Release Date: 24th June 2016
Genre: YA Contemporary
Source: I was sent this book for review by the wonderful people at Scholastic as part of this blog tour organised by Faye Rogers. This does not in any way affect my review or opinions of the book.
An inspiring, uplifting and sympathetic story about sexuality and self-acceptance, Lucy Sutcliffe’s debut memoir is a personal and moving coming out story. In 2010, at seventeen, Lucy Sutcliffe began an online friendship with Kaelyn, from Michigan. They began a long distance relationship, finally meeting in 2011. Lucy’s video montage of their first week spent together was the first in a series of vlogs documenting their long-distance relationship. Now, for the first time, Lucy’s writing about the incredible personal journey she’s been on.
I was so excited when the opportunity arose to be a part of the blog tour for this book. I am always looking for more LGBTQ+ reads and so when I was given the opportunity to review this book I immediately jumped at the chance! Thank you again to Scholastic for sending this to me and to Faye Rogers for organising the tour!
I had not heard of Lucy or her Youtube channel before being offered to be a part of the blog tour, but as soon as I read the synopsis of the book I knew I had to read it. Whilst waiting for it to arrive I watched a few of the videos on Lucy and Kaelyn’s channel and really warmed to them both as people, and couldn’t wait to read the book.
Girl Hearts Girl is Lucy’s debut memoir and takes us through significant points in her life, focusing on her confidence, anxiety, and most of all sexuality. The writing is very simple for most of the book as Lucy takes us swiftly through her life and her acceptance of herself, but there were a few descriptive passages that really stood out to me and I thought were very well written. Her voice is open and honest, and it’s written in a way that it feels like a friend is talking to you. It’s a very easy book to read and could easily be read in one sitting if you can put aside some time, and I do think it’s worth it.
Lucy doesn’t hold back in talking about her experiences and chronicles feeling different as a child to discovering her sexuality as an adult, the denial that comes with that, and her growth into self acceptance as an adult. I related to so many of Lucy’s experiences growing up and the confusion she felt, but I think that no matter what your sexuality or who you are, you will be able to relate to this book in some way. There are some beautiful messages in this book about self confidence and loving yourself, as well as discussion of the serious struggles the LGBTQIA+ community face today which are interwoven with Lucy’s personal experiences seamlessly.
I felt whilst reading this book that it was perhaps aimed at an audience slightly younger than myself, however this didn’t bother me. In fact, there were many times whilst reading it I thought how I wish I could give it to 16 year old me, and how it would’ve given the person I was then so much comfort and empowerment. Even as a slightly older reader Lucy’s story still touched me, made me laugh, made me cry but most of all gave me hope. It’s a book that celebrates diversity and being who you are which I think is such an important message for anyone of any age.
There is a tour-wide giveaway! 3 copies of Girl Hearts Girl for 3 lucky winners! Participants must live in the UK or Ireland.
About the Author
Co-star of the popular YouTube channel Kaelyn and Lucy which documented the long distance relationship she had with Kaelyn Petras. She and Kaelyn finally came together in August of 2014, ending the long distance element of their relationship.
She graduated from Plymouth College of Art and Design in 2014 with a degree in Film Arts
She works as a freelance film editor and author. She and Kaelyn’s channel mainly focuses on advice videos for LGBT youth.
She was born in Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire to parents Sharon and Roger Sutcliffe.
Check out the rest of the Blog Tour!
Girl Hearts Girl is out in all good bookshops now!