Krásne napísaná s príjemnými postavami a zároveň skúmala témy akými sú rodina, priateľstvo a celkovo vzťahy.

Ďalší príklad YA knihy, ktorá dokáže rozpovedať zaujímavý príbeh, hovoriť o dôležitých témach a to všetko bez zbytočnej drámy všade naokolo. (A tiež je táto kniha ako stvorená pre fanúšikov Saénza.)
Jun 18, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019-copyright
A really solid boy narrated book about life, family, friendship, and love. Realistic coming-of-age story that incorporates life lessons without being preachy. Beautiful writing, but somewhat slow moving. I especially liked the alternating time periods (8th grade and senior year)--this format worked well to tell Marco's story.
Bruin LiBEARian
Jun 19, 2020 rated it really liked it
Wonderful, smart, diverse characters with real voices and struggles. The circle of friends is funny, smart, and real. I laughed out loud. Organization of the narrative is hard to follow at times, though it does have a point and does help build suspense. Dumb title. Really liked it. More like a 4.5
May 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2019
I loved reading this simmering novel that examines what brings people together, and what we owe to those people. Carmen Rodrigues artfully cuts between scenes of middle school and high school, and each story builds to a satisfying and completely earned conclusion that kept me reading until the end.
Ethan Evans
Jan 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
This is the first book I've read in a long while that had quotes I wanted to write down. That's meaningful to me. It also hooked me because it's about nostalgia and growing up and leaving the familiar behind and maybe keeping some familiar around.
Jesse Brown
Mar 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed this book!!!! I thought that the relationships between the characters were amazing and it took me to places that were completely relatable!! It was a very easy read and I didn’t want to put it down!!
Oct 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
4.5. I really liked how this alternated back and forth between middle school and high school until the entire story unfolded
Ernesto Cisneros
Oct 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I haven't read it yet. But I can't wait to. The 5 stars is for my desire to read it.
Mar 18, 2020 rated it it was ok
It was really slow and I didn’t really enjoy the flashbacks, plus the characters didn’t have a lot of personality.
Grace T
Apr 05, 2019 rated it liked it
3.5--good story, lovely cover, dealing with some very real issues and complex relationships, and no one said the f-bomb, but there was a deal of other language and some almost-sex. So.
Jan 05, 2020 rated it really liked it
A romance, a bromance, a really well written coming of age story about a group of kids in Miami with the sweet and cerebral Marco at its center.
Jun 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction, young-adult
This is such a wonderful book - super heartwarming and feel good, but also does a fantastic job of addressing tough issues such as abuse, depression, and living with a parent who's struggling with chronic illness/injury. There are a lot of great slice-of-life moments capturing teenage life and life in the Miami area, but also a really interesting, genuinely unpredictable plot and a lot of mystery that slowly builds as the book goes on.

The characters are also vibrant, hilarious (and diverse) and
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Mar 15, 2020
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Oct 13, 2018
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Jul 21, 2020
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Mar 30, 2019
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Carmen Rodrigues lives and plays in the urban wilds of Virginia, where she is a writer by day and an educator by night.

She is the author of three young-adult novels: THE UNIVERSAL LAWS OF MARCO, 34 PIECES OF YOU, and NOT ANYTHING.

She earned her MFA in creative writing from the University of North Carolina Wilmington.

For more, visit her at

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