Best Fiction for Young Adults (#BFYA2023) Featured Review of The Lesbiana’s Guide to Catholic School by Sonora Reyes

The Lesbiana’s Guide to Catholic School by Sonora Reyes
Balzer + Bray
Publication Date: May 17, 2022
ISBN: 9780063060234

Yamilet Flores is doing the best she can. She’s working part-time to be able to afford the tuition at her new fancy private school and she’s trying to keep her brother on the straight and narrow. But it’s hard when you’re the new girl, with a supposedly difficult to pronounce name who also happens to be Mexican and queer but just wants to blend in. Add in a really nice, cute, and smart, openly queer girl named Bo and it becomes even harder.

This contemporary romance novel has a memorable narrator in Yami – she is clever and funny, poignant and tender. The romance unfolds convincingly – will Yami get her happily ever after? Readers will want to find out! The relationships with Yami’s family – the tension with her mom, the absence of her father, and her brother’s own struggles are all realistically portrayed and handled with care. The author includes trigger warnings at the beginning of the book and readers should proceed with those in mind (racism, homophobia, immigration, and the suicidal ideation and hospitalization of a character). This is a moving and hopeful story that is also really funny in some parts – kind of like life.

Perfect for readers who enjoy Leah Johnson, Elizabeth Acevedo, or Gabby Rivera.

-Elizabeth Webster

Other Nominated Titles:

  • Valiant Ladies by Melissa Grey
  • Love Radio by Ebony LaDelle
  • Home Field Advantage by Dahlia Adler
  • This Vicious Grace by Emily Thiede

The Selected Lists teams read throughout the year in search of the best titles published in their respective categories. Once a book is suggested (either internally or through the title suggestion form), it must pass through a review process to be designated an official nomination.

Each week, the teams feature a review of one of the officially nominated titles. Additional titles to receive this designation are listed as well. At year’s end, the team will curate a final list from all nominated titles and select a Top Ten.