Thank you to The Write Reads for allowing me to be part of this blog tour.
Kate in Waiting by Becky Albertalli
Published By: Penguin
Released: 22nd April
CAWPILE Rating: 6.4 / 3 ★
I received this book free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
From bestselling YA rom-com queen Becky Albertalli (author of Love, Simon) comes a new novel about daring to step out of the shadows and into the spotlight in love, life and theatre.
[PRINCIPAL CAST LIST]
Best friends, and contrary to popular belief, not co-dependent. Examples:
Carpooling to and from theatre rehearsals? Environmentally sound and efficient.
Consulting each other on every single life decision? Basic good judgment.
Pining for the same guys from afar? Shared crushes are more fun anyway.
But when Kate and Andy’s latest long-distance crush shows up at their school, everything goes off-script.
Enter Stage Left: Matt Olsson
He is talented and sweet, and Kate likes him. She really likes him. The only problem? So does Anderson.
Turns out, communal crushes aren’t so fun when real feelings are involved. This one might even bring the curtains down on Kate and Anderson’s friendship…
Becky Albertalli, you can say is one of the most well known YA authors, and I loved Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda. When I found out her second solo book Kate in Waiting was being released I was eager to get my hands on it. I was intrigued to see how she’d moved on from the Simonverse, and as soon as I had the chance I picked it up.
Kate and Anderson are best friends, and are inseparable, doing everything together from theatre rehearsals, riding to school together and giving each other advice on every single problem they both have. They also share crushes on cute guys from afar, also known as a communal crush. When Kate and Anderson’s latest crush Matt, turns up at their school everything changes. Kate likes him, but so does Anderson. When their real feelings get in the way of their communal crush, both Kate and Anderson worry how this is going to affect their strong friendship.
Kate in Waiting was a cute, easy read that made me feel all sorts of gooey feelings. It brought to the forefront the themes of friendship and how easily these can be affected when love gets in the way. I also found myself getting transported back to my younger teenage years when I and my friendship group used to have communal crushes on the same person. It also made me remember how painful it could be. Having a book like this take me back through my past was an experience that I get a lot when reading YA, and it made me realise why I still read this genre.
The story and plot itself was fun and fast-paced and I didn’t feel like anything was dragging. As a big lover of musical theatre, I found myself drawn to this part of the story, and enjoyed reading about Kate and a group of theatre lover’s experiences of auditions, rehearsals and ultimately the final performance. This also took me back to my teenage years, as I loved drama when I was in school and took part in many school productions, so I knew what our characters were going through. The romance side of the plot between Kate, Anderson and Matt, despite being somewhat predictable brought the issue of choosing between your best friend and your crush to the front of your mind, and it’s probably something that we all went through in our younger years. Kate and Anderson’s friendship was pushed to the limit several times throughout the book, and at times you are left wondering if they’ll be able to repair it.
Kate, at first I found slightly irritating, but as the story went on I warmed up to her. Her conflicting struggle with wanting to pursue Matt, as well as keep her friendship with Anderson was heartbreaking at times. You could see how much she cared for Anderson and wanted to keep their close relationship intact. Anderson was someone that I took to straight away. You could also tell how much he loved Kate and wanted to keep their friendship the same as it’s always been. When they went through some spats, I felt heartbroken as I was rooting for them to stay friends.
I also want to mention the amazing representation that was within Kate in Waiting. We have LGBTQ+ representation featured in the form of Anderson and Raina, and there are different diversities mentioned throughout with regards to other characters. To see such a scope of diversity within YA is something that I am seeing more and more of, and it’s such a joy to see. All teens deserve to see themselves represented within books, and this is increasingly happening, and I’m ever so pleased.
Kate in Waiting was a sweet, delightful read that will leave you feeling all fuzzy inside. It’s the perfect summer read and a must-have for fans of YA contemporary.