Thank you to all those people on Goodreads that said this was a good option for Read Harder’s task 13, a book by or about someone that identifies as neurodiverse. Stella, one of the two protagonists, is autistic and has some opinions about how her “labels” affect her relationships with people. She’s one of my favorite female characters, fierce and sweet at the same time. Michael is the other protagonist and he’s pretty great too. I loved hearing from his POV as much as Stella’s.
As a romance with two POVs, the overall plot was fairly predictable but it was still a lot of fun along the way. That’s just real sometimes, especially in the case of a romance. I’m not usually one for romance, I prefer a romantic subplot, but a romance like this is still fun. Before this task, I hadn’t really thought about the diversity of romantic stories. There are lots of different ways that people come together and lots of different kinds of people to come together. This is no exception.
I would not normally have thought about people like Michael and Stella in the world of romances. They are gorgeous, as all romantic characters should be I guess. I mean, they should be gorgeous to each other and it doesn’t really matter what other think. I enjoyed getting both POVs on each other’s appearances. I especially enjoyed the cynical side of Michael. He wasn’t hateful or sexist or anything like that. He had experiences that informed his expectations on how things were gonna be and they were completely reasonable. So did Stella, for that matter, but she wasn’t cynical. She was hopeful and sweet. She was adorable and lovable. But she wasn’t this meek little girl that couldn’t stand on her own. She just sucks at interpersonal relationships.
My favorite thing about it is the growth arc of the characters. I don’t want to spoil anything, but I’ll just say that there were a lot of crappy places that this could go and Hoang avoided all of them. The only thing that I didn’t like in the whole book was this one little piece of the last page that annoyed me a little. It was not so much the scene itself or what was going on, but something one of them said that was a little much. It was correct to the situation, but also the kind of thing that seemed a little extra. Regardless, the overall book was great fun and a good reason to get into some more romances in the future.
Add The Kiss Quotient to your Goodreads TBR here.