C.G. Drews's Reviews > When You Get the Chance

When You Get the Chance by Tom   Ryan
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really liked it
bookshelves: 4-star, contemporary, read-2020, young-adult

This was thoroughly wholesome and lovely. I am here for more quiet queer family-centric books in 2020 🙌🏻 thank you so much. This is about estranged family who come together to tidy up and maybe sell their grandmother's cottage. It's set in Canada too! I thought there was only piles of moose and pine trees in Canada so I learned a lot! (I mean, there were no meese in here at all. The stereotypes lie.) And just reading about cousins becoming friends, and exploring the complex (and often strained) love of family...plus the terrifying dark vortex of not knowing who you are or what you want in live...it was all really well done.

[characters]
It's dual narrated by Talia and Mark. (And Mark's little 10yo sister Paige is amazing and my favourite side character!) Talia was absolutely amazing. She's very quiet and reserved, she's going through a maybe-breakup with her partner, doesn't know what she wants with her life, and is the kind of person who has deep friendships not tons of friends. (RELATABLE.) Mark is very outgoing and just wants to have a good time. But he's super self-centred, so like? I didn't love him, but he did grow at least. I think he should've apologised more though...he was very unaware of his cis/white/male privilege, even when called out.

[queers books by queer authors]
I loved the discussions and it really really discussed queerness. From Talia not being sure how she identified (her partner was nonbinary) (I even wonder if Talia was demisexual too?) and talking about not outing people as well as proudly normalising queerness and just...so much identity discussion and it was written so naturally and well.

[read it? yes yes]
It also feels like a good younger-YA story too! I mean, I stayed pretty pissed at Mark the whole way, but I really loved Talia and the dynamics and the family and Canada (!!) and it was easy to read and warm and encouraging.
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Reading Progress

June 22, 2018 – Shelved
June 22, 2018 – Shelved as: to-read
February 4, 2020 – Started Reading
February 5, 2020 – Shelved as: 4-star
February 5, 2020 – Shelved as: contemporary
February 5, 2020 – Shelved as: read-2020
February 5, 2020 – Shelved as: young-adult
February 5, 2020 – Finished Reading

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message 1: by L.C. (new) - added it

L.C. Perry Great review! I didn't even know this book existed so thanks for bringing it to my attention!


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