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Odd One Out
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Odd One Out
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From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Dear Martin comes an honest and touching depiction of friendship, first love, and everything in between. Perfect for fans of Love, Simon and What If...
From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Dear Martin comes an honest and touching depiction of friendship, first love, and everything in between. Perfect for fans of Love, Simon and What If...
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Description-

  • From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Dear Martin comes an honest and touching depiction of friendship, first love, and everything in between. Perfect for fans of Love, Simon and What If It's Us.

    Courtney Cooper and Jupiter Sanchez (Coop & Jupe!) have been next-door neighbors and best friends since they were seven-years-old. She's his partner-in-crime and other half. But lately, Cooper can't ignore he might want something more than friendship from Jupiter.

    When Rae Chin moves to town she can't believe how lucky she is to find Coop and Jupe. Being the new kid is usually synonymous with pariah, but around these two, she finally feels like she belongs. She's so grateful she wants to kiss him...and her.

    Jupiter has always liked girls. But when Rae starts dating Cooper, Jupe realizes that the only girl she ever really imagined by his side...
 

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Excerpts-

  • From the book I, Courtney Aloysius Cooper IV, Should Be a Very Sad Dude

    I should be devastated or pissed or deflated as I let myself into the house next door and climb the stairs to my best friend's bedroom. I should be crushed that less than a month into my junior year of high school, my latest girlfriend kicked me to the curb like a pair of too-­small shoes.

    It's ridiculous that I have to stop outside the door to get my act together so Best Friend won't get suspicious, isn't it? Rubbing my eyes so the whites look a little red, slumping my shoulders, hanging my head, and poking my bottom lip out just the slightest bit so I look sad . . .

    Best Friend doesn't even look up from her phone when I open the door. Normally I'd be offended since I did all this work pretending sadness, but right now it's a good thing she keeps her eyes fixed to the little screen. She's sitting at her desk, laptop open, in one of those thin-­strapped tank tops—­nothing underneath, mind you, and she's got a good bit more going on up there than most girls our age. She's also wearing really small shorts, and she's not small down bottom, either. In the words of her papi: "All chichis and culo, that girl . . ."

    And I can't not notice. Been trying to ignore her *assets* since they started blooming, if you will, in seventh grade. Largely because I know she would kick me to the curb if she knew I thought of her . . . that way. But anyway, when I see her sitting there with her light brown skin on display like sun-­kissed sand and her hair plopped on top of her head in a messy-­bun thing, my devastated-­dumped-­dude act drops like a bad habit.

    I close my eyes. The image has already seared itself into my memory, but I need to pull myself back together. With my eyes still closed, I cross the room I know better than my own and drop down into the old La-­Z-­Boy that belonged to my dad.

    Despite the squeak of the springs in this chair, she doesn't say a word.

    I crack one eye: no earbuds. There's no way she doesn't realize I'm in here. . . . She smiles at something on her phone, tap-­tap-­tap-­tap-­taps around, and after literally two seconds, there's the ping of an incoming text. She L's-­O-­L.

    I sigh. Loudly. Like, overly loudly.

    Tap-­tap-­tap-­tap-­tap-­tap. "You're back early," she says without looking up.

    "You should put some clothes on, Jupe."

    "Pffft. Last I checked, you're in my domain, peon."

    Typical. "I need to talk to you," I say.

    "So talk."

    Ping! She reads. Chuckles.

    Who the hell is she even talking to?

    I take a deep breath. Wrangle a leash onto the green-­eyed monster bastard raging within. "I can't."

    She glares over her shoulder at me. "Don't be difficult." God.

    Even the stank-­face is a sight to behold. "You're the one being difficult," I say.

    "Oh, well, excuse me for feeling any opposition to you waltzing into my room without knocking and suggesting that I adapt to your uninvited presence." She sets her phone down—­thank God—­faces her computer, and mutters, "Friggin' patriarchy, I swear."

    I smile and glance around the room: the unmade bed and piles of clothes—­dirty stuff on the floor near the closet, clean in a basket at the foot of the bed; the old TV and VHS player she keeps for my sake since she never uses them when I'm not here, or so she says; the photo on the dresser of me, her, my mom, and her dads on vacation in Jamaica six years ago; the small tower of community service and public speaking certificates...

About the Author-

  • Atlanta native Nic Stone is the author of the New York Times bestselling Dear Martin, which Booklist called "vivid and powerful." Odd One Out is Nic's second novel and the book she wishes she'd had back when she was trying to figure out who it's okay to love.
    You can find Nic fangirling over her husband and sons on Twitter and Instagram at @getnicced or on her website, nicstone.info.

