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Late to the Party Paperback – April 20 2021
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From author Kelly Quindlen comes a poignant and deeply relatable story about friendship, self-acceptance, and what it means to be a Real Teenager. Late to the Party is an ode to late bloomers and wallflowers everywhere.
Seventeen is nothing like Codi Teller imagined.
She’s never crashed a party, never stayed out too late. She’s never even been kissed. And it’s not just because she’s gay. It’s because she and her two best friends, Maritza and JaKory, spend more time in her basement watching Netflix than engaging with the outside world.
So when Maritza and JaKory suggest crashing a party, Codi is highly skeptical. Those parties aren’t for kids like them. They’re for cool kids. Straight kids.
But then Codi stumbles upon one of those cool kids, Ricky, kissing another boy in the dark, and an unexpected friendship is formed. In return for never talking about that kiss, Ricky takes Codi under his wing and draws her into a wild summer filled with late nights, new experiences, and one really cute girl named Lydia. The only problem? Codi never tells Maritza or JaKory about any of it.
"An absolutely stunning, but also incredibly important novel about best friends and discovering who you are." ―Mason Deaver, bestselling author of I Wish You All the Best
“Perfectly captures the joys and hopes and thrills of being a real, authentic teenager . . . A fantastic read for queer teens today.” ―Kacen Callender, Stonewall and Lambda Award–winning author This Is Kind of an Epic Love Story
“Late to the Party is right on time to being your favorite read. I didn’t want my time with Quindlen’s characters to end.” ―Sara Farizan, Lambda Award–winning author of If You Could Be Mine
"Kelly Quindlen has written a slow-burning, exquisite book well-worth savoring." ―Aminah Mae Safi, author of Tell Me How You Really Feel
"A deeply heartfelt and emotionally honest celebration of late bloomers, queer solidarity, and friendships both old and new. This book has a permanent place in my heart." ―Dahlia Adler, author of Under the Lights.
"A love letter to late bloomers, Late to the Party combines teenage angst with first loves and second chances and emphasises that true friends will always be there for you even as you discover new parts of yourself." ―The Nerd Daily
"Heartfelt and fun, Quindlen’s latest (Her Name in the Sky, 2014) brings together all the angst, excitement, and uncertainty of the teenage years in an LGBTQ+ friendly package. Fans of Becky Albertalli are sure to love this sometimes painfully relatable heroine and her journey of self discovery. Codi Teller may be late to the party, but readers will be happy she showed up." ―Booklist
"Recommended for LGBTQ teens."―School Library Journal
"Quindlen (Her Name in the Sky) deftly conveys both the awkwardness of outgrowing an old life without having a clue how to move toward a new one. ―Publishers Weekly
About the Author
- Publisher : Square Fish (April 20 2021)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 320 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1250209129
- ISBN-13 : 978-1250209122
- Item weight : 281 g
- Dimensions : 13.59 x 2.16 x 20.83 cm
- Best Sellers Rank: #33,980 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- #16 in LGBTQ2S+ Coming Out
- #2,132 in LGBTQ2S+ Fiction (Books)
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
Top reviews from Canada
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I grabbed this one mainly because of the title and the cover. I wasn't a person that went out a lot in my teens. While all my friends went to parties and clubs I much preferred to stay home and just read or watch TV in a time where Netflix didn't exist! Gasp! The horror. So this book called out to me like the beacons of Gondor.
Late to the Party was such a good read. It made me relive my teen years all over again but with a different outcome in the end. Codi feels a bit trap in her relationship with her best friends. She wants to experience life but doesn't seem to know how to do it with them. They keep calling her reliable and it's a word that she is tired of hearing so she decides to live a double life and have a summer of firsts. Codi was so relatable to me. Her journey reminded me so much of myself back then and maybe a little of me now. It also got me thinking about how we put each other in certain boxes. I am still friends with people from primary/secondary school and I wondering if I am still that same person to them. It's strange when you think about it how you can be a different person to everyone. Don't you wish sometime you could reinvent yourself like Codi?
I loved the diversity in this book. There was so many LGBTQ+ reps it warmed my little black heart. You could also feel the solidarity and support between them. Codi and Ricki were there for each other even if their friendship was really new. They helped each other figure things out no questions asked. It was nice to see a story with such a great cast of LGBTQ+ characters.
I really enjoyed Late to the Party it was a cute short-ish book that you could read in one sitting. I haven't read anything else by Kelly Quindlen but I will be keeping an eye out for her.
Top reviews from other countries
The novel is much more a coming of age than a romance, where the protagonist is figuring out who she is and what parts of herself she wants to change. A great surprise was seeing Codi reevaluate her friendships, their dynamics, and how you can truly love somebody, but feel like you're at a better place when you're not interacting with them. This has such a good message, it says that it's okay to need time and space for yourself when you're changing and growing. The period between being a teenager and becoming an adult (17-20) can be really confusing and stressful, and I think this book captures it perfectly.
It was also just a plain, fun read: there were parties, silly games, and tiny adventures that you go on with your friends when you're all giddy and excited about life, midnight road trips. The relationship that we see develop between Codi and Ricky is so pure and fun and it reminded me so much of that period when you're getting to know a new friend and you begin to bond and discover little things about them. Quindlen captured both the good and the bad about being a teenager, or, at least, she captured everything that I remember from my teenage years and it was interesting to look upon those things from a different perspective. I'm an only child, so I can't say for certain if the relationship between Codi and her brother is a good portrayal of how real siblings behave, but it added a nice layer to the story and it helped round up the protagonist's personality.
One of the characters that I couldn't stand was Maritza, she was nasty and judgemental and all-around an unpleasant person. That might be because we see her through Codi's eyes during a troubling time of their friendship, but this didn't happen with JaKory, whom I love. Especially when you compare her to the other characters, specifically Richy's friends, I just don't understand how Codi wishes to keep a person like that in her life.
All in all, 100% recommend picking up Late to the Party.
Maritza versucht es mit der Brechstange, JaKory über das Internet. Für Codi ändert sich alles, als sie auf dem Weg zu einer Party den schwulen Ricky kennen lernt. Von da an überstürzen sich für sie die Ereignisse, die sie aber vor ihren besten Freunden verheimlicht. Dadurch wird ihre Freundschaft letztendlich auf eine harte Probe gestellt.
Insgesamt eine interessante und lehrreiche Geschichte. Weniger Dramatik als Her Name In The Sky