Seventeen-year-old Lacey Burke is the last person on the planet who should be doling out sex advice. For starters, she’s never even kissed anyone, and she hates breaking the rules. Up until now, she’s been a straight-A music geek that no one even notices. All she cares about is jamming out with her best friends, Theo and Evita. But then everything changes. When Lacey sees first-hand how much damage the abstinence-only sex-ed curriculum of her school can do, she decides to take a stand and starts doling out wisdom and contraception to anyone who seeks her out in the girls’ restroom. But things with Theo become complicated quickly, and Lacey is soon not just keeping everyone else’s secrets, but hers as well.
I wasn’t sure about this book. SwoonReads books aren’t usually my cup of tea. Though, the title is really clever (the cover is a little off for me though) and I am definitely love the idea of sex positivity in books! And this one sounded like it wasn’t just going to be sex positive, it was going to be pro safe sex, pro consent, and pro learning about sex so you can make the best decision for you!
I was not expecting to enjoy this book as much as I did. I thought it would be alright and the sex positivity would be awesome, but I wasn’t expecting too much. The beginning is a little shaky. Sentences seem choppy (I did read an ARC, so this is subject to change) and dialogue seemed stilted and awkward. I felt like I didn’t know what characters were going to say next and not in a good way. Characterization was all over the place. And there were just so many cringey lines.
The romance also started of really, really weird. It sort of seemed like it was thrown together at the last second? It does feature one of my favorite tropes, but it comes out of nowhere and character motivation does not align at all. The romance actually turned out out to be really good. Things settled down and the tropeyness really kicked in and it was awesome. I also had a few problems with Evita, Lacey’s best friend. I felt like some conflict was introduced, but it never really followed through. There is development that happens, I just don’t think it was stark enough for the changes that happened.
Though, about 1/3 in things really pick. Pieces start to fall into place and the plot settles. This book is fun and cheesy. And this time in a good way haha. This book features things that I rarely see in YA books, besides sex positivity. Honestly Lacey’s mom was basically my mom. She was so proud when Lacey, straight As and never breaks a rule, gets in trouble. I was kinda cool to see such a present, forward thinking, and laid back parent figure!
The way sex education was handled in this book was fantastic. I actually learned a lot haha. It was so unapologetic in talking about the things that people usually feel awkward or embarrassed talking about. I loved that it normalized it. And there was such a big emphasize on consent and it being sexy and it was amazing. There is clear consent in the sex scenes and it was fantastic it to see it there. Both the MCs were completely open about what they wanted and what they were comfortable with.
Another thing that I found super awesome was the communication. I didn’t expect for characters to talk things out as well as they did. Lacey makes a mistake. And she and her best friend hash it out by having a conversation. No super big dramatics. Just two girls talking about what went wrong and how they want things to change and how they want to do better going forward. It was super awesome to see.
I would love for more books to be sex positive in all the ways that in can. In having sex is cool if you want and so is not having sex. Just putting an emphasize on doing what you’re comfortable with. This book does that so well. I enjoyed it a lot. I would definitely want to read a sequel or companion novel of sorts!
Thank you for reading!