Reviews-

  • Publisher's Weekly

    August 13, 2018
    In Decatur, Ga., three teens in a complex love triangle navigate a fine line between friendship and romantic love. High-school junior Courtney (“Coop”) can’t deny his physical attraction to his neighbor and female best friend, Jupiter, whom he’s loved for years. She identifies as gay, but she begins to wonder about her feelings for Coop, leading to mixed messages between them. Meanwhile, new student Rae dramatically changes Courtney and Jupiter’s dynamic after befriending them, and she finds herself infatuated with them both. Divided into three sections, each narrated distinctively by one of the three protagonists, the book effectively conveys teen dynamics, early sexual exploration, and feeling left out. Stone (Dear Martin) challenges stereotypical notions of what it means to be straight, bisexual, or gay, showing how sexual identities and desires can be as complicated as the individual human brain. Ages 14–up. Agent: Katherine Dunn, InkWell Management.

  • School Library Journal

    August 1, 2018

    Gr 9 Up-This sophomore novel by the author of Dear Martin is something completely different. Coop has been in love with his best friend, Jupiter, for as long as he can remember. He knows his love will never be returned because Jupiter is only attracted to girls. Rae is new in town and fits into "Jupe & Coop's" orbit very comfortably. Slowly, Rae begins to recognize that she is attracted to them both. This is the setup for the love triangle book that teen fiction has needed for a long time. While ethnicity and race are built into the intersectional storytelling, this title has more of a focus on the LGBTQ+ experience. Many young readers will identify with the feelings explored: the differences between romantic love and physical love, the difficulties associated with testing the boundaries of one's own sexuality with someone who is sure of theirs, and love beyond the binary. The subject matter is handled sensitively and thoughtfully. The novel's three perspectives are provided consecutively rather than the traditional alternating structure. The consequence of this is that one loses the access to the interior monologues of characters as the story progresses, which creates gaps in the telling. Nevertheless, this is an excellent choice. VERDICT An important and necessary love story for YA that will fill a gap in collections.-Kristin Lee Anderson, Jackson County Library Services, OR

    Copyright 2018 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

  • Kirkus

    August 15, 2018
    Not your usual love triangle.Decatur, Georgia, teen Courtney "Coop" Cooper lives next door to his best friend, Jupiter "Jupe" Charity-Sanchez, a girl he'd be (even more) in love with if she weren't gay--and crushing on new girl Rae (half white and half Chinese-Jamaican), who may or may not be straight. Coop agrees that Rae is pretty cute, and the three become close friends as they navigate difficult, mercurial feelings about crushes, sexuality, and friendship. Biracial (black/Latinx) Jupe has two dads: Cuban-American Papi and African-American Dad. Coop, who is black, has a single mother (his father died in a car crash) and regards Jupe's dads as father figures. Rae feels like an interloper in the midst of this intimate friendship--Coop and Jupe have been snuggling at sleepovers for years. Just to make things more complicated, Rae is unsure if she has a crush on Courtney or Jupiter. Maybe both? In this novel that is divided into three parts and narrated first by Coop, then Rae, then Jupe, Stone (Dear Martin, 2017) has created well-rounded characters whose voices are distinct. The story's authentic and honest depictions of sex, parent-free social interactions, and Gen Z's highly critical take on gender roles and sexuality hit the mark.A he said, she said story that stands out. (Fiction. 14-18)

    COPYRIGHT(2018) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • Booklist

    Starred review from September 1, 2018
    Grades 9-12 *Starred Review* Stone, author of Dear Martin (2017), delivers another poignant and necessary book for teens with her sophomore novel. It is a story about self-discovery, identity, love, and all the uncomfortable and staggering emotions felt keenly when you are a teen. The novel is told from three perspectives. Courtney Cooper is a basketball star, and although he has had a string of relationships?and breakups?he has always harbored a crush on his best friend, Jupiter Charity-Sanchez. However, Jupiter likes girls. Jupiter thinks her identity is neatly and clearly defined, until Rae Chin moves to town. Rae finds herself drawn to both Jupiter and Courtney, and a love triangle evolves among the trio that is complicated, messy, and real. Each teen embarks on their own journey of self-discovery to figure out who they are, what they need, and what they desire outside of the societal norms and labels dictated to them. Like Dear Martin, this shines in its authentic, timely dialogue; vivid, touching characters; and complex interpersonal relationships. It is a novel vital to young adults' lives that examines the intersections of sexuality, gender, and race?issues and blurred boundaries that teens grapple with in a society that favors neat and tidy boxes. Essential reading that proves some glass houses need stones thrown at them.(Reprinted with permission of Booklist, copyright 2018, American Library Association.)

